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Humanitarian, emergency and disaster management
Study with CDU

Humanitarian, Emergency and Disaster Management

Want to work in emergency management, become an aid worker or do disaster relief work? 

Learn how to approach disaster, emergency and community risks holistically. Our courses focus on the Asia Pacific, Africa, the Middle East and South America. You'll do scenario training, be taught by industry experts, and complete placements at leading aid agencies, NGOs and government departments.

You make CDU.

Choose CDU for humanitarian and disaster management courses

  • 100% flexible study that suits you

    Choose to study online or on campus, part-time or full-time

  • #7 Australian university for undergraduate employment outcomes

    According to The Good Universities Guide 2024 CDU ranks as a leader for undergraduate employment outcomes

  • 30 years' experience in distance and online education

    We have what it takes to support flexible study

Top humanitarian and emergency management courses

  • Students at CDU

    Bachelor of Humanitarian Aid and Development

    Your path to a career in humanitarian and development aid. This unique course offers both online study and hands-on learning through practical placements with aid organisations in Australia or abroad.

    See course structure
  • Stock image of an emergency and disaster management professional in a fire

    Master of Emergency and Disaster Management

    A postgraduate online course that equips you with the knowledge to manage all phases of the disaster management cycle. You'll focus on Southeast Asia, a region that is most prone to and affected by disaster. 

    See course structure
  • St Johns NT paramedic at work

    Bachelor of Paramedicine

    Qualify to work as a paramedic anywhere in Australia. Combine the best of online and face-to-face learning, thanks to guaranteed placements with St John NT.

    See course structure
Need some help finding the right course or career path?

Why study a humanitarian, emergency and disaster management degree?

Emergency and disaster management student

If you're a problem solver by nature with the ability to work under pressure in challenging situations and a desire to perform life-saving work, consider forging a career in humanitarian, emergency and disaster management with CDU. 

Our emergency management courses are designed to address the growing need for skilled humanitarian and development assistance workers due to man-made disasters like war and famine, disasters caused by natural hazards like flooding and earthquakes, and widespread health emergencies like pandemics and epidemics.

Apply your academic learnings to practical scenarios during intensive units and community-based placements. Available here in Australia or overseas with industry partners, you’ll get the real-world experience to set up your future career in humanitarian relief, development assistance or human services organisations.


Studying a humanitarian, emergency and disaster management degree online

Students at CDU

Study emergency and disaster management courses online with CDU, wherever you live in Australia. You will have the flexibility to:

  • Study your humanitarian aid and development degree completely online
  • Choose between part-time and full-time study
  • Undertake community-based placements with organisations across Australia and overseas
  • Complete intensive units online

When you study emergency management courses online with us, you’ll have access to round-the-clock academic and technical support, 1:1 support from lecturers and our world-class online learning platform, Learnline.

Learn more about CDU’s online study experience.

Your career in humanitarian, emergency and disaster management

Humanitarian, Emergency and Disaster Management

There has never been more demand for skilled humanitarian and development assistance workers. The industry is growing rapidly due to the growing incidence of disasters across the globe, both man-made and caused by natural hazards.

Foreign aid work is often seen as the employment outcome of choice for disaster management courses, though opportunities extend far beyond this. Importantly, you don’t need to be a frontline aid worker to make a real impact. Many professionals working in this industry work regular desk jobs in their own city.

Interested in making a difference on a local scale? The Human Services major in the Bachelor of Humanitarian Aid and Development focuses on working with individuals, families and groups at the local level. Graduates find roles in migration support, homelessness services, local community services and more.

The multi-disciplinary approach of our disaster management courses gives you the critical analysis and conceptual application skills to succeed in a broad range of fields, from government and hospitals to not-for-profit organisations and more.

Launch into your new world of study with confidence

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    The Humanitarian Design Summit: Everything I was expecting and more.

    Humanitarian and Community Studies student, Tiana Hokins, attended the Engineers Without Borders Humanitarian Design Summit in India. She describes it as one of the most amazing experiences she has had to date. Here’s her story.

    Read more
  • CDU student Emma Kettle with fellow CDU students

    How Emma's shoring up her industry skills

    As the humanitarian aid and disaster management sector evolves, keeping up with best practice and new ways of responding to crises has never been more important. That’s exactly why Emma Kettle chose to return to uni to take on a postgraduate degree in Humanitarian, Disaster and Emergency Management.

    Read more
  • Piggy bank

    Financial support for study: What help can I get?

    Beginning or returning to study can have huge rewards in terms of improving your quality of life and income potential once qualified, but like anything worthwhile, it takes time and money to get there. There is help out there for you.  

    Read more
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