Faculty of Education

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2014 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered, or view unit timetables.

FacultyFaculty of Education
OfferedClayton Second semester 2014 (Off-campus)
Clayton Second semester 2014 (Evening)
Hong Kong Term 1 2014 (Off-campus)
Singapore Term 1 2014 (Off-campus)
Hong Kong Term 4 2014 (Off-campus)
Singapore Term 4 2014 (Off-campus)
Coordinator(s)Mr Scott Douglas (Second semester, Clayton evening and Term 1, Hong Kong and Singapore); Dr Nicky Jacobs (Term 4, Hong Kong and Singapore); Ms Michele Huppert (Second Semester, Off-campus)


This unit builds on core learning and further develops professional counselling practice in a sound ethical and legal context. Topics include: implementing ethical principles and codes of practice, moral and legal responsibilities, personal, social and professional values, diversity, sensitive issues and practice, duty of care, confidentiality and privacy issues, referral, dealing with multiple clients, and managing boundaries and professional relationships.


Upon successful completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. understand and be prepared to implement the professional, ethical, social, legal and moral obligations of counsellors
  2. comprehend the ethical requirements of the societies and professional organisations in the regions they plan to practice
  3. explore the functions and processes of these professional and legal bodies in dealing with ethical matters
  4. develop and demonstrate well informed decision-making processes regarding dilemmas arising in counselling
  5. determine professional competencies and limits of proficiency in a range of situations
  6. make appropriate referrals
  7. monitor and develop their own abilities and well-being as counsellors.


Essay on ethical issues in the practice of counselling (4000 words, 50%)
Responses to two case vignettes (1500 words each, 50%)
Compendium (1000 words equivalent, ungraded pass)

Chief examiner(s)

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload equals 24 hours per week comprising:

(a.) Contact hours for on-campus students:

  • 3 contact hours per week

(b.) Singapore and Hong Kong students

  • online study as well as an intensive face to face week

(c.) Additional requirements

  • 21 hours of independent study per week time involving activities such as electronic reference searching completion of practical exercises, reading and assignment preparation.