Master of Social Change and Development

University of Newcastle

The program is designed to provide students who wish to pursue a career with government agencies, non-government organisations (NGOs) and private firms, with the knowledge and skills to understand the processes of social change and development and to improve their effectiveness as administrators, researchers, development planners, local officers, educators, or managers. As people and governments from the rich world take on the responsibility to engage with the developing world, there is a growing need for qualified professionals to work in the community development and policy analysis sectors of funded development projects and aid organisations. For those working now in developing countries, this program enhances their capacity to improve outcomes and make change effectively. While a base undergraduate degree in an area of relevant specialisation is useful for this kind of work, professionals in the field of international development need an understanding of the implications of wider social and political changes at a global level which affect local conditions and capacities. The program aims to equip professionals with advanced theoretical and applied knowledge, which can meet the challenges of development work in a rapidly changing global environment. What distinguishes this program from others in this field is the opportunity it offers to students to create their own research work as part of a research project. Not only does this give scope to individuals already working within the field to further pursue their specific areas of interest, but it enables those new to the field to explore many paths to shape their career's future.

Course Fee:

Australian: $25,905
International: $40,433

Entry Requirements:

Bachelor degree in a discipline area with 2 years relevant work experience (80 units); or a Bachelor degree in a discipline area with no relevant work experience (120 units); or a Graduate Certificate in a relevant discipline area (80 units); or a Bachelor Honours degree in a relevant discipline area (80 units).


This program requires students to complete between 80 - 120 units. All students complete 60 units of Core courses and 20 units of Directed courses from Group A. Students who are required to complete a 120 unit program complete a further 40 units of Directed courses from Group A or B. Students may be eligible to complete a reduced number of units based on previous qualifications and/or experience. Refer to full admission requirements for pathway options.

Subjects you can Study:

Social change and development Social Science Research Methods Social Science Project Design and Evaluation

Study Pathways:

Students apply for credit to enter into the program by first completing the Graduate Certificate in Social Change and Development (40 units) or apply for Recognition of Prior Learning for work experience in a Discipline area.

Further information:

Discipline areas include: Sociology; Geography; Anthropology and development studies; Agriculture; Environmental studies; Education; Municipal community or Social work/Welfare; Indigenous Studies; Politics and Economics.

Who for:

Students who wish to pursue a career with government agencies, NGOs and private firms

Accepts International Students:


Provider CRICOS: 00109J

Related Careers:

Campus ATAR/OP Mid Year Intake Study Mode Duration
Callaghan No info Yes Online 1.5 years
Callaghan No info Yes Full time 1.5 years
Callaghan No info Yes Part time 3 years

Since our foundation as an independent university in 1965, the University of Newcastle has specialised in delivering world-class education to talented students from all walks of life. 

Our commitment to equity, performance in innovation and making a global impact has been recognised internationally, with the university being ranked in the top one per cent of universities in the world (QS World University Rankings Fact File, 2018). 

The University of Newcastle is home to more than 38,000 enthusiastic individuals from 115 countries around the globe, all looking to bring new to the world.

New approaches to shape tomorrow’s leaders

Our goal is to shape graduates who are more than degree-qualified. 

We deliver degrees that promote real-world experience, facilitate specialised work placements and encourage entrepreneurial opportunities.

From international exchanges that allow you to make your mark on the world stage, to opportunities to create a social enterprise around your passion, we offer a supportive and future-focused learning environment. 

Embedding Work Integrated Learning programs into our degrees allows students to gain real-world, practical experience and establish professional networks during their studies. 

New research with global impact

Our teaching and research staff are leaders in their field. They are here to motivate and inspire future generations of students who will be the leaders of tomorrow. 

The University of Newcastle continues to deliver innovative approaches to research.  The significance of our research is reflected in the Australian Government's Excellence in Research Australia assessment, which awarded the university the highest possible '5' rating across 22 research fields, placing us in the top eight Australian universities for research quality well above world standard.

Our world-class research and strong national and international partnerships drives the kind of innovation and discovery that challenges conventional thinking. Our research breaks new ground and changes lives.

New spaces to spark ideas

With campus locations in Newcastle (Callaghan), Newcastle CBD, Central Coast, Port Macquarie, Sydney and Singapore, we offer inspiring and innovative environments across all our hubs, ideal for connecting learning and lifestyle. 

The newly opened $95 million NeW Space precinct boasts state-of-the-art facilities, harnessing the latest technologies in teaching to deliver an exceptional student experience. 

Each of our locations provide students with a range of services designed to create a vibrant and dynamic environment for student life. These include cafes and bars, clubs and societies, accommodation, fitness centres, swimming pools, transport, restaurants and more. 

So, whether you are finishing high school this year, changing career direction, or contemplating study for the first time, we are sure you will find your path to new here. 

Where will new take you?

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