Postgraduate Psychology

Postgraduate Psychology

JCU Inherent Requirements for Master of Psychology (Clinical) [102304] and Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology) [112802]

JCU is committed to enhancing students' access, participation and success in higher education and embracing the diversity of the communities we serve. We strongly support the rights of individuals who wish to pursue a degree to achieve their potential personal and professional career objectives. This document is designed to assist students and potential students to make informed decisions for study and access to services and to guide further discussions based on a clear understating of the inherent course requirements.

Inherent requirements

Inherent requirements are the fundamental abilities, attributes, skills and behaviours needed to complete the learning outcomes of a course while preserving the academic integrity of the university’s learning, assessment and accreditation processes. Students and prospective students must be able to demonstrate that they have acquired or have the ability to acquire the inherent requirements for their degree.

Reasonable adjustments may be implemented to assist you manage additional circumstances impacting on your studies provided these do not fundamentally change academic integrity of a degree.

Are inherent requirements different to admissions and academic requirements?

Each degree has a number of admissions and academic requirements which must be met prior to being able to enrol in or graduate from the degree. Admissions and academic requirements can be found at:

Students with a disability or health condition

In many cases, studying with health conditions or disabilities will not impact on your studies. Many students with disabilities or other impacting circumstances that impact on their studies, have successfully completed their university studies, with and without reasonable adjustments made to their learning conditions.

Students with a disability or health condition, or other circumstances such as cultural or religious considerations, can discuss their circumstances and potential needs for reasonably adjusted learning conditions with university staff including the Course Coordinator or AccessAbility Services.

It is highly recommended that you discuss your circumstances with JCU staff as early as possible as reduced time frames may impact significantly on the adjustments that are possible. For students with a disability or health condition, AccessAbility Services provides an experienced reference point, facilitates reasonable adjustments made, and assists students to develop the strategies to realise their capabilities. The University has no requirement to adjust for conditions that it is not aware of. Disclosure is required for any circumstances that pose a health or safety risk to yourself or others.

Reasonable adjustments

JCU is committed to making reasonable adjustments to teaching and learning, assessment, placement and other activities to enable students to participate in their course. Reasonable adjustments could be made to how curricula is delivered, clinical placements are conducted, and the way in which learning outcomes are achieved, demonstrated or assessed. Reasonable adjustments must not fundamentally change the nature of the inherent requirement. Reasonable adjustments do not alter the need to be able to demonstrate the inherent requirements of the course, and may or may not be sufficient in themselves to assist students to meet these requirements.

Reading the Inherent Requirements Statements

Inherent requirements are divided into domains and sub-domains and contain the following information:

  1. Introduction to the inherent requirement
  2. A rationale as to why it is an inherent requirement
  3. Examples of things you must be able to demonstrate, or have the ability to acquire and demonstrate during the course of your degree. Please note this is not an exhaustive list.

If you are intending to enrol in the Master of Psychology (Clinical) or the Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Psychology) degrees, you should read this document in conjunction with the relevant course handbook.

You should carefully consider the inherent requirement statements below as a guide for your learning during the course, and as a way to identify early possible challenges you may have in meeting these requirements. If you remain interested or engaged in the course, you should discuss your concerns with the College staff such as the Course Coordinator as soon as possible. If the challenges are related to your disability or health condition contact AccessAbility Services to discuss possible strategies and reasonable adjustments.

If the inherent requirements cannot be met with reasonable adjustments, University staff can provide guidance regarding other study options.

Please note reasonable adjustments must:

  • Be consistent with legislative and regulatory requirements, and not compromise codes, guidelines and policies
  • Not result in unethical or unprofessional behaviour
  • Meet the necessary standards of timeliness, accuracy and functional effectiveness to ensure that self and patient care, treatment or safety is not compromised
  • Address the need to perform the full range of tasks involved in clinical practice, including undertaking learning activities in mixed gender environments, which reflect the Australian context, and
  • Ensure that performance is consistent and sustained over a given period.

Legal

Inherent Requirement

Compliance with Australian Law and professional regulations.

Rationale

Knowledge, understanding, and compliance with legislative and regulatory requirements are necessary in order to identify, manage and reduce the risk of harm to self and others; compliance with these professional regulations and the Australian Law ensures students are both responsible and accountable for their conduct.

