Graduate Diploma in Youth Mental Health

Course GD-YMH (2016)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2016.

Year and Campus: 2016 - Parkville
Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Level: Graduate/Postgraduate
Duration & Credit Points: 100 credit points taken over 24 months part time.


Dr Paul Badcock


Melbourne Medical School

Currently enrolled students:

Future students:

Course Overview:

The course is directed toward those who wish to acquire the skills necessary to remain at the forefront of preventive psychiatry in young people's mental health during the onset phase of serious mental illness, both within Australia and internationally. Spanning the 'youth' developmental phase from 14 to 25 years, the course actively integrates a developmental perspective with an emphasis on early detection, intensive intervention and secondary prevention across a range of serious mental illnesses including early psychosis, eating disorders, and depression.

Learning Outcomes:

By the conclusion of the graduate diploma students will have developed the following areas of knowledge:

  • The major theories of development spanning the transition from adolescence to adulthood
  • Recent advances in the preventative models of psychiatry as applicable to young people
  • Recent advances in the biological assessment and treatment of serious mental illness in young people
  • Optimal organisation and management approaches for the provision of services to young clients with serious mental illness

In addition, students will be able to apply the following skills in working with young people:

  • Design community awareness interventions focusing upon early detection and referral of young people to mental health services
  • Assess the early signs of a range of serious mental illnesses in young people
  • Design comprehensive treatment plans which are applicable to the early stages of serious mental illness and sensitive to the developmental tasks facing young clients of mental health services
  • Apply psychosocial interventions in the treatment of primary and secondary morbidity across a range of serious mental illessesses affecting young people and their families
  • Match optimal approaches to the treatment of young people to impatient, community-based and home-based approaches
Course Structure & Available Subjects:

Students must successfully complete all eight core subjects to obtain the Graduate Diploma.

Subject Options:

Year 1 subjects

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:

Year 2 subjects

Study Period Commencement:
Credit Points:
Entry Requirements:

1. In order to be considered for entry, applicants must have completed:
• either
– an undergraduate degree in a cognate discipline such as Health Science, Social Work, Psychology, Medicine, or related discipline, or
– an undergraduate degree in any discipline or equivalent, and two years of documented relevant work experience, or
– five years of documented relevant work experience, including clear evidence of career development, of professional writing, and generally of professional achievement or practice comparable to that expected of undergraduate degree holders in cognate disciplines.
Meeting these requirements does not guarantee selection.

2. In ranking applications, the Selection Committee will consider:
• prior academic performance; and, if relevant
• the professional experience.

3. The Selection Committee may seek further information to clarify any aspect of an application in accordance with the Academic Board rules on the use of selection instruments.

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 6.5 is required.

• Students who do not achieve a weighted average mark of at least H2B (70%) in the first year of the Master of Youth Mental Health are not eligible to continue to the second year of the program, but are eligible to receive a Graduate Certificate in Youth Mental Health or Graduate Diploma in Youth Mental Health as an exit award if all relevant subjects have been passed
• Quotas may be applied. For direct entry into the Master of Youth Mental Health, or for transfer from the Certificate or Diploma to the Master, preference may be given to applicants with evidence of appropriate preparation or potential to undertake research.
• Entry to the Master of Youth Mental Health is subject to the capacity of a participating department to provide adequate supervision in a research project appropriate to the interests and preparation of the individual student and may be subject to the agreement of a member of academic staff to supervise the project module.

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 Overview, Objectives, Assessment and Generic Skills sections of this entry.

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 programs. Students who feel their disability may impact on meeting the requirements of this subject are encouraged to discuss this matter with a Faculty Student Adviser and Student Equity and Disability Support:

Graduate Attributes:

This course provides professional development for practitioners who are currently working with young people who have the intention of pursuing a career in youth mental health practice.

Professional Accreditation:

The program is recognized by professional bodies, e.g., Australian Association of Social Workers, Australian Psychological Society, Royal College of Nursing, and Australian College of Mental Health Nurses as fulfilling professional development (continuing education) requirements.

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