Master of Psychology (Clinical Psychology)

Course 527CL (2015)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2015.

Year and Campus: 2015 - Parkville
CRICOS Code: 009681G
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Level: Graduate/Postgraduate
Duration & Credit Points: 200 credit points taken over 24 months full time. This course is available as full or part time.


Associate Professor Carol Hulbert


Melbourne School of Psychological Sciences

12th floor Redmond Barry Building (Building 115 Map)

Telephone: + 61 3 8344 6377



Course Overview:

There is no midyear entry available for this course.

The clinical psychology program at the University of Melbourne began in the early 1970s. The program enjoys an excellent reputation and is one of the premier clinical psychology programs in the country. The program aims to produce students with a strong knowledge base in ‘organic’ and ‘functional’ psychopathologies, combined with a high level of skill and acumen in the detection, assessment and diagnosis and treatment of various psychological conditions. Therapeutic skills are taught primarily within a broad cognitive-behavioural framework within didactic, individual and group-based clinical contexts. In their first year, all students see adult clients referred to the University of Melbourne Psychology Clinic based at Blackwood Street in North Melbourne. In addition, all students undertake second year field placements in adult mental health services and with children and their families at the Royal Children’s Hospital and/or in related community treatment services for children and adolescents.

The academic members of the clinical teaching staff are active in both clinical work and research in a wide variety of clinical domains. Hence, the Program provides the opportunity to access a wide range of clinical placement settings and research programs. Alongside of the core training in psychology across the life span, students enrolled in the Clinical Program have the opportunity to focus their clinical and research training in one of three specialist areas: child and adolescent, health psychology or adult mental health domains.

A major focus of the program is the provision of clinical psychology training for the assessment and treatment of adolescents and adults with serious mental illness, work undertaken, for the most part, within public mental health settings. The longstanding and productive collaborations of Clinical Psychology Program academic staff with senior clinicians and researchers in generalist and specialist mental health services, including Orygen Youth Services, has contributed significantly to the development of innovative clinical programs and research. Building on these achievements, students have the opportunity to undertake clinical placements and research in challenging areas, such as early psychosis and emerging personality disorder.

Clinical psychology training for working with children and adolescents has been developed through partnerships with staff of the Psychology Department at Melbourne’s major paediatric service provider, the Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH). The staff of the program are senior clinicians with a breadth and depth of clinical and research experience in the child and adolescent area that is unique in Australia. RCH staff contribute to core teaching within the postgraduate clinical programs, and provide clinical placement opportunities. All students undertaking the clinical course will acquire competence in the assessment, diagnosis, treatment and clinical management of psychological disorders presenting in infancy, childhood and adolescence. There are exciting opportunities for research relevant to the child and adolescent area in mental health and medical psychological domains through collaborative programs with staff at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute, Orygen Youth Services and the Early Psychosis Intervention Centre.

Clinical health psychology is devoted to understanding psychological influences on physical health. The recent development of partnerships with the Royal Women’s Hospital and the Royal Melbourne Hospital has created exciting opportunities for clinical training and research related to the application of psychological principles to treat individuals in health settings. Clinical health psychology components of the program are supported by senior and experienced clinical and academic staff at these major hospitals. The range and breadth of expertise of our staff creates an exciting range of placements and research opportunities across diverse and innovative clinical programs. Developing collaborations across health settings allow the possibility of multi-site research.

Learning Outcomes:

This program aims to provide graduates with the theoretical skills and knowledge to work as professional clinical psychologists as well as a thorough grounding in the discipline of clinical psychology, particularly in the area of serious mental illness. The program aims, also, to provide students with a working knowledge of the medical, mental health and relevant systems and settings where clinical psychologists are employed. A further aim is to provide students with advanced skills in research and evaluation, alongside of excellent clinical skills so that graduates of the clinical psychology program are well prepared to go on to be leaders in the professional clinical psychology community. They should also be expected to generate and apply research knowledge in ongoing enhancement and evaluation of their professional work.

Course Structure & Available Subjects:

This course consists of coursework, placement and a minor research thesis (6,000 to 10,000 words).

Coursework consists of 14 classroom-based subjects taken over the two years of the course (see below) and 125 days of Placement (30 days in the first-year and 95 days in the second-year).

Subject Options:

In order to satisfy the requirements of the Master of Psychology (Clinical) students must complete the following subjects:

First-year subjects

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Not offered in 2015

Second-year subjects

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Semester 1, Semester 2
Entry Requirements:

1. In order to be considered for entry, applicants must have completed:
• an Australian Psychological Accreditation Council (APAC) accredited four-year undergraduate sequence in Psychology, namely a three-year major in Psychology as part of an undergraduate degree plus a fourth-year Honours specialisation in Psychology, with a weighted average mark of at least H2A (75%), or equivalent; and
• an interview; and
• a personal statement; and
• nomination of three referees.
Meeting these requirements does not guarantee selection.

2. In ranking applications, the Selection Committee will consider:
• prior academic performance; and
• suitability for clinical training as determined by the interview, personal statement and referee reports.

3. The Selection Committee may seek further information to clarify any aspect of an application in accordance with the Student Application and Selection Procedure.

4. Applicants are required to satisfy the university’s English language requirements for postgraduate courses. For those applicants seeking to meet these requirements by one of the standard tests approved by the Academic Board, performance band 7 is required.

• Selection into the two Master of Psychology courses associated with a PhD place in Psychology requires the approval of the intended PhD supervisor, the Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, and the Melbourne School of Graduate Research.
• Direct entry into the combined Masters/PhD programmes is available to international applicants only.
• Local applicants must enrol in the Masters programme (Clinical or Clinical Neuropsychology) and then apply to articulate to the combined PhD programme towards the end of their first year in the Masters programme.

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:

Graduate Attributes:

The Clinical programme aims to produce graduates with a strong knowledge base in "organic" and "functional" psychopathologies, combined with a high level of skills and acumen in the detection, assessment and diagnosis and treatment of various "psychological" conditions.

The expectation is that graduates of the clinical psychology programme will not only become excellent clinicians but will go on to be leaders in the professional clinical psychology community.

Professional Accreditation:

Accredited by the Australian Psychological Accreditation Council and recognised by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA)

Generic Skills:
  • Written and spoken Communication Skills
  • Analytic skills
Links to further information:

Download PDF version.