Examples

  • Respond to the requirements for student registration with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA);
    * Comply with relevant child protection and safety, health and safety, and anti- discrimination legislation. For examples of applicable Australian Federal legislations,  visit www.comlaw.gov.au/

Ethical and professional behaviour

Inherent Requirement

Ethical and professional behaviour in academic and community/professional environments

Rationale

Compliance with standards, codes, guidelines and policies that facilitate safe, competent interactions and relationships with the people students engage with to safeguard the physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual well-being of all.

Examples

  • Comply with academic and non-academic conduct codes and policies and professional standards
  • Reflect on ethical dilemmas and issues relevant to academic and non-academic settings
  • Identify and enact relevant applications of these codes and standards, including those relating to plagiarism, informed consent, privacy, confidentiality, and equitable and respectful behaviour in academic and non-academic settings and in their usage of online learning and social media platforms

Safe practice

Inherent Requirement

Compliance with safe practice sufficient to meet client care needs, including considerations of current scope of practice, workplace health and safety and infection control.

Rationale

Compliance with current scope of practice, workplace health and safety, infection control considerations and effective and timely response to alarm systems are required to provide safe environments for students, staff and others.

Examples

  • Limit task performance to current scope of practice
  • Comply with relevant workplace health & safety policies for equipment use and storage
  • Remain up to date with first-aid and CPR knowledge and practice
  • Work safely with clients with infectious diseases and with reduced immunity
  • Be able to identify and respond to alarm systems to maintain safety and/or effective health management for self and clients

Cognition

Knowledge and cognitive skills

Inherent Requirement

Knowledge acquisition, utilisation and retention spanning and drawing together all coursework subjects. Cognitive skills for focus, memory, attention to detail, theoretical deliberation, and practical functioning sufficient to meet academic standards and for competent clinical practice.

Rationale

Understanding and retention of coursework information and the effective processing and application of this information is required to complete academic tasks and for competent practice.

Examples

  • Acquire, comprehend, conceptualise and apply appropriate information and knowledge in response to academic tasks and clinical practice.
  • Make safe and appropriate client care decisions from retained knowledge
  • Assess the application of policy and procedures in the context of clinical situations
  • Research and use an evidence based framework to make sound decisions when developing treatment plans
  • Notice and respond effectively to critical changes in instructions, measurements or observable behaviour.

Metacognition

Inherent Requirement

Awareness of own thinking, and skills to reflect, evaluate, adapt and implement new cognitive strategies for improved learning and client care.

Rationale

Understanding and ongoing learning about oneself as an instrument in client care is required for safe and effective delivery of practice.

Examples

  • Review treatments and adapt to clinical changes
  • Monitor and reflect on personal responses and cultural paradigms around patient care, and develop safe, effective and professional care approaches
  • Manage and proactively learn from academic and clinical set-backs through self- evaluation
  • Reflect on the options, ethical implications, and impact for all stakeholders of client care decisions

Literacy

Inherent Requirement

English literacy skills that allow the creation and interpretation of clear meaning for client care through a range of symbols and English language text.

Rationale

Competent literacy skills are essential for the appropriate and effective delivery of academic
information and for safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Comprehend, summarise and reference a range of literature in accordance with appropriate academic conventions in assessment
  • Interpret diagrams and graphs accurately
  • Produce accurate, concise and clear documentation which meets academic and clinical requirements

Numeracy

Inherent Requirement

Accurate processing and reasoning with numbers and numerical concepts

Rationale

Competent reasoning and reliable accuracy with numerical concepts are essential for the completion of academic tasks and for the provision of safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Accurately score and interpret test data
  • Perform accurate statistical analysis

Communication

Verbal communication

Inherent Requirement

Verbal communication in English to a standard that allows fluid, clear, and comprehensible two-way discussions, tailored to the local English-speaking audiences.

Rationale

Effective verbal communication, in English, with university students and staff is required for effective learning and for safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Understand and respond to verbal communication accurately and appropriately in time-constrained academic and clinical environments
  • Convey spoken messages accurately and effectively in academic and clinical situations, such as explaining a client treatment plan
  • Present information formally to, and engage in developing discussions with a wider audience, including tutorial participation, clinical presentations and case conferences
  • Build rapport with clients and clinical colleagues

Non-verbal communication

Inherent Requirement

Non-verbal communication skills that enable respectful communication with others.

