SWK4031 - Working with complexity - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

Department of Social Work

Chief examiner(s)

Melissa Petrakis


Rachel Averbukh

Unit guides



  • First semester 2019 (Off-campus)
  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)
  • Second semester 2019 (Off-campus)
  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


Must be enrolled in one of the following course codes: 0004, 3426, 3864, 3870, 3964, 3965, M20022


SWK4032Not offered in 2019


This unit uses a range of case studies to assist the student in working through the complex issues faced by many social work clients. The unit asks the students to reflect on their knowledge and theory to draw upon appropriate assessment and intervention techniques for a range of social work situation.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Develop the ability to critically reflect on their own values and how this impacts on social work practice.
  2. Develop an understanding and appreciation of the depth and complexity of use of self in professional practice.
  3. Develop an understanding of complexity in areas such as but not limited to ageing, cultural and linguistic diversity, class, family dysfunction, violence, poverty and disability.
  4. Develop an understanding of theoretical approaches and models of practice to be able to respond to the complexity of diversity in social work practice.
  5. Develop a framework for dealing with complexity in social work and the ability to develop appropriate strategies and interventions.


  • Assignment 1 (1,500 words) (40%)
  • Assignment 2 (3,000 words) (60%)

Workload requirements

Sem 1: 12 weeks - 3 hours per week (normal semester time)

Sem 2 (intensive on-campus): 4-5.5 hours per week over 6 weeks, 20 hours self-directed study per week.

See also Unit timetable information

Off-campus attendance requirements

Off-campus students are expected to undertake 144 hours per semester in private study, completing readings and other tasks as outlined on the Blackboard site in the off-campus Unit Guide, and to complete three assignment tasks.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: