PUB HLTH 7005 - Narrative Approaches to Counselling

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2022

This course provides a rigorous introduction to narrative practice. All of the central practices of the narrative approach will be explored, along with an accessible introduction to the theories and thinking that informs the practice. This introduction is relevant for a range of contexts including counselling and working with groups and communities. It will include explorations of the key ideas of narrative therapy, with an emphasis on developing skills in using the narrative approach and how these might apply in a variety of settings.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code PUB HLTH 7005
    Course Narrative Approaches to Counselling
    Coordinating Unit Public Health
    Term Semester 1
    Level Postgraduate Coursework
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Up to 33 hours
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange N
    Prerequisites PUB HLTH 5005, PUB HLTH 5007, PUB HLTH 7010, PUB HLTH 5006, PUB HLTH 6018, PUB HLTH 6021 and (PUB HLTH 7003 or PUB HLTH 7300 OL)
    Restrictions Available to MCounsPsych students only
    Course Description This course provides a rigorous introduction to narrative practice. All of the central practices of the narrative approach will be explored, along with an accessible introduction to the theories and thinking that informs the practice. This introduction is relevant for a range of contexts including counselling and working with groups and communities. It will include explorations of the key ideas of narrative therapy, with an emphasis on developing skills in using the narrative approach and how these might apply in a variety of settings.
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Mrs Rebecca Wood

    Course Coordinator: Rebecca Wood
    Phone: +61 8 8313 1633

    Student & Program Support Services Hub
    Phone: +61 8313 0273

    Course Timetable

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

    Timetable details are located on MyUni.
  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes
    On successful completion of this course students will be able to:

    1. Identify the principle ideas of poststructuralist theories as they relate to narrative approaches to counselling and psychotherapy.

    2. Critically appraise narrative approaches to counselling demonstrating an appreciation of the evidence base, clinical and community applications, strengths, and limitations.

    3. Investigate the relevance of narrative approaches as they relate to specific populations.

    4. Demonstrate a consistently high level of skill utilizing a variety of narrative practices, substantiating the use of interventions as they relate to the underlying philosophy of narrative practice.

    5. Critically appraise narrative therapy practice demonstrating advanced levels of self-awareness and discuss the ethical and political concerns supported within the narrative community of practice.
    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)

    Attribute 1: Deep discipline knowledge and intellectual breadth

    Graduates have comprehensive knowledge and understanding of their subject area, the ability to engage with different traditions of thought, and the ability to apply their knowledge in practice including in multi-disciplinary or multi-professional contexts.


    Attribute 2: Creative and critical thinking, and problem solving

    Graduates are effective problems-solvers, able to apply critical, creative and evidence-based thinking to conceive innovative responses to future challenges.


    Attribute 3: Teamwork and communication skills

    Graduates convey ideas and information effectively to a range of audiences for a variety of purposes and contribute in a positive and collaborative manner to achieving common goals.


    Attribute 4: Professionalism and leadership readiness

    Graduates engage in professional behaviour and have the potential to be entrepreneurial and take leadership roles in their chosen occupations or careers and communities.


    Attribute 5: Intercultural and ethical competency

    Graduates are responsible and effective global citizens whose personal values and practices are consistent with their roles as responsible members of society.


    Attribute 6: Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultural competency

    Graduates have an understanding of, and respect for, Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander values, culture and knowledge.


    Attribute 7: Digital capabilities

    Graduates are well prepared for living, learning and working in a digital society.


    Attribute 8: Self-awareness and emotional intelligence

    Graduates are self-aware and reflective; they are flexible and resilient and have the capacity to accept and give constructive feedback; they act with integrity and take responsibility for their actions.

  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    White, M. (2007). Maps of narrative practice. New York: Norton.

    Additional required readings will be made available to participants via MyUni.
    Recommended Resources
    Online Learning
    3.3.1 MyUni
    All students enrolled in a postgraduate coursework program have access to a Postgraduate Coursework Student Centre on MyUni. This course is available on MyUni at
    Please check the website regularly as it may contain announcements that are relevant to your study in the course. If you would like the opportunity to network with other students, you can use the Communication features in the site:
    Discussion Board – Users can post discussion items and reply to other posts. Note: If you would like to have a specific Discussion Board Forum created, please send your request to
    Send Email – This feature enables users to send email to fellow students.
    Group Pages – Groups enable Users to collaborate with each other. Groups usually consist of a smaller group of Users in a course or organisation, such as study groups or project groups. From a Group Page, users may send email, exchange files, enter discussion forums or enter collaboration sessions. Note: Only members of a particular Group can access the Group communication
    features (discussion forums, email, etc.). If you would like to have a specific Group Page created, please send your request to For example, Group Pages can be created to include students living in the same geographical area or students working for the same organisation.
    Please note that you also have access to individual MyUni sites for EACH course you are enrolled in. Please check the sites regularly as they may contain important announcements that are relevant to your study in the course.

