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CHC42021 Certificate IV in Community Services

National ID: CHC42021 State ID: BII6
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A career in Community Services can change and impact lives by helping people that need it most. This course will give you job ready skills to be qualified for a role supporting the community as an outreach officer, welfare support worker or case worker.

The Community Services industry assists individual clients, families and entire communities who are vulnerable or at risk and is about improving the quality of life of people who need support. You will be able to utilise your skills to make a difference in areas such as family and youth work, child protection, counselling, alcohol/drugs, domestic violence and mental health.

Be guided by our expert team of professional lecturers as you learn how to build relationships with clients, carers and their families, assess social emotional and physical wellbeing of others and methods of providing individualised support, information and advice to people in crisis. You’ll need to have determination and drive for helping others as well as patience, tolerance, a positive attitude, ability to take initiative and at times, deal with conflict.

Qualified welfare support workers are in-demand and can work in a range of settings including government departments, local councils, hospitals, or non-government welfare agencies.

Take the first step into your rewarding career in Community Services.

Want to find out more about this industry?

Our Community services at SM TAFE Facebook page has more information for students about organisations, initiatives and leading expertise in the industry.


  • communicate and work effectively in the community services sector
  • promote social, emotional and physical wellbeing
  • respond to critical situations including children at risk
  • assist collective action
  • work with cultural diversity
  • ethical behaviour and legal responsibilities


In order to make an informed choice about the suitability of this course, you must take into account the essential skills and knowledge required to undertake this study.

  • Able to work with a National Police Clearance that is free of any criminal conviction 
  • Able to communicate well in English with clients, families and community members
  • Able to perform manual lifting tasks in personal care work
  • Can work through confronting content on topics such as sexual abuse, childhood trauma, domestic violence and drug and alcohol abuse
  • Can maintain positivity and be respectful, resilient and empathetic 
  • Can maintain confidentiality, uses initiative and leadership skills
  • Strong communication, consultation, problem solving and negotiation skills

This course remains FEE FREE in 2024! The tuition fees are 100 per cent subsidised by the WA Government for WA residents.

Some eligibility conditions apply for the free training, and other fees may apply for some courses. Please see the FAQs on our Skills Ready page for further information.

* Please note that eligibility requirements apply to some of the free training. Tuition fees are free, but resource fees may be payable for some courses


Online study is available for this course. Be sure to check the study requirements tab for information about studying this course using eCampus including study assistance and our helpful online study guide, then use the apply now link where you see the online study option. 

This course requires COVID-19 vaccination, police clearance and working with children check prior to work placement. See the important information tab for instructions. 

School Leaver Non-School Leaver AQF
C Grades in Year 11 WACE General English, and OLNA; or NAPLAN 9 Band 8 C Grades in Year 11 English and Maths or equivalent Certificate II or Certificate III

Attendance in class

You will need to attend class for one semester when studied full-time. The days and times differ between campuses. 

As well as the in-class component, you will need to complete approximately 1 hour of additional study each week outside of class hours, including private study, assignment preparation, and research.

You will need to have the basic technical requirements(opens in a new tab)  for at-home study. If you don’t have access to a computer and Wi-Fi at home, we recommend using our library computers(opens in a new tab)  during library hours.

What you need for your first day of class

On your first day you should bring your SM TAFE confirmation enrolment receipt, your student ID and stationery (pen and exercise book). Clothing suitable for an office workplace must be worn.

Work placement

This qualification requires the completion of a work placement of approximately 120 hours. Your work placement requires you to be available to attend during weekdays and you may need to rearrange personal or work commitments to be able to attend. If you live in the local area of Perth, you will be assisted to find a placement if you are unable to find one.

Online study

Students completing the online study option will complete two units at a time, with progress monitored by their lecturer. This can be done at a pace suitable to you but for each group of units you have 4 months to complete, so we recommend you use our schedule provided to you at enrolment to assist you in avoiding having to re-enrol in the unit. 

Students must be able to demonstrate practical skills to achieve this qualification while studying completely online. For each unit there is a requirement to demonstrate performance tasks and skills, these will need to be simulated, recorded and submitted for assessment.

The nature of online study can involve a significant investment of time and the ability to be a focused, self-motivated learner. You should consider your personal circumstances and past study history before committing to study online. Find out more in our online study info pack below.
Online study info pack (334 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)

Work placement - online studies

This qualification requires the completion of a work placement of approximately 120 hours, to be arranged by yourself. Your work placement requires you to be available to attend during weekdays and you may need to rearrange personal or work commitments to be able to attend. 

All students enrolled in Community Services, Youth Work and Mental Health are encouraged to obtain First Aid training (HLTAID011 is preferred). On campus students will receive first aid training as a unit in the recommended study plan. Online students will need to organise and pay for the training as their own responsibility.

You may be required to obtain a Working With Children Check and National Police Clearance prior to a supervised work placement. This will depend on the organisation you arrange your work placement with.

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Important COVID-19 update

This course requires you to undertake a mandatory work placement with an employer associated with an industry outlined in the COVID-19 mandatory vaccination policy. This means that you must be triple dose vaccinated prior to your work placement.  For the latest information on vaccine requirements for students visit our COVID-19 update page.

Please note this list should be used as a guide only as job titles and qualification requirements may vary between organisations.

SM TAFE actively promotes the employment availability of course graduates to key industry partners and organisations. We also seek expressions of interest from organisations for the placement of our students into work experience. In addition, this course involves work placement, giving you further opportunity to develop relationships with potential employers. We endeavour to assist students into a career pathway, but please be aware that employment is not guaranteed by us.

To access free career planning and job search assistance, visit the Jobs and Skills Centres page.

Select your preferred campus and apply

Click on your preferred campus and study mode below to get started with your application. 

All year round

When All year round
Where Armadale
When All year round
Where Rockingham

Indicative fees and charges 

The fees quoted are estimates only and are for all units in the course for students enrolling on a full-time basis. If you're a student that has successfully completed a lower-level qualification that is a prerequisite for this course, you'll only pay for the units that you need to enrol in to complete this course. Please view the full list of fee disclaimers. 

Semester 1, 2024

Duration 6 Months
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Armadale
How On Campus
Duration 6 Months
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Bentley
How On Campus
Duration 6 Months
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Murdoch
How On Campus
Duration 6 Months
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Mandurah
How On Campus

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