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Deakin University

  • 21% international / 79% domestic

Master of Disability and Inclusion

  • Masters (Coursework)

Be a part of social change that facilitates inclusion with a Master of Disability and Inclusion. Study a course that's informed by national and international research, policy and practice.

Key details

Degree Type
Masters (Coursework)
Course Code
Intake Months

About this course

Be a part of social change that facilitates inclusion with a Master of Disability and Inclusion. Study a course that's informed by national and international research, policy and practice. Follow your passion for human rights and equality into research and leadership roles within a growing industry.

Want to be the driving force behind a more inclusive society?

The Master of Disability and Inclusion is deeply connected to the disability industry, the organisations that work within it and the communities they serve. Many of our students have lived experience with disability - either their own or that of someone close to them. Our academics are embedded within the field and contribute to research of global significance. The Master of Disability and Inclusion is responsive to developments in disability, adopting the values and policies of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and national and international approaches including the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) in Australia.

The topics you'll cover are informed by leading disability theory and practice. In fact, the curriculum has been carefully designed to focus on core concepts in disability and inclusion through contemporary theory, government policy and practice; and to critically engage with theory, policy and practice in the context of the lived experiences of people with disabilities. You will have the opportunity to learn about and apply your knowledge in areas including planning and community capacity building

Projects are anchored to developments and policies within the sector. You might be challenged to critically analyse recent updates to legislation, government disability planning where you live and work, and international projects that are working to progressively realise the rights embedded in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. If you're currently working in disability or community inclusion, you also have the option of basing your assessment tasks on the work you are doing with people with disabilities, families and communities. This will enable you to apply your skills to your current practice and have an instant impact on the communities in which you are working.

The course is also a pathway to further research studies including a PhD. It introduces you to important academic skills to enable you to develop and conduct research through the major research project. Undertaking the major project, you will use critical research skills that will set you up for further research studies, research roles and other roles working in decision-making, project planning, development and evaluation. The major project will link you to researchers in the disability field, including senior researchers at Deakin and our research partners in industry and the community, ensuring your research experience contributes to contemporary national and international research of significance.

A highlight of the course is building relationships with your fellow students and the academic team. Students in the Masters of Disability and Inclusion come from a range of disciplines and backgrounds, ensuring your learning experience is vibrant and engaging. Our academic staff are nationally and internationally recognised researchers, making them great mentors, as well as teachers. In addition, our partnerships with peak government and non-government organisations engaged in policy development, legislative reform, advocacy and service provision, means the door will be open to professional networks and exciting employment opportunities. A constant connection to people with lived experience of disability makes your study experience richer and more relevant. It also allows you to see the world through the eyes of a person with a disability, giving you a real and valuable perspective on inclusion.

Entry requirements

Entry will be based on performance in:

* Bachelor Degree or higher in a related discipline
* Bachelor Degree or higher in any discipline AND two years relevant work experience
* evidence of academic capability judged to be equivalent

Deakin University offers admission to postgraduate courses through a number of Admission categories.

All applicants must meet the minimum English language requirements.

Please note that meeting the minimum admission requirements does not guarantee selection, which is based on merit, likelihood of success and availability of places in the course.

For more information on the Admission Criteria and Selection (Higher Education Courses) Policy visit the Deakin Policy Library

Career pathways

Australia's National Disability Insurance Scheme is now fully rolled out across the nation. This has resulted in an unprecedented demand on Australia's disability sector. According to National Disability Services' Australian Disability Workforce report (2018), the disability support workforce growth rate was 11.1% per year (between 205-2017). This compares with growth of 1.6% for the entire Australian workforce at the time*

As a graduate of the Master of Disability and Inclusion, you'll be perfectly suited for positions including leadership roles in policy, practice and research in Australia and internationally.

In particular, the course was designed to align with areas of knowledge and skills identified in current disability position descriptions. These include:

  • knowledge of disability systems including disability research, legislation and policy
  • high-level communication skills for working with people with disability and their families
  • self-directed approaches to service planning
  • community capacity-building knowledge and skills.

In addition to these roles, there are a huge range of areas within the sector you can explore once you graduate, such as:

  • policy and legislation
  • education
  • health and human services
  • community development
  • roles within state and federal government, government agencies, community organisations and disability service providers.

You'll also be well-equipped for research opportunities once you graduate, including employment in the higher education sector in research and teaching. Or, you may be eligible to continue your studies in a PhD program within Disability and Inclusion.

* https://www.nds.org.au/images/workforce/ADWR_Third_Edition_July_2018.pdf

Course structure

To complete the Master of Disability and Inclusion students must complete 12 credit points comprising 6 core units (1 credit point each), 2 electives (1 credit point each), and a 4 credit point Major Project (comprising Major Project A - 2 credit points and Major Project B - 2 credit points) OR students who enter via the Graduate Certificate of Disability and Inclusion (or equivalent) will only need to complete the remaining 8 credit points.

Students are required to complete 2 electives as part of their course. These electives have been carefully chosen to complement your studies in Disability and Inclusion. You will be able to select units within the School of Health and Social Development and the Faculty of Arts and Education. These units are focused on a range of topics including human rights, social justice, public health, health promotion, design and humanitarian leadership.

All commencing Faculty of Health Undergraduate and Postgraduate course work students are required to complete HAI010 Academic Integrity in their first trimester of study (0 credit point compulsory unit).

Credit for prior study or work

Students who have completed the 4 units of the Graduate Certificate of Disability and Inclusion (H508) will be given credit for these units if they enrol in the Master of Disability and Inclusion.

These arrangements reflect a vertical pathway as outlined in the AQF Qualifications Pathway policy (2013) and meet requirements outlined in the relevant Deakin University policies.

Graduate outcomes

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