We are excited to hear our colleague Phillip Bachelor announce the launch of a cemeteries studies program with Deakin University. The Graduate Certificate in Cemetery Practice is now approved to commence early in 2020. Course details are below:


Professional cemetery education is finally here. From early 2020, Deakin University will offer a Graduate Certificate in Cemetery Practice. This new industry-specific course is designed to build essential knowledge and skills for those striving to lead professional cemetery practices.

Admission to the program is offered exclusively to those actively engaged in cemeteries, crematoria and memorial parks. A previous tertiary qualification is not essential. Deakin’s on-line study mode offers ready access from anywhere within Australia or overseas.

Planned, delivered and overseen by nationally and internationally-recognised bereavement, funeral and cemetery researchers, practitioners and academics, the Graduate Certificate requires completion of four units. The recommended part-time study rate is one unit per trimester. Particularly-keen students could complete the program in one year.

The Graduate Certificate program includes the following core units, and one elective unit:

  • Contemporary Context of Cemetery Practice (including social, cultural & landscape values, bereavement context, governance & sustainability),
  • Religious & Cultural Practices of Bereavement & Interment (including key tenets of major faiths, common funeral & mourning rituals), and
  • Cross-Cultural Communication (including cultural diversity, appropriate responses & effective communications).

An elective unit may be chosen from:

  • Heritage Practice, Business Communications, and Human Resource Management.

Assignments will address real workplace issues and develop practical planning and management solutions within this emotionally-sensitive and culturally-diverse service sector.

Professional education is considered the best possible staff training and client service investment. Enrolment costs are currently around $2,600 per unit (or $10,400 to complete the Graduate Certificate program).

The Graduate Certificate is offered as the first step towards a prospective Master’s Degree in Cemetery Practice (yet to be finalised and approved). Completion of the Graduate Certificate will be a prerequisite. The future Master’s program is expected to include a research component to investigate issues of industry significance that will establish graduates as world-experts in their field.

Enrolments will now open before the end of 2019. Meanwhile, to express interest and directly receive updates and enrolment details, please contact: Dr Phillip Bachelor OAM at Box Hill Cemetery.



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