PSYC5032 Psychological Assessment for Professional Psychology

Graduate Diploma Course Unit

PSYC5032 Psychological Assessment for Professional Psychology

Year level and semester: 5th year, Trimester 1

Coordinator: Dr Katie Seidler

Credit points: 3 (out of total of 48 points)

Length of unit: One trimester

Format of unit: 10weeks of 2hour lectures/10weeks of 2hour workshops

Value of unit as a percentage of the year: 13.6%

Any other special requirements of the unit: Students require access to the Psychological Test Library


Unit description

This unit presents fundamental principles and methods of psychological assessment for professional psychology: theoretical and empirical foundations of psychological assessment; the assessment interview; selection, administration, scoring, interpretation and communication of information about assessments; culture and psychological assessment; development of psychological formulations; ethical, legal and professional issues in psychological assessment. In this unit students will gain experience with: administering, scoring and interpreting standardised tests of intelligence and personality; the conduct and reporting of a mental status examination; critically evaluating a range of tests relevant to professional psychology practice; reporting the findings of a psychological assessment in written form; the relation of test results and data of psychological assessment to psychological formulation and diagnosis.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate understanding of fundamental principles and methods of psychological assessment and of the theoretical and empirical foundations of psychological assessment;
  • Explain and justify the selection of an assessment instrument appropriate to the individual, the setting, and the purpose of the assessment with reference to empirical findings;
  • Demonstrate understanding of the legal, professional and ethical implications of psychological assessment and of the contents of psychological reports that is appropriate to the individual, the setting, and the purpose of the assessment with reference to relevant legislation and codes of conduct;
  • Administer, score, interpret and communicate information about psychological assessments;
  • Conduct and report the findings of a mental status examination;
  • Demonstrate behaviour that is consistent with the legal requirements and professional codes of conduct relevant to the individual, the setting, and the purpose of the assessment;
  • Demonstrate a high level of written communication about the findings of psychological assessments that is appropriate to the recipient and consistent with relevant legal requirements and professional codes of conduct.

Learning and teaching process

  • This unit comprises 10 weekly two hour lectures and two hour workshops. Attendance is compulsory.
  • Students are expected to undertake set reading prior to seminars and be prepared to engage in discussion of the topic with the seminar group.
  • Students are required to conduct and report on a mental status examination.
  • Students are required to administer, score and report findings of a standardised personality test.
  • Students are required to administer, score and report findings of a standardised adult intelligence test.
  • Students are required to successfully administer a standardised adult intelligence test

Prescribed Textbook

Groth-Marnat, G. (2009). Handbook of psychological assessment (5th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Recommended Readings

American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (5th ed., text rev.). Washington, DC: Author.

Eells, T. D. (Ed.). (2006). Handbook of psychotherapy case formulation (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Guilford Press.

Goldfinger, K. & Pomerantz, M. (2010) Psychological Assessment and Report Writing. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Hersen, M. (Ed.). (2003). Comprehensive handbook of psychological assessment (Vols. 1-4). Hoboken, NJ: Wiley.

Kaplan, R. M. (2009). Psychological testing: Principles, applications and issues (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning.

Richard, D. C. S. & Huprich, S. K. (2009). Clinical psychology: Assessment, treatment and research. Boston: Elsevier/AP.

Smith, S. R. & Handler, L. (Eds.). (2007). The clinical assessment of children and adolescents: A practitioner’s handbook. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Crowe, S. (2010). Evidence of absence: A guide to cognitive assessment in Australia. Bowen Hills, QLD: Australian Academic Press.

Journal Articles, Book Chapters & Electronic Resources As Relevant

Study Schedule

Week

Topic

Week 1

 

Nature of psychological assessment; Ethical and legal issues in psychological assessment; Code of Conduct issues in psychological assessment; How to conduct an interview; What kind of collateral information is needed? Clinical interviewing

Week 2

Mental Status Examination; Psychological formulation, Report writing principle

Week 3

Principles of psychological testing; How to interpret test results

Week 4

Intelligence testing

Week 5

Intelligence testing

Week 6

Personality Assessment; Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-II (MMPI-II)

 

Mid-trimester

Week 7

Personality Assessment; Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory-II (MMPI-II)

Week 8

Other forms of psychometric assessment: aptitude and achievement

Week 9

Other forms of psychometric assessment: malingering, effort, mental health

Week 10

Cultural issues in psychological assessment; Bringing it all together: psychological formulations, report writing, treatment planning, making recommendations

Assessment and requirements for the unit including percentage weighting for each assessment:

Assessment Type

When assessed

Weighting

Learning Outcomes Assessed

Score a standardised adult intelligence test WAIS-IV

Week 5

10%

(a), (d), (f), (g)

Conduct and report on a Mental Status Examination

Week 6

20%

(a), (d), (e), (f), (g)

Score and report findings of a standardised adult intelligence test

Week 8

30%

(a), (d), (f), (g)

Administer, score and report findings of a standardised personality test

Week 10

30%

(a), (d), (f), (g)

WAIS-IV Passout Exam

Exam week

10%

(a), (d), (f)

Academic misconduct

Ethical conduct and academic integrity and honesty are fundamental to the mission of ACAP. Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the college. This includes plagiarism of any nature. It is your responsibility to make sure that you understand what constitutes plagiarism in order to ensure that you do not engage in it. Please refer to http://currentstudents.acap.edu.au/assets/Managing-My-Course/A-Z-Policies/Academic-Misconduct-Policy.pdf for full details of the Academic Misconduct Policy.

Disclaimer

This unit outline may be updated and amended from time to time. To ensure you have the correct outline please check it throughout the trimester. Your lecturer will advise when there are updates on the site and also when readings are available for class discussion.