Course Outline

PSY716 Professional Skills 2

Course Coordinator:Rachel Brand ( School:School of Health and Behavioural Sciences

2022Semester 2

Thompson Institute

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

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

What is this course about?


The USC postgraduate psychology programs are committed to maintaining the primacy of public safety in the delivery of the program within the education and placement environments. This is the second practicum placement in the Master of Professional Psychology program. In your internship you will work under supervision at the University for at least 150 hours. Core components of professional practice include you undertaking professional and administrative duties related to the provision of psychological care of clients.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – On campus tutorial/workshop - 2 hours 2hrs Week 1 13 times
Placement – Minimum 150 placement hours 150hrs Week 1 Once Only

Course Topics

Course topics (not necessarily in this order) will include: 

  1. crises and risk
  2. functional analysis
  3. sleep problems
  4. substance use problems
  5. problem-solving therapy
  6. consumer-centred mental health services
  7. clinical presentations

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 Demonstrate advanced knowledge, skills and competencies required to work as a psychologist. Knowledgeable
2 Demonstrate advanced knowledge, skills and competencies in the design and implementation of evidence-based psychological interventions. Knowledgeable
3 Demonstrate competency and strong knowledge and skills in dealing professionally with clients and with other professionals. Engaged
4 Demonstrate competency to communicate knowledge and skills effectively in writing and through oral presentation. Creative and critical thinker
5 Demonstrate strong knowledge of ethical, legal and professional aspects of psychological practice and understanding of using the APS Code of Ethics and its accompanying Guidelines, and other relevant sources, to resolve ethical questions. Ethical
6 Demonstrate behaviour consistent with the legal requirements and code of conduct relevant to psychologists. Ethical
7 Demonstrate advanced awareness of potential ethical and legal issues involved in psychological practice and the use of the APS Code of Ethics and its accompanying Guidelines, and other relevant sources, to resolve ethical questions. Ethical

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

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


Enrolled in Program AR507, AR702 or AR703




Not applicable

Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Knowledge of evaluating counselling and clinical interviewing, case conceptualisation and formulation, psychometric and clinical assessment, therapeutic interventions, appropriate written and verbal communication, professional, ethical and legal knowledge as they relate to professional psychology.

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Limited Grading (PNP)

Pass (PU), Fail (UF). All assessment tasks are required to be passed for successful completion of the course.

Details of early feedback on progress

Early assessment of your progress in this course will primarily be provided by your supervisor(s), who will closely monitor your casework throughout the course of your practicum.

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Placement performance Individual
*150 hours
Throughout teaching period (refer to Format) To Supervisor
All 2 Placement performance Individual
Refer to format.
Exam Period To Supervisor
All 3 Portfolio Individual
Refer to format.
Refer to Format SONIA
All 4 Placement performance Individual
Refer to format.
Throughout teaching period (refer to Format) To Supervisor
All - Assessment Task 1:Supervised practica and skills training
To competently assess, diagnose and develop evidence-based interventions for psychological problems in collaboration with peers and supervisors.
Product: Placement performance
The minimum 150 hours for this course consists of logged supervised practica and skills training which may involve collaborating with peers to develop and execute role plays and demonstrate skills practice, observation of supervisors working with clients, individual and group work, and case analyses. Supervised casework involves the discussion of the assessment and the proposed psychological treatment for a series of written and video cases which will be provided to you, as well as direct client work. You will meet with your supervisor to discuss the cases and obtain feedback on your written work. Prior to beginning supervised casework, you and your clinical supervisor will complete and sign a supervision contract stating the objectives for the placement, including the range of activities to be covered and the skill base to be developed. This will be signed and approved by the Course Coordinator.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Demonstrate an appropriate level of knowledge and competent skills in a range of professional activities (including assessment, case formulation, treatment planning with on-going monitoring, and revision of problem formulation and interventions).
1 2 3
A high level of oral communication and interpersonal skills for effective communication with peers, other psychologists and other professionals as needed.
3 4
Ability to make accurate DSM-5 and ICD-10 diagnoses.
1 2 3
Ability to research empirical literature to develop plans for interventions and draw on published studies and theories/models relevant to the problem and intervention.
1 2 3
All - Assessment Task 2:Log Book
To record professional work competently and accurately
Product: Placement performance
A single log book of practica, casework and supervision experiences is a requirement* across the two practicums in the Master of Professional Psychology program. The log book must detail the nature and hours of all practica undertaken, as well as the dates, nature and hours of supervision, and clearly specify the nature of the client-focused work undertaken.

A final check of the Log Book is a requirement of the course and this check must be confirmed by the signature of the supervisor on the Log Book itself.

