Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation 2019

The most practical and comprehensive facilitation qualification available in Australia, this hallmark course equips you with leadership, management, community and life skills.

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National Course Code: 10386NAT

Do you want to be a competent, confident and compassionate facilitator?

Please note: Our Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation 2019 is now booked out. You’re welcome, however, to contact us to discuss the course and go on our waiting list.

Working well with groups to harness the wisdom of everyone present, for the best outcome, requires more than experience in the role of running a meeting or leading a team. Development of effective communication and leadership skills, self-awareness and actively applying compassion are all required to be a good facilitator.

Our Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation offers a depth of practical material in a course that is experiential, interactive and a bit of fun. We offer eleven units, developed from our extensive experience of what is needed for you to become a facilitator who can make a positive difference.

We have a strong emphasis on emotional resilience and facilitation micro skills. This is applied to working with different types of groups, and your own particular facilitation challenges and opportunities.

Why with us?

Our Advanced Diploma is the most practical and comprehensive facilitation education available in Australia.  Our approach provides a high level of support to ensure your current skills, knowledge and awareness flourish. Participants who have been working with groups for years find this education powerful and empowering; the course is consistently rated highly by a diversity of facilitators working in a broad range of settings.

The course balances facilitation education with the specific learning goals of participants. There are plenty of opportunities to practise the skills relevant to whatever facilitation context interests you:

  • within your organisation
  • community engagement
  • therapeutic settings

Conducted in a group setting so you can always see and feel how skills are applied, contact days are ‘supportively challenging’. You will learn great things about yourself and provide a much stronger and more practical foundation for your facilitation skills.

Our ground-breaking course is nationally recognised by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA). This is an acknowledgement of the vital role of facilitation in effective workplace practices. Read more about how this course came to be

What you get

Your course fees are all inclusive of:

  • 19 contact days over the course of the year
  • 5 day residential at the start of the course which includes gourmet catering
  • Gourmet catering for each of the 2-day blocks at Rennie Street, Thornbury
  • 2 day residential at the end of the course which includes gourmet catering, extra dinner/accom/breakfast for those staying on Saturday night after the course finishes
  • Comprehensive training manual
  • Facilitation ‘Hot Spots and Tricky Bits’ video
  • Getting Our Act Together – book by Glen Ochre on the power of working well in groups
  • Graduation dinner

Entry requirements

There are no prerequisites for the Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation 10386NAT. The only requirement is a capacity to practice and apply your facilitation skills and understanding developed during the course. Open to beginners through to ‘old hands’. This diversity enriches the group’s learnings.

Prospective participants are required to attend either an Information Session, or have a one-on-one interview with us before being accepted into the course.

Course structure

There are 11 units in total, delivered over 19 contact days. These contact days are divided into eight blocks over an eight-month course year, with assessment continuing for a further 3 months. Course content has been developed based on our extensive experience of what you need to know practically for effective facilitation practice.

These units meld together relevant theory and practice.  There is a strong emphasis on developing facilitation micro skills which include developing effective communication skills and leadership development. We explore the facilitator’s role working with different types of groups as well as welcoming participants particular challenges.

We give you skills and processes you can immediately take back into your work with groups. We will address your challenges and build on your experience and strengths. This course is a balance of:

  • Education units derived from our Model of Collaborative Practice
  • ‘Live’ work issues that participants bring
  • Practical techniques which bring the learning to life
  • Lots of practice.

We believe there is no teacher like practice!  There will be work in large and small groups, roleplays, sociodrama, inner work, and exercises using art and drama techniques, personal reflection and fun!  People will be supported to have a go at different learning techniques.

Course Units

Click on any course unit below to read an overview.

  • Develop and use self-awareness and emotional resilience in groups

    The more we understand ourselves, the better facilitators we will be.  Becoming conscious of unrecognised ‘drivers’ can dramatically improve our facilitation capacity to first facilitate ourself!  Therefore, self reflection is threaded throughout the course.

    This Unit includes:

    • a model for understanding ‘The Unconscious at Work’
    • mapping our own Community of SelvesTM 
    • getting to know and working on the fears and other self limiting messages that hold us back as group facilitators.

    Unit National Course Code: FACAER601A

  • Develop and apply facilitation practice principles

    Facilitation practice needs to have a strong, clear value base.  As facilitators we need to be able to articulate our values and principles, for ourselves and for the groups we facilitate.

