Graduate Diploma of Development Practice

Information valid for students commencing in 2015.

Course code




Course type

Graduate Diploma (AQF Level 8)


Tropical Environments and Societies

Award Requirements

Course Structure



Advanced Standing

Award Details

Admission Requirements

Course pre-requisites

Completion of an AQF level 7 Bachelor Degree in a cognate discipline, at this or another university.  Preference will be given to applicants with demonstrated experience or interest in international development practice.

Minimum English language proficiency requirements

Applicants of non-English speaking backgrounds must meet the English language proficiency requirements of Band 1Schedule II of the JCU Admissions Policy.

Additional entry requirements


Post admission requirements

Prior to undertaking the field components of the course, students must provide evidence of immunity to Hepatitis B, as well as immunization certificates for Tetanus, Hepatitis A, and Typhoid Fever.

For more information refer to: Infectious Diseases Policy and Immunisation Guidelines

Academic Requirements for Course Completion

Credit points

24 credit points

Additional course rules


Additional completion requirements


Course learning outcomes

The graduates of James Cook University are prepared and equipped to create a brighter future for life in the tropics world-wide.

JCU graduates are committed to lifelong learning, intellectual development, and to the display of exemplary personal, professional and ethical standards. They have a sense of their place in the tropics and are charged with professional, community, and environmental responsibility. JCU graduates appreciate the need to embrace and be acquainted with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples of Australia. They are committed to reconciliation, diversity and sustainability. They exhibit a willingness to lead and to contribute to the intellectual, environmental, cultural, economic and social challenges of regional, national, and international communities of the tropics.

On successful completion of the Graduate Diploma of Development Practice, graduates will be able to:

  • Integrate and apply advanced theoretical and technical knowledge in development practice, particularly as it relates to the tropics

  • Retrieve, analyse, synthesise and evaluate knowledge from a range of sources

  • Plan and conduct reliable, evidence-based field work and/or studies by selecting and applying methods, techniques and tools, as appropriate to development practice

  • Organise, analyse and interpret complex development related and livelihoods data using statistical, socio-economical, political and technological skills

  • Communicate complex development ideas, arguments and conclusions clearly and coherently to a variety of audiences through advanced written and oral English language skills and a variety of media

  • Identify, analyse and generate solutions to unpredictable or complex problems, especially related to tropical, rural, remote or Indigenous contexts, by applying scientific knowledge and skills with initiative and high level judgement

  • Explain and apply regulatory requirements, ethical principles and, where appropriate, cultural frameworks, to work effectively, responsibly and safely in diverse contexts

  • Reflect on current skills, knowledge and attitudes to manage their professional learning needs and performance, autonomously and in collaboration with others.

Course Structure


EV5955:06 Contemporary Issues in Development Practice

EV5956:06 Tropical Landscapes and Livelihoods


Select 12 credit points from the specified list:

BZ5520:03 Agroecology

EV5009:03 Foundations of Natural Resource Management

EV5010:03 Planning for Sustainable Communities in a Changing Environment

EV5013:03 Climate Change: The Science, Impacts and Solutions

EV5205:03 Conserving Tropical Rainforests

EV5252:03 Indigenous Environmental Management

EV5301:03 Urban Geography and Design

EV5404:03 Field Studies in Tropical Geography

EV5905:03 Literature Review and Proposal

EV5910:03 Minor Project (Part 1 of 2)

EV5914:06 Independent Project and Dissertation (Part 1 of 2)

EV5915:06 Independent Project and Dissertation (Part 2 of 2)

EV5920:03 Minor Project (Part 2 of 2)

LB5521:03 Conflict, Reconciliation and Peace

PL5110:03 Government and Politics in Developing Areas

PL5003:03 Governance, Democratisation and the State

TM5552:03 Global Health and Development







Expected time to complete

1 year full-time or equivalent part-time

Maximum time to complete

6 years

Maximum leave of absence

2 years


Course progression requisites


Course includes mandatory professional placement(s)


Special assessment requirements


Accreditation requirements


Maximum allowed Pass Conceded (PC) grade


Supplementary exam for final subject

The grade of Pass Conceded cannot be credited toward this course.

Advanced Standing


Students may apply for advanced standing for previous tertiary study in accordance with the Advanced Standing and Articulation policy and associated procedures.

Maximum allowed

12 credit points


Advanced standing will be granted only for studies completed in the 5 years prior to the commencement of this course.


Advanced standing gained for any subject shall be cancelled 11 years after the date of the examination upon which the advanced standing is based if by then the student has not completed this course.

Other restrictions

Not applicable

Award Details

Award title

Graduate Diploma of Development Practice

Approved abbreviation


Inclusion of majors on testamur

Not applicable - this course does not have majors

Exit with lesser award

Not applicable

Course articulation

Not applicable