Course Title: Youth Work and the Schooling System

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Youth Work and the Schooling System

Credit Points: 12.00


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


365H Global, Urban and Social Studies


Sem 1 2007,
Sem 2 2011,
Sem 2 2014

Course Coordinator: Kerry Montero

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3

Course Coordinator Email:

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

none required

Course Description

This course is a youth work elective taken in the second or third year of the program. It will also be available to non-youth-work students. This course is based on a recognition that
most young Australians spend many years of their lives in the schooling system, which
makes education institutions an important space for most children, young people and
youth workers. This elective is designed for assisting people who are working, or who may work as youth workers, teachers, or student welfare workers. The course begins with a cursory overview of the historical evolution of public- and private-schooling, before turning to the contemporary shape of the schooling and educational system in Australia. This analysis is informed by changing ideas about the relationship between schooling, waged work and ‘family life’. It will also be an inquiry framed by the relationships between the stated objectives and value of education and the experiences of young people as students in Australian schools. These insights are then framed by factors such as the near-complete disappearance of the full-time youth-labour market, policies directed towards increasing the time young people spend in some form of formal education or training, and the extension of dependency on the part of young adults.

In the second part of the course, the focus turns to the variety of professional practices
found in schools, including: youth workers, local-government youth workers, teaching,
student-counseling, careers-guidance and welfare workers. The different modes of practice that characterise these occupational groups are identified, while questions are raised about professional demarcation.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

By the end of this course students will: be able to demonstrate a knowledge of the evolution of schooling in Australia; appreciate how changes to the family and labour market connect to the schooling system and to training and education more generally; be able to explain how those changes influence being young, and contemporary understandings of ‘youth’; be able to recognise the different modes of youth-work practice available in schools; be able to articulate the knowledge for understanding and negotiating professional demarcation issues; be able to recognise how their own professional and personal practice can contribute to educational experiences of young people in ways that are respectful of their moral and legal status, and be able to discuss in an informed way the relevance of schools to a future where waged work and other key social institutions have changed significantly.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be able to engage in a variety of lectures and smaller classes.

Overview of Learning Resources

You will be able to use a prescribed text.

Overview of Assessment

You will be able to prepare assessment tasks with a total word length or equivalent of 4,000 words.