    3.3.2 Access Adelaide
    Access Adelaide is the name of the online service that allows you to access and, in some cases, amend your records. It can be found at:
    You can log into Access Adelaide to view:
    · your enrolment details for any term
    · your academic results
    · your unofficial academic transcript
    · your personal details
    · the fees, charges and payments on your University account · your exam schedule
    · your graduation eligibility details.
    As a student you can:
    · change your address and telephone details (please inform the School as well)
    · change your password
    · set a password clue to help you remember your password.

    3.3.3 Student email
    It is important that you set up your student email and check it regularly. Information from your course coordinator and student administration will be sent to you at your University of Adelaide email address. It is your responsibility to check your email. You will need your student number located on your student card to log in.

    3.3.4 Computers
    Where can I use a computer in the University? Computing facilities are provided to students by the University, and there are
    several suites of computers available, including at the Barr Smith Library and in Hub Central. The University web site has a list of computer labs at:

    3.3.5 Internet access
    The University provides a free dial-up service to students without the need for a commercial ISP account. This service is available at the cost of a local call to students residing within Adelaide (please refer to your telecommunications provider for confirmation of call costs). Students residing outside these numbers can dial into the University at STD call rates ( Postgraduate Coursework students will receive a University Funded Quota of 500Mb.

  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course will be highly experiential and interactive, with 11 weekly (3 hour) sessions. Each session will include didactic components, small group and large group discussions, as well as scaffolded practice of introduced skills. The lecturer will use illustrations from their own work, videos, structured exercises and group discussion, as a way of supporting participants to engage with this model of practice. An emphasis on connecting theory and practice supported by reading and assessment work is designed to assist integration of learning and development of skills.

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

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.
    The course comprises three hours every week of seminar, practice, and small-group discussions. Sessions will be seminar/workshop format, with a mixture of lectures and interactive exercises, and it is compulsory for all students to attend. Essential readings or on-line video material will be recommended.

    Face to Face lectures and practicals: 3 hours / week
    Core/background readings: 6 hours / week
    Preparation of assignments: 4 hours / week
    Learning Activities Summary
    Workshop 1 Introducing key concepts of a narrative therapy approach
    Workshop 2 Construction of stories and identity formation, therapeutic posture
    Workshop 3 Externalsing conversations
    Workshop 4 Unique outcome and re-authoring conversations
    Workshop 5 Scaffolding, and loitering with intent (Guest speaker)
    Workshop 6 Re-membering conversations
    Workshop 7 Outsider witness practices
    Workshop 8 Responding to Violence
    Workshop 9 Working with Indigenous Communities
    Workshop 10 Working with Children
    Workshop 11 Practical Assessment

    Specific Course Requirements
    Assumed Knowledge: Completion of all first year courses.

    Restrictions: Available only to Counselling and Psychotherapy students, or with permission of the Course Coordinator.
  • 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 Task Type Weighting Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Participation Summative 10% 1-5
    Critical Analysis and Reflection on Narrative Theory and Practice Summative 30% 1,2,5
    Narrative Therapy Interview Summative 30% 1,2,4
    Interview Analysis Summative 30% 1,2,3,5
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Students are advised to comply with word limits for written assignments, and time limits for the practical assessment. A 10% leeway on either side is acceptable.
    Assessment Detail
    Participation (10%)
    Assessment by instructor. Assessment of class participation is based on consideration of the student’s attendance record, their ability to manage time (in terms of attendance and assignment submission), their engagement in developing and fostering group norms for the class, their willingness to offer questions in class, engagement in small-group discussions and learning tasks, their respectful and professional engagement with peers and staff, evidence of their tolerance with peers and clients, and their ability to modify behaviour in response to feedback from peers or staff.

    Criitcal Analysis and Reflection on Narrative Theory and Practice (30%)
    Students will complete a critical analysis essay of the philosophical concepts of poststructuralist theory as it relates to identity and the multi-storied version of life. It includes an explanation of how these concepts integrate with the construction of their personal story of identity. Individual feedback will be provided to each student via MyUni

    Narrative Therapy Interview (30%)
    Students will demonstrate competence in applying narrative therapy practices by completing a 15 minute narrative therapy interview. The course coordinator will assign one of three types of conversations, an externalising, re-authoring or re-membering to the student. The recording will be submitted for assessment.

    Interview Analysis (30%)
    The interview will be subject to an analysis of the use of narrative practices and narrative maps, and will evaluate how the interview links to broader contexts. Individual feedback will be provided to each student via MyUni.


    No information currently available.

    Course Grading

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

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    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 ( 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.