All students undertaking a program of study at Flinders University are expected to attain the graduate qualities of the University.

Graduate Qualities

Flinders University’s degree programs aim to produce graduates: 

  • Who are knowledgeable
  • Who can apply their knowledge
  • Who communicate effectively
  • Who can work independently
  • Who are collaborative
  • Who value ethical behaviour
  • Who connect across boundaries



Course Aims and Learning Outcomes

In addition to the Graduate Qualities, all of the University’s courses include course aims and learning outcomes. These are designed to specify the expected achievements that will be demonstrated by students in the areas of knowledge, understanding, skills and attributes as a result of their successful completion of a course or topic. The nature of the knowledge and skills expected of graduates should be indicated so that the effectiveness of the proposed curriculum in meeting graduates' needs can be assessed (Clause 5.3 of the Policy on Course and Topic Development, Approval and Management).

Postgraduate Courses in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT)

Working in mental health care is rewarding and challenging, demanding and confronting and requires individuals that have the capacity to be reflective, self-aware and willing to embark on life-long learning to provide effective interventions and care to people. The progressive awards are intended to equip students with advancing knowledge and clinical skills in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT). The Masters course requires students to undertake coursework delivered through intensive workshops and online learning platforms; complete three clinical practicums and demonstrate adherence and clinical competencies in CBT for high prevalence psychological disorders through industry placements; and complete a research project.

The programs are intended to complement existing qualifications and experience in health and related areas for individuals interested in equipping themselves with skills in evidence-based focused psychological therapies for high prevalence psychological disorders. Individuals interested in undertaking these courses should consider the commitment and inherent requirements necessary to successful complete the program of study.

Professional Experience Requirements

  1. Before undertaking professional experience in South Australian government and non-government sites (e.g. hospitals and health care centres and community health programs), all students are obliged to obtain, then maintain, two mandatory certificates (documents) related to child safety in the workplace. These are 1) a Vulnerable Person Related Employment Screen issued by the Department of Community and Social Inclusion (DCSI) and 2) Form A and B immunisation record. For more information go to: Students who, for whatever reason, cannot be issued with these documents in their first year (and thereafter) of their degree will be unable to continue in the program.
  2. Students are required to undertake blocks of professional experience over the course of their degrees. At Flinders University, this comprises three (3) professional experience placements in the Masters award. Blocks of placements are available at set times of the year and occur as continuous days of placement for a duration of set days over the course of each semester (three semesters in total). Professional experience placements occur in mixed gender and diverse, cultural environments, and they occur in a variety of locations, which reflect the Australian context. The ability to maintain a continuous presence at a site during the blocks of placements is an expectation of professional experience. Students who feel they may not be able meet this requirement are advised to discuss their personal circumstances with a University Disability Advisor or the School of Education Disability Academic Advisor to investigate whether this is a suitable career pathway for them.
  3. If students are unable to obtain all required checks and documents then progression through the program will be delayed or precluded. Students are required by most placement agencies to have an Australian driver’s license and access to a reliable car (this requirement is not set by the University).

Students with health conditions, impairments, learning or other disabilities

Flinders University is committed to providing an inclusive environment and community for all students and staff, regardless of their ability or disability. Students may be provided with adjustments in teaching and/or assessment methods; provided such adjustments do not compromise the safety or wellbeing of any person, and technical and academic standards are maintained.

Students who anticipate that they might experience challenges in meeting the inherent requirements of this course are encouraged to discuss their concerns with a Disability Advisor in the first instance. The Student Disability Service is free and confidential to prospective and enrolled students.

For more information please see the web page Students with disabilities.

If you are intending to enroll in either the Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma or Master of Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, carefully review the inherent requirements listed and consider whether you might experience challenges in meeting them.


Observational Skills

Observational skills (i.e. vision, hearing, smell, taste and touch) are a core requirement of the course.

