Diploma of Health Science
"The Diploma of Health Science is your foundation if you are thinking of upskilling in your current role or even thinking about changing careers. Available fully online, as well as on-campus or in blended modes, the Diploma is a way to springboard your career in health science. You can also use your credit points to transition into one of our Bachelor programs. And, because it can be studied fully online, you can start without making a big change to your current lifestyle and commitments."
Ashley Hillsley | Program Director
Diploma of Health Science
Get your first taste of the science behind Complementary Medicine and Public Health.
The Diploma of Health Science covers the foundations you need for further study in the Bachelor of Health Science specialising in Nutrition, Naturopathy, Western Herbal Medicine, Chinese Medicine and Public Health. You will also get a thorough understanding of how the human body functions as well as access to a broad range of electives that provide key knowledge and skills for use in a variety of healthcare professions allowing you to tailor the course to suit your desired career.
Upon graduation, students are eligible to attain Associate Membership with the Complementary Medicine Association (CMA).
What you'll learn:
- Understand the biological building blocks that make up the human body
- How the body functions and maintains health
- Develop an understanding of health theories and initiatives to improve health outcomes from the perspective of Complementary Medicine or Public Health
- Understand and apply evidence-based practice and critical enquiry
How can I study?
Blended Learning (On Campus & Online)
- Full time
- 1 year *
- Part time
- 2 years *
- Full time
- 1 year *
- Part time
- 2 years *
General Entry Requirements
Year 12 or equivalent with ATAR 50.
Special Entry Requirements:
Demonstrated ability to undertake study at the required level:
- broadly relevant work experience (documented e.g. CV), demonstrating a reasonable prospect of success; OR
- formal, informal or non-formal study, completed or partially completed, demonstrating a reasonable prospect of success; OR
- written submission to demonstrate reasonable prospect of success
View full course admission information
English Language Requirements
Approved English tests include:
- Equivalent IELTS 5.5 (Academic), with no skills band less than 5.5
|2020 - Trimester 2
||24 Aug – 14 Sep
|2020 - Trimester 3
||7 Dec – 15 Feb
Fees & Financial Assistance
Course tuition fees are available by contacting a Course and Career Advisor. If you are an eligible domestic student you may choose to defer some, or all, of your tuition fees through FEE-HELP. And as we are a university you can also take advantage of no loan fees on FEE-HELP when you study selected courses with us.
Scholarships are available for this course to full-time on-campus students only.
* SSNT reserves the right to increase fees by up to 10% in each calendar year to cover increases in the cost of course delivery. The total course cost will depend on the duration of the course and whether a student studies full time or part time.
CRICOS Code: 084580B
Online learning registered providers may offer overseas students up to one-third of their course online. If online or distance learning is offered, the registered provider must ensure that the overseas student is studying at least one unit that is face-to-face in each study period.
Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact a Course Advisor
Workload and Assessment
Typical assessment includes:Each subject you complete includes 3 assessments on average. Assessments are mapped to specific subject learning outcomes and may include quizzes, written assignments, presentation, reflective journal, case analysis, literature review and practical exams
Human Structure & Physiology 2
Human Structure & Physiology 2 will further develop knowledge of the structure and physiology of the human body with special attention given to the integration of human systems and beginning to explore the impact of disturbances in Homeostasis and disruption of normal function. The structure and function of the lymphatic, immune, digestive, nervous, endocrine, urinary, reproductive systems and the special senses are covered in detail including the homoeostatic control mechanisms of each system and the integration of the systems in the body. This subject builds on the knowledge and understandings of human structure and physiology, provides the foundation to look at disease, disorders and syndromes and their pathophysiology, in later subjects.
Evidence-based practice is an essential component of the exercise of clinical judgement in the delivery of quality healthcare. Students will also gain an understanding of how research evidence is translated into practice. This subject provides students with an introduction to health informatics, research and digital literacy, critical thinking and evidence-based practice. Students are guided through the skills necessary to locate, critique and interpret a research article for application to their practice. They will become familiar with quantitative and qualitative evidence, research methodology, basic descriptive and inferential statistics and the foundational skills to be able to evaluate and appraise evidence in healthcare research.
Human Structure & Physiology 1
Human Structure & Physiology 1 introduces the basic concepts and terminologies required to study and understand the structure and function of the human body. This subject will build on the biological foundations by exploring the interaction and organisation of cells, tissues and organs which forms a basis to study the physiological integration of key body systems. The maintenance and regulation of the internal environment by homeostasis at a system level will be key to students understanding disruption and disease in later subjects. Key physiological and functional processes such as movement, metabolism, oxygenation and protection will be discussed, with body systems including the integumentary, musculoskeletal, respiratory and cardiovascular system the focus of this subject. This subject will provide the first part of an evidence based foundational knowledge of human physiology to guide health practice.
Biological Foundations explores the biological building blocks which make up the human body from the chemical level up to the cellular level. These essential chemistry concepts will assist with building relevant links to the study of human physiology in later subjects. The subject then explores the foundational studies in biochemistry which includes the structure and function of carbohydrates, proteins, enzymes, lipids, DNA and RNA. The concepts of gene expression and regulation are discussed in addition to the cellular membrane structure and transport through the membrane. The study of the biology of the human cell concludes this subject and upon completion equips students to commence study at the tissue level of structure and physiology subjects.
This subject provides students an introduction to the diversity of health theories and initiatives to improve health outcomes. Students will engage with key concepts including human right to health, social determinants of health, equality, equity, and vulnerability. An introduction to Australia’s health system and intersectoral action will also be provided.
