Substance Use Across the Lifespan (IHSU5006)


In this unit students will consider substance use across the lifespan from during pregnancy (fetal development), through childhood and onto adulthood. It explores factors that can lead to cycles of alcohol, tobacco and other drug problems across generations and how to break these cycles. Use of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs in pregnancy and ways to prevent fetal harm will be examined. Clinical skills will focus on how to prevent, assess and manage benzodiazepine (e.g. Valium or Serepax) dependence and solvent misuse. Professional writing and speaking skills will be further refined.

Further unit of study information


block mode (5 days), followed by 50 hours of self-directed learning at home


written assignments (80%), class participation (10%), open book quiz (formative) (10%)


Lee K, Freeburn B, Ella S, Miller W, Perry J & Conigrave K (2012). Handbook for Aboriginal alcohol and drug work. Sydney, NSW: University of Sydney.
National Clinical Guidelines for the Management of Drug Use during Pregnancy, Birth and the Early Development Years of the Newborn (2006). NSW Department of Health and Commonwealth of Australia.

Faculty/department permission required?


Unit of study rules

Prerequisites and assumed knowledge

IHSU5001 and IHSU5002



Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.