Master of Social Work

Course information for - 2021 entry

Offered at 3 locations

Study mode
2 years full-time or equivalent part-time
7.0 overall score (with a minimum score of 7.0 in all bands)
Fees (first year)*
Start dates
February 2022



The Master of Social Work is a vibrant and challenging program. You will be encouraged to build on your existing knowledge and experience, and gain a sound understanding of social work values and practice approaches. The course emphasises social justice, human rights, and achieving the best possible outcomes for the most marginalised and disadvantaged members of our community. You will be taught by leading social work practitioners and academics, with a strong focus on experiential learning.


Professional experience

You will be required to complete 1,000 hours of supervised field education and training over two years.

Work placement

ACU has strong industry ties with hospitals for placements and significant stakeholder engagement with many health partners.

Students are placed in a variety of different locations to give them experience in various settings. Locations and settings include: community mental health; CatholicCare; Life Without Barriers; Mission Australia; St Vincent’s Hospital; Department of Family and Community Services; Queensland Child Safety; Centrelink. Students may have some flexibility in choosing where you want to do your placements.

Field education is a core element of the program and a major part of your professional identity development. It provides an opportunity for you to observe, question and model social work behaviours, translate social work theory into practice, and apply knowledge drawn from other units of study.


This is an Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) accredited qualification. It is an entry qualification into the social work profession and meets the Australian Social Work Education and Accreditation Standards (ASWEAS).



Social workers may also work in different areas of practice, including:

  • family work
  • youth and child welfare services
  • medical and health services
  • disability services
  • psychiatric and general mental health
  • community services
  • aged care
  • income support
  • mediation
  • research 

Course details

Course structure

To complete the Master of Social Work, a student must complete 160 credit points (cp).

View course rules

Sample program map

Year - Study periodUnit 1Unit 2Unit 3Unit 4Unit 5
Year 1 - Semester 1

SWTP632 Social Work Law and Policy

SWTP620 Social Work Theory and Ethics

SWTP622 Social Work with Individuals

SWTP633 Social Work and Mental Health

Year 1 - Semester 2

SWTP624 Social Work with Children, Youth and Family

SWTP625 Field Practicum 1

(Pre: SWTP620 Social Work Theory and Ethics , SWTP622 Social Work with Individuals , SWTP633 Social Work and Mental Health )

Year 2 - Semester 1

SWTP634 Cross Cultural Social Work

(Pre: SWTP620 Social Work Theory and Ethics , SWTP622 Social Work with Individuals )

SWTP627 Social Work with Communities

(Pre: SWTP632 Social Work Law and Policy )

SWTP626 Social Work with Groups

(Pre: SWTP620 Social Work Theory and Ethics , SWTP622 Social Work with Individuals )

SWTP629 Social Work Research

Year 2 - Semester 2

SWTP630 Social Work Special Studies

(Pre: Complete Year 1)

SWTP631 Field Practicum 2

(Pre: SWTP625 Field Practicum 1 , SWTP626 Social Work with Groups , SWTP627 Social Work with Communities , SWTP629 Social Work Research , SWTP634 Cross Cultural Social Work )


‘Pre:’ – indicates a unit that must be completed before the next unit can be undertaken (prerequisite).

A blank cell indicates that there are no additional units required for that study period.

This is a sample program only and units will vary between states. Please refer to the handbook for the prerequisite units and the current listing.

AQF framework

Masters (Coursework) - AQF Level 9

Entry requirements

International applicants

To be eligible for admission to the course, applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree from a recognised university which includes a minimum of 8 units (2 full-semesters) of study in the social sciences.

These units may include psychology, sociology, anthropology, policy studies, history, law, health and disability, technology, philosophy, indigenous studies, culture and human diversity, media study, gender studies, social theory and population studies.

The undergraduate degree must have at least one unit in human behaviour AND one unit in sociology.

International students must have completed the above prerequisites, they must also comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy and require an academic IELTS minimum overall score of 7.0 (with a minimum score of 7.0 in all bands), or an equivalent acceptable test score as outlined in the Admission Coursework Programs Policy(Schedule 3).

English language requirements

Applicants require an academic IELTS minimum overall score of 7.0 (with a minimum score of 7.0 in all bands), or an equivalent acceptable test score as outlined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy (Schedule 3).

Inherent requirement

There are essential components of a course or unit that demonstrate the capabilities, knowledge and skills to achieve the core learning outcomes of the course or unit. Learn more about inherent requirements and how they affect you, and explore the requirements for your course.


Further study

Graduates may be eligible to progress to higher degree research programs within ACU.


Course costs

  • Unit fee: $3013
  • Average first year fee: $24104
  • Estimate total cost: $48208

The Tuition fees quoted above are for commencing students in the current year who undertake a normal full-time load. The Unit Fee is based on a 10cp unit. Fees are reviewed annually.

Tuition fees for continuing students may increase by up to 3 percent each year for the minimum duration of the course as provided on your electronic Confirmation of Enrolment (eCOE). Students who continue to study beyond the minimum duration will have the relevant annual commencing rate applied to their fees for subsequent study periods.

Payment options

You should be able to concentrate on getting good marks instead of worrying about how you’ll pay your fees. We have a number of options that can help you ease the financial burden, including government assistance, scholarships and income support. 

Explore your options 


You could be eligible for one of the hundreds of scholarships we award each year to help students from across the university with the cost of studying, accommodation or overseas study opportunities. Some of our scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit, but these aren’t just for the academically gifted; ACU also recognises excellence in community engagement and leadership. We also offer a range of scholarships for those who may be struggling financially or who have faced other barriers to accessing education.  

Search our scholarships 

How to apply

International applicants

Direct Application

Apply now


Yes. See Defer your offer.

Students with a Student Visa will need to complete the program in minimum duration, study at least one subject on-campus each semester and must not undertake more than 33% of the program online.


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