I am a prospective
student, looking to study at
Duration0.5 years full-time or part-time equivalent up to 3 years maximum.0.5 years full-time.
Mode of deliveryFace to Face, Online
Start datesTrimester 1 (23 Jan 2023), Trimester 2 (8 May 2023), Trimester 3 (21 Aug 2023), Trimester 1 (23 Jan 2023), Trimester 2 (8 May 2023), Trimester 3 (21 Aug 2023), Trimester 1 (23 Jan 2023)Trimester 1 (23 Jan 2023), Trimester 2 (8 May 2023), Trimester 3 (21 Aug 2023)
FeesFind information about indicative course and program fees.
English proficiencyIELTS overall minimum - 6.5, IELTS section minimum - 6.0 Find out more about IELTS.
CRICOS CodeCRICOS code: 090807D
Program Code40019
Current CSP Discount
Saving $12,847

Study Disaster Risk Reduction

If you work in a role that relates to risk assessment and management and business continuity, or if you are considering this as a career path, then the Graduate Certificate in Disaster Risk Reduction is relevant to you. All industries are impacted by disasters and must implement strategies to manage risk, speed up recovery and improve resilience. Even if you are experienced in this field, this program can increase your professional capacity in relation to the latest Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) practices.

This program is delivered through CIFAL Newcastle, a United Nations training centre with a focus on disaster resilience and sustainable development, which is hosted at the University of Newcastle. The United Nations has partnered with the University to develop the Graduate Certificate in Disaster Risk Reduction. The program provides graduates with the knowledge to manage the Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) process across all sectors of society.

Graduates will be capable of conducting disaster risk evaluations and guiding the subsequent development of disaster risk mitigation and management strategies for the organisation in which they work.

Why study with us?

  • Receive UN co-certification – complete courses that are co-certified by both the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNDRR).
  • Direct engagement with UNDRR resources - receive training aligned with the Sendai Framework – the United Nation’s global strategy for Disaster Risk Reduction.
  • Future pathways – the Graduate Certificate will provide you with the foundational study to progress into the Master of Disaster Resilience and Sustainable Development.
  • Top 150 in the world for Architecture & Built Environment. *
  • Flexible study options – our advanced online learning system, together with that of UNITAR provides you with the flexibility and support to study anytime, anywhere to balance work, life and study.
  • Ranked 3 in Australia by our postgraduate Architecture and Building students for overall satisfaction. **

    * QS World University Rankings by Subject 2021
    **  Course Experience Questionnaire 2020-2021
UN co-certified ? by UNITAR and UNDRR
World Top 150 ? for Architecture and the Built Environment
$90,000 median salary ? above national average
88.5% employed ? full time within four months of graduating

What you will study

Students of the program engage fundamental disaster risk concepts, and receive training in the use of the most globally adopted DRR tools and protocols, some of these through direct engagement with UNITAR and UNDRR resources. UNDRR is the UN agency with responsibility to foster the change needed to meet the recommendations of the Sendai framework.

Core courses:

  • Theory and Practice of Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Government Approaches to Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Private Sector Approaches to Disaster Risk Reduction
  • Professional Practice in Disaster Risk Management

Entry options and duration

This program recognises prior learning. Admission is available to applicants who can demonstrate a suitable combination of education, professional experience and industry qualifications.

The table below outlines the number of years experience required, depending on your previous educational qualifications.

Educational Qualification

Number of years relevant industry experience

Associate Degree, Advanced Diploma, Bachelor Degree, Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate in a related field of study


Program plans

Download a program plan for further details on your degree's structure and what courses you will study.

These program plans are applicable to new students. Current students should refer to the program handbook to access the plan relevant to the year they commenced.

View the full course list


Career opportunities

The University of Newcastle has entered into a strategic relationship with UNITAR, and now hosts CIFAL Newcastle, an international training centre with a special focus on disaster risk reduction (DRR). As a result of this partnership, University of Newcastle graduates will be well positioned to move into organisations who require experts to specialise in, or have knowledge of DRR.

Government organisations, private enterprises, non-governmental organisations, and not-for-profit will all require such professionals, as the Sendai framework begins to generate changes in practice. Risk-related industries such as insurance, will also require a strong knowledge of DRR of their professionals.

This qualification has wide appeal, and is suitable for those pursuing a career where they are responsible for business continuity and human safety such as a:

  • risk manager
  • compliance officer
  • local government officer
  • WHS coordinator

Professional recognition

This program is certified by the Centre International de Formation des Autorités et Leaders (CIFAL) Newcastle, in accordance with the requirements of the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR) and The United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR).

Application info

Applying for Graduate Certificate in Disaster Risk Reduction

I am a prospective
student, looking to study at

Ok, great, let's go!

Applications to study are now open. Submit your application now..

Apply to study in Australia

Both students and education agents can submit applications online. This is our preferred way of application. You can save your application after you have started, and come back to it later.

Apply to study online

This program is open to online international students. Applications to study online are now open.

Before you get started

To ensure that the process goes smoothly for you, you should complete the following steps before applying:

  1. Review the program that you wish to apply for. Note the admission criteria, admission instructions, requirements & structure and any additional information listed.
  2. Review the program fees and costs.
  3. Check whether your postgraduate program has a Semester or a Trimester closing date. Please view the application closing date.
  4. If you are from a non-English-speaking background, you need to satisfy the University's English language requirements and ensure that you can provide evidence of your English proficiency if required.

You will be considered for entry based on criteria such as your undergraduate studies and/or equivalent prior learning and/or relevant work experience.

Postgraduate application process

Other things to consider

Make sure you double check the special entry requirements, assumed knowledge or recommended studies for the degree:

Associate Degree, Advanced Diploma, Bachelor Degree, Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate.

Note: Organisations of all types within civil society have the potential to be negatively impacted by disasters. The appropriateness of this program to potential students is therefore in large part determined by their role within those organisations (i.e. the extent to which they are, or are intended to become, responsible for its disaster risk reduction activities) rather than the nature or level of their prior qualifications (which will be assumed to be vocationally relevant to the organisation for which they work, and therefore be used to determine their educational eligibility for admission).

All Applicants must demonstrate that they meet the University’s English proficiency requirement. Further information regarding English language proficiency requirements can be found at the English Language Proficiency for Admission Policy here.

Applicants for this program must satisfy a minimum English Language Proficiency Standard equivalent to an IELTS overall minimum of 6.5 with no subtest result below 6.0

You can look at Uni prep for options to brush up on knowledge before you start.

View University key dates

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.