HCS409 Social Welfare in Human Services (8)

This subject provides an introduction to the welfare sector in Australia and to concepts and issues underpinning welfare practice, past and present. It will advance students' knowledge and skills in professional human services work as well as enhance the students' capacity to critically analyse and reflect on current practice. An ecosocial framework is introduced to critique contemporary welfare state issues and provide an alternative pathway for the future of human services and society.


Session 1 (30)
Wagga Wagga Campus
Session 2 (60)
Wagga Wagga Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: HCS409. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Humanities and Social Sciences

Enrolment Restrictions

All students who have completed HCS111 cannot undertake HCS409

Subject Relationships

HCS111 Paired Subject

Incompatible Subjects


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to demonstrate an advanced understanding of, and critically assess the characteristics of professional human services, including a knowledge base, and core values and ethics;
  • be able to demonstrate advanced understanding of, and critically assess, welfare in Australia, including the history of human services, contemporary approaches to welfare provision and issues underpinning welfare;
  • be able to demonstrate an advanced understanding of the impacts and complexity of, and critically assess the origin of poverty and social exclusion;
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of an ecosocial framework to human services and implications for practice


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Overview of human services and welfare practices is Australia
  • Orientation to welfare services
  • Service delivery systems and organisations
  • Ecological framework to human services and implications for practice
  • Impacts and complexity of poverty and disadvantage
  • Professional knowledge base, values and ethics,
  • Fields of practice across the lifespan, cultures and genders

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of HCS409 in Session 2 2020. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Case study

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.