1 x 40-hour intensive workshop per semester
6 x 2-hour on-line exercises per semester
1 Admission into MSWGE-Master of Social Work (Graduate Entry)
2 2 of SOAD9060, SOAD9102
3 Admission into MSWQS-Master of Social Work (Qualified Social Worker Entry)
Must Satisfy: ((1 and 2) or (3))
Course context
Master of Social Work
Topic description
This topic introduces students to the values, ethics and competencies required to work in culturally respectful ways with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and relevant policy makers and service providers. The learning process aims to increase student's awareness of self and the complexity of social and emotional wellbeing (SEWB) issues facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities today. Students will critically reflect on the ways that non-Aboriginal people and social policies have contributed to contemporary challenges, reflecting on how to develop alternative ways that promote respect and genuine collaboration with Aboriginal and Islander people, families and communities. Interpersonal communication skills are focussed on, particularly those relating to engagement of diverse populations through reflective listening and the critical use of self.
Educational aims
This topic aims to:
  • explore the meaning of the term 'Social and Emotional Wellbeing' (SEWB) and how ethical social work practice with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, families and communities needs to demonstrate this holistic approach.
  • increase students' knowledge of the effects of past social policies and colonisation, in particular the assimilation era policies, on the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, families and communities;
  • focus analysis on the nature and effects of racism on Aboriginal and Torrest Strait Islander people, perpetrated by individuals, groups, institutions and governments
  • Focus analysis on the power dynamics of white privilege and Indigenous oppression as they unfold in diverse situations, including social work history, education and contemporary practice;
  • explain and demonstrate how narrative circular questioning processes and the skill of deep reflective listening can assist effective relationship building between social workers and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, families and communities
  • Allow students to practice reflective listening and use these processes to inform assessments and interventions.
Expected learning outcomes
On successful completion of this topic students should be able to:
  • Summarise the major demographic, cultural and social characteristics of contemporary Indigenous societies and cultures and recognise the diversity of these societies
  • Recognise and describe the significance of colonial history on current social policies and practices in Australia that involve Indigenous people;
  • Articulate the impacts of colonisation on Indigenous cultures and people within human rights and social justice frameworks, critically reflecting on the potential implications of white privilege and Indigenous oppression for contemporary practice;
  • Identify the key factors in working ethically and holistically with Indigenous clients, families and communities, taking account of their emotional and social wellbeing;
  • Demonstrate familiarity with some of the major issues and strategies relevant to working effectively in collaboration with colleagues and clients from the Indigenous community; and
  • Demonstrate the ability to engage in reflective listening processes that inform interventions.