Start date


3 year(s) full-time


Program Code


Assumed Knowledge

AUD$ 30,900 per annum (per 1.0 EFTSL) for students enrolled in 2024
AUD$ 32,800 per annum (per 1.0 EFTSL) for students enrolled in 2025

English Language Requirements
  • IELTS total [6.0]
  • IELTS reading [6.0]
  • IELTS writing [6.0]
Equivalent English qualifications (PDF)

International Admission by Country
See full entry requirements


Degree overview

  • Study with the Top 10 University in Australia for graduate careers in Social Sciences1.
  • Join the Top 5 University in Australia for student satisfaction in Social Sciences2.
  • Get hands-on experience and build pivotal networks with 560 hours of supervised field education placements.
  • Benefit from flexible study options, with internal (in-person) and external (online) learning available.
  • Work alongside practitioners and highly skilled academic staff in simulated real-world scenarios.
  • Learn from world-class research in Sociology and Social Work3.
  • Use this degree as a pathway to further learning, including the Master of Social Work.
  • This degree is nationally recognised by the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA).

1ComparED (QILT) Graduate Outcomes Survey 2021-23, Humanities, Culture and Social Sciences – Full-time Employment Indicator (Domestic Postgraduate). SA public universities. 2Ranked #3, ComparED (QILT) Course Experience Questionnaire 2021-22, Humanities, Culture and Social Sciences – Overall Satisfaction Indicator (Domestic Undergraduate). Public universities.32018 Excellence in Research for Australia (ERA). 



This degree provides a framework for understanding the notions of critical disability studies, ableism, ageism and as well as capacities to support individuals living with disability and utilising support networks to live their optimum life.

You will develop a broad and coherent body of knowledge of human service practice, with in-depth understanding in the underlying principles and concepts of:

  • ethical practice
  • social and emotional development and wellbeing, community engagement and promoting independence
  • policy, legislation and programs to support social value and optimal wellbeing.

In addition to this you will also get practical experience as part of the degree’s field education placement component. This is a valuable learning opportunity where you will build industry networks and further enhance your practical skills. 

What you'll need

Students studying this degree will be required to undertake Criminal History Checks through the Department of Human Services (DHS), a National Police Record Check, and complete a one-day Safe Environments for Children and Young People course prior to being accepted for work placements. Some placements may also require students to hold a current driver's licence and or additional requirements as requested by a specific placement provider

What you'll learn

What you Learn

You will apply a broad and coherent body of knowledge of political, behavioural and social sciences in a range of ageing and disability focused human service contexts.

You will develop in-depth knowledge of policy and apply it by:

  • navigating major systems such as the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and My Aged Care policies
  • informing social policy development
  • enhancing service provisions
  • promoting social inclusion within the ageing and disability sectors.

You will explore diverse scenarios and learn how to effectively manage challenging situations during on-campus sessions in our state-of-the-art Social Work and Human Services Studios. You will then get the opportunity to practice these skills when you complete 560 hours of work placements during your final year of study.

Degree structure

Course name Area and cat no. Units Reference  
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Human Service Provision WELF 1014 4.5
Communication Skills in Social Work and Human Services WELF 1019 4.5
The Social World SOCU 1003 4.5
Language and Communication in Applied Linguistics LANG 1062 4.5
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Governance and Citizenship in Australia POLI 1008 4.5
Group Work BEHL 2009 4.5
Applied Psychology BEHL 1005 4.5
Lifespan Development and Diversity WELF 1021 4.5
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Human Service Intervention WELF 2012 4.5
Australian Social Policy POLI 1012 4.5
Interviewing Skills in Social Work and Human Services WELF 2020 4.5
Elective 4.5 Note(s): 3
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Mental Health and Mental Wellbeing WELF 2019 4.5
The Social Construction of Ageing and Disability WELF 2024 4.5
Aboriginal Australians and the Human Services WELF 2015 4.5
Human Service Workers and the Law JUST 2005 4.5
First Semester (Study Period 1, 2 or 3)
Social Research Methods HUMS 2047 4.5
Human Service Field Placement A WELF 3022 9 Rule(s): 1,2
Ageing and Disability: Diversity and Discrimination WELF 3029 4.5
Second Semester (Study Period 4, 5 or 6)
Human Service Field Placement B WELF 3014 9 Rule(s): 1,2
Human Service Project Management WELF 2014 4.5
Elective 4.5 Note(s): 3

Study hours

For each course you study, you will need to allocate time for various classes such as lectures, tutorials, workshops, seminars and practicals. Plus you will need additional hours to study in your own time to complete assignments, readings and projects, as well as to contribute to online discussion forums (independent study). So as a general rule, if you are studying full-time you would need to allocate 12–26 hours of study when at university and 14–28 hours of independent study per week.



Your studies will incorporate practical, professionally focused and research-based learning, so assessment types will vary. You can expect them to include:

  • case studies
  • projects
  • an e-portfolio
  • essays and assignments
  • examinations
  • journals.

Global opportunities

Enrich your studies and your life – make overseas study part of your qualification. You may have the option to undertake an exchange, short-term program or study tour overseas while you study. We have links with universities worldwide, as well as a range of travel grants available to make going overseas much more accessible.

You can choose short-term or semester-long study from a range of universities and countries depending on your area of study and cultural interests.

Take a look at the global opportunities available.

