Social Change
& Advocacy

"This course provides the tools to create change, and help communities create prosperity" - Isabella.

The Bachelor of Social Change and Advocacy identifies key areas of social and environmental concern relevant to the demands of a modern global city. The degree is designed to introduce you to some of the social, economic and environmental challenges operating at global levels with local consequences. You'll discover the social, political and power structures within which social change can be enacted in Australia. 

You'll have the opportunity to undertake Career Ready Learning and Work Integrated Learning subjects to prepare you for your career and help you build relationships with employers and organisations, and a capstone project at the end of the degree will grow your skills so that you are able to contribute meaningfully to projects aimed at delivering positive and sustainable social change. 

Belong to one of the best

Study a top-rated social science degree at UOW:

  • Best skills development: In the 2021 Good Universities Guide, UOW postgraduate humanities, culture and social sciences were ranked first in NSW for skills development.
  • Top 1%: In the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2020, UOW ranked in the top 150 universities in the world for geography.
  • Top 200: In the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2020, UOW ranked among the top 200 universities in the world for sociology. 

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At UOW we focus on teaching you the practical skills that you need to succeed in the workplace:

  • This degree gives you the opportunity to apply your skills and knowledge in a workplace embedded project.
  • Career ready learning is embedded in every year of the course.
  • Third year students will have the option of an international field trip to explore the global context of their studies.

Two females sitting with a laptop at a table.

UOW courses focus on teaching you the knowledge and skills you need to make a successful transition to the workplace:

  • You will develop professional skills and experience that employers want, spanning a broad range of industries and organisations. Whether you want to pursue a career in a private institution, in the government, in non-government organisations, community advocacy or development, you will be empowered to become an agent of change.
  • Graduates of this degree will be qualified to enter a range of professions according to their interest and experience, or a range of professionally oriented postgraduate programs in Primary Education, Social Work, Public Health, or Urban Planning.



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The research conducted in the School of Geography and Sustainable Communities aims to support public policy design and better decision making through a range of knowledge exchanges and community engagement activities. Seven key values underpin teaching and learning in the School: compassion, respect, advocacy, courage, passion, vision and groundedness. Our research extends from these values and is conducted through the Australian Centre for Culture, Environment, Society and Space (ACCESS).

Three key research platforms characterise our research focus:

  • Reworking Cities and Economies
  • Living Environmental Change
  • Negotiating Everyday Sustainabilities.

Current academic research interests include; urban greening and forests, city governance and innovation, technology and employment, invasive species and housing and quality of life.

The Bachelor of Social Change and Advocacy is offered at our South Western Sydney campus.

Located in the heart of Liverpool, UOW's South Western Sydney campus offers world-class education in one of Australia's fastest-growing urban areas.

For more information on the campus and courses on offer please visit our page.

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Top 200

UOW ranked among the world's top 200 universities for scientific impact in the study area of social sciences and humanities.

CWTS Leiden Ranking 2020

Become one of the world's most employable graduates

A career in social sciences and advocacy can be very diverse and rewarding, with opportunities in management, policy development, education, environment, human resources, the public service, and the community sector.

No matter your path, your UOW degree is valued by employers; UOW is consistently rated in the world's top 200 by global employers (QS Graduate Employability rankings). Here are just some of the careers you could pursue:

  • Community Planning and Development
  • Environmental Officer
  • Federal and International Policy
  • Health Care Management and Policy
  • Local and International Community Development
  • Policy Analysis And Evaluation
  • Social Planning and Social Impact Assessment

Read more: What can I do with my degree?


Real-world experience

Growing up in Western Sydney, Senior Professor Chris Gibson has always been passionate about social and environmental issues affecting his community. With his research spanning climate refugees, country music, identity and regional development, Chris is renowned as an agent of change. Find out about how you can join a generation of change-makers at UOW's South Western Sydney campus.

Find out more about our campus in Liverpool


My name is Chris Gibson and I'm a professor here in the university, in the geography school. I grew up in Western Sydney and of course, there's been so much change since then. The world we live in is changing faster than ever. We are seeing incredible disparities and inequalities become more serious problems, politically. We're seeing the world go through great change and then, of course, environmentally.

The Bachelor of Social Change and Advocacy aims to graduate students who can not only analyze the problem, but know about the range of solutions that we can bring to bear on those problems and have actually got skills and experience in doing so through their work ready training, as part of the degree. This course will suit a really diverse range of people who are thinking about their future careers, and they want to make sure that whatever it is they do for a job, that it makes a difference in the world positively in terms of society and the environment. You could make a really positive change in the world. It's not just a fanciful idea anymore. There are degrees that can train you to do that kind of work.

What sets UOW apart is that we bring world class education and research into what we do in South West Sydney. We rank the highest in terms of both education, quality and graduate outcomes. We know how to train students well and get them jobs. The career prospects for graduates of this course are really strong because we know that these social environmental problems are not going away and that every organisation, whether it's a private company, the corporations, the government sector and the charity sector, for example, are all employing our graduates in positions, policy officer positions, community advocacy positions, community development workers, social planners.

These aren't the kinds of jobs of the past. These are actually the jobs that the future that we know are in demand. And employers want graduates who are skilled in being able to actually deliver on some of those solutions. Thirty years ago, when I grew up in western Sydney, I was really passionate about social and environmental issues, and I still am.

But 30 years ago, I didn't know how to channel that energy. I didn't know how to pursue a career that would actually position me to influence the world I live in. I really wish this degree existed back then. I had an incredible passion for social environmental issues. I didn't know how to direct it. I didn't know where to go to make a career out of that. And so I'm so proud that this degree now exists because it provides that pathway to become a change agent for our communities and for the future.

There's a lot of change going on, a lot of uncertainty. Do we sit back and let that happen? Do we want to actually have an impact on the way in which the world changes? It is possible to do so. And the point is this real and rewarding careers by actually being skilled and being able to address these kinds of social and community and environmental problems. So this degree is actually about professional training in exactly that, becoming a change agent, not letting that change wash past you, but actually have an influence on the shape of the places we live in and the society with which we ultimately want to be a part of.