5 + 1 model for training psychologists for the future: issues of quantity and quality

Melissa Davis, Mary Katsikitis, Andrea Reupert, Sandy Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstract


Background: The demand for postgraduate psychology training places in Australia significantly outweighs the number of available opportunities. Together with the high demand for psychological services, this provides the impetus for developing high quality, efficient, and scalable models of training for registered psychologists in Australia. The 5 + 1 model, which involves graduates of 4-year undergraduate psychology courses completing a one year, applied, Master of Professional Psychology (MPP) course, followed by a 12-month supervised workplace internship, currently pro- vides an alternative to the traditional entirely workplace internship model of training for generally registered psychologists. Competition for places in MPP programs around Australia is high and increasing, particularly with the prospect of the alternative route to psychology registration being phased out in the near future. In this context, there is significant pressure on higher education providers to innovate and explore efficient and effective methods of training to increase the number of MPP places available to meet demand and workforce needs. Aims/Objectives: The aims of this forum are to (i) promote discussion about strategies to assist psychology educators to meet the challenges of providing postgraduate training to increasing cohorts of diverse students in MPP programs; and (ii) discuss the operationalisation of the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council competencies for the MPP together with the level of progress towards the Psychology Board of Australia competencies for the 5 + 1 internship pro- gram expected of MPP graduates entering workplace internships, to progress the development of benchmark training standards for MPPs. Approach/Method: The forum will involve current MPP program coordinators presenting examples of innovations in skills training and practicum
activities that are designed to be efficient and scalable strategies to facilitate the development of core professional psychology competencies to prepare graduates for the internship. Methods of assessment of competencies, and strategies for setting standards of expected achievement for graduates, will also be discussed. Implications/Conclusion: It is hoped that this forum will provide opportunities for stakeholders to provide input into training standards and methods for professional psychologists. It is also hoped that the discussion will promote opportunities for collaboration and further research on this important issue for the training of future psychologists in Australia.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35
Number of pages1
JournalAustralian Psychologist
Issue numberS1
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018
EventAustralian Psychological Society (APS) Annual Conference 2018 - Sydney, Australia
Duration: 27 Sep 201830 Sep 2018

Cite this