    This unit includes:

    • exploring and articulating our own values
    • developing faciliation practice principles
    • applying these principles to group process design
    • applying facilitation practice principles during facilitation

    Unit National Course Code: FACPRI601A

  • Use facilitation micro-skills to work with a group's purpose

    A competent facilitator needs an array of interpersonal communication skills. The Groupwork Centre has clarified and extended these by developing our own set of facilitation micro skills. Many of these skills may be well known to you, but never before articulated in such a useful way.

    This unit includes:

    • learning the Groupwork Centre facilitation micro skills
    • setting learning goals
    • developing the micro skills so they become second nature

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP604A

  • Work with group dynamics

    So much of what goes on in groups has an emotional content. Much of it is to do with our unconscious. It is understanding these dynamics that enables the full potential of the group to be realised. Participants will learn to identify the signs of unconscious dynamics and their effect and develop the skills to work with these towards the group’s purpose.

    This unit includes:

    • understanding the full spectrum of group dynamics
    • working with different aspects people bring into groups
    • understanding the roles people play, and can get stuck in
    • Field Theory – understanding all the ‘players on the unconscious field’.

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP601A

  • Create a group

    A collection of individuals is different to a group.  A group has the capacity to achieve great things together.

    This units includes:

    • different types of groups and approaches to groupwork
    • establishing a group and setting the scene
    • setting clear group agreements
    • safety and belonging, facilitating group ownership
    • resources for formation of groups

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP602A

  • Design, plan and evaluate group processes

    To develop the most appropriate process, we need to balance leadership, planning, flexibility and a willingness to negotiate with the group.

    This unit includes:

    • different facilitation roles including co-facilitation
    • negotiating with groups about your role
    • design, planning and preparation of group processes
    • scribing, report writing and evaluation

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP603A

  • Facilitate in organisations

    Organisations have their own function, structures and culture.  As facilitators, it is desireable to have frameworks to guide our work with organisations.  Competency in this arena is strategic for career development.

    This unit includes

    • framework for organisational mapping
    • negotiating a clear facilitation role
    • strategic planning
    • balancing organisational expectations with the wishes of the group you are facilitating
    • making organisational training more dynamic

    Unit National Course Code: FACORG601A

  • Facilitate collaborative decision-making in groups

    All groups are required to make decisions throughout their life as a group. This unit is especially useful for facilitating effective work team or task group outcomes.

    This unit includes:

    • different types of decision-making approaches and their applications
    • developing decision making principles
    • collaborative decision making – why it is so powerful, yet so challenging to implement
    • the decision making process, and how to facilitate it.

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP605A

  • Manage conflict in groups

    Most of us have fears and avoidance behaviour around conflict. As facilitators, this will have a negative impact on our work. We need strategies to deal with our own and other’s feelings and reactive behaviour.

    This unit includes:

    • under identifying the common causes of conflict in groups
    • understanding our own and others’ responses to conflict
    • working with ‘hot spots’ and ‘flat spots’
    • identifying and using group processes for conflict resolution
    • managing challenging behaviour
    • challenges to your facilitation

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP606A

  • Manage rank, power and diversity in groups

    This area is often overlooked in the study of groupwork. Yet marginalisation can take many forms and brings with it myriad challenges for facilitators.  We ignore it at our peril!

    This unit includes:

    • understanding how rank and power is played out in groups
    • encouraging and working with difference
    • dominant/non-dominant groups and their effect on groups
    • understanding how our own rank affects our facilitation

    Unit National Course Code: FACGRP607A

  • Practice self-care, professional development and continuous improvement

    To remain focused in our work we need to be personally centred and in good shape.  We all know it is essential to take care of ourselves, however, this is easier said than done.

    This unit includes:

    • understanding and addressing the difficulties involved in facilitation and the effect this has on us
    • ways of taking better care of ourselves
    • practical tools for prioritising and tracking our objectives
    • assessing our professional development needs

    Unit National Course Code: FACPSC601A

Learning Process

We give you skills and processes you can immediately take back into your facilitation endeavours. Our Model of Facilitation will address your challenges and build on your experience and strengths.

This course is a balance of:

  • Education units derived from our model of collaborative practice
  • Participants’ ‘live’ work issues
  • Practical techniques which bring the learning to life
  • Lots of practice.

