Training in clinical psychology in regional Australia

Helmes, E. (2010) Training in clinical psychology in regional Australia. In: Abstracts of the 27th International Congress of Applied Psychology. pp. 555-556. From: 27th International Congress of Applied Psychology, 11-16 July 2010 , Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

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The Australian population is concentrated in capital cities, and clinical training programs at the large urban universities tend to be better resourced than those at smaller, regional universities. It is not known whether the quality of training differs between regional and urban universities and whether students differ in their experiences during clinical training. During semester 2, 2009, first-year postgraduate clinical psychology students were surveyed. Students from 20 of the 3S universities provided responses, with 29% of the 190 students being from regional universities. Survey questions covered ratings of the quality of training, teaching methods used, effectiveness of teaching methods, responsiveness to student needs, assessment methods used in the program and their effectiveness, monitoring of therapeutic work and therapy workloads, exposure to clinical research, clinical supervision, and overall workload and stress levels. Comparisons were made between urban and regional universities on the 55 items that were surveyed. As an exploratory study, two-tailed tests with alpha = .05 were used. Five items showed differences between urban and regional training programs. Students rated the effectiveness of lecturers using their own clinical cases as higher among urban training programs, and also the use of portfolios of client work as an assessment method. Students at urban universities were also monitored by video tape recordings more frequently and exposed to clinical research of their teachers more frequently. Finally, students at urban universities were significantly less likely to consider a placement in a rural setting compared to those at regional universities. At best, students indicated a moderate interest in undertaking a placement in a rural setting. Overall, there were more similarities between urban and regional training programs than there were differences. Where there were differences, they tended to favor the urban universities in terms of training that was illuminated by both clinical work and clinical research of the teaching staff. Such differences are also associated with the other resources available in larger universities. Nonetheless, the lack of differences in perceived quality of training and the majority of other aspects suggest that training across Australian universities is largely comparable in both urban and regional environments.

Item ID: 14852
Item Type: Conference Item (Abstract / Summary)
ISBN: 978-0-909881-46-7
Keywords: urban, regional, training, clinical
Date Deposited: 11 May 2011 02:57
FoR Codes: 17 PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES > 1701 Psychology > 170106 Health, Clinical and Counselling Psychology @ 100%
SEO Codes: 92 HEALTH > 9202 Health and Support Services > 920205 Health Education and Promotion @ 100%
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