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Leadership in Health and Human Services

Become the next generation of leadership in health and human services.

Every health organisation needs qualified and passionate leaders. Effective leadership helps drive improved health outcomes, increased access to services, and greater efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of those services.

Our courses are designed to enhance the professional skills of those working, or aspiring to work, in leadership or management positions within the health and human service sectors. We will help you develop skills and knowledge for visionary thinking and strategic planning, vital interpersonal and communication skills to help you turns plans into action, and the adaptability you need to respond to a dynamic and ever-changing workplace.

Our courses are designed to fit around the existing commitments of busy professionals. You can study part-time, as little as one unit per semester, and scale your commitment based on your personal circumstances. You can also complete the courses fully online, with many of our students never setting foot on a campus as they gain the knowledge, skills, and confidence to become future leaders in the health and human services industry.

Customise your study to support your desired career plans through alignment of assessment tasks within units, selection of elective units, your qualification level, and the selection of your Master degree pathway option. Pathway advice is available via your teaching staff throughout your study.

Course Options

Master of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

3 years min, 7 years max

View course details Master of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

Graduate Diploma of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

2 year min, 5 years max

View course details Graduate Diploma of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

Graduate Certificate in Leadership (Health and Human Services)

1 year min, 3 years max

View course details Graduate Certificate in Leadership (Health and Human Services)

Study entirely online or with an optional mixed method delivery system.

Build critical thinking skills to interpret research and complex information.

Develop skills and knowledge to pursue complex leadership roles in health and human services.

Study options

Graduate Certificate in Leadership (Health and Human Services)

This course offers a standalone qualification, and can also be the first step on your leadership learning journey. You will builds a foundation of knowledge by studying core units covering leadership and management in health and human services, and risk management and governance. You will then customise with your choice from two electives – Global Health Systems, or Positive Psychology and Leadership.

Graduate Diploma in Leadership (Health and Human Services)

Build on the foundation gained in the Graduate Certificate with two further core units covering health research methods, and leading and managing change, then specialise further with your choice of two electives from a broad list of contemporary, engaging leadership topics. See the course page to explore all the options.

Master of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

Complete your learning journey with the Master degree. As a fully nested series of courses, the Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma articulate with full credit if you started there, or you can commence with the Master. By undertaking this degree you will be able to put your leadership and management knowledge into practice through one of three pathways: coursework, professional practice, and research. Information on each pathway is below.

Course breakdown

The Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma are the first steps on your leadership journey.

You will develop in-depth, contemporary knowledge of health and human service systems across a range of leadership and management dimensions. These include system planning, policy, strategy, governance, positive psychology and leadership, risk management, legal issues, ethics, health economics, financial management, quality & safety, clinical redesign, leading & managing change, leading clinical supervision, epidemiology, evaluating health interventions, and translating evidence into practice.

Our Master of Leadership (Health and Human Services) completes the journey, offering three exciting pathways to specialise your knowledge: coursework, professional practice, and research.


Coursework Pathway

For those who like online, self-paced, course learning

Units in systems thinking, economics and advocacy, and health policy, will teach you an approach to public health that allows us to understand and manage complex problems, and provide a basic understanding of health economics, its value, and limitations.

This builds towards a capstone unit where you will propose and complete an initiative that demonstrates your discipline knowledge, problem-solving capability, and applied research skills through the development of a proposed solution to a leadership issue in health and human services relevant to your organisation and/or career aspirations.


Professional Practice Pathway

Designed for senior and emerging leaders within the health and human services sector

Undertake a guided program to develop applied skills in transformational leadership. This pathway provides an intensive, work-integrated learning experience including advanced studies in leadership, workplace projects and reflective learning, supporting a program of learning towards mastery of leadership skills that can be applied within the broad fields of health and human service settings.

You will undertake a life-changing experience that expands your levels of self-awareness and thinking, as well as develops knowledge and skills to create environments where others can flourish, and where systems can be transformed. This is achieved through a combination of online and intensive face-to-face experiences that include:

  • online readings,
  • weekly two-hour sessions of either learning circles, or masterclasses, involving all students and facilitators,
  • two five-day intensives in Hobart. The first in week 2 (March) focussing on the introduction to the pathway and the second in Week 12 (September) where you can reflect on your project and leadership development outcomes throughout the year with the benefit of peer review and facilitator feedback.

Entry to this pathway is via interview, with candidates considered inclusive of their experience, and demonstrated ability to manage the high level of commitment required. It contains a range of online and in-person engagements, including two five-day intensives.


Research Pathway

For aspiring researchers, and those who take a research-driven approach to leadership

You will complete a substantial piece of original, independent research related to leadership within the health and human services context. Your research will explore topics that are of particular interest to you, and you will design your own project, which can be relevant to your organisation, or on a topic you are passionate about. The project can take the form of an empirical research project, analysis of an existing dataset, systematic literature review, or a critical-interpretative analysis of existing knowledge within your specialist field.

In addition to your major research project, you will pick an elective unit from a range that align to key issues related to leadership and management within health and human services.

Ideal for those who aspire to become published researchers, take a research-driven approach to leadership, and who are considering undertaking a PhD in the area.

Career outcomes

Hear from one of our recent graduates, Dr Liz Webber

Dr Webber recently graduated from the Graduate Diploma in Leadership (Health and Human Services). Hear how the course has transformed her professional life.

By undertaking any of these courses, you’ll be better equipped to tackle the leadership and management roles you are either currently fulfilling or aspire to reach within the Health and Human Services sector. As a graduate, you'll have knowledge, skills, systems, and confidence to pursue a range of middle and senior leadership positions within health and human services.

The course content, project focus flexibility, and pathway options in the Master degree have a clear focus on providing multidisciplinary leadership and management skills designed to equip emerging, middle and senior managers, clinicians, health professionals, administrators, policy officers, teachers and counsellors working within the broad fields of health and human services.

Health care and Social Assistance is the largest employing industry, with around 15.3% of total workers having their main job in this industry. It's a sector which both demands and deserves quality, considered, empathetic, and transformational leadership.

Projected growth in healthcare and social assistance


Five years to 2026

Full-time role share of employment market


In the healthcare industry

Percentage of unfilled vacancies in healthcare


In 2022, up from 33% in previous year

Study Experiences

Access renowned transformational leadership models in the Professional Practice Pathway

Master of Leadership (Health and Human Services)

In the Professional Practical Pathway of the Master degree, you will explore the way transformation works and relates to leadership through the Quinn Model for Guiding Transformation, learning about leadership through the lens of narrative and archetype with the Pearson Marr Archetype Instrument (PMAI), and Joseph Campbell’s Hero’s Journey monomyth.

Your learning will be enhanced through access to the customised, award-winning, Institute of Managers and Leaders Mentoring Program, together with pre-and-post program psychometric testing covering 360 Leadership and Management, Transformational Leadership, Change Readiness, Enneagram RHETI Personality, and PMAI Archetype Assessments.

Entry information

Entry requirements

Entry requirements vary across courses. You'll find the requirements on our individual course pages. These can be accessed from Course Options, which is located at the top of this page.

We encourage you to apply for the courses you most want to study. If you're not eligible to enter your chosen course right now, our admissions team will work with you to find the best pathway option.

Credit for prior learning

The University of Tasmania aims to provide you with credit for approved prior study or equivalent professional experience which exceeds standard entrance requirements for courses. For more information please visit Recognition for Prior Learning.

English language requirements

For those applicants who are nationals of and currently residing in a country where English is not the official language, evidence of an IELTS or TOEFL test must be provided. For more information, please visit International Future Students.