We believe there is no teacher like practice!  There will be work in large and small groups, roleplays, sociodrama, inner work, and exercises using art and drama techniques, personal reflection and fun!  People will be supported to have a go at different learning techniques.

Why Study with the Groupwork Centre?

  • You will learn practical skills that you can apply in your work straight away
  • Our approach helps build actual emotional resilience.  You will develop the ability to land on your feet, no matter what happens.
  • The way you learn is nourishing, helping to sustain you in your busy workplace.
  • Learning together reflects the realities of group dynamics, so you will experience the facilitation skills being applied.
  • All assessment tasks are tailored around your work and real life experience.
  • We have a whole of person approach, acknowledging the importance of self reflection.  People often use this course to ‘change gear’.
  • Our unique models and processes are clear and simple.  Your confidence will build as we step through them together.
  • This is the highest government accredited facilitation qualification available in Australia.


Participants are welcome to borrow books at any time from the Groupwork Centre library.  Over the years, we have built up a specialised selection of books and resources that are practical and compliment the experiential nature of our approach.

Scholarship places

Two places in the course are reserved for people on low income. Your facilitation work may be voluntary, or is with an unfunded community group. The subsides price is $4,500, a 50% discount.

To apply for a scholarship:

Part 1

If you’d like to apply, you need to attend an information session, either before or after you submit Part 2.

Part 2

Submit a written application of no more than one page, detailing your response to the following areas:

  1. What is your facilitation work?
  2. What is your area of work or experience?
  3. Why do you need a subsidised place?

Please note that it’s highly likely that all full-fee paying places will be taken by the time we announce scholarship recipients. If you miss out on a scholarship, you probably won’t be able to take up a standard course enrolment.

To submit your application

Please send your response to the above three questions by 21 February, 2020 to us via our Contact Us page.

On the Contact Us form, complete your details then enter your submission in the Your Query section.

Successful applicants will be advised by 28 February 2020.

Ongoing Support

We provide a variety of ongoing support and information about networking options – both for current participants and our graduates.  These include:

  • Graduates-only events to keep you connected and inspired by your facilitation principles – and peer support network
  • Updates on resources and processes we share with current participants are made available to graduates on our website
  • We offer Peer Learning Circles – ongoing small group support around facilitation after graduation
  • Victorian Facilitation Network – the local chapter of the Australasian Facilitation Network, which is the peak body for facilitation in Australia and New Zealand.  This is a public forum open to all people interested in facilitation.  Meetings run for two hours, once per month.
  • Annual Australasian Facilitation Network conference


Held at Commonground Conference Centre & Groupwork Centre Training Rooms.
Read more about why this is such a delightful space in which to do your training.

Pricing Information

Fees for 2019 Participants

Early bird: $9,400 – deposit of $1,500 payable by Thursday 20 December 2018 to secure your early bird price.

Standard: $9,900 – deposit of $1,500 payable by 28 February 2019

Scholarship: $4,900 – deposit of $780 payable by 31 March 2019

There is no GST for this registered qualification.

Please note: Our Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation 2019 is now booked out. You’re welcome, however, to contact us to discuss the course for 2020.

Applications for two scholarship places open until 21 February 2019. Please refer to Scholarship Places section on this page.

All fees are paid in instalments over the course year (except for Early Birds who pay their $1,500 deposit by 19 December 2018). Instalment schedule below.

Note:  There are no extra costs!

Please note: Our Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation 2019 is now booked out. You’re welcome, however, to contact us to discuss the course and go on the waiting list.

Applications for two scholarship places open until

Discount available: You can have a discount of $220 off the total price if you have attended one of our Facilitation Training 2-day public short courses.

Payment Schedule for Advanced Diploma of Group Facilitation – 10386NAT

Instalment   Due dateEarly BirdStandard
Instalment 119/12/18 – EB
28/02/19 – St
Instalment 230/04/19$1,500$1,500
Instalment 331/05/19$1,500$1,500
Instalment 430/06/19$1,500$1,500
Instalment 531/07/19$1,500$1,500
Instalment 631/8/19$1,500$1,500
Instalment 731/10/19$400$900

We recommend that you attend an info session as part of your enrolment process.

You can do this before or after you make your booking.

  • Price: $9,900

    GST exempt
  • Early Bird Price: $9,400

    GST exempt
  • Deposit Required: $1,500

    GST exempt