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PSY8130 Practicum 1

Semester 3, 2019 On-campus Toowoomba
Short Description: Practicum 1
Units : 1
Faculty or Section : Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences
School or Department : School of Psychology and Counselling
Student contribution band : Band 1
ASCED code : 090701 - Psychology
Grading basis : Pass/Not Pass


Examiner: Elizabeth Goadby


Pre-requisite: PSY8010 and Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: MPCL or MPHD

Other requisites

Students enrolled in the DPCL or MPCL program MUST enrol in the TOOWOOMBA offer of this course.


To become fully aware of the role of the professional psychologist, students need to work within a general psychological practice setting. The practicum requires the student to face some of the broader issues that the practising psychologist typically has to deal with in integrating academic learning with professional application. Students will learn about the function of the discipline of psychology in that setting; the role of other disciplines or professions, and the professional etiquette and ethics involved.


The first Practicum is designed to provide students with a structured situation in a clinical agency in which appropriate psychological skills can be developed to high levels of competency. It gives the student the opportunity to examine applied problems from a theoretical perspective and to then apply theoretically derived interventions. It promotes a scientist-practitioner model of the professional psychologist. Students will be encouraged to approach applied problems and skill based learning from a hypothesis based assessment perspective. The emphasis is on skill development in a supervised, structured environment. Expert feedback on performance is seen as an essential feature of the learning process and strong emphasis is placed on skill development under adequate supervision.


At the end of the practicum, students will be able to demonstrate many identified competencies: such as case formulation, assessment, intervention, service implementation, professional legal and ethical principles, communication and professional and community relations in a clinical context. Actual content of the Practicum will include skills as identified in the Clinical College Competency standards (MPCL or DPCL) AND Psychology Board of Australia registration competencies (MPPS). Specifically students will be able to:

  1. conduct a preliminary intake interview with people from varied cultural backgrounds;
  2. formulate questions to guide further assessment and intervention;
  3. plan, conduct, and evaluate assessment case studies;
  4. plan, conduct and evaluate intervention case studies;
  5. demonstrate a working knowledge of the role of psychological interventions within a multidisciplinary team;
  6. construct and present case reports in oral and written formats setting;
  7. demonstrate insightful self-analysis of clinical intervention expertise.


Description Weighting(%)
1. Specific goals for assessment and intervention skills to be arranged between student and supervisors. See Practicum Guidelines. 100.00

Text and materials required to be purchased or accessed

ALL textbooks and materials available to be purchased can be sourced from USQ's Online Bookshop (unless otherwise stated). (

Please contact us for alternative purchase options from USQ Bookshop. (

There are no texts or materials required for this course.

Reference materials

Reference materials are materials that, if accessed by students, may improve their knowledge and understanding of the material in the course and enrich their learning experience.
Bramston, P, Practicum contract plan: review forms, Department of Psychology USQ, Toowoomba, Australia.
Dobson, KS 2010, Handbook of cognitive behavioral therapies, Guilford Press, New York.
(Electronic book available.)
Jongsma, AE & Peterson, LM 2014, The complete adult psychotherapy treatment planner, 5th edn, Wiley, Hoboken, NJ.
(Electronic book available.)
The Australian Psychological Society Ltd 2007, Code of ethics, Rev edn, The Australian Psychological Society Ltd, Carlton South, Victoria.
The Australian Psychological Society Ltd 2014, Ethical guidelines: Complementing the APS code of ethics, 12th edn, The Australian Psychological Society Ltd, Carlton South, Victoria.
Directed reading as assigned and recorded in the Goals and Objectives Form. Students will consult relevant Psychological Journals.

Student workload expectations

Activity Hours
Practical Experience 330.00
Supervisor Consultation 60.00

Assessment details

Description Marks out of Wtg (%) Due Date Notes
MID-PRACTICUM INTERVIEW 1 50 06 Feb 2020 (see note 1)
Case Study And Reflection 1 25 13 Feb 2020 (see note 2)
Final Practicum Evaluation 1 25 13 Feb 2020 (see note 3)

  1. Examiner will advise of due dates.
  2. At least one case study and reflection must be submitted to be awarded a passing grade.
  3. Examiner will advise of due dates.

Important assessment information

  1. Attendance requirements:
    It is the students' responsibility to attend and participate appropriately in all activities (such as practicum seminars and group supervision) scheduled for them, and to study all material provided to them or required to be accessed by them to maximise their chance of meeting the objectives of the course and to be informed of course-related activities and administration.

  2. Requirements for students to complete each assessment item satisfactorily:
    To obtain a satisfactory standard on the final practicum evaluation of the University students must obtain a satisfactory rating on all of the assessment criteria on the Practicum Evaluation Form. Students must submit to the Practicum Supervisor to mark a written case study of a de-identified client assessed or treated in the practicum. The case study documentation should conform to the format for case studies as set out in the guidelines.

  3. Penalties for late submission of required work:
    Students should refer to the Assessment Procedure (point 4.2.4)

  4. Requirements for student to be awarded a passing grade in the course:
    To receive a passing grade in this course students must complete the required hours of the Practicum as organized by the Psychology Practicum Coordinator, obtain a satisfactory standard on the Final Practicum Evaluation and have a written case study passed by the Practicum Supervisor.

  5. Method used to combine assessment results to attain final grade:
    As P is the only passing grade available for this course, all students who are qualified for a passing grade as in Assessment 4 will be given a grade of P. Other students will be given either a Failing grade if they do not achieve the goals stated in the Practicum Booklet or an Incomplete grade. Students who fail the Practicum cannot continue in the Program.

  6. Examination information:
    There is no examination in this course.

  7. Examination period when Deferred/Supplementary examinations will be held:
    There will be no Deferred or Supplementary examinations in this course.

  8. University Student Policies:
    Students should read the USQ policies: Definitions, Assessment and Student Academic Misconduct to avoid actions which might contravene University policies and practices. These policies can be found at

Assessment notes

  1. At the start of the practicum a contract will be drawn up between the on-campus supervisor, the setting supervisor and the student regarding supervisory and practicum requirements.

  2. Specific goals for the practicum will be completed in each competency area by the setting supervisor and the student within completion of the first 80 hours of practicum. Goals are to make specific reference to assessment, intervention, and professional competencies listed by the appropriate APS College and the Psychology Board of Australia.

  3. A record of all practicum activity hours and supervision must be maintained by students in log books (see Practicum Guidelines Booklet for details).

  4. Supervision meetings will be held with setting and academic supervisors as specified in the Practicum Contract.

  5. Assessment 1 is a Mid-Practicum Interview with Supervisors in the setting to determine the student's progress.

  6. Assessment 2 is a Final Practicum Evaluation from the setting supervisor based on predetermined criteria for each practicum goal.

  7. The examiner may grant an extension of the due date of a practicum in extenuating circumstances.

  8. Students will require access to email and internet access to UConnect for this course.

  9. The due date for an assignment is the date by which a student must despatch the assignment to the USQ. The onus is on the student to provide proof of the despatch date, if requested by the Examiner.

  10. APA style is the referencing system required in this course. Students should use APA style in their assignments to format details of the information sources they have cited in their work. The APA style to be used is defined by the USQ Library's referencing guide.

  11. There is no LP (Low Pass) in any psychology core courses as these courses are exempt from awarding the LP grade.