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Human Services study options

03 November 2023

Human Services at UC offers a range of undergraduate and postgraduate qualifications. With us you can choose a group of courses tailored to subject areas to make your study relevant to your chosen profession. Check out our Human Services study options.

Undergraduate study

There are two HSRV courses at 100-level. HSRV103 (Violence in Society) and HSRV104 (Youth Realities). Both these courses are the prerequisites for Human Services courses at 200-level.

At 200 and 300-levels our course topics are dynamic and contemporary, and closely related to staff research and practice interests. Courses at 200-level explore topics including communication, human behaviour, policy debates, gender sensitivity, culture, animal-human relationships, citizenship, indigeneity, sport, community development, family violence.

At 300-level students must take our core course HSRV301. This course offers a unique opportunity to gain research experience and integrate that experience with your theoretical knowledge.

Undergraduate courses in Human Services can be grouped into five subject areas to tailor your study:

This study area offers students the opportunity to explore understandings of ‘health’ and ‘wellbeing’ across diverse social, political, cultural, and economic contexts. To facilitate this analysis, topics covered across human services courses include:

The politics of ‘wellbeing’: health promotion, policies and practices 
The role of technologies in constructing understandings of wellbeing, lifestyle and illness  
How gender, ethnicity, ability, age, disability, healthism, class and sexuality shape how our bodies look, feel, and are viewed by others 
Sport, recreation and mindfulness
The different meanings and objectives of sport development 
The politics of active/recreational tourism
Animals and human health
Health tourism
High performance sport
Courses contributing to this area: HSRV104HSRV202HSRV208/318HSRV209HSRV211HSRV301, HSRV316HSRV311

This study area is designed to encourage students to think critically about various forms of, and responses to, violence, crime and deviance. To facilitate this, topics covered in human services courses include:

The gendered nature of crime and deviance and of responses to them
Green criminology and harms to the environment
Links between violence to humans and to other animals
Domestic and family violence
Violence by, and to, young people
State violence, oppression and social justice
Cyber violence, technologies and social media
Violence and work
Social and political violence
Sexual citizenship

Courses contributing to this area: HSRV103HSRV104HSRV202HSRV204HSRV212HSRV208/318HSRV209HSRV210/310HSRV301HSRV306HSRV311

This study area explores how we critically think about 'community' space, including how we construct and negotiate belonging, identity, creativity, politics and resources. To facilitate this, topics covered in human services courses include:

Digital communities
Environmental and social change
People and the spaces they inhabit
Sport and development
Collective action

Courses contributing to this area: HSRV104HSRV201HSRV204HSRV211, HSRV301HSRV316HSRV311

This study area enables students to develop in-depth knowledge about workers and workplaces. Courses critically explore changing contexts and structures of work; how work and the organisation of work impact people and communities. Topics covered in human services courses include: 

Impacts of local and global social movements
Work in community disaster contexts
Workplace bullying, harassment, and discrimination
Impact of technologies, insecurity of work, neoliberalisation, and the ‘greening’ of the workplace
Working with/for other animals
Work and healthy lives and bodies
Communication and work
Sex as work and sex at work
Sport organisations

Courses contributing to this area: HSRV103HSRV104HSRV202HSRV208/318HSRV209HSRV211HSRV301HSRV316HSRV311

This study area offers the opportunity to explore the social construction of youth and the worlds they inhabit. Topics covered across human services courses include:

Youth culture and identities
Social justice and activism
Healthy bodies, recreation and sport
Social and political participation
Youth offending and youth justice
Youth rights
Young people and animal relationships
Gender and sexuality
Education for young people
Employment and labour markets
Mental health and wellbeing
Actions sports and recreation 

Courses contributing to this area: HSRV103HSRV104HSRV202HSRV208/318HSRV209HSRV211HSRV301HSRV316HSRV311

Postgraduate study

Human Services offers a number of different postgraduate qualifications and tailored pathways to make your study relevant to your chosen profession.

The Graduate Diploma in Arts in Human Services offers people who already hold a bachelor's degree (such as a BA, BCom, BFA or BSc) an opportunity to complete a transitional qualification that will enable them to pursue postgraduate study in Human Services. Limited entry criteria apply.

The Head of School works with students as they enrol to develop a personalised course of study. Find out more about the Graduate Diploma in the Arts.

The Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Human Services is designed to provide people working within the human services with the knowledge and skills that will lead to positions in local, national, and global human service agencies, organisations, and government departments. The programme also prepares candidates for senior positions within these organisations.

The degree is made up of the compulsory core course, HSRV 401, and three other courses chosen from HSRV 402-425, as approved by the Head of School. Find out more about Honours in Human Services

The Master of Arts degree in Human Services consists of two parts: One year of coursework and then a thesis.

Part I: Four courses, comprising the compulsory core course, HSRV 401, and three other courses chosen from HSRV 402 - HSRV 425, as approved by the Head of School.

Part II: A thesis (HSRV 690).

Candidates require a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or bachelor's degree with a relevant graduate diploma. BA(Hons) graduates need only complete a thesis.


Entry requirements

Entry into Part I requires 12 points with a B average in courses at 300-level approved by the Head of School. A candidate who has completed 12 points at 300-level in unrelated courses with a B average may be required to complete a qualifying year. Candidates should consult the department to determine whether and to what extent their undergraduate work qualifies as related to Human Services.

Entry into Part II requires completion of Part I.

Candidates who have qualified BA (Hons) with at least Second Class Honours Division 2 may be admitted as candidates for the MA in Human Services for a course of study comprising a thesis only. Such candidates will be accepted subject to suitability of topic, disciplinary background and availability of supervision.

Find out more about the Master of Arts degree.

A PhD degree comprises an advanced course of study and research, presented in a thesis.

Candidates must have either a bachelors degree with first or second-class honours, or a masters degree with first or second-class honours or equivalent.

Candidates study for between two and four years full-time or three to seven years part time. A candidate must spend at least two years on advanced study and research. Most candidates find they need at least three years full-time work to complete a doctorate.

Consult the academic requirements and guidelines for PhD study.

Visit the Human Services subject page.


Scholarships and funding

A number of scholarships are available to students of Human Services. Visit the UC scholarships page to get help applying  or search the Scholarships database.

Interested in Human Services studies? Find out more

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