Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology)

In order to complete the Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology), students are required to meet these inherent requirements.

Reasonable adjustments are available to support you to meet inherent requirements. Register with Equitable Learning Services.

The Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) program requires students to:

  • use and understand verbal communication in English
  • use and understand non-verbal (social) communication.

Verbal Expression and Comprehension (understanding)

What do I need to be able to do?

You will need to:

  • understand and respond to verbal communication appropriately and in a timely manner in both academic and professional placement settings
  • verbally communicate clear instructions and explanations in academic and professional placement settings. 

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will need to use verbal communication include:

  • participating in tutorial discussions and practicing professional communication skills during class
  • establishing rapport and responding appropriately to clients, supervisors and other health professionals in the professional placement setting

Why do I need to be able to do this?

You will need to use and understand verbal communication because:

  • academic material is presented verbally in English in the academic setting
  • understanding verbal information and communicating with peers and academic staff is an important part of academic study
  • accurate, timely and clear verbal communication in small and large groups is required in order to complete the program requirements and learning objectives 

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

Additional time allowances for comprehension and expression may be provided for you within the academic setting. However, professional placement tasks often require timely communication and this should be considered prior to commencement.

Consideration may be given to the professional placement type and location – some professional placement placements may better be able to accommodate students with specific identified needs.

Social Communication

The capacity to understand and use appropriate non-verbal communication such as:

  • eye contact
  • gestures
  • facial expression
  • speaking volume and tone of voice
  • proximity
  • verbal turn taking.

What do I need to be able to do?

You will need to:

  • recognise, interpret and respond to non - verbal communication appropriately in both academic and professional placement settings
  • be aware of, and use non-verbal communication appropriately in academic and professional placement settings. 

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will need to use non-verbal communication include:

  • recognising and responding appropriately to non-verbal cues from peers and staff in the academic setting
  • recognising the social communication used by clients and identifying client’s emotional states through their non-verbal cues whilst undertaking professional placement 
  • responding to clients by using your own social communication skills, such as open body language, eye contact and facial expressions to display understanding and empathy in the professional placement setting.

Why do I need to be able to do these things?

You will need to use and understand non-verbal communication skills because:

  • these skills help to establish trust and respect in academic and professional relationships
  • the ability to notice, understand and use appropriate non-verbal cues is critical to establishing and maintaining rapport; assessing clients support needs and proceeding with intervention in the workplace setting during your professional placement

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

The School will give consideration to non-verbal communication behaviours appropriate to your disability or condition. If you have sensory deficits, such as vision or hearing impairments, you may rely more on either auditory or visual communication behaviours.

Consideration may be given to the professional placement type and location – some professional placements may better be able to accommodate students with specific, identified needs.

The Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) program requires students to:

  • demonstrate effective reading and reading comprehension
  • demonstrate effective written communication skills
  • demonstrate competent number skills.

Reading

What do I need to be able to do?

  • read and understand a range of academic material from a variety of sources
  • read and understand information conveyed by academics and peers during academic activities and professional placement.

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will need to use your reading skills include:

  • reading and comprehending academic texts and required readings in the academic setting
  • reading and comprehending client notes and reports from other health professionals in the professional placement setting.

Why do I need to be able to do these things?

You need effective reading and reading comprehension because:

  • the majority of required course material in the academic setting is presented in written form
  • in the professional placement setting essential client information is communicated in written form. Your ability to read, comprehend and interpret written information is fundamental for delivery of client support in the professional placement setting.

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

You may use specialised software to support your literacy in academic contexts. The appropriateness and practicality of using such software during professional placement placements may vary between placements and should be discussed prior to commencing professional placement.

Writing (Written Language)

N.B. This refers not to the physical act of writing but to the written content.

What do I need to be able to do?

You will need to produce coherent written communication appropriate to academic or professional placement contexts.

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will need to use written language include:

  • completing written assessment tasks in the academic setting, such as essays and lab reports, which demonstrate your understanding of course content
  • writing case notes, journals and reports required during  professional placement
  • using clear and accurate language to support client needs through, letters, reports, program proposals and program review documentation in a timely manner and according to the organisation standard and protocol during professional placement

Why do I need to be able to do these things?

You will need written language skills because:

  • written assessment tasks are a primary means of assessing your knowledge and understanding of academic subject matter
  • accurate and clear written communication for client notes and reports is an integral part of fieldwork placement, essential for coordinated client care
  • the accuracy of written notes in the professional placement context has both professional and legal ramifications.

