Community health services and social development


Establish a rewarding career in the community health sector. Learn how to address broad health and social challenges, while empowering others to live happier, healthier lives.

Explore your study options

Community health workers provide health and social welfare support across a wide range of services and roles. Our courses equip you with the skills to sensitively support individuals, families and groups, based on their unique circumstances.


Undergraduate (your first degree)

An undergraduate degree is generally completed between two to four years, depending on the pattern of study and any recognition of prior learning you may have. Associate degrees, bachelor and bachelor with honours are all undergraduate degrees.


Postgraduate (further study)

A postgraduate qualification can be undertaken by students who have already completed an undergraduate degree or possess significant, demonstrable work experience. Postgraduate courses include graduate certificates, graduate diplomas, masters and PhDs, as well as specialist programs for industry professionals.


Higher Degrees by Research (supervised research)

Research degrees are research based master’s or PhD programs that focus on a single area of expertise. They provide students the opportunity to carry out highly specialised research under expert supervision.

Download our study area guide

Study at Deakin and be rewarded with new skills that will give you an edge in the job market

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Choose a degree that will get you work ready

Graduate ready to pursue the diverse and rewarding pathways available in community health services and social development. You’ll be equipped with industry-informed knowledge and extensive experience, preparing you for a career in the booming health and social assistance sector.

Gain industry experience

Many of our courses offer embedded work-integrated learning opportunities, allowing you to build experience and establish vital networks while you study. These practical learning and placement opportunities mean you’ll graduate highly skilled and work ready.

A multidisciplinary approach

Throughout your degree, you’ll be exposed to complementary health streams. Develop an understanding of the expertise and roles of different health professionals who you might find yourself working alongside in your future career.

Take the next step to a brighter future

Explore our community health services and social development courses and find out more about life at Deakin. Get more inspiration for your future career in a major growth sector.

Download study area guide

Professional recognition

Boost your career options with professional accreditations and recognition. Depending on your course or major, you may be eligible for registration with Australian and global bodies, including:

  • Australian Association of Social Workers
  • Australasian College of Health Service Management
  • International Union for Health Promotion and Education
  • Australian Counselling Association
  • Psychotherapy and Counselling Federation of Australia.

Top professional roles in community health

Be part of Australia’s largest employment sector and drive positive health and wellbeing outcomes at a community level. Roles in the healthcare and social assistance sector are projected to grow by 257,300 new jobs or 12.1% by 2028 according to Australian Government employment projections.*

  • 28,300 for social and welfare professionals
  • 14,600 for health diagnostic and promotion professionals
  • 5,700 new jobs for health and welfare services managers
  • 6,900 new jobs for social workers
  • 3,900 for occupational and environmental health professionals.

Graduate with an employment advantage

Our health courses are shaped by industry experts, designed to equip you with practical skills and experience to prepare you for your future career. Graduate job-ready with a degree from Victoria’s #1 university for course satisfaction.^

I benefitted personally from the great information I learned from course content and the personal growth I found out about myself whilst studying and undertaking this course.

Angus Kerr

Bachelor of Social Work

World-class teaching experiences

By studying community health at Deakin, you’ll be immersed in world-leading research, while enjoying access to exceptional learning facilities and resources.

Leading research

Our research is making a difference across the health spectrum and feeds directly into the development of our courses. You’ll graduate with a contemporary knowledge of health and social welfare trends, preparing you for the dynamic scenarios you’ll encounter as a professional.

Learn Auslan

Open new communication opportunities by learning Australian Sign Language (Auslan). We offer Auslan units at undergraduate and postgraduate level, which you may be able to study as part of a major sequence or as an elective depending on your course.

Expand your horizons

Experience a different culture and learn about international health perspectives by completing an overseas experience. You may have the option to join a study tour, exchange program, or complete an international internship, to count as credit towards your degree.

Want to explore more?

If you're dreaming of an exciting and rewarding career in community health services and social development, we'll help get you there.

  • Which health degree is right for you?
  • Which postgraduate health course is for you?
  • How to become a social worker and advocate for change

Which health degree is right for you?

Want to study health but don’t know where to start? There are many options to consider when it comes to choosing which health degree is right for you.

Read more

Which postgraduate health course is for you?

Keen to take the next step in your health career and expand your skills with a masters degree? Learn which Deakin health course is right for you.

Read more

How to become a social worker and advocate for change

A degree in social work enables you to pursue a wide range of meaningful career paths and opens up a world of opportunity.

Read more


*Jobs and Skills Australia, Employment Projections 2023 - 2028
^Australian Graduate Survey 2010–2015, Graduate Outcomes Survey 2016–2022, Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT)

Deakin references data from a range of government, higher education and reputable media sources. For more information, visit our list of sources.

Contact us

Got a question about our community health and social development courses? Our expert advisers are available to speak to you about your study options and how we can help you further your career.

Domestic students
1800 693 888
Enquire online

International students
+61 3 9034 6205
Enquire online