Law for Community Workers
Looking for practical training about the law that's designed for community workers?
Running since 1989, Law for Community Workers has a practical focus on developing skills in identifying legal problems, providing legal information and assisting people to understand legal procedures.
All workshops are delivered by experienced lawyers practising in the field.
A recent student had this to say:
"Law for Community Workers was exactly what I needed for my job...There have been so many examples where the knowledge from the course has helped me working with clients."
The course is aimed at community workers or staff in agencies involved in direct client contact. Students need to be able to deal with legal concepts, be interested in legal issues and social justice, and have reliable internet access.
People from diverse backgrounds and those who work with disadvantaged groups are particularly encouraged to apply.
The training covers the content of two units of study approved by the Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council:
Students are required to attend a two hour class each week, as well as undertaking reading and assessments tasks.
Students who successfully complete the training will have the above units added to their Academic Record at TAFE SA. These two units of study may also be used as electives in TAFE SA’s Certificate IV in Legal Services. If you wish to continue on to complete the Certificate IV, you may need to apply for entry through SATAC after completing these two units.
Topics covered include
All substantive topics will cover sources of law, using legal resources, giving legal information, where to refer for legal advice, assistance and/or representation, and where particular types of claims are lodged.
The main reference text is the Law Handbook www.lawhandbook.sa.gov.au, published by the Legal Services Commission.
The class is held at the Adelaide campus of TAFE SA.
Regional and remote students are able to attend via TAFE SA video conferencing sites located across the State (for example, at Berri, Ceduna, Elizabeth, Ernabella, Gawler, Gilles Plains, Kadina, Mount Barker, Mount Gambier, Murray Bridge, Noarlunga, Port Augusta, Port Pirie, Port Lincoln, Victor Harbor and Whyalla).
If you wish to attend from a remote site it is essential to return an Expression of Interest Application Form as early as possible. This will ensure that the site can be booked for this course.
Course fees for 2017 fees are $493.50 and are payable to TAFE SA.
A concession rate is not available.
The current semester is underway. To register your interest, download and complete the Expression of Interest Application Form.
Who can apply?
The training is aimed at caseworkers and other staff involved in direct client contact. If you do not fit into this target group, you are encouraged to discuss your interest and suitability for the training with the Course Coordinator prior to enrolment.
What qualification will I get?
On successful completion of the training, the Legal Services Commission will issue you with a Certificate of Completion. Your TafeSA academic transcript will be credited with the following two units of competency:
These units of competency can be credited as electives towards qualifications such as the Certificate IV Legal Services and other certificate courses within the Community Services training package, subject to approval by TafeSA.
How will it help me in my work?
This training will help you gain an understanding of the legal system, how to identify common legal problems your vulnerable clients may be experiencing, locate relevant information, and how to refer your clients to relevant legal and dispute resolution services.
What texts are required?
You will have access to the learning materials on the TafeSA Moodle online learning platform. Most materials will be from the Law Handbook, which is produced by the Legal Services Commission and located at www.lawhandbook.sa.gov.au. There will be set readings each week.
What is the assessment?
Assessment will include a discussion forum, three simulated case studies, as well as short answer quizzes. There is no exam.
What level of English proficiency is required?
It is essential that students can read and write in English to a level equivalent to Certificate III.
How much does the course cost?
The fees for the 2017 course are $493.50 but may be subject to change. If your employer is paying the fee, you will need to complete a third party payment form. This is available from TafeSA Justice and Policing Studies.
Can I study online?
The course is designed to be delivered face-to-face and via videoconferencing. We have found that students get the most benefit from a live and interactive classroom, complemented by online learning materials.
Can I attend via videoconference at my local TAFE campus?
TAFE campuses currently booked for semester 1, 2017 include Mount Gambier, Victor Harbor, Noarlunga, Murray Bridge, Berri, Elizabeth, Kadina, Port Pirie, Port Augusta, Whyalla, Port Lincoln and Ceduna. If you would like to attend at another campus, please contact the Course Coordinator for availability.
When are classes held?
Classes are held each Thursday from 10am to 12pm.
The Law for Community Workers timetable for Semester 1, 2017 is available here.
Semester 1, 2017 classes are from February and to May. No classes are held during the mid term break.
What if I can’t attend every class?
If you miss a week you can catch up with an audio recording of each class.