Psychosocial Practice in Oncology

Subject SCWK90035 (2012)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2012.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2012:

August, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Mid Semester intensive teaching
Total Time Commitment:

24 Hours

Prerequisites: Entry into the MSW program at the University of Melbourne or as approved by the RAGS Co-ordinator.
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge: None
Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

It is University policy to take all reasonable steps to minimise the impact of disability upon academic study and reasonable adjustments will be made to enhance a student's participation in the University's courses. Students who think their disability will impact on meeting this requirement are encouraged to discuss this matter with the Course Coordinator and the Disability Liaison Unit.


Assoc Prof Lynette Joubert


Social Work
Melbourne School of Health Sciences
The University of Melbourne
Level 1, 200 Berkeley St
Carlton Victoria 3010 AUSTRALIA
T: +61 3 8344 9417
F: +61 3 8344 4188

Subject Overview: The focus of this subject is on the theoretical paradigms, and the political, economic and social determinants of psychosocial practice associated with Oncology. Advances in cancer care, and the relevance of these in relation to life stresses and quality of life, have resulted in the increased importance of psychosocial issues on assessment, intervention and recovery. The subject will include the impact of cancer on the developmental stage of the individual, family and interpersonal relationships, as well as issues related to survivorship and the management of cancer as a chronic illness. Professionals working in multidisciplinary cancer care teams are in a unique position to respond to the needs of people who have been diagnosed with cancer and their carers. This subject will aim to strengthen their capacity to respond effectively and appropriately from a pyschosocial service perspective.
  • To expose students to the multidimensional aspects of recent developments in relation to advances in cancer care
  • To familiarize students with major current issues in the political economic and service developments surrounding cancer care
  • To enable students to develop critical understanding and assessment of current policy in relation to cancer care
  • To review major research findings and the skill base of focused psychological interventions in cancer care
  • To explore the influences of social cultural economic and environmental factors on survivorship and recovery in cancer care
  • To examine current conceptions and models of psychosocial care related to cancer and relate them to different problem definitions. policies and programs
Assessment: An essay of 5000 words (100%) - due at the end of semester
Prescribed Texts:


Recommended Texts: A subject reader will be available from the Bookroom at the beginning of semester.
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject students should be able to:

  • demonstrate an understanding of cancer incidence, treatment approaches and their implication for psychosocial functioning and quality of life across the life span
  • demonstrate their understanding of the importance and role of community based providers and the cancer care team in their approach to the care of cancer survivors, their carers and families
  • related their understanding of the psychosocial issues related to cancer care to policy development, service provision and evaluation, and research
  • demonstrate their familiarity with psychosocial practice/intervention strategies relevant to working with cancer survivors
Links to further information:

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