Graduate Diploma in Psychology
Course code: M5013
The Graduate Diploma in Psychology provides you with a stepping stone towards becoming a practising psychologist by giving you the foundation needed to pursue advanced psychology studies.
- Accredited by The Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC)
- 100 per cent online, flexible study – including all assessments and exams
- Six intakes a year – start whenever you are ready
- Dedicated support – personalised support team to guide you throughout your studies
This course is designed to provide you with a solid foundation in psychology principles that will help prepare you for your chosen career or further study. You will cover the theory and contemporary issues, as well as develop strong research, critical and analytical thinking skills. Each unit is worth 6 credit points, and you will need to complete a total of 60 credit points to complete your degree.
You will study:
Introduction to the discipline of psychology as a behavioural science. Topics include personality, the biological bases of behaviour, sensation and perception, an introduction to theories of learning and development, plus an introduction to the historical origins of the discipline. Online activities (for example interactive skills development, formative quiz presentations) and discussion forums, aim to enhance students' understanding of the lecture material and provide training in research techniques.
Introduction to the discipline of psychology as a behavioural science. Lecture topics include Social Psychology, Abnormal Psychology, Cognitive Psychology, plus an introduction to research design and analysis. Online activities and discussion forums enhance students' understanding of the lecture and assessment material and provide training in research techniques.
This unit expands upon topics in research design and analysis initially presented in the foundational psychology units. Students will further develop their understanding of the research process and some of the most commonly used methods of statistical analysis using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software package. Specific topics covered include: parametric and nonparametric procedures to compare two or more independent or matched samples; correlation and linear regression; planned and post hoc comparison techniques; power and sample size considerations; interpretation of output; experimental, quasi-experimental, and correlational research strategies; between- and within-subjects designs; and ethics. There is a strong practical component to the unit, including authentic assessments and regular hands-on tutorial experiences, designed to advance your competency in applying a range of common research techniques and analyses.
Psychology is a scientific discipline which spans a diverse range of areas. This unit provides a continuation of two psychology topics that you will have learnt about in the foundational units. Developmental psychology encompasses physical, cognitive, and social-emotional changes across the life span and how these are shaped by macrosystems such as culture, and microsystems such as peers and the family. Biological psychology includes states of consciousness, mental disorders and addiction, mechanisms and disorders of learning and memory, and the regulation of emotional and motivated states. Unit activities provide further training in research techniques, report writing, oral presentations and teamwork.
This unit covers all important aspects of abnormal behaviour: historical influences, theory, assessment, specific psychopathologies, treatment methods, and legal issues. Both the scientific and professional aspects of abnormal psychology are presented. Students will be provided with a broad and comprehensive review of abnormal behaviour, by studying and contrasting different theoretical perspectives.
Testing and assessment is a major component of psychological research and practice. This unit introduces the principles and processes of test development, test administration and test interpretation. Some widely used psychological tests will be described and critiqued on a number of criteria including test reliability and validity. The unit also covers theories of ability and how our thinking about human abilities is influenced by our cultural framework.
The unit will also provide students with a strong foundation in professional ethics for psychologists. Students will also gain an advanced knowledge of the ethical, legal and professional responsibilities of practising psychologists. These ethical principles will then be applied to specific ethical dilemmas and case studies.
In this unit, students will continue their training in research via three components. First, research design and analysis topics presented in earlier units will be explored at a more advanced theoretical level. The major focus of this component will be analysis of variance and multiple regression. Second, students will develop experience performing statistical analyses using SPSS. Finally, students will continue their training in research design and analysis by undertaking a research project under the supervision of a member of staff.
As a specific example of cognitive psychology, the first half of this unit covers sensory processes involved in vision, audition and speech perception. Coding mechanisms common to different modalities are emphasised to help students understand general mechanisms of sensory coding and perceptual processing. The second half of the unit encompasses the acquisition, organisation, and retrieval of knowledge and aims to cover cognitive psychology more generally. It includes emphasis on contemporary research techniques, cognitive architecture, attentional processes, models of learning and memory, mental imagery, language and higher-order thinking.
This unit covers the key themes of social psychology and personality. The history and the philosophy of the different schools of social psychology and personality are examined to highlight changes in our understanding of social identity, meaning and relationships. The first half of the unit will demonstrate how social psychology theories, such as behaviour in groups, aggression, attraction, dehumanisation and attitude change, are applied and critiqued in light of contemporary behaviour and new knowledge. In the second half of the unit, several different personality theories will be compared and contrasted including psychoanalytic, phenomenological, trait, and social learning approaches to personality.
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.
This unit focuses on the neurobiological mechanisms responsible for human cognition and behaviour, with a particular focus on understanding leading methodology and technologies employed in brain-behaviour relationships. By exploring brain-behaviour interactions through an in-depth examination of a selection of cognitive abilities and behaviours, this unit will guide students to establish an understanding of the mechanisms behind cognitive control and social cognition, control of action, perception, sleep and pain. Technologies utilised by neuroscientists, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT), electroencephalography (EEG), and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), will be considered during the course of this unit.
The Graduate Diploma in Psychology is a versatile qualification that can lead you into a wide variety of careers. It could lead you to further study to become a professional psychologist or researcher, or to roles in industries such as human resources, teaching, mental health, counselling, marketing and more.
Find out more about your various pathways and career options with a Graduate Diploma in Psychology, with the ‘Where can psychology take you?’ infographic.
If you’re wondering about whether psychology or counselling is right for you, this ‘Psychology vs Counselling – What is the difference?’ infographic tells you more about the differences between the two areas.
While salary will depend upon the number of years of experience you have within the industry, you have the potential to earn as much as $103,196 after 10-19 years of practicing within Australia (Payscale).
For entry into the Graduate Diploma in Psychology, you will need:
$3,737.50 per unit*
1.7 years part-time
Jan, Mar, May, Jul, Aug, Oct
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