Rationale

The ability to recognise, interpret and respond to non-verbal cues, to communicate with congruent and respectful non-verbal behaviour, and to be sensitive to individual and/or cultural variations in non-verbal communication is essential for effective communication with colleagues and clients, and for safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Recognise client cues in facial expression, appearance, behaviour, posture, movement
  • Deliver information to a distressed client incorporating non-verbal behaviour that matches the nature of the information

Written communication

Inherent Requirement

Ability to produce English text to a standard that provides clear and professional-level communication, with language usage and style tailored to the targeted recipients.

Rationale

Effective communication in English text is required to demonstrate applied skills in academic writing conventions and in sustained and organised academic argument, and in safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Communicate complex academic and clinical perspectives in writing
  • Summarise and appropriately reference a range of literature in assessments
  • Prepare clinical reports that are appropriate to the purpose and audience, and are completed in a timely manner
  • Use precise and appropriate language and formatting to construct both handwritten and electronic clinical reports in a time constrained environment

Sensory ability

Visual

Inherent Requirement

Ability to interact with visual inputs sufficiently to manage learning environments and to meet client care needs.

Rationale

Elements in the learning environment are delivered by visual means, and the ability to learn from or respond to these inputs is required to learn effectively and to provide safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Process visual information from wall-posted information, handwritten, print and electronic sources
  • Monitor the broader environment for client safety including observing multiple people and events simultaneously
  • Detect visual changes in a patient's posture, movement, and other responses to clinical treatments

Auditory

Inherent Requirement

Ability to interact with auditory inputs sufficiently to manage learning environments and to meet client care needs.

Rationale

Elements in the learning and clinical environments are delivered by auditory means, and the ability to learn from or respond to these inputs is required for effective learning and for safe and effective clinical practice.

Examples

  • Acquire information aurally in learning environments
  • Detect and discriminate alarms and emergency calls over PA systems, and urgent verbal information for client care
  • Follow developing discussions with colleagues and clients for clinical treatment decisions

Motor ability

Gross motor

Inherent Requirement

Strength, range of motion, coordination and mobility sufficient to meet client care needs.

Rationale

A wide range of physical client care actions in a time-constrained environment is required to provide safe and effective practice.

Examples

  • Move readily around colleagues, between work areas and clients, and around varying surfaces and levels in a clinical setting, to complete tasks within shift time-frames
  • Safely retrieve, move and utilise stock and equipment from reasonable storage positions at a range of heights

Fine motor

Inherent Requirement

Manual dexterity and fine motor skills sufficient to meet client care needs.

Rationale

A wide range of fine-motor manual tasks in a time-constrained environment are required to provide safe and effective practice.

Examples

  • Prepare and perform assessment and treatment techniques
  • Contribute to both handwritten and electronic clinical records

Sustained performance

Inherent Requirement

Sustained physical, cognitive and psychosocial performance sufficient to engage in learning opportunities and to perform safe an effective clinical practice.

Rationale

A range of complex, multi-component or extended academic tasks carried out over a period of time and in a time-constrained environment is required to achieve learning outcomes and to provide clinical practice.

Examples

  • Sustain study practices and class participation to sufficiently engage with the learning workload for a study period, and for the degree, within a constrained time-frame
  • Maintain sufficient concentration to focus on a task to completion
  • Sustain a working posture, associated manual tasks, cognitive engagement, performance level and emotional control for the full duration of a client care process e.g. providing assessment and treatment to a client
  • Successive and extended client sessions with minimal breaks
  • Sustain performance for durations that are manageable within overall shift- planning for client care

Behavioural adaptability

Inherent Requirement

Behaviour that adapts to changing situations sufficiently to maintain academic standards, safe and effective clinical practice, and instigates self-care consistent with professional expectations.

Rationale

Behavioural adaptation is required to manage personal emotional responses as an individual and within teams in changing and unpredictable environments, including emergency situations and times of human distress. Students will also be required to adapt their behaviour appropriately during times of additional stressors in their own lives, whether this adaptation involves ways of continuing to engage with their role or withdrawing for self- care for a period.

Examples

  • Adjust ways of working within teams of varied backgrounds and opinions to facilitate effective academic and clinical decisions
  • Manage own emotions and behaviour effectively when dealing with changing responses of individuals and groups in academic and clinical settings
  • Be receptive and respond appropriately to constructive feedback
  • Maintain respectful communication practices in times of increased stressors or workloads
  • Adjust to changing circumstances in a way that allows self-care while maintaining a focus on academic achievement and a focus on the client