A career in social practice is a career of constant collaboration. Community developers, counsellors and social workers work together to improve people’s lives and reduce social injustice. It’s one reason social practice is such a blend of different disciplines. A combination of social work, counselling and community development, with input from sociology, political science, philosophy, psychology, indigenous and cultural studies, and organisational theory. It’s complex, challenging and it’s changing lives.
Study at the Department of Social Practice and you collaborate each day – with students of all ages, cultures and professional backgrounds, with lecturers who are experienced social practitioners themselves, and with key community and state-run organisations during your work experience.
Strong links with the community and not-for-profit sector are a strength. We are members of the Aotearoa New Zealand Association of Social Workers, the New Zealand Association of Counsellors and other industry organisations, and work closely with community organisations around New Zealand and the Pacific. Our staff have expertise in child advocacy, social work, counselling, refugee support, bi-culturalism, community development and mental health. We frequently also invite guest lecturers who are experts in their field.
It’s study that fits around your life – part-time study and block courses are part of many of our programmes. Study the Bachelor of Social Practice and you have two years to decide if you want to specialise in community development or social work. You only select your major in Year 3.
Our postgraduate programmes are fairly flexible too – you can cross-credit your certificate to a diploma, or your diploma to a masters degree. As a postgraduate student you can also choose the courses and research topics that are most relevant to you.
Social Practice programmes
If you're just starting out:
Bridgepoint foundation education programmes will get you ready to apply for certificate, diploma or degree level study. Find out more about Bridgepoint programmes on offer.
To prepare yourself for further study in social practice:
- Certificate in Community Skills – 1 semester full-time, pathway into the Bachelor of Social Practice, Graduate Diploma in Not-for-Profit Management or National Certificate in Mental Health.
If you want to work in community development:
- Bachelor of Social Practice (Community Development) – 3 years full-time, includes a practicum in a community organisation, first 2 years serve as an overview of the different social practice disciplines.
If you want to work in counselling:
- Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling – 18 months part-time, for students who have an undergraduate degree and work experience in social practice, emphasis on Narrative Therapy, leads to provisional membership of the New Zealand Association of Counsellors.
If you want a career as a social worker:
- Bachelor of Social Practice (Social Work) – 3 years full-time, includes a social work practicum, first 2 years serve as an overview of the different social practice disciplines.
If you already have work experience and an undergraduate degree in a field of social practice:
- Postgraduate Certificate in Social Practice – 1 semester full-time, trans-disciplinary.
- Postgraduate Diploma in Social Practice – 1 year full-time, trans-disciplinary.
- Postgraduate Diploma in Counselling – 18 months part-time, leads to provisional membership of the New Zealand Association of Counsellors.
- Master of Social Practice – 2 years full-time, includes a major research project on a topic of your choice, trans-disciplinary.
Last edited: 22 April 2013