Social Work in Psychiatric Disability

Subject SCWK90037 (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2011.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 hours (8 x 3 hour seminars)
Total Time Commitment:

24 contact hours

16 hours of class preparation and reading

24 hours of assessment related tasks

= 64 hours total time commitment

= 8 hours total time per week


Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements: It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student’s participation in the University’s courses. Students who think their disability will impact on meeting this requirement are encouraged to discuss this matter with the Course Coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Social Work
Melbourne School of Health Sciences
The University of Melbourne
Level 5, 234 Queensberry St
Carlton Victoria 3010 AUSTRALIA
T: +61 3 8344 9400
F: +61 3 9347 4375

Subject Overview:

This subject aims to provide students with a knowledge of psychiatric disability and the principles and practices involved in the Psychiatric Disability Rehabilitation and Support Services Sector . This community sector is fast becoming known for its innovation and excellence in practice. Attention will be placed on policies, consumer participation, gender issues and differing service types. Seminar presenters include:

  • People with a serious mental illness (consumers of the services in the sector)
  • Social Work Clinicians
  • Psychiatric Disability Rehabilitation Support Service workers

Some seminars will be held in the field, visiting at least two different services.

Objectives: Subject objectives
  • To develop an understanding of the major policies, strategies, service standards and legislation relating to psychiatric services and in particular psychiatric disability rehabilitation and support services
  • To develop knowledge of the underlying philosophies and values such as consumer directed services, empowerment and the concept of recovery
  • To develop understanding of the theory and principles underpinning the delivery of services from psychiatric disability rehabilitation and support agencies
  • To develop an understanding of the network of service types, different ways services are delivered and a knowledge of good practices in service provision
  1. A written essay 5,000 words (100%) - due end of semester OR
  2. A 2,500 word written essay (70%) and 10 minute oral presentation (30%)
Prescribed Texts: A reading pack will be available
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • critically analyse texts and practices;
  • understand recent developments in social work contexts of practice;
  • link theory to practice;
  • competently communicate in ways relevant to both academic and practice contexts;
  • undertake independent research.
Links to further information:
Related Course(s): Master of Advanced Social Work
Master of Social Work

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