PSY4140 - Introduction to counselling - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

School of Psychological Sciences

Chief examiner(s)

Miss Leah Braganza


Ms Eloise Perini

Unit guides


Monash Online

  • Teaching Period 1 2019 (Online)


PSY4051, PSY4131.


Must be enrolled in either of the GDP course codes (M5013 or 4525).




This unit covers all important introductory aspects of counselling. Themes to be covered include theories of counselling, evaluation of how personal beliefs and values influence the counselling process and legal and ethical issues in counselling psychology. Students will be provided with a broad overview of the field of counselling psychology and will be expected to be able to compare and contrast different theoretical perspectives and reflect on how these perspectives would influence their (potential) counselling style and practice.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Explain and contrast a variety of theoretical approaches to counselling including individual, group and systems approaches.
  2. Critically analyse specific concepts and techniques used by various theoretical approaches to counselling.
  3. Recognise and reflect upon the influence of personal values and beliefs on the counselling process.
  4. Identify and provide solutions to ethical and legal issues, and develop skills in ethical decision making in counselling.
  5. Explain which theoretical perspectives within counselling (including concepts and techniques) best fits with the students' own values, beliefs and experiences and therefore would be more likely to be adopted by the student to use within their own potential counselling practice in the future.
  6. Communicate the importance of the guidelines available to psychologists, and explain where to access the appropriate and relevant guidelines.


  • Reflective clinical commentaries (2 x 500 words each) (20%)
  • Essay (1,000 words) (20%)
  • Simulated counselling session with reflective commentary (10 mins + 750 words) (30%)
  • 6 x Secure online quizzes (30%)

Workload requirements

Students should expect to spend a minimum of 20 hours per week on this unit to achieve the learning outcomes.

This time will cover:

  1. video lecture materials;
  2. synchronous & asynchronous discussion;
  3. synchronous web-based 'class-time' for skills-based activities;
  4. weekly readings;
  5. weekly skills-based assessment tasks; and
  6. content-based assessment, including revision and formative assessment.

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study