Course Title: Work effectively in the community sector

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2015

Course Code: HWSS8117C

Course Title: Work effectively in the community sector

School: 365T Global, Urban & Social Studies

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4329 - Certificate IV in Disability

Course Contact : Renee Costa

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 0886

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Mary Collins - Teacher, Disability and Community services Work programs (03) 99254598,

Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Not applicable

Course Description

This course describes the skills and knowledge required to work effectively in a community work or service delivery setting with communities, clients, carers, staff, visitors, suppliers and others to meet established work requirements.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CHCCS411C Work effectively in the community sector


1. Work ethically

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Follow ethical guidelines in decision-making in all work undertaken with an awareness of potential ethical complexity in own work role
1.2 Reflect understanding and compliance with the principles of duty of care and legal responsibilities in all work undertaken
1.3 Refer any breach or non adherence to standard procedures or adverse event to appropriate personnel
1.4 Maintain confidentiality of any client matter in line with organisation policy and procedure, regulatory requirements and/or code of practice
1.5 Show respect for rights and responsibilities of others through considered application of work practices
1.6 Reflect current working knowledge and understanding of employee and employer rights and responsibilities in all work undertaken
1.7 Recognise, avoid and/or address any conflict of interest


2. Communicate effectively in a community work or service delivery setting

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Develop, review and revise personal skills in communication as an ongoing priority to address work role requirements
2.2 Exercise caution in communicating personal information by oral and written means to ensure confidentiality of client and staff matters
2.3 Routinely apply workplace protocols and procedures in all workplace communication to support accuracy and understanding of information provided and received
2.4 Recognise individual and cultural differences and make any adjustments in communication needed to facilitate the achievement of identified outcomes
2.5 Conduct interpersonal communication with clients and colleagues in a manner that enhances a person-centred or community-centred approach consistent with work role requirements
2.6 Take appropriate measures to resolve conflict and interpersonal differences in the workplace


3. Work effectively within the community services system

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Develop knowledge of different sectors involving community work and/or service delivery and how inter-relationships between these sectors affect own work
3.2 Work with awareness of the roles of various organisations involved in community work and/or service delivery
3.3 Demonstrate respect for workers from different sectors, levels and agencies within the industry
3.4 Gain and maintain awareness of current issues influencing community work and/or service delivery, including issues for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples


4. Demonstrate commitment to relevant values and philosophy underpinning work in the sector

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Demonstrate consideration and understanding of the underpinning values and philosophy of the sector and the work area
4.2 Demonstrate a commitment to access and equity principles in work in the sector
4.3 Identify personal values and attitudes and take into account when implementing work activities


5. Maintain work standards

Performance Criteria:

5.1 Identify relevant organisation policies and procedures relating to awards, standards and legislative requirements of own work role and clarify any uncertainties with appropriate personnel
5.2 Contribute to identifying and implementing improved work practices
5.3 Comply with relevant accreditation and standards applying to work undertaken
5.4 Demonstrate understanding and focus on achieving organisation goals and objectives in all work undertaken
5.5 Respond positively to changes to improve work practices and procedures in accordance with organisation requirements
5.6 Identify issues requiring mandatory notification and report to supervisor and/or an appropriate authority
5.7 Reflect and identify own scope of practice within each work context


6. Take responsibility for personal skill development

Performance Criteria:

6.1 Seek advice from appropriate persons on areas for skill and knowledge development
6.2 Identify options for accessing relevant skill development opportunities and initiate action in consultation with manager
6.3 Undertake designated skill and knowledge development and maintenance activities of the organisation
6.4 Identify and prioritise personal work goals in accordance with organisation requirements


7. Reflect on own practice

Performance Criteria:

7.1 Undertake self-evaluation in conjunction with supervisors and/or peers
7.2 Provide and receive open and evaluative feedback to and from co-workers
7.3 Actively seek constructive feedback relevant to work role and accept it non-defensively

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

In this course you will participate in classroom sessions  in semester 1 that explore the community services sector, legal and policy frameworks, and its values and principles.  There will be an overview of the types of supports provided to groups including people with disabilities, the elderly and aged care, mental health, youth work and dual diagnosis.

The course assessment tasks include satisfactory completion of the 200 hours of Field Placement.  In semester 2 you will participate in scheduled 1-1 appointments with the Certificate IV in Disability teacher responsible for Field Placement to review your progress in the field placement, identify any supports needed to complete field placement and coordinate appointments with your field placement agency supervisor.   

Teaching Schedule



1Course introduction - what is the "community sector"? Values, principles and ethics of the sector
2Contemporary approaches to working in the community sector
3Duty of Care and the law of negligence in disability services and the community sector.
4Duty of Care and the law of negligence
5The disability service sector - Disability Service Standards, Quality Frameworks, codes of ethics. 
6Monitoring disability services - the Disability Services Commissioner, the Senior Practitioner, the Office of the Public Advocate, the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
7Communication in the community services sector - verbal, written, electronic, visual, stakeholders including clients, families, colleagues
8The language we use: non-judgemental, un-emotive, privacy and confidentiality
9 Mid semester break - no class
10Working in the accommodation sector or home based supports - when the client’s home is your workplace.
11The disability sector and the industrial landscape - awards, agreements, working conditions, position descriptions, qualifications
12Field Placement preparation - student placements, requirements of students, RMIT, field placement agencies.  OHS considerations, use of mobile phones and other electronic devices.  Field placement assessment tasks
13 Field Placement
14 Field Placement
15 Field Placement
16 Field Placement Review - In class assessment task
17The community sector - aged care, youth and family, mental health, alcohol and other drugs(AOD). When your client doesn’t need a disability worker
18Your values, beliefs and practices - what is their place in your work, and ethical approach - reviewing the  course.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

During sessions you will be directed to government, non-government and industry sources of information such as the Department of Human Services website which includes current legislative and policy documents from the disability, youth and family and public housing sectors.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment is ongoing throughout the course. Assessment will incorporate a range of methods to assess performance and the application of knowledge and skills and will include a number of assessment tasks.

Assessment Tasks

There are four assessment tasks for this course:

  1. Field Placement - Written record and reflection of participation and activities on 3 week block placement. The daily record will describe what you have done, the journal will reflect on those events, the people your role, your reactions and responses etc.
  2. In-class - A post placement structured review and class discussion on the placements you and your fellow students have undertaken. 
  3. Short answer questions on the nature of disability support work, conditions of employment, responsibilities and challenges, community and disability agency services, values and practices.
  4. Field Placement - satisfactory completion of requirements including: 200 hours supervised practice, 2 Third Party Reports

Assessment Matrix

A detailed assessment matrix will be available from the course teacher.

Other Information

Assessment Tasks Submission Cover Sheet
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work, including online submissions. This signed sheet acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.
It is strongly advised that you attend all workshops in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.
You will receive verbal and written feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your competency. Information regarding student feedback can be found at:;ID=9pp3ic9obks7
Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. The Student progress policy can be found at:;ID=vj2g89cve4uj1
Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Information regarding application for special consideration can be found at:;ID=g43abm17hc9w
Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. For more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity Web site:;ID=kw02ylsd8z3n

Course Overview: Access Course Overview