Australia program

Australia Certificate Program

Australia Post-Graduate Certificate Program

Designed for MSW graduates who want to gain work experience overseas and learn about social work in an international setting, the Australia Post-Graduate Certificate Program offers participants a two-year immersion focused on Australia’s social welfare profession and its social and cultural scene. The program complements the educational objectives of an MSW degree with an intercultural experience that provides opportunities for personal growth and professional development. In turn, social welfare agencies acquire social workers with advanced training in social work practice and research skills that can be utilized as part of their employment. Our graduates' strong backgrounds in children, families and mental health make them excellent casework managers and leaders.

Successful completion of the program, which includes a comparative research project, will lead to a Post-Graduate Certificate in International Social Work Practice from the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work.


**now taking applications through March 10, 2019, for relocation this summer/fall 2019!**

This program uses a selection process for admission. Applicants who meet all requirements listed below are invited to apply. Admission to the certificate program is contingent upon the following:

  • MSW degree (or scheduled to receive by May 2019)
  • Two letters of recommendation (one professional, one academic)
  • Two years of professional social work experience
  • Completed application form, resume/CV and letter of interest
  • Transcripts (official copy to be scanned and uploaded)
  • $250. non-refundable application fee* 
  • $3,750. program fee due upon acceptance (job offer and pre-relocation)


What participants will gain:

  • An understanding of Australia’s social welfare system, particularly its impact on individuals, families, groups and communities, and mental health
  • Competence in conducting comparative research at an international level
  • Opportunities to develop valuable international professional networks with colleagues and agencies
  • Professional development with agencies that vastly invest in their employees, including but not limited to self-care practices, reflection theory and practice, and pathways to career growth
  • Experience working with agencies that believe in harnessing social resources to build community capability, opportunity and inclusion
  • Competitive salaries with benefits; opportunity for relocation fees with some agencies
  • An international post-graduate certificate from the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work upon successful completion of the two-year program**

Who can participate?

This two-year program will be of particular interest to USC MSW program graduates who want to extend their knowledge of social work and social policy in a comparative international context. An individual admissions interview is required. Interested students scheduled to graduate within the academic year are also encouraged to apply, although the degree must be completed before the job placement is finalized.***

Will I be paid for my practice placement?

Yes. Once you have secured a placement with a social welfare agency in Australia, you will receive a monthly living wage during your two-year placement. Please note that the salary range is based on the particular agency, town and country.

Is it necessary for me to be registered as a social worker in Australia?

Yes, you will need to register with the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW) immediately following your acceptance of a job placement. Our office and our Australian partners will facilitate this process, but the program participant will be responsible for visa fees and follow-up during the process.

*Please note that a $250.00 non-refundable application fee (check made out to “USC”) must be mailed to Susan Cornwall at 669 W. 34thSt., MRF 215, Los Angeles, CA 90089 by March 10, 2019, in order for your application to be considered complete; the application fee will count toward the total program costs if successfully accepted. 

**Please note that this is a two-year USC post-graduate program based on gaining international social work experience and supervised research, leading to a certificate from USC; program costs are $4,000., with $3,750. only to be paid if successfully accepted (pre-relocation). 

***This program is currently only open to USC MSW alumni and current students scheduled to graduate by spring 2019.