Global opportunities

Why Bachelor of Social Science (Ageing and Disability)

Why this Degree

Your knowledge of policy will help you navigate major systems such as the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and My Aged Care policies. Your skills will also inform social policy and promote social inclusion within the ageing and disability sectors. 

Third year work placements will also provide valuable practical experience during which you will learn first-hand what it’s like to work in local and rural settings.
As part of your placement, you may have the opportunity to take part in UniSA’s South Australian Parliamentary Internship program. Students undertaking their second field placement in their final year of study in an undergraduate Social Science or Social Work degree, including double degrees, are eligible to apply for this opportunity. To find out more about further eligibility, contact Dr Cenz Lancione.

Career outcomes

Your career

Health care and Social Assistance, which includes aged and residential care services, is the largest employing industry in Australia, with a predicted 25.8% growth by 20261. With the need for skilled workers in this area, graduating students can find employment in a wide range of fields.

Career opportunities are available in:

  • disability support
  • child and youth health
  • multicultural services
  • healthcare
  • community development
  • legal and court services
  • child and family wellbeing
  • schools/youth work
  • mental health
  • homelessness services
  • Aboriginal health and wellbeing
  • correctional services
  • drug and alcohol addiction services
  • aged care
  • domestic violence services
  • social planning and administration
  • research and private industry
  • employment sector
  • education department
  • child protection.

This degree is also a pathway to Masters programs in areas such as Human Services and Allied Health.

1Jobs and Skills Australia, 2021 Employment projections for the five years to 2026.

Professional accreditation and recognition

This program is recognised by the Australian Community Workers Association. Graduates will be eligible for full membership of the Australian Community Workers Association.

Industry facts


Employment for Aged and Disabled Carers is expected to increase by 28 per cent by November 2026.

Australian Government National Skills Commission Labour Markets Insight, Employment Projections 2021.


Employment for Welfare Support Workers is expected to increase by 25.2 per cent by November 2026.

Australian Government National Skills Commission Labour Markets Insight, Employment Projections 2021.

How to apply

How to apply for international students will give you helpful information about the application process at the University of South Australia. When you are ready, apply through our International Application System. If you would like to talk to someone near you about studying at the University of South Australia, we have agents all over the world who can assist you. Find an Education Agent in your country.

Alternative Pathways

There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including:

There are other pathways you can follow to study this degree, including:


Every year, over 2,500 UniSA students are supported in their studies through scholarships and grants worth millions of dollars. Check out the scholarships below. One of them may be perfect for you. Visit our scholarships page for more.

More scholarships

Your study experience and support

As a UniSA student, you will have unique access to work placement opportunities, overseas study tours and exchanges, networking events, internships, guest speakers and more.

Our campuses are equipped with state-of-the-art facilities including modern lecture theatres, libraries, workshops and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments. These are all supported by the latest technologies and a 24/7 online learning platform. We have health services on campus, gymnasiums, technology zones and great student lounges. You will also gain access to a range of community clinics, which provide professional and cost effective services in areas of health, business, law and psychology. There are campus sport activities to keep you active, and if you are keen to explore the social side of university life, there are movies, cooking demonstrations, parties and lots more.

Adelaide also has a variety of accommodation options to suit different requirements and budgets. Options include dedicated student accommodation and private rentals. See our long-term accommodation pages, or explore our student accommodation by Scape on Bank Street in Adelaide’s lively cultural precinct, an ideal location for students. It is within easy reach of UniSA’s city and metropolitan campuses, Rundle Mall shopping, the Central Market, Chinatown, and the West End’s vibrant nightlife. It is also across the road from the Adelaide train station, and on bus and tram routes.

Student services

Student services

Our international student services provide you with all the support you need at university. We want you to succeed, and if you need help, we're here to assist. You can access a full range of support services, including:

  • career advice and mentoring
  • help with student visas and health cover
  • personal counselling
  • academic counselling
  • fees and finance help
  • common rooms
  • prayer rooms
  • security officers
  • accommodation services 
  • as well as services offered through our student association, USASA.

We also offer study support from our Learning Advisers face-to-face or online. They are here to help you develop academically and professionally during your studies, and can offer help with the English language too. When you become a UniSA student, you can also contact Campus Central for help with anything related to your degree. They will help you with your enrolment, ID cards, fees, timetables and more.

24/7 digital environment

Our learnonline facilities include a personal learning environment with virtual classrooms, lecture recordings, emails, learning support, administration, library access and results. The environment is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you can tailor your learning to your life. We are continually investing in innovative digital technologies for a high-quality student learning experience.

Student services

Your campus

We have six campuses in metropolitan and regional areas, each with modern facilities including lecture theatres, libraries and laboratories, as well as spaces that simulate real work environments.

Location This degree is delivered at the following campus.

Your program director

As a developmental educator I am committed to walking alongside people living with disabilities and their networks to achieve their aspirations, life goals and take their place as full citizens. I have had a diverse range of roles in disability services in direct service provision, management, governance and research. As a result, I am passionate about educating future professionals to practice with high levels of integrity in a diverse range of settings, ensuring that social justice is accessible to all members of society. This program offers you insights into the range of employment options in the ageing and disability sectors, as well as a balance of theory and technical practice skills that are highly valued and sought after by employers. There is high demand for graduates who can work in direct service, service development, quality assurance and management.

AsPr Caroline Ellison

Program Director

Portrait image for AsPr Caroline Ellison
Portrait image for AsPr Caroline Ellison

AsPr Caroline Ellison

Program Director


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