Course Title: Principles and Practice of Work Health and Safety

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Principles and Practice of Work Health and Safety

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


135H Applied Sciences


Sem 1 2006,
Sem 1 2010,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2016,
Sem 2 2017


City Campus


171H School of Science


Sem 1 2017


City Campus


325H Property, Construction & Project Management


Sem 1 2019

Course Coordinator: A/Prof Susanne Tepe

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 2899

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 8.8.59

Course Coordinator Availability: Mondays by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

The course provides an introduction to the concepts of work place health and safety, and the historical influence on the perception of risk.

  • The course provides a basic understanding of work place risk management.
  • Risk is discussed within a context involving people, tasks, equipment, the environment and the organisation.
  • Models of injury and ill health causation are explored.
  • The course explores systematic risk management processes of hazard identification, evaluation and control in order to manage the risk of damage, injury and/or disease
  • .OHS management systems and their effectiveness are introduced.



Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes:

1.1 You will demonstrate an advanced and integrated understanding of the OHS Body of Knowledge allowing you to reflect critically on OHS theory and professional practice.

2.1 You will have skills to investigate, analyse and synthesise OHS information, problems, concepts and theories.

2.2 You will have skills to generate OHS solutions and evaluate their effectiveness.

3.1 You will be able to apply knowledge and skills with creativity and initiative to new situations in OHS professional practice.

4.1 You will have communication and research skills to interpret OHS issues and justify OHS decisions for specialist and non-specialist audiences.

On completion of this course you will be able to:

  1. Explain the concepts of OHS and risk, and how work contributes to the causation of fatalities, injuries, disease and ill health.
  2. Identify and manage hazards in the work place by using a systematic approach to hazard identification, risk evaluation and control
  3. Locate, evaluate, interpret and provide health and safety information appropriate to the work place
  4. Communicate about hazards and risks to technical and non-technical audiences
  5. Apply knowledge of relevant legislation, standards and codes in day-to-day activities 



Overview of Learning Activities

Key concepts and their application will be set out in face to face lectures and suggested readings
Case studies on selected topics will be used to build your capacity to think critically and analytically. You will have to prepare reports which will develop your communications skills.
You will receive feedback on academic progress when assignments are returned.

Module details are:

  • Introduction to OHS
  • Introduction to risk
  • Risk management
  • Hazard identification and accident causation
  • Risk assessment
  • Risk control
  • Safe work systems
  • Safety system effectiveness
  • Safety systems communications
  • Systems and culture

 If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Disability Liaison Unit if you would like to find out more.

Total Study Hours

  144 (lectures, tutorials, assessments, research, private study)

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be directed to a range of texts, journal articles and other web based material that provide a current understanding of the knowledge in this area.

Lectures, voice files and other materials will be available on myRMIT (Blackboard). 

Overview of Assessment

Note that:

☒This course has no hurdle requirements.

☐ All hurdle requirements for this course are indicated clearly in the assessment regime that follows, against the relevant assessment task(s) and all have been approved by the College Deputy Pro Vice-Chancellor (Learning & Teaching). 

Assessment is at AQF8 level:

1. Written assignment on identification of main hazards within an organisation (21%) – Supports CLOs 1,2,3,4,5

2. Written assignment on Risk analysis and control within an organisation (24%)– Supports CLOs 1,2,3,4,5

3. Written assignment of incident reporting and investigation within an organisation (25%)– Supports CLOs 1,2,3,4,5

4. End of semester exam (30%) – Supports CLOs 1,2,4,5

Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles,