There may be on campus intensives offered.Cloud (online)
To access your official course details for the year you started your degree, please visit the handbook
Sometimes children don’t have the words to express what they are feeling. Studying therapeutic child play at Deakin will give you additional skills to pursue your rewarding work with children and their families.
Deakin’s therapeutic play and child play therapy courses are the first of their kind offered by an Australian university. The Graduate Diploma of Therapeutic Child Play is taught by practiced teachers equipped with overseas teaching experience, and by pioneering academics in Australian child play therapy research.
The course is designed for medical, allied health, welfare, and education professionals who work in community based services with children, adolescents and families who have experienced developmental, emotional, trauma or events that result in or comprise a mental health issue or concern.
The role of play in lives of children will be explored with an introduction to the theories, models, and practices of therapeutic child play. You will learn how to assess and observe a child’s play behaviour, examining the behavioural characteristics present when children have a play deficit.
You will gain knowledge about children's development of play skills and coping, and consider the role of the practitioner in providing age appropriate play based experiences to children and young people.
This includes the study of several aspects of child development (cognitive, linguistic, social, emotional, biological, motor, moral, developmental disorders) from infancy to adolescence.
There will also be an exploration of childhood developmental neuroscience and psychopathology, covering a range of mental health issues such as post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), autism spectrum disorders, eating disorders, child abuse and bereavement.Read More
To complete the Graduate Diploma of Therapeutic Child Play students must attain 8 credit points comprising 7 core units (these are compulsory) plus 1 unit from the electives listed below.
Select one unit:
Campuses by intake
Campus availability varies per trimester. This means that a course offered in Trimester 1 may not be offered in the same location for Trimester 2 or 3. Read more to learn where this course will be offered throughout the year.
Trimester 1 - March
- Start date: March
- Available at:
- Cloud Campus
Trimester 2 - July
- Start date: July
- Available at:
- Cloud Campus - part time students only
Additional course information
Course duration - additional information
Course duration may be affected by delays in completing course requirements, such as accessing or completing work placements.
Mandatory Student Checks
In accordance with Department of Human Services policy, all students are required to undertake a National Police Record Check prior to clinical placements in each calendar year of their course.
In accordance with the Department of Justice 2007, Working with Children Act 2005, amended 2017, all students are required to undertake a Working with Children Check at the commencement of their course. Students who fail to obtain a Police Record Check and a Working with Children Check prior to the commencement of clinical placement will not be able to undertake clinical placement and this will impede progress in the course.
Students may also be required to declare their immunisation status to satisfy the requirements of health organisations where they will be undertaking their clinical learning experience. A health organisation may refuse to accept a student for placement if the student’s immunisation status is not satisfactory to the health organisation.
As a student in a Cloud (online) course in the Faculty of Health you will be expected to spend 8-10 hours per unit every week studying, interacting via CloudDeakin and completing assessment tasks for each unit in your course.
The course involves a compulsory clinical placement of 40 hours during Trimester 2. The placements may be undertaken in your local area.
Compulsory attendance is required at a four-day on-campus intensive placement workshop as well as the 40 hours in a professional placement and 10 hours of online clinical supervision.
Placement can occur at any time, including during standard holiday breaks listed here
The course includes a mandatory 1 credit point unit (HSO712), that requires students to undertake at least 40 hours of suitable practical experience. This experience may be in a school environment or community based play therapy clinic, where the student will be exposed to professional e.g. early childhood educators or health care professionals and associates carrying out their duties.
Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories. In all categories of admission, selection is based primarily on academic merit as indicated by an applicant's previous academic record.
All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements.
Entry will be based on performance in:
- a Bachelor Degree in any discipline
- a Graduate Certificate in any discipline
- at least three years of relevant work experience (or part-time equivalent)
For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library.
Fees and scholarships
Learn more about fees and your options for paying.
The available fee places for this course are detailed above.
Tuition fees are determined by your enrolment:
- If you are offered a full fee paying place, your tuition fees are calculated based on your course.
- If you are offered a Commonwealth supported place, your tuition fees are calculated depending on the units you choose. Not all courses at Deakin have Commonwealth supported places available.
The 'Estimated tuition fee' is provided as a guide only based on a typical enrolment of students completing the first year of this course. The cost will vary depending on the units you choose, your study load, the length of your course and any approved Credit for Prior Learning.
* One year full-time study load is typically represented by eight credit points of study. Each unit you enrol in has a credit point value. The 'Estimated tuition fee' is calculated by adding together 8 credit points of a typical combination of units for your course.
You can find the credit point value of each unit under the Unit Description by searching for the unit in the Handbook.
Learn more about fees and available payment options.
You may be eligible for the Government's FEE-HELP scheme. This scheme covers your tuition fees and can help make studying significantly more affordable.
It's similar to HECS-HELP, but designed for full-fee place courses. It doesn't matter how much you earn, you may still be eligible for FEE-HELP.
What is FEE-HELP?
