Clinical Placement 3

Subject PSYC90078 (2014)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2014.

Credit Points: 18.75
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject is not offered in 2014.

Time Commitment: Contact Hours: Eight hours for two days per week for about 23 weeks plus attendance at case conference (two hours per week for 12 weeks during semester)
Total Time Commitment: Not available
Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Corequisites: None
Recommended Background Knowledge:

Completion of APAC approved psychology studies to fourth-year (Honours) level.

Non Allowed Subjects: None
Core Participation Requirements:

For the purposes of considering requests for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry.

The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements, Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website:


Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

12th floor Redmond Barry Building (Building 115 Map)

Telephone: + 61 3 8344 6377



Subject Overview:

This subject has two components:

(i) 43 days of field placement:

Students are required to successfully complete a 43 day field placement. Field placements may occur in a variety of mental health agencies across Melbourne. Students will typically be assigned to one placement context and, depending on availability, this may include child, adolescent and adult, acute and rehabilition, and specialist services. It should be noted that over the course of the Masters program, students are expected to experience a range of placements (e.g. adult, child, older age, specialist services). The setting for this placement should be different from the setting for the 50 day placement. For example, if a student has undertaken the 50 day placement in a child/adolescent setting then this placement should be within an adult setting, and vice versa. However it is not possible to guarantee that this will occur in all situations. Generally students will be required to commit two days per week to this external placment for approximately 23 weeks of the year.

Supervisors for the field placement component will be registered as both psychologists and supervisors with the Psychologists Board of Australia. They will also be a member (or eligible for membership) of the College of Clinical Psychologists of the Australian Psychological Society, and eligible for specialist endorsement as a clinical psychologist with the PBA. The field supervisors will be responsible for ensuring that students are adequately introduced to the field setting and for day-to-day supervision of the student's placement. Field Supervisors will ensure that students are exposed to a range of clinical work, as far as possible allowing the student to function as a clinical psychologist within the facility.

(ii) Participation in Clinical case Conference held weekly during the teaching period. There are two major purposes for the clinical case conference.

The first is to provide the opportunity (structure, feedback) for students to gain skills in presenting case material in an effective, professional manner, with emphases on the following:

  • selection of material (clinical content and focus of presentation)
  • organisation of the material (format; use of overheads, etc)
  • personal presentation skills
  • physical environment
  • timing of presentations
  • evaluation/feedback

The second is to provide the opportunity for students to discuss selected clinical issues in a large group format, with emphses on the following:

  • focus/purpose for formal case presentations
  • integrations of clinical and research material within scientist-practitioner framework of professional practice
  • discussion of broad professional and ethical issues
  • implementation of professional skills

Learning Outcomes:

The subject aims to provide the students with opportunities to experience a range of clinical presentations across the life span and to begin functioning as a clinical psychologist, under the supervision of a field supervisor. Students will receive experience in history taking, conducting a mental state examination, arriving at a case formulation and making treatment plans. Under supervision, students will be given the opportunity to develop competency in the provision of psychological treatments to individuals and (where appropriate) groups. In addition, the subject aims to give the student experience of professional psychology practice, including professional presentation, report writing and record keeping, managing a clinical caseload, and liaison with other professional practitioners.


(1) A hurdle requirement of

(i) attendance at placement for 8.0 hours per day for at least two days per week over about 23 weeks;

(ii) satisfactory attendance (80%) at case conference

(2) Completion of placement goals assessed on a pass/fail basis. The assessment is undertaken by the Placement Coordinator, in consultation with the supervising clinician, on the basis of satisfactory attainment of placement goals following APAC accreditation placement standards. Placement goals are as follows: Experience in the administration and interpretation of a range of psychological assessment strategies and the writing of psychological reports; understanding of typical courses and prognoses of disorders, and capacity to develop appropriate treatment and management plans; experience with a variety of intervention strategies, which may include case management, individual therapy, family therapy and/or group interventions, and to be capable of evaluating those interventions; experience in functioning as an independent clinical psychologist within the facility, although closely supervised by field supervisors.

Prescribed Texts:


Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:
  1. Advanced problem identification and problem solving skills
  2. Advanced written, oral and interpersonal communication skills
  3. Advanced information integration skills
Related Course(s): Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)
Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)/Doctor of Philosophy

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