Course Outline

SCS730 Advanced Social Work Theories for Practice

Course Coordinator:Dimitra Lattas ( School:School of Law and Society

2023Semester 1

UniSC Sunshine Coast

UniSC Moreton Bay

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Please go to for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?


This course provides you with an overview and exploration of a range of theories which inform social work practice. You will develop an understanding of social work theory to develop skills in applying theory to understand and intervene with individuals, communities and society. You will further extend your practice philosophy and skills within these theoretical frameworks. You will be challenged to integrate your own personal perspective and societal influences when applying theoretical concepts to specific practice contexts and understand the implications of these for practices.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Learning materials – A variety of materials will be presented for 1 hour per week (online) for students to complete in own time. 1hr Week 1 13 times
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – On campus tutorial 2hrs Week 2 13 times

Course Topics

  • Understanding of theories
  • Models and perspectives
  • Micro theories of practices
  • Macro theories of practices
  • Application of theory to practice

What level is this course?

700 Level (Specialised)

Demonstrating a specialised body of knowledge and set of skills for professional practice or further learning. Advanced application of knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Mapping Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming... Professional Standard Mapping * Australian Association of Social Workers
1 Identify, discuss and apply theoretical concepts to specific practice contexts and understand the implications of these for practice Knowledgeable
Creative and critical thinker
4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4
2 Engage with the process of self-reflection and describe how your own environment, beliefs, values and worldviews your role as a social worker. Knowledgeable
4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 5, 5.2, 5.4, 6.3
3 Examine recent developments in social theory and apply these understandings to how they can contribute to transforming society in a more just, participatory and sustainable direction. Creative and critical thinker
3, 3.1, 4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.4, 5, 5.2, 5.4
4 Apply your knowledge of theory to a particular case study. Knowledgeable
Creative and critical thinker
1.2, 2, 3, 4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 5, 5.1, 5.4, 6, 6.4, 7, 7.1
5 Demonstrate emerging professional verbal and written communication skills Knowledgeable
Creative and critical thinker
1.1, 1.2, 4, 4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4, 5, 6, 7, 7.1

* Competencies by Professional Body

Australian Association of Social Workers
1.1 Practise in accordance with the AASW Code of Ethics
1.2 Manage ethical dilemmas and issues arising in practice
2 Professionalism
3 Culturally responsive and inclusive practice
3.1 Work inclusively and respectfully with cultural difference and diversity
4 Knowledge for practice
4.1 Understand higher level systemic influences on people with respect to area of practice
4.2 Understand and articulate social work and other relevant theories and concepts
4.3 Understand the role of research and evaluation in obtaining and generating new knowledge for practice
4.4 Understand and articulate how and when theories, knowledge bases and knowledge sources inform practice
5 Applying knowledge to practice
5.1 Assess and analyse needs to inform practice
5.2 Work collaboratively
5.4 Apply critical and reflective thinking to practice
6 Communication and interpersonal skills
6.3 Work with others in a team environment
6.4 Use information technology to communicate and provide services
7 Information recording and sharing
7.1 Record and manage information appropriately

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the UniSC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.


Enrolled in any postgraduate program


Not applicable


Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

The in-class activities commencing in the tutorials and will entail early feedback on your comprehension of the learning materials in this course.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Activity Participation Individual 10%
13 weeks
Throughout teaching period (refer to Format) In Class
All 2 Quiz/zes Individual 20%
1 hour
Throughout teaching period (refer to Format) Online Test (Quiz)
All 3 Artefact - Professional, and Written Piece Individual and Group 30%
750 words equivalent
Week 5 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All 4 Case Study Individual 40%
2000 words
Week 13 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All - Assessment Task 1:Tutorial Attendance and Participation
AASW external accreditation requires mandatory attendance for skills based tutorials. Students must attend weekly tutorials and actively participate in all tutorial activities.
Product: Activity Participation
Tutorial attendance will be recorded to meet external AASW accreditation requirements. Student participation and engagement in tutorial activities assessed based upon attendance and participation across 13 tutorials.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Attendance and engagement in activities
Demonstrate engagement with course content.
1 5
All - Assessment Task 2:Online Quiz/zes
The goal is to demonstrate a clear understanding of course concepts and learning materials.
Product: Quiz/zes
Online quizzes throughout the semester. Details of quizzes will be provided to students on Canvas.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Identification of critical theoretical terms employed in the analysis of power, oppression and emancipatory social alternatives
Application of social theories- discussion in tutorials and learning activities.
Communication and understanding of key terms in social work theories
1 3
All - Assessment Task 3:Eco-Map and Critical Reflection
The goal of this assessment task is to apply social work theories and an ecological perspective to develop an Eco-map reflecting on factors across the various levels/systems.
Product: Artefact - Professional, and Written Piece
This task will be a group eco-map presentation in class and an individual written critical reflection.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Development of an Eco-map
1 4 5
Explanation and application of relevant concepts from social work theories.
1 2 4 5
Critical analysis of social work theories to provide a broader and more critical understanding of a issues and application to social work practice
1 2 4 5
Effective professional communication in oral and written format.
2 5
All - Assessment Task 4:Case Study Analysis
The goal of this task is to demonstrate a critical understanding of course materials in relation to a multidimensional case assessment.
Product: Case Study
A written application and critical analysis of course materials and the demonstration of the application of various theoretical and evidence-based concepts to a case study.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Demonstrate and apply an advanced and accurate knowledge of the relevant concepts and theories to social work practice.
1 3 4
Critical self-refection of how one's own worldview impacts your role as social worker
Logical and compelling arguments - based on your critical analysis and relevant academic evidence.
1 3
Clear professional written communication, including grammar and APA7th referencing.

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

There are no required/recommended resources for this course.

Specific requirements


How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct.

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks may be penalised at the following maximum rate: 
- 5% (of the assessment task's identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- 10% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the third day - 20% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted after seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late. To request an extension you must contact your course coordinator to negotiate an outcome.


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The SafeUSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or

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Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Administration of Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Academic Misconduct
  • Students with a Disability

For more information, visit

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General Enquiries

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