FEE-HELP loans cover up to 100% of tuition fees for eligible students. By taking out a FEE-HELP loan, the government pays your tuition fees directly to Deakin, and the balance is repaid from your employment income - but only once you're earning over $51,956.
Estimate your FEE-HELP repayments
after FEE-HELP and tax
Your estimated FEE-HELP repayments
- $* is the total tuition fee for a Graduate Diploma of Therapeutic Child Play (8 credit points) at Deakin
- is the annual FEE-HELP payment, based on your current salary
- of your current salary be spent on FEE-HELP
- is how long it will take to pay off your FEE-HELP loan on your current salary
Deakin University (Deakin):
- gives no warranty and accepts no responsibility for the currency, accuracy or the completeness of the information provided;
- advises users that no reliance should be placed upon on the information provided, and;
- instructs users that they should confirm the actual course fee with Prospective Student Enquiries prior to enrolment.
This tool provides indicative information about the fees that will be payable in respect of courses and subjects offered to prospective students domiciled in Australia during the periods indicated.
Please note that the fees shown by the calculator are indicative only and actual fees may vary. Users are advised to confirm the actual course fee with Prospective Student Enquiries prior to enrolment.
The estimated course fee is based on the tuition fee costs applicable to a domestic full time student commencing the course in Trimester 1 and studying full time for the duration of the course but:
- does not include non-tuition costs that may apply, such as Student Services and Amenities Fees (SSAF);
- does not take into account any scholarships or bursaries awarded to the student (including the 15% Deakin Alumni Postgraduate Course Fee Bursary);
- assumes the maximum number of units that need to be successfully completed actual number completed may be reduced if Credit for Prior Learning is granted;
- assumes that no exceptional, or non-typical, circumstances apply to the proposed course of study;
- assumes that the options that the user selects are appropriate for the course of study that they intend to undertake;
- where fees are estimated for future years those fee will be subject to annual increases in accordance with increases in the cost of course delivery.
A Deakin scholarship might change your life. If you've got something special to offer Deakin – or you just need the financial help to get you here – we may have a scholarship opportunity for you.
If you’re a Deakin alumni commencing a postgraduate award course, you may be eligible to receive a 15% reduction per unit on your enrolment fees. Your spouse and members of your immediate family may also be eligible to apply for this bursary.
Graduates will be eligible to work in professional healthcare teams, in individual private practice, and in a range of health, education and community contexts.
The Master course H705 Master of Child Play Therapy leads to professional recognition. This Postgraduate Diploma is a skills enhancement program that supports practitioners to engage new learning and enhance their existing skills.
Note: All information regarding professional recognition is accurate at the date of publication. Enquiries regarding accreditation and professional membership should be directed to the School of Health and Social Development in order to ascertain the current status of accreditation at any future point in time beyond publication. Representations about accreditation apply only to the course, and the relevant professional body retains discretion as to who they admit as members of their association. Deakin University cannot exercise any control over membership of an external body.
Course learning outcomes
Deakin's graduate learning outcomes describe the knowledge and capabilities graduates can demonstrate at the completion of their course. These outcomes mean that regardless of the Deakin course you undertake, you can rest assured your degree will teach you the skills and professional attributes that employers value. They'll set you up to learn and work effectively in the future.
Graduate Learning Outcomes
Course Learning Outcomes
Discipline Specific knowledge and capabilities
Integrate knowledge of attachment, child development, neuroscience and psychopathology to design, implement and scaffold a therapeutic child play intervention.
Demonstrate verbal, written and interpersonal communication skills necessary to convey ideas, proposals and findings, pertaining to therapeutic child play to a variety of audiences.
Use appropriate technologies to find, use and disseminate information; and use technologies consistent with ethico-legal requirements for the management of personal information and clinical record keeping.
Demonstrate an ethical research approach to identify, analyse and critically evaluate evidenced-based practice integrated with relevant literature.
Apply knowledge and skills to assess, plan, implement, evaluate a therapeutic treatment plan or refer to a Child Play Therapist or other Practitioner.
Demonstrate personal autonomy and professional judgement in the field of therapeutic child play showing responsibility and accountability, in conjunction with reflective and ethical practice.
Establish and maintain collaborative professional relationships demonstrating responsibility and accountability to the child, family and carers.
Demonstrate professional and ethical practice and respect for diverse social, cultural and environmental contexts that may impact children and families.
How to apply
For more information on the application process and closing dates, see the How to apply webpage. If you're still having problems, please contact us for assistance.
Please complete the Register your interest form to receive further information about our direct application opportunities.
Credit for prior learning
Students may be eligible to apply for credit for this course.
Pathways for credit are available for this course. Details of institutional credit agreements are published in the CPL database.
Students who complete the following courses will be guaranteed a place in the course and receive credit as specified:
Graduate Certificate of Therapeutic Child Play, 4 credit points
Faculty contact information
Health - Student and Academic Services
Tel 03 9251 7777