Diploma of Community Services


Course Length

Full time:

18 Months

Contact Hours

Full time:

2 Days a week


Subsidised Standard:


Full Fee:


Course Materials:


Student Services Fees (per year):




Shepparton - Fryers Street

Wangaratta - Docker Street

Delivery Mode

On Campus

Course Overview

The Diploma of Community Services is the recognised qualification to work in a number roles in the Community Services industry.

Make a real difference in the community, working to improve people's lives. Learn from industry-qualified, experienced trainers, and undertake a work placement through our partnerships with local community services.

You'll gain skills in coordinating and delivering services to individuals, groups, and communities.

This course is available as part of the Free TAFE scheme for eligible students.

Studying during COVID-19 Restrictions

We’ve had to make adjustments to how our courses are delivered due to the restrictions imposed by COVID-19. This means that we’re currently offering a combination of delivery modes including online and flexible learning and, where we can, on-campus classes with strict social distancing in place.

Career Pathways

This course prepares you to work in the Community Services industry. Roles you may be eligible for include:

  • Family Support Worker
  • Case Worker or Manager
  • Pastoral Care Counsellor
  • Community Services Worker
  • Senior Youth Officer/Chaplain
  • Early Intervention Worker
  • Welfare Worker

Working in this industry may involve supervision of other workers and volunteers and/or case management, program coordination or the development of new business opportunities and may involve shift and weekend work.

At this level, workers have specialised skills in community services and work autonomously under broad directions from senior management. Workers are usually providing direct support to individuals or groups of individuals.

Further Study

After graduating, you might like to undertake further study in Community Services at the university level, such as the Bachelor of Community Services or a Masters in Social Work at LaTrobe University.

Course Dates & Times

Shepparton - Fryers Street

Blended - Starts on 01/02/2021 - Mon & Tues - 9am to 4pm / 2021

Blended - Starts on 12/07/2021 - Mon & Tues - 9am to 4pm / 2021

Wangaratta - Docker Street

Blended - Starts on 01/02/2021 - Mon & Tues - 9am to 4pm / 2021

Blended - Starts on 12/07/2021 - Mon & Tues - 9am to 4pm / 2021

Fee Information

1. Subsidised Standard: $11,057.00

2. Full Fee: $14,391.00

Course Materials: $500.00

Student Services Fees (per year): $70.00

The student tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment. Please note all fees and charges are correct at time of publication for 2021 and may change without notice.

Students will be invoiced for the components of the course that they are enrolled into for each year or semester.

Material fees cover costs associated with the following where applicable, and not limited to:

  • Classroom activity consumables, handouts and booklets
  • E-Learning resources and associated license access fees
  • Excursions

Additionally some courses require students to purchase or supply text books, kits, tools, uniforms and personal protection equipment. Some specific materials may be purchased through the GOTAFE Bookshop. A full list with associated costs will be provided to you at your course information session or during the pre-training review Interview.

All students are required to pay an annual Student Services Fee (SSF) of $70.00. The Student Services Fee contributes to the provision of student engagement, learning and support services. SSF does not apply to short course participants.

Further details on fees available

Entry Requirements

Training package entry requirements

There are no training package entry requirements for this qualification.

GOTAFE preferred entry requirements

Before being accepted into the course applicants must:

  • Attend an interview
  • Undertake a Pre-training Review to document previous work experience and qualifications and assess suitability for the course
  • Complete a Core Skills Profile for Adults (CSPA) test to ensure the required language, literacy and numeracy levels are met for the course
  • Hold a current and successful Police Check
  • Hold a current and successful Working with Children check
  • As a pathway into this qualification GOTAFE requires applicants to have successful completion of CHC42015 Certificate IV in Community Services, or have relevant experience in the community services sector within the last 3 years.

Course Study Units

Core Units
CHCCCS007 - Develop and implement service programs
CHCCOM003 - Develop workplace communication strategies
CHCDEV002 - Analyse impacts of sociological factors on clients in community work and services
CHCDIV003 - Manage and promote diversity
CHCLEG003 - Manage legal and ethical compliance
CHCMGT005 - Facilitate workplace debriefing and support processes
CHCPRP003 - Reflect on and improve own professional practice
HLTWHS004 - Manage work health and safety
Elective Units
CHCADV002 - Provide advocacy and representation services
CHCCCS004 - Assess co-existing needs
CHCCDE011 - Implement community development strategies
CHCCSL001 - Establish and confirm the counselling relationship
CHCCSM004 - Coordinate complex case requirements
CHCCSM005 - Develop, facilitate and review all aspects of case management
CHCCSM007 - Undertake case management in a child protection framework
CHCDEV001 - Confirm client developmental status
CHCMHS013 - Implement trauma informed care
CHCPRT001 - Identify and respond to children and young people at risk
CHCPRT003 - Work collaboratively to maintain an environment safe for children and young people

Assessment Methods

Assessment methods may include:

  • Oral Presentations
  • Workplace observation/demonstration
  • Written tasks

Additional Information

This course is currently registered with the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA).

The Training Package states the following:

  • The Statutory & forensic child, youth & family welfare specialisation must be achieved in order to meet the minimum education requirements for child protection and youth justice practice in Victoria. In addition, to meet the minimum education requirements for entry into child protection practice in Victoria, diploma qualifications must be approved by the Australian Community Workers Association (ACWA)

Course Co-ordinator

Damien Stevens-Todd
Campus: Shepparton

Di Connors
Campus: Shepparton

Julie Rawson
Campus: Benalla/Wangaratta

Attendance & Commitment

This course is delivered full time over an 18 month period. Students attend classes 2 days a week, with an additional support day with Trainer access provided.

Students undertake a practical component which requires 400 practical placement hours within the workplace. This is completed over two blocks of 5 – 6 weeks full time (Mon – Fri). The hours are varied according to the needs of the placement host and may involve shift work.

Where to From Here

If you need any further clarification of the information provided please contact one of our client service officers on 1300 468 233 who can assist you or submit an enquiry through our website now and one of the team will be in touch.

Educational Support Services

As an enrolled student at GOTAFE you may access a wide range of academic support services to assist you to meet the academic challenges of your course from our Learning Support Unit.

Student Support

As an enrolled student at GOTAFE you will be welcome to access a variety of non-academic support services from the Student Welfare Unit. These services are designed to best support you to successfully complete your course.

Services include on campus supports and remote supports

  • Counselling
  • employment information
  • careers
  • activities etc.

Learn more about support services

Learner's Rights

Refer to the Student Handbook for information regarding Learner’s Rights Student Handbook.

Further information is provided at course induction.


Please note: Eligible individuals who wish to access a government subsidised place, must participate in a Pre-training Review. This will consider your:

  • Aspirations/career goals
  • Educational attainment and capability
  • Literacy and numeracy skills
  • Suitability for Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL) and Credit Transfer

Enrolment in general public entry courses will require a selection interview. Please call 1300 468 233 to enquire further.

Skills Recognition

Skills Recognition is an assessment only process that may result in credits towards a part or full qualification. There is no formal training involved, although you may choose to complete further training as a result of the assessment process.

You can apply for Skills Recognition before you enrol in the qualification you are seeking. You can apply for Skills Recognition through one or both of the following processes:

  • Credit Transfer for formal training that might be equivalent to a new qualification or partial qualification
  • Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) for people who have relevant and current skills and knowledge that they have gained through non-formal or informal learning i.e. work or life experience.