The core observational skills for this course are:

  1. Initial and ongoing assessment and receptiveness to environmental risks and safe practice;
  2. Maintain consistent, accurate and safe professional standards to ensure safety of self and others;
  3. Attend to situational observations in outpatient, inpatient and other dynamic health related environments;
  4. Interpret and collect data in multiple forms (written, electronic, auditory).

Communication Skills

Communication skills (i.e. speaking, hearing, observing, writing, and reading) are a core requirement of the course.

The core communication skills for this course are:

1. The ability to communicate in English to a standard that is comprehensible, understandable and coherent. This includes the ability to:

a) understand and respond to explicit and implicit communication and body language that is accurate, appropriate and culturally sensitive;

b) produce timely, accurate, professional medico-legal documentation in line with relevant organisational requirements and expectations.

2. To apply effective non-verbal communication skills such as self-care, empathy, respect and establishing sound professional and peer relationships. This includes the ability to:

a) consistently and appropriately display spatial awareness, time boundaries, gestures and language that is respectful and appropriate at all times;

b) respond to behavioural cues and maintain safety of self and others during volatile or aggressive exchanges, or times when diffusion is required;

c) consistently show awareness of own behaviours, attitudes, beliefs and values and maintain professional boundaries at all times.

3. To apply effective written communication skills in English to provide the safe and effective delivery of services, and to meet professional legal requirements. This includes the ability to:

a) maintain clear, concise and organised clinical documentation in a timely and organised way;

b) convey knowledge, understanding and clinical applications in-line with recognised guidelines in the field of cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT);

c) interact both orally and verbally with diverse groups of people such as clients, families, service providers, allied health professionals and medical practitioners to a standard that is appropriate to the context and consistent with evidence-based guidelines.

4. The capacity to communicate and interpret critique, analyse and adhere to clinical guidelines, research methodologies, and understand complex material in the areas of mental health, psychological therapies and cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT).

5. The ability to engage and establish sound therapeutic relationships with clients to support recovery.

Motor Skills

Motor skills (i.e. coordination of gross and fine muscular movements) are a core requirement of the course.

The core motor skills for this course are the ability to:

  1. Physically attend on campus when required;
  2. Physically attend each clinical placement for the full duration and undertake the requirements of the topics;
  3. Perform at a consistent and sustained level to meet learning requirements.

Behavioural and Social Skills

Behavioural and social skills are a core requirement of the course.

The core behavioural and social skills for this course are the ability to:

  1. Demonstrate stability and adaptability to dynamic academic and clinical environments that may be challenging and unpredictable;
  2. Deal with uncertainties in a constructive and professionally appropriate manner;
  3. Contribute to the learning of others in a collaborative learning environment, showing interpersonal skills and an understanding of the needs of other students;
  4. Work effectively individually and as a member of a team;
  5. Interact in a professional manner with others including students, staff, members of the lay public, service providers, clients and families and other health professionals;
  6. Operate ethically and responsibly within any contextual framework;
  7. Manage stressful and emotionally challenging situations, through emotional health and insight;
  8. Recognise personal limitations and when and where to seek assistance or professional advice and support;
  9. Consistently exhibit personal insight and self-reflection throughout the course of studies;
  10. Receive and reciprocate constructive feedback, advice and direction through clinical supervision;
  11. Convey empathy and respect and to display interpersonal skills to establish and maintain sound relationships with client, peers, supervisors and other professionals;
  12. Identify when clinical issues are outside one’s scope of practice, or when one’s practice is affected by an impairment.

Intellectual – Conceptual, Integrative and Quantitative Abilities

Intellectual-conceptual, integrative and quantitative abilities are a core requirement of the course.

The core intellectual–conceptual, integrative and quantitative skills for this course are the ability to:

  1. Read, analyse, comprehend and integrate evidence-based psychological interventions, specifically cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) and translate research into practice;
  2. Critically review clinical sessions, research articles and individual practice;
  3. Conceptualise, formulate and problem solve complex clinical presentations;
  4. Demonstrate the integration of theory and practice in CBT with clients presenting with high prevalence mental health disorders, comorbid substance use disorders and severe mental health disorders in real world settings.