Testimonials for Graduate Diploma in Social Work

Name: Ms Sia Seow Hong
Programme: Graduate Diploma in Social Work
Year: From 2003 to 2004
Name: Mr Ng Yong Hao
Programme: Graduate Diploma in Social Work
Year: From 2015 to 2016
Name: Ms Lim En Yin, Amanda
Programme: Graduate Diploma in Social Work
Year: From 2016 to 2017
Name: Mr Kok Weng Chew
Programme: Graduate Diploma in Social Work
Year: From 2016 to 2018

Please click here for the testimonial.

About the Course



The Graduate Diploma in Social Work (GDSW) programme is for

  • persons holding degrees earned from reputable universities other than social work, currently working in social service sector and acquiring knowledge and skills of social work and would be qualified for accreditation as social worker after completion of GDSW;
  • persons holding degrees earned from reputable universities who are planning to switch their career into social work.

The objective is to train non-social work graduates to be competent social service professionals by providing professional knowledge and skills in:

  • Social work theory and practice;
  • Social service delivery systems; and
  • Specialised fields of social intervention.


The candidature period is as follows:

Coursework Programme Normal Candidature Maximum Candidature
Full-Time Study (in years) Part-Time Study (in years) Full-Time Study (in years) Part-Time Study (in years)
Graduate Diploma in Social Work 1 1.5 2 3

Graduate coursework students who exceeded their normal candidature will have to pay full, non-subsidised fees, during their extended semesters.

Course Structure

For Students Admitted from AY 2007/08 Onwards (updated May 07)

A candidate for the Graduate Diploma in Social Work must offer not fewer than five modules and a social work practicum.

The Graduate Diploma in Social Work programme comprises the following components:

  • 4 Essential modules *
  • 1 Elective module
  • 1 Social Work Practicum

* Candidates possessing a recognised social work academic qualification may be exempted from one or more essential modules if they had already done similar modules in their undergraduate degree. The exempted essential module(s) will be replaced with elective module(s) as approved by the Head of Department of Social Work.

  • SWD5102 Social Work with Groups and Community

  • SWD5103 Contemporary Social Work Practice

  • SWD5104 Human Development in Context

  • SWD5105 Skills in Advanced Social Work Practice
  • SWD5263 Family Centred Practice

  • SWD5265 Social Work Research and Inquiry

  • SWD5880 Topics in Social Work

  • SWD5297 Human Service Organisations and Management

  • Children and Youth Work

    • SWD5268: Studies and Research on Children & Youth
    • SWD5269: Working with Children & Youth
    • SWD5270: Child Welfare Policy and Practice

  • Gerontological Social Work

    • SWD5261: Gerontological Counselling
    • SWD5272: Multidisciplinary Perspectives on Ageing
    • SWD5273: Intervention with the Terminally Ill

  • Family Intervention

    • SWD5274: Family Systems and Intervention
    • SWD5275: Human Sexuality and Marital Therapy
    • SWD5276: Family Stress and Coping

  • Group and Community Work

    • SWD5277: Planned Social Change
    • SWD5279: Comparative Group Modalities
    • SWD5298: Approaches to Community Work

  • Addictions and Substance Abuse

    • SWD5280: Nature of Drugs and Alcohol Abuse
    • SWD5281: Individuals, Families and Substance Abuse
    • SWD5282: Drug and Alcohol Abuse Treatment

  • Rehabilitative Social Work

    • SWD5283: Disability and Rehabilitative Work
    • SWD5284: Health and Mental Health Service Systems
    • SWD5285: Rehabilitation Programme and Issues

  • Applied Topics in Social Work

    • SWD5292: Topical Studies in Social Work Methods
    • SWD5293: Topical Studies in Social Work Issues
    • SWD5294: Topical Studies in Related Social Work Fields

    Note: Not all elective modules are necessarily available in any one year.

  • SWD5120: Social Work Practicum

Candidates are required to fulfil practicum requirements of 400 fieldwork hours under an approved supervisor and is equivalent to one module. The 400 fieldwork hours are to be undertaken in an agency outside the candidate's work place. The candidate is only allowed to take the Social Work Practicum if he/she had already taken one of the essential modules specified by the Department of Social Work.

Click here for the Practicum Manual and Forms (NUS login required)

Click here for the detailed descriptions of modules.

Continuation Requirements

  • With effect from AY2015/2016, where a module is required for the graduate candidature and the minimum grade is not met, a student may repeat:
  • The same module (core or elective) only once. The improved grade point of the repeat/replaced module will replace the weaker one in the CAP (Cumulative Average Point) computation in the semester in which the successful attempt is made; and
  • One-third of the curricular requirements not exceeding three modules, whichever is lower.

back to top