SOWK611-23S2 (D) Semester Two 2023 (Distance)

Human Behaviour and Mental Health

15 points

Start Date: Monday, 17 July 2023
End Date: Sunday, 12 November 2023
Withdrawal Dates
Last Day to withdraw from this course:
  • Without financial penalty (full fee refund): Sunday, 30 July 2023
  • Without academic penalty (including no fee refund): Sunday, 1 October 2023


This course builds on students’ foundation knowledge of human behaviour and social work theory and methods. Mental health is studied by examining notions of mental health and mental illness, and then introducing the major classifications. The topic is explored within the context of a developmental ecological, evolutionary and Maori perspectives. Implications for working in multi-disciplinary teams, within mental health services or associated services, as a social work practitioner, are foundational features of this course. Teaching methods include reflective/reflexive group process and an independent learning project.

Learning Outcomes

  • To demonstrate an awareness of the origins of mental health practices and key shifts in practices, policy, protocols, and expectations in responding to mental ill health
  • To demonstrate foundational knowledge about major areas of mental disorder, including knowledge of key theories, diagnostic criteria and evidence-based treatments.  
  • To show awareness of the reciprocal impacts of these disorders on the individual, family/whānau and communities.  
  • To demonstrate foundational awareness of the impacts of inequality, oppression and stigma on developmental issues and mental health and illness.  
  • To articulate awareness of indigenous approaches to mental health and illness and critically reflect on the relevance of bicultural and diverse cultural contexts to practice in mental health.
  • To articulate the relevance and applicability of mental health knowledge to social work practice in Aotearoa, and the contribution of social workers in this multidisciplinary field.  
  • To understand the potential impact of trauma work on the mental health and wellbeing of the worker and an awareness of ways to prevent or manage this.  
  • To undertake literature searches and assess the relevance of mental health data, reports, and literature to topics under consideration.
    • University Graduate Attributes

      This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attributes specified below:

      Critically competent in a core academic discipline of their award

      Students know and can critically evaluate and, where applicable, apply this knowledge to topics/issues within their majoring subject.

      Employable, innovative and enterprising

      Students will develop key skills and attributes sought by employers that can be used in a range of applications.

      Biculturally competent and confident

      Students will be aware of and understand the nature of biculturalism in Aotearoa New Zealand, and its relevance to their area of study and/or their degree.

      Engaged with the community

      Students will have observed and understood a culture within a community by reflecting on their own performance and experiences within that community.

      Globally aware

      Students will comprehend the influence of global conditions on their discipline and will be competent in engaging with global and multi-cultural contexts.


Subject to approval of the Head of Department.


Timetable 2023

Students must attend one activity from each section.

Online A
Activity Day Time Location Weeks
01 Wednesday 16:00 - 17:00 Online Delivery
17 Jul - 27 Aug
11 Sep - 22 Oct


Letitia Meadows


Assessment Due Date Percentage 
Online Posts 30%
Topic and Outline 03 Aug 2020 15%
Literature Review and References 07 Sep 2020 20%
Intervention Plan 05 Oct 2020 35%

Textbooks / Resources

There is no textbook for this course. Readings relevant to the course will be placed on AKO|LEARN.

Indicative Fees

Domestic fee $995.00

* All fees are inclusive of NZ GST or any equivalent overseas tax, and do not include any programme level discount or additional course-related expenses.

For further information see Language, Social and Political Sciences .

All SOWK611 Occurrences

  • SOWK611-23S2 (D) Semester Two 2023 (Distance)