Perspectives on Disability - 2017

Unit summary


  • Level of Study: Postgraduate
  • Study load: 0.125 EFTSL
  • Delivery method: Fully Online
  • Prerequisites: Yes
  • Duration: 12 weeks
  • Government loans available: HECS-HELP
  • Availability for 2017: Sem 2
  • Availability for 2018: Sem 2
  • Assessment: Assignment 1 - Written Assignment (55%) , Portfolio - Reflective Portfolio (45%)

Unit provided by

2017 Fees
Domestic 2,563.00
HECS 793.00

Hearing directly from people with disabilities about their lives is vital to good research, effective policy and compassionate, sound practice. This course exposes students to the lived experiences of people with a disability from the `insider perspective'. By examining personal narratives such as memoirs, autobiographies and documentary films of, or by, people with a disability, students will come to understand how disability is just one influence - sometimes significant, sometimes minor, but always fluid - in shaping the direction and quality of people's lives. This course requires a commitment from students to read deeply and broadly, and to be open to fresh perspectives of understanding the experiences of people with disabilities, in Australia and globally. Such openness is essential in advancing the rights, dignity and opportunities of people with disabilities.

After successfully completing this unit you should be able to:

  1. Critique the rise of the disability rights movement including the current Australian (including Indigenous Australians) approaches to disability.
  2. Place the lived experience of people with disability at the centre of your understanding of disability by reading and critically reflecting on first person narratives and memoirs. (Skills in information literacy, analysis & critical evaluation);
  3. Critically evaluate the concepts and experiences of disability, difference and diversity in society. (Skills in information literacy, analysis & critical evaluation);
  4. Harness your improved understanding of the impact of some disabilities upon some people's lives, to better understand how those experiences might influence their access to education, housing, work, relationships, and where applicable, to rehabilitation and/or disability support services.(Skills in information literacy, analysis & critical evaluation).
  • Assignment 1 — Written Assignment (55%)
  • Portfolio — Reflective Portfolio (45%)

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.

  • Other special requirement — Admission to Griffith University MSocial Work (Qualifying) OUA Course required

This unit addresses the following topics.

1Introduction to Memoirs & Disability
2Talking about Disability Rights
3Disability in Australia
4Disability Rights, Health & Welfare
5Perspectives on Exclusion & Inclusion
6Disability & Families
7Disability / Mental Health & Identity
8Understanding Autism
9Trauma & Hope
10Mental Health & Well-being
11Review - The Future of Disability

This unit is delivered using the following methods and materials:

Instructional Methods

  • Discussion Forum/Discussion Board
  • Embedded Multimedia
  • Online assignment submission
  • Streaming Multimedia
  • Web links
  • Wikis

Online materials

  • Resources and Links

This unit is not currently a requirement for any courses, but may be eligible for credit.

  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.

Textbook information for this unit is currently being updated and will be available soon. Please check back regularly for updates. Alternatively, visit the The Co-op website and enter the unit details to search for available textbooks.

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