First Australians and Social Justice (Advanced) - 2016

To enrol in this unit, you must be accepted into a course from the provider. Read before you start
This page is for past year, View 2017 unit details.

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Postgraduate
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 13 weeks
  • Government loans available: HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2016: Sem 1, Sem 2
  • Assessment: Assignment 1 - Research-based - Digital Story (40%) , Assignment 2 - Major Essay (50%) - Learn more

Unit provided by

2016 Fees
Domestic 2,188.00
HECS 782.00

Engaging social justice and human rights perspectives, this course critically analyses the various historical, political, institutional and social forces that have shaped welfare and health policies and practices for Indigenous Australian peoples.

The unit critically analyses ideas and practices that shape contemporary approaches to human services and social work with Indigenous Australian Peoples. Through an examination of a diversity of Indigenous Australian Peoples' voices within the wider discourse in Australia, past and current colonial politics, policies, practices and socio-economic imperatives are critically analysed from social justice and human rights perspectives. Focuses include the history and impact of colonisation, governmental responses to Indigenous Australian Peoples needs and the challenges of best practice policy-making and service delivery. Students will develop critical analysis skills through the examination and evaluation of various relevant social theories.  The development of advocacy skills will be encouraged to enable students to engage the discourse around Indigenous Australian Peoples human service and social work policy and practice within Australia.

After successfully completing this unit you should be able to:

  1. extrapolate the implications for Indigenous Australians as a result of colonisation since British invasion;
  2. express a clearer understanding of the diverse identities, histories, experiences and therefore diverse needs of Indigenous Australian peoples who reside in urban, rural and remote areas;
  3. critically evaluate the attitudes, values, opinions and beliefs that underpin mainstream representations of contemporary Indigenous Australian issues;
  4. appreciate the extensive and complex manifestation of racism in Australia;
  5. examine the ways in which Australian policy, professional practice and mainstream institutions privilege whiteness;
  6. critically analyse and articulate the societal constructs, policies and practices that impact Indigenous Australians;
  7. articulate some principles of a practice framework for working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
  8. apply critical analysis and advocacy skills.
  • Assignment 1 — Research-based - Digital Story (40%)
  • Assignment 2 — Major Essay (50%)
  • Portfolio — Evidence Reflective journal (10%)

Mandatory prerequisites

You must have successfully completed the following unit(s) before starting this unit:

If you have completed equivalent study at another university, please contact a Student Advisor for advice.

  • Broadband access — Students must be able to access the learning@griffith site for this unit
  • Other special requirement — Admission to Griffith Univeristy MSocial Work (Qualifying) OUA degree required

In order to enrol in this unit, you must be accepted into one of the following courses:

Please visit the course details page and read the Requirements tab for more information about eligibility.

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Introduction and invitation to participate in the course.
2An Introduction to the diversity of Indigenous Australia.
3History of invasion. History of resistance. History of invasion. History of resistance.
4History of human rights for Indigenous peoples in Australia. History of land rights. Rights and social justice.
5Whiteness, race, and culture. Racism and anti-racism.
6Persisting dominant ideologies: Assimilation/ism, Neoliberalism, Race and racism.
7Critical overview and analysis of contemporary media, policy, and legislative environments for practice.
8Radical pluralism. Social justice. Human rights.
9Current socio-political realities of education policy and environments for Indigenous peoples.
10Current socio-political realities of child protection policy and environments for Indigenous peoples. Inter-generational trauma and healing.
11Current socio-political realities of criminal justice policy and environments for Indigenous peoples.
12Summary, assessment support.

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Embedded Multimedia
  • Online assignment submission
  • Podcasting/Lecture capture
  • Standard Media
  • Streaming Multimedia
  • Web links
  • Wikis

Online materials

  • Online Assessment
  • Printable format materials
  • Quizzes

This unit is a core requirement in the following courses:

This unit may be eligible for credit towards other courses:

  1. Many undergraduate courses on offer through OUA include 'open elective' where any OUA unit can be credited to the course. You need to check the Award Requirements on the course page for the number of allowed open electives and any level limitations.
  2. In other cases, the content of this unit might be relevant to a course on offer through OUA or elsewhere. In order to receive credit for this unit in the course you will need to supply the provider institution with a copy of the Unit Profile in the approved format, which you can download here. Note that the Unit Profile is set at the start of the year, and if textbooks change this may not match the Co-Op textbook list.
This unit does not have a prescribed textbook(s).

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