Templates for the three records for the Log Book will be on Canvas.
*APAC requirement.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Casework Record: Must show the dates of all role plays, video and written case analyses, and individual and group work undertaken, and must clearly detail the nature of the work undertaken. You are required to have it reviewed and signed regularly.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Supervision Record: Must show the dates and hours of all supervision with group supervision clearly differentiated from individual (i.e., one-to-one) supervision. You are required to have it reviewed and signed by your supervisor regularly.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Professional Psychology Record: Must show the dates, times and detail the nature of all professional work (other than video/written case analyses & supervision meetings), undertaken during this course. You are required to have it reviewed and signed.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
All - Assessment Task 3:Clinical Portfolio
To achieve competence in specific professional skills: profession writing, reflective practice, feedback, and specific micro skills that align with APAC capabilities and attributes.
Product: Portfolio
Submit: End of Practicum. 

Your task is to compile a portfolio which includes (1) two reports of the cases you have worked on which demonstrate your professional writing and directly relate to and reflect the knowledge and skills acquired during your case work, (2) a reflective narrative (500-1000 words) which provides an opportunity for you to reflect on your professional development during the practicum, (3) a mid-practicum and (4) end of practicum review completed by your supervisor/s.

Each report will contain information about the reason for presentation, referral information, case history, diagnosis, case formulation and treatment plan/description of assessment results and recommendations. A discussion of the major ethical, professional and legal issues relevant to the case, in the context of the APS Code of Ethics and Ethical Guidelines will be included.

References used to develop the formulation and treatment plan must be provided and listed in APA format.

Specific details about the structure of the reports will be placed on Canvas. A mid-practicum review will be undertaken after approximately mid-way through the course (e.g., Week 7) has been completed. This interim review provides you and your supervisor with an opportunity to review your progress, your performance and the extent to which the practicum objectives are being met. 

The end of practicum review is a final assessment of your performance, which, combined with the other assessment tasks, is used to assess whether you have acquired professional skills and knowledge to an acceptable level.

Details of the reflective narrative, the Evaluation of Supervision questionnaire and the practicum review templates will be placed on Canvas in Week 1.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Clinical Case Reports: General presentation – correct spelling, grammar and punctuation; use of professional language, clarity of expression and sentence structure.
Clinical Case Reports: Accuracy and completeness of diagnoses.
Clinical Case Reports: The effective integration of relevant case history and psychometric information to develop the formulation and treatment plan.
1 2 4
Clinical Case Reports: Evidence of effective integration of theoretical model/orientation to guide the formulation and treatment plan.
1 2 4
Satisfactory completion of mid placement review with primary supervisor.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Satisfactory completion of end of placement review with primary supervisor.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
All - Assessment Task 4:Placement PerformanceFace to Face Client file documentation
Competent, professional writing and time management skills
Product: Placement performance
Your task is to ensure that client files are maintained in a professional, confidential and accurate manner consistent with the ethical and legal requirement of professional clinical practice. You are required to record, in your clients' Psychology Clinic files, an accurate account of the content of the client contact, immediately following the consultation or as soon after the consultation as practicable. Each record must be dated and signed by you and reviewed and co-signed by the clinical supervisor. You are also required to ensure that all relevant additional records (e.g., referral letters, discharge summaries, assessment results, and correspondence) are captured in the files and maintained appropriately.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Ability to competently record relevant information in clients’ files in an accurate, succinct and timely manner to ensure that files are kept up to date.
5 6
Competent written communication skills including the ability to write progress notes, reports and other documents in an informed, succinct, valid and well organised fashion.
3 6

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. 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

You are expected to attend all tutorials. For any tutorials that are missed you will need to demonstrate to your course coordinator that you have covered the required material. This will usually take the form of a detailed summary and reflection of the Directed Study Activities that were missed.

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

This course will be graded as Pass in a Limited Grade Course (PU) or Fail in a Limited Grade Course (UF) as per clause 4.1.3 and 4.1.4 of the Grades and Grade Point Average (GPA) - Institutional Operating Policy of the USC.

In a course eligible to use Limited Grades, all assessment items in that course are marked on a Pass/Fail basis and all assessment tasks are required to be passed for a student to successfully complete the course. Supplementary assessment is not available in courses using Limited Grades.

All assessment pieces must be passed to pass the course.

Assessment: Submission penalties

You must contact your Course Coordinator and provide the required documentation if you require an extension or alternate assessment.


UniSC 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

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

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

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 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 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

For more information, visit

Student Charter

UniSC 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:
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  • Tel:+61 7 5430 2890