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What to expect as a university student versus a MOOC participant

Have you completed the Understanding Dementia MOOC and have an interest in continuing your studies in dementia care? To find out more about what this would involve, please read on…

Question Dementia Care Degree Understanding Dementia MOOC
What is the Study Mode? Fully online Fully online
How am I assessed? Discussion boards, essays and presentations – these will be graded by your Lecturers. There are no exams. Multiple Choice Quizzes
Do I receive a grade? Yes, for each unit you will be awarded a University Grade No, you will be eligible to download a Certificate upon completion
What is the cost? Details of course and individual unit fees may be found in the Course and Unit Handbook. Free
When can I study? Semesters 1 and 2  Twice per year, with courses commencing in February and July
How long is the course? Each unit goes for 13 weeks. You can study up to 4 units at a time. The time required to complete a qualification depends on whether you study full or part time. At least one year of full time study is required to complete a Diploma. Seven weeks content, with the course accessible over a total of 10 weeks
How much time do I need to study? Around 10 hours per week (for each unit) Around 3 hours per week (over 7 weeks)
What happens on completion?

Students are eligible to graduate with a:

  • Diploma of Dementia Care (8 units)
  • Associate Degree in Dementia Care (16 units)
  • Bachelor of Dementia Care (24 Units)
All graduates can participate in a Graduation Ceremony and will receive a testamur
Completers may download a free Certificate of Completion. An Enhanced Certificate is also available to purchase, which includes details of content and may be useful for CPD purposes
How is the course structured? Year 1 - 6x core units plus 2x elective units

Year 2 - 6x core units plus 2x elective units

Year 3 - 4x core units plus 4x elective units

Details of course units may be found in the Course and Unit Handbook.
Module 1 – The Brain
Module 2 – The Diseases
Module 3 – The Person
Who is this course for? People working in aged care, health professionals, and anyone with an interest in gaining a qualification of advanced dementia knowledge Carers (including families of people with dementia and those working in aged care), health professionals, and anyone with an interest in dementia
Why should I do this course? A range of career paths in aged care, toward further study or research, improving dementia care in allied health areas, community care and residential care To develop your understanding of dementia and enable improved quality of care; certificates may be used toward CPD

The Dementia Care Program is a tertiary (university) level education program. The program offers students a choice of three potential exit points:

  • Diploma of Dementia Care (successful completion of 8 units), 1 year full time or equivalent part-time
  • Associate Degree in Dementia Care (successful completion of 16 units), 2 years full time or equivalent part-time
  • Bachelor of Dementia Care (successful completion of 24 units), 3 years full time or equivalent part-time

Students have up to seven years to complete their qualification. Many students choose to study only one or two units at a time, so do require this much time.

After starting a Bachelor of Dementia Care, students have the option to complete their studies early with a Diploma of Dementia Care (8 units) or Associate Degree in Dementia Care (16 units).  Upon graduation you will have a formal University of Tasmania qualification and receive your testamur (official certificate of your qualification).

Information about individual units and the course structure may be found here ( 159.8 KB).

The Dementia Care Program is completely online and students may study part-time (1-2 units at a time) or full-time (3-4 units at a time). The course is offered across three study periods each year – Semester 1, Semester 2 and Spring School Extended. Delivery dates may be found at the Key Dates web page. New students can commence their study in either February or July.

While the course is entirely online, it does require the same time commitment as other on-campus university programs. Students are advised to allocate approximately 10 hours of study per week for each unit, for a total of 13 weeks in each study period. Units run concurrently, so, for example, if you are studying two units, you need to allocate 16-20 hours per week to study. There are no formal examinations, and assessments occur throughout each semester. Assessments may include quizzes, assessed discussion boards, essays, reports and oral presentations. You will be expected to use academic referencing (information and assistance with this may be found at the University of Tasmania Library) and write at a university-appropriate level. We have two dedicated Student Advisers to assist you with all aspects of your study life. They maintain a unit called Your Common Room where many resources and helpful hints are located.

The Dementia Care Program is Australia's first degree specifically focused on dementia. It is available to domestic or international students, from carers to health professionals and anyone with an interest in learning more about dementia. The rise in the prevalence of dementia has emphasised the need for better quality knowledge across the community and health sectors.

Understanding Dementia is a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC), offering university-quality education about the latest in dementia research and care. This free course is open to anyone and provides an opportunity to engage with the perspectives of an international community, without requiring exams or assignments.

Understanding Dementia is designed to be accessible and appealing to people from diverse backgrounds, including:

  • Health professionals
  • Community and residential facility support staff
  • People in the early stages of the disease, their families and carers
  • Social scientists
  • Health policymakers
  • Individuals with a general interest in dementia

Understanding Dementia addresses the foremost issues surrounding dementia, providing avenues for discussion to engage with this major international health Issue. The MOOC outlines topics including how the brain is affected by the diseases that cause dementia, symptoms, diagnosis, management, therapies, living with dementia, and dementia friendly communities. The course provides knowledge designed to maximise quality of life across the trajectory of dementia for people with the condition.

To obtain the most from this course, participants should expect to spend approximately 3 hours per week engaging with the content and completing related course activities. There are 7 weeks of scheduled content. After completing the final quizzes for all three modules of the course: 'The Brain', 'The Diseases' and 'The Person', participants will be eligible to download a certificate of completion.  The Understanding Dementia MOOC is offered twice a year.