Complementary Medicine Foundations
Complementary Medicine Foundations introduces the historical and conceptual emergence of Naturopathy and Western Herbal Medicine and how this underpins contemporary clinical practice in Australia and globally. It specifically focuses on professional practice: introducing the therapeutic model, the underlying theoretical and philosophical concepts, and discusses the differences between various approaches to the health-disease-healing process. Students will be introduced to the local regulatory environment of the complementary medicine professions within the context of their career outcome and best practice. This subject introduces key concepts regarding ethics and communication in therapeutic relationships.
Foundations of Public Health
Within this introductory subject, students learn the principles and practice of public health and improving the health of populations. Students learn how public health is defined, the origins of public health and its evolution as a discipline. Students learn the key principles of the ‘new public health’, public health practice, the functions of public health, the role of government in improving the health and wellbeing of citizens, and public health service models, including comprehensive primary health care. They consider different understandings of health and illness, including professional, lay and Australian Indigenous definitions. They are introduced to key concepts in public health, including a human rights approach to health, an ecological perspective and the social determinants of health.
Botany & Herbal Manufacturing
Botany & Herbal Manufacturing provides students with foundational botany and plant identification skills. In this context students will be familarised with different forms of herbal preparations exploring the definition, herbs used, manufacturing techniques and application. Students are also introduced to the regulatory environment of commercial production and extemporaneous dispensing in Australia.
Chinese Medicine Diagnosis & Pattern Differentiation
Chinese Medicine Diagnosis & Pattern differentiation, builds on the basic concepts and theories taught in Chinese Medicine Foundations. In this subject the four diagnostic methods and various pattern differentiation methods are introduced, including visual examination, audio-olfactory, inquiry, palpation, and pattern differentiation according to the eight principles, Qi, Blood and Body fluids. For each diagnostic method, the clinical information gathered is analyzed in order to diagnose disease according the patterns of disharmony and determine appropriate treatment strategies and prescriptions. Finally, an introduction to tongue and pulse examinations are developed in this subject. *This unit is currently only available in Melbourne
Chinese Medicine Foundations
This subject introduces the fundamental philosophies and principles of Chinese Medicine (CM). It provides a solid and detailed account of the theory of Chinese medicine that can be used as a foundation for the further understanding of later subjects in the CM course. This introduction to Chinese Medicine explores the concept of yin and yang theory, wu xing theory, the functions of the organs and vital substances, as well as the causes, development and progression of diseases. *This unit is currently only available in Melbourne
Healthcare in the Digital World
Digital capabilities are an essential part of employability in the health and well-being sector in the 21st Century. Health informatics is the use of computer technologies and communication systems to store, transmit or analyse health information and e-Health and information and communication technologies (ICT) are widely used by Australian health professionals. Students in this course will develop their own digital fluency and learn about the role of ICT in health.
The subject introduces the current and emerging range of health care technologies and data science, the role of telehealth, m-health (health applications for mobile phones) wearable technology and the internet of things, the use of health informatics such as telemedicine in rural communities and developing countries and managing and monitoring information technology operations is also covered. This is in context of interprofessional communication and also in a global perspective. Students will also discuss the role of social media and understand the legal and ethical issues as health professionals. In addition, legal and ethical issues and strategies for managing privacy and security of patient data are explored.
This subject allows students to create and manage an ethical and professionally appropriate online presence and use basic multimedia elements to enhance the presentation of information.
Counselling & Communication Skills
Counselling & Communication Skills encompasses counselling skills commonly needed by health professionals for effective communication. This subject comprises a practical approach to a variety of communication skills and best practice strategies including promoting change, compliance, obstacles to change, transition and self-care. Sessions facilitate the development of effective listening and responding skills, increased personal awareness and insight in order to assist the building of a professional relationship for interactions with clients, colleagues and members of the community.
In this subject students will develop their understanding of disease processes and review evidence-based strategies to reduce the risk of disease and maintain health. Students will develop knowledge to apply educational and environmental interventions based upon risk factors associated with the development and chronicity of disease.
Food Science, Systems and Policy
Food Science, Systems and Policy (NUTR2004) examines the way in which food is produced, processed and distributed in Australia and globally. It provides students with an understanding of current practices and trends in primary production and food manufacturing and distribution. It also examines the laws governing food for sale and the politics of the food system and how these impact on public health initiatives as they relate to food security, sustainability and food deserts.
In this subject students will examine the range of nutritional requirements that impact populations, communities and individuals at particular life stages including pre-conception, pregnancy, during lactation, infant, toddler, adolescent, adult and geriatric populations, as well as the specific issues affecting indigenous communities.
Human Nutrition 2
In this subject, students undertake a detailed and in-depth study of the micronutrients which includes water- and fat-soluble vitamins and minerals and how these relate to human metabolism. This subject provides students with underpinning knowledge in relation to the correlation that exists between micronutrients and human physiology. Each individual micronutrient is studied in regard to structure, biological function, dietary sources, recommended daily intake and therapeutic doses. Also included are factors contributing to, and symptoms associated with, states of excess, insufficiency and deficiency.
Human Nutrition 1
In this subject, students undertake a detailed and in-depth study of the macronutrients, protein, carbohydrates and lipids, and how these relate to human metabolism. Each individual macronutrient is studied in regards to their composition, biological function, dietary sources, recommended daily intake, factors contributing to excess states, and states of insufficiency and deficiency; and signs and symptoms associated with nutrient imbalances found in individuals and populations. Students will investigate how the management of these macronutrients contribute to the public health agenda.