PSYCHOL 7232 - Psychological Assessment

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

This course aims to introduce students to the principles and practice of psychological assessment. The course will focus on a small number of widely used norm-referenced tests of intellectual abilities as well as diagnostic interview schedules, and both clinician rated and self-report measures used in the assessment of emotional and behavioural problems across the lifespan. Students will become familiar with the strengths, limitations, interpretation and presentation of findings from a variety of assessment instruments and will learn skills in both assessment planning and report writing. Students will learn about the ethical and social implications of assessment in a variety of contexts including socially and linguistically diverse populations. Opportunities for practice administration of assessment tools will be provided.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PSYCHOL 7232
    Course Psychological Assessment
    Coordinating Unit Psychology
    Term Semester 1
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 3 hours per week
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Corequisites PSYCHOL 7233
    Assumed Knowledge Psychology Honours degree and relevant undergraduate instruction in the qualities desirable in psychological tests and the statistical measures of those.
    Restrictions Available to M Psych (Health) and PhD/MPsych(Health) students only or by permission of Head of School
    Course Description This course aims to introduce students to the principles and practice of psychological assessment. The course will focus on a small number of widely used norm-referenced tests of intellectual abilities as well as diagnostic interview schedules, and both clinician rated and self-report measures used in the assessment of emotional and behavioural problems across the lifespan. Students will become familiar with the strengths, limitations, interpretation and presentation of findings from a variety of assessment instruments and will learn skills in both assessment planning and report writing. Students will learn about the ethical and social implications of assessment in a variety of contexts including socially and linguistically diverse populations. Opportunities for practice administration of assessment tools will be provided.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Melissa Oxlad

    School Psychology Office: psychologyoffice@adelaide.edu.au ; Ph +61 8313 5693


    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    The following learning outcomes are consistent with the APS College Course Approval guidelines for Postgraduate Specialist Courses in Health Psychology (see: http://www.psychology.org.au/academic/course-approval/)

    1.    Apply knowledge and clinical skills in the practice of psychological assessment for a variety of assessment tasks, across the lifespan.
    2.    Demonstrate competence in the selection, administration, and scoring of assessment measures
    3.    Demonstrate competence in drawing inferences from the results within a hypothesis generating and hypothesis testing framework
    4.    Demonstrate competence in writing a report and letter to a referral source of a professional standard

    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    1
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    2,3,4
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    4
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    1
    Intercultural and ethical competency
    • adept at operating in other cultures
    • comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
    • Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
    • demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
    1
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    3,4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    Lecturers will provide reading material which will be made available on MyUni, prior to or at each session.
    Recommended Resources
    The Library is a major resource centre for students. The Research Librarian for Psychology, Maureen Bell, provides some useful information through the Internet at http://libguides.adelaide.edu.au/psychology. The website contains a list of databases, links to tutorials and help with searching methods.

    For additional information please refer to the relevant Master of Psychology program handbook at the following link:
    http://health.adelaide.edu.au/psychology/students/resource/handbooksforms.html
    Online Learning
    This course may use MyUni for one or more of the following:
    - Communication with students via Announcements and Discussion Board
    - Submission of assessment
    - Access to resources such as additional readings
    - Self-directed learning activities
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    Lecturers will support group discussion related to the lecture content. This will include clinical case scenarios to guide the development of psychological assessment practice. Time will also be spent familiarising students with tests, as well as practice and supervision in administration, scoring and interpreting psychological tests.Students will collect and summarise information about tests for specific health-related conditions and present their findings to the class.
    Workload

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    Seminars: 3 hours each week for 12 weeks = 36 hours
    Video assessment: 2 hours (not including preparation time)
    Independent test familiarisation and practice administration: 3 hours per week = 36 hours
    Independent reading: 3 hours per week = 36 hours
    Assignment 1: 26 hours
    Assignment 2: 20 hours
    Learning Activities Summary
    Week Topic Lecture
    Week 1 Assessment planning and test selection Assessment principles
    Week 2 Introduction to the Wechsler Scales Assessment of intelligence
    Week 3 Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-IV Assessment of intelligence
    Week 4 Assessment of intellectual ability in children and adolescents Assessment of intelligence
    Week 5 Report writing 1: Planning, organisation, professional standards Communicating assessments
    Week 6 Report writing 2: Interview content, legal and ethical implications Communicating assessments
    Week 7 Assessment of mental health Assessment of mental health
    Week 8 Personality assessment Assessment of personality
    Week 9 Assessment of memory (focus on WMS-IV) Assessment of memory
    Week 10 Assessment of adaptive behaviours, support needs, systematic observation. Assessment of adaptive behaviour
    Week 11 Assessment of health and health behaviours Assessment specific to health psychology
    Week 12 Organic screens and medically-used measures Assessment of organic conditions/neuropsychology
    Disclaimer: This program is provisional and subject to change


    Specific Course Requirements
    On the initial enrolment into this Master’s program, all students (unless already a Registered Psychologist) MUST apply for and obtain provisional registration with the Psychology Board of Australia.  All students are required to provide a copy of their registration details to the Program Administrator on their first day in the Program: this will be required for the Summer School courses Interviewing & Intervention and Evidence-Based Practice. The application form and details of fees payable are available from the PBA website: http://www.psychologyboard.gov.au/Forms.aspx.

    Candidates are required to consent to a police check as part of their application to the Psychology Board of Australia for Provisional Registration, a requirement of enrolment in the program. A satisfactory current police check is a mandatory requirement for acceptance to and continuation within the program.
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    Not applicable
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary
    Assessment Task Assessment Type Weighting Learning outcome(s) being addressed
    Administration (video), scoring (test record), and reporting (written report) on a cognitive assessment, with self and peer rating. Summative NGP 1-4
    Part A Scoring, hypothesis generation and reporting (letter) a mental health assessment
    Part B Initial mental health assessment interview Objective Structured Clinical Interview (OSCI)
    Summative NGP 1-4
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Attendance is required for 80% of classes, with attendance lists maintained. Failure to meet this attendance requirement (i.e., absence from three or more classes in the course) may lead to exclusion from the course.
    Assessment Detail
    Assignment 1: This assignment involved students videoing themselves administering an intelligence scale, then scoring the test, interpreting the results and writing a report. Students also complete a self and a peer rating of the administration of the test. The scale is administered to a role played (pseudo) adolescent ‘client’.

    Assignment 2: This assignment involves students being provided with test forms, and initial  information from which they are required to develop a provisional formulation of a client with a mental health problem and compile this information into a letter to a GP referrer. Further details of both assignments will be provided in class.

    For further information re the Assessment Policy please refer to the relevant Master of Psychology Program Handbook at the following link:
    http://health.adelaide.edu.au/psychology/students/resource/handbooksforms.html
    Submission
    Assignments are to be submitted to the Psychology Office, along with a signed cover sheet (available on MyUni).

    Extension of time for an assignment may be granted at the discretion of the Course Coordinator, to whom students should apply in writing (or email) before the due date and time.No requests for extensions will be considered if made after the due date and time.Please refer to the Assessment Policy in the Master of Psychology (Health) Program Handbookhttp://health.adelaide.edu.au./psychology/students/resouce/handboodsforms.html
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    GS8 (Coursework Grade Scheme)
    Grade Description
    CN Continuing
    FNS Fail No Submission
    NFE No Formal Examination
    F Fail
    NGP Non Graded Pass
    P Pass
    C Credit
    D Distinction
    HD High Distinction
    RP Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
  • Fraud Awareness

    Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.

The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.