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

You may use specialised software to support your literacy in academic contexts. The appropriateness and practicality of using such software during your professional placement may vary and should be discussed prior to commencing professional placement.

Number Skills (Numeracy)

Numeracy is the ability to understand and work with numbers. Basic numeracy skills consist of comprehending fundamental mathematics like addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.

What do I need to be able to do?

You will need to interpret and accurately apply numerical data, measurements and formulae in academic contexts.

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will use number skills in the academic setting include:

  • understanding of numerical data and concepts related to psychological outcomes
  • analysing results from psychological data collection and research

You need competent number skills because:

  • the ability to interpret and apply numerical data is fundamental for interpreting psychological outcome data and the preparation of psychological reports.

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

You may use specialised software to support your numeracy in academic contexts. The appropriateness and practicality of using such software during professional placement may vary between workplace settings and should be discussed prior to commencing your placement.

The Bachelor of Social Science (Psychology) program requires the use of the following cognitive abilities in both academic and professional placement settings:

  • concentration
  • memory
  • problem solving
  • planning and organisation
  • information processing abilities
  • reasoning skills.

What do I need to be able to do?

You will need to:

  • understand and apply knowledge of theory, research and practice from the academic setting to professional placement situations
  • actively listen, advocate, problem solve, provide feedback and create plans with clients in a timely manner during professional placement
  • demonstrate the ability to engage with clients with a level of focus and concentration during professional placement.

What are some examples of this?

Examples of when you will need high level cognitive skills, such as those listed above, include:

  • correctly using theoretical knowledge, gathering research evidence, and applying policies and procedures in both academic and workplace settings during professional placement
  • remaining focussed during client engagement and intervention, including counselling, advocating, co-planning and when making referrals for clients during professional placement
  • organising and implementing research projects, reports and community development initiatives in the professional placement setting

Why do I need to be able to do these things?

You need the cognitive skills listed above because:

  • sufficient cognitive and emotional endurance is an essential for the completion of learning objectives in the academic setting and needed to perform multiple tasks and provide appropriate support to clients during professional placement

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

You may use assistive technology and strategies such as rest breaks to support your memory, planning and organisation in the academic context. The possibility of using these strategies during professional placement should be discussed prior to commencing the placement.

Many people who experience mental health challenges can be successful as students and go on to be successful practitioners. Social Science (Psychology)and the demanding nature of this practice, requires all students to be mentally well enough and to demonstrate sufficient behavioural stability to perform optimally in both academic and professional placement settings.

Stable and consistent mental health promotes optimal engagement in academic and professional placement settings.

What do I need to be able to do?

You need to:

  • demonstrate the capacity to manage multiple, complex demands in the professional placement setting with focus, composure and adaptability
  • manage professional interactions with clients and staff calmly,  professionally and with sensitivity in the professional placement setting
  • demonstrate behavioural stability to work constructively and safely in diverse and changing academic and professional placement settings
  • reflect and critically evaluate the effect that your own mental health plays in practice, as well as its impact on others within academic and professional placement settings.

What are some examples of this?

Examples include:

  • reflecting on practice and responding appropriately to constructive feedback in academic and professional placement settings
  • managing personal emotions and behaviour effectively when dealing with peers, staff and clients in the academic and professional placement setting
  • remaining emotionally engaged during client assessment and intervention during professional placement
  • putting in place supports that assist behavioural stability, such as self-care, supportive relationships, and structuring your time, balancing family, employment, self, social and educational activities.  

Why do I need to be able to do these things?

You need sound mental health and behavioural stability because:

  • you will be exposed to highly complex and unpredictable human situations and will be required to be mentally robust and demonstrate behavioural stability in order to manage these events competently and professionally in professional placement settings
  • The University must prioritise the wellbeing and safety of your peers, staff and clients in academic and professional experience settings. Professional placement activities may be ceased if a risk is apparent. This can impact your academic progress.

What reasonable adjustments could be considered?

Reasonable adjustments such as reduced hours or consideration of placement type and location should be discussed prior to commencing placement. The practicality of accommodating these adjustments during placement will be considered but may not be possible.

Flexible arrangements for your professional experience placement will be considered. The appropriateness and practicality of these arrangements may vary between placements and agencies and should be discussed with your placement coordinator prior to commencement of the placement. 

You may be supported to take time off from your studies if you become unwell or have difficulties with behavioural stability.

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business. - Artwork created by Louisa Bloomer

aboriginal flag
torres strait flag

Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nation on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.