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Monash University

Graduate Diploma in Civil Ceremonies

Course code: 2157 ~ Course abbreviation: GradDipCivCer ~ Total credit points required: 48 ~ 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time ~ Managing faculty: Arts

Study mode and course location

On-campus (Caulfield)

Off-campus (Clayton)

Multimode (Caulfield)

Course description

In addition to providing an understanding of cultural variation and sensitivities in public statements of lifecycle events, this course prepares celebrants to plan and conduct public ceremonies of grief, such as funerals, and ceremonies of recognition, such as weddings, namings and majority. The course is designed to provide the training required to practise as a civil celebrant in Australia.

Course objectives

Students completing this course will have: 1. an understanding of diverse aspects of the academic discipline; 2. an understanding of the world view of the field of study; 3. a familiarity with the secondary literature in the field of study; 4. a familiarity with many of the key texts and cultural products pertaining to the field of study; 5. advanced reading and communication skills, both written and verbal; 6. developed sound analytical skills; 7. developed the ability to use relevant technology such as databases, information management systems and search engines effectively.

Course structure

Course requirements

Students complete 48 points. All units are offered face-to-face at Caulfield and via off-campus learning:

  • CVL4010 Rites of passage: culture and celebrating life cycle events
  • CVL4020 Life cycle events: literature, music and life stories
  • CVL4030 Celebrant and client: legal, ethical and personal issues
  • CVL4040 Professional celebration of rites of passage

As each unit in the Graduate Diploma in Civil Ceremonies has an assessment component in performance and presentation skills, all students must present a video tape or DVD of the activity to be assessed.

Exit points

There are no alternative exit points from this course.


For further study options please contact the School of Historical Studies or visit

Course coordinator

Judy McNicoll