Course Outline

MHN707 Stress-related Disorders

Course Coordinator:Christina Driver (cdriver@usc.edu.au) School:Thompson Institute

2022Semester 1

Online

Online You can do this course without coming onto campus.

Please go to the USC website for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?

Description

Stress promotes vulnerability to, or exacerbates symptoms of, most mental illnesses. Stress-related disorders result from an atypical response to anxiety due to physical, mental or emotional stress. Post-traumatic stress disorder can develop if feelings of fear, anger and depressed mood persist after exposure to a traumatic event. You will explore how atypical responses to trauma lead to disorders and how brain changes manifest into debilitating symptoms. For most, current treatments are not effective, so you’ll also explore emerging evidence behind novel therapies such as pharmacotherapies.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Online
Online – The online activities will include a combination of videos, peer to peer collaboration, asynchronous online materials, and lecturer and peer zoom drop-ins. 3hrs Week 1 13 times

Course Topics

  • Stress: From a normal physiological response to chronic problems Part 1
  •  Stress: From a normal physiological response to chronic problems Part 2 
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder and other stress-related disorders 
  • The neurobiology of stress 
  • The impact of childhood trauma and maltreatment 
  • Intergenerational trauma: More than epigenetics  
  • Preclinical research: The utility of animal models  
  • Translation research: From discovery to treatments of stress-related disorders   
  • The role of communities and those with lived experience 
  • Existing treatments for stress-related disorders 
  • Psychedelics
  • Other novel treatments
  • Summary and integrated approaches for stress-related disorders 

What level is this course?

700 Level (Specialised)

Demonstrating a specialised body of knowledge and set of skills for professional practice or further learning. Advanced application of knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming...
1 Build an advanced understanding of neurological evidence associated with the development and treatment of stress-related mental health disorders. Knowledgeable
2 Assess and articulate, from an ethical perspective, the complexities of addressing stress-related disorders in the community and its impacts. Ethical
3 Appraise traditional approaches in addressing stress-related disorders and review current evidence of novel therapies utilised in treatment or community care. Sustainability-focussed
4 Evaluate an integrated approach to treating a stress-related disorder to develop research questions and future directions based on neuroscientific evidence. Engaged

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the USC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.

Pre-requisites

Enrolled in Program AR602.

Co-requisites

Not applicable

Anti-requisites

Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

You will be given practice questions within the first 4 modules to receive early feedback and to help you to become familiar the type of questions to be answered in task 1.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Examination - not Centrally Scheduled Individual 15%
1 hour
Week 4 Online Test (Quiz)
All 2 Written Piece Individual 30%
1500 words (across multiple posts).
Week 9 Online Discussion Board
All 3 Written Piece Individual 55%
3500 words
Exam Period Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All - Assessment Task 1:Online open book exam
Goal:
You will be assessed on your understanding of neurological evidence associated with the development and treatment of stress-related mental health disorders. You will complete an open book, take home (online) exam to respond to a series of questions including multiple choice, fill in the blank, and one word and short answer responses.
Product: Examination - not Centrally Scheduled
Format:
Open book, take home exam (online) to respond to a series of questions including multiple choice, fill in the blank, and one word and short answer responses.
Individual work.
You will have one attempt.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Demonstration of an advanced understanding of neurological evidence associated with the development of stress related disorders
1
2
Demonstration of an advanced understanding of neurological evidence associated with the treatment of stress-related mental health disorders.
1
3
Assessment and articulation of the complexities of addressing stress-related disorders.
2
All - Assessment Task 2:Discussion board posting
Goal:
This assessment has been designed for you to demonstrate your ability to assess and articulate the complexities of ethical considerations in research, and in the treatment of stress related disorders in the community.  
You will respond to a series of set discussion board questions, incorporating both your own viewpoint and acknowledging those held by others.
Product: Written Piece
Format:
Discussion board postings in response to set questions.
More details will be in your task folder.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Assessment of the complexities of addressing a stress-related disorder in the community from an ethical perspective.
2
2
Assessment of the impacts of addressing a stress-related disorder in the community from an ethical perspective.
2
3
Articulation of ethical perspective by incorporating both own viewpoint and acknowledgement of views held by others.
2
All - Assessment Task 3:Position paper
Goal:
This assessment has been designed to demonstrate your ability to critically appraise the current evidence base regarding novel and integrated therapies for a stress-related disorders, and draw conclusions based on the evidence base to pose potential research questions and future directions.
Product: Written Piece
Format:
Written piece - position paper.
Guidelines and examples will provided in your task folder.
Criteria:
No. Learning Outcome assessed
1
Appraisal of traditional approaches in addressing stress-related disorders.
3
2
Review of current evidence of novel therapies utilised in treatment or community care of stress-related disorders.
3
3
Evaluation of an integrated approach to treating stress-related disorders.
4
4
Development of research questions to address a novel integrated approaches to treating stress-related disorders.
4
5
Development of future directions to address a novel integrated approaches to treating stress-related disorders.
4

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Directed study hours may vary by location. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

There are no required/recommended resources for this course.

Specific requirements

All work submitted for assessment is to be word processed and submitted electronically. It is expected that

students will have ready access to a computer with common productivity software and reliable Internet access. Students will be able to participate in video conferencing, and therefore it is recommended to have computer capabilities to join these sessions (e.g. webcam, microphone).

How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Eligibility for Supplementary Assessment

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct
If Limited graded course

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks will be penalised at the following maximum rate:

5% (of the assessment task’s identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task
10% (of the assessment task’s identified value) for the third day
20% (of the assessment task’s identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task
A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task.
Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late.

To request an extension, you must contact your Course Coordinator and supply the required documentation to negotiate an outcome.

SafeUSC

USC is committed to a culture of respect and providing a safe and supportive environment for all members of our community. For immediate assistance on campus contact SafeUSC by phone: 07 5430 1168 or using the SafeZone app. For general enquires contact the SafeUSC team by phone 07 5456 3864 or email safe@usc.edu.au.

The SafeUSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email studentwellbeing@usc.edu.au.

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or studentcentral@usc.edu.au.

Wellbeing Services

Student Wellbeing provide free and confidential counselling on a wide range of personal, academic, social and psychological matters, to foster positive mental health and wellbeing for your academic success.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email studentwellbeing@usc.edu.au or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email AccessAbility@usc.edu.au or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Administration of Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Academic Misconduct
  • Students with a Disability

Visit the USC website: https://www.usc.edu.au/explore/policies-and-procedures#academic-learning-and-teaching

Student Charter

USC is committed to excellence in teaching, research and engagement in an environment that is inclusive, inspiring, safe and respectful. The Student Charter sets out what students can expect from the University, and what in turn is expected of students, to achieve these outcomes.

General Enquiries

  • In person:
    • USC Sunshine Coast - Student Central, Ground Floor, Building C, 90 Sippy Downs Drive, Sippy Downs
    • USC Moreton Bay - Service Centre, Ground Floor, Foundation Building, Gympie Road, Petrie
    • USC SouthBank - Student Central, Building A4 (SW1), 52 Merivale Street, South Brisbane
    • USC Gympie - Student Central, 71 Cartwright Road, Gympie
    • USC Fraser Coast - Student Central, Student Central, Building A, 161 Old Maryborough Rd, Hervey Bay
    • USC Caboolture - Student Central, Level 1 Building J, Cnr Manley and Tallon Street, Caboolture
  • Tel:+61 7 5430 2890
  • Email:studentcentral@usc.edu.au