News for Supervisors - March 2017



Supervisors with BAS status expiring in 2018

Board-approved supervisor (BAS) status is reviewed every five years, and evidence of completion of at least a one-day Board-approved master class must be supplied to the Board.

All supervisors who were Board-approved before July 2013 (when the Guidelines for supervisors and supervisor training providers came in to effect), will need to complete a master class and apply to maintain BAS status by 30 June 2018. This includes all supervisors who transitioned to the National Scheme as an approved supervisor in 2010. The majority of Board-approved supervisors have a BAS expiry date of 30 June 2018. You can check your expiry date on the supervisor online services portal

To help meet demand, the Board has approved six new providers of master classes, as detailed below. This is in addition to 11 existing providers of both full training and master class workshops. You are encouraged to review the master classes on offer across the country. Website links and contact details for all Board-approved providers are available on the supervisor training page of the Board's website.

If you have not yet completed your training, the Board encourages you to enrol in a master class as soon as possible. This will ensure you have the widest choice of workshop providers, topics and dates. When you have completed your training, you should notify AHPRA by applying to maintain your approval for another five years. The application form to maintain BAS status, MBAS-76, is available on the forms page of the Board's website. There is no fee for this application, and approval will be for five years from the date that you completed your training program.

If you have not completed the minimum training requirements and lodged your form for renewal before 30 June 2018, your BAS status will lapse. Do not wait until the deadline is approaching to enrol in a training program, as there is no guarantee there will be master class capacity at that time.

For more information on how to maintain BAS status, and other questions related to supervision, see the Board's supervision FAQ.

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New Board-approved supervisor training providers

At its meeting on 16 December 2016, the Board approved six new providers of master class training. The Board was particularly pleased to approve a number of new supervisor training providers who plan to offer workshops in regional areas.

The Board has approved the following new supervisor training programs (master class only):

Name of provider Master class topics Locations
Australian College of Applied Psychology
  • Supervising for clinical psychology endorsement
  • Supervising to prevent and manage problems of professional competence
  • Supervising the development of case conceptualization and diagnosis competencies
  • Supervising the development of meta-competencies
  • Reflective practice and the scientist-practitioner mindset
  • Adelaide
  • Brisbane
  • Melbourne
  • Perth
  • Sydney
  • Regional NSW and VIC (Ballarat and Central Coast)
  • Videoconference for regional and remotely based supervisors
C-BEST - Competency-Based Excellence in Supervisor Training
  • Reflective Practitioner and Scientist Practitioner meta competencies
  • Best practice in CBT supervision: A competency-based approach
  • Best practice in assessment and evaluation in supervision
  • Adelaide
  • Brisbane
  • Hobart
  • Melbourne
  • Sydney
  • Cairns
  • Newcastle
SPOT - Specialist Psychological Outreach Team
  • Advanced Clinical Supervision: Translating Professional Competencies into Client Outcomes
  • Albany
  • Broome
  • Bunbury
  • Geraldton
  • Kalgoorlie
University of Canberra
  • Developing and Maintaining Strong Supervisory Relationships
  • Canberra
University of Melbourne
  • Process and Complexity in Specialist Supervision
  • Melbourne
  • Shepparton
James Cook University /Mount Isa Centre for Rural and Remote Health (MICRRH)
  • Supervising for ethical practice in a rural and remote setting
  • Critical reflection and planning for feedback in supervision
  • Cairns
  • Emerald
  • Longreach
  • Mackay
  • Mount Isa
  • Rockhampton
  • Townsville

The Board introduced a supervisor training framework in 2013 that is consistent with best-practice regulation, consistent with the Board's standards, and takes a competency-based approach. The aim is to ensure that psychologists and provisional psychologists receive quality supervision, and the public receive quality psychological services.

In order to manage a potential shortfall of master class training workshops for Board-approved supervisors who are required to do refresher training by mid-2018, the Board recently invited applications from parties interested in becoming providers of master class training only. These new programs have approval until December 2018, to align with the current five-year approval cycle. The six new providers join the 11 providers approved in 2013.

Go to the supervisor training page on the Board's website for more information on supervisor training including web links to approved providers. Also see the Board's supervision FAQ.

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Supervisors of provisional psychologists - revised provisional registration standard

The Board is pleased to advise that its revised registration standard for provisional registration has been approved by the Australian Health Workforce Ministerial Council (the Ministerial Council) and will come into effect on 1 June 2017.

A copy of the approval letter has been published on the website under Ministerial Council directions and approval and an advance copy of the revised standard has been published on the Board's news page.

The new standard does not introduce any significant changes. Key aspects such as the minimum qualification and the provisional psychology training pathways are unchanged.

This review of the standard focussed on clarifying existing requirements and producing a clearly set out and easy to understand standard. The revised standard includes more detailed definitions of key terms, and links to relevant guidelines and other information on the website. It also uses a clear structure, plain English and up to date terminology.

Current provisional psychologists will not be impacted by the revisions to the standard which focuses on the requirements for becoming provisionally registered. Current provisional psychologists have already passed that hurdle and are focussed on meeting the requirements in general registration standard.

New applications for provisional registration will be assessed against the revised standard from 1 June 2017.

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Supervisors of provisional psychologists in a 4+2 internship program - revised guideline

The Board is pleased to announce that it will be implementing its revised Guideline for the 4+2 internship program together with the revised provisional registration standard on 1 June 2017.

The guideline outlines a competency-based and outcome-focused internship that recognises and values the skills and knowledge of the profession and promotes supervisor responsibility for internship training, with oversight by the Board.

Under the revised guideline the 4+2 internship will enable innovation and technology in the delivery of supervision and training and support employers and industry and ensures the viability of regional and remote internships.

Some of the key improvements to the revised guidelines are more flexible options for supervision delivery including:

  • provision for more secondary supervision - up to 50 percent
  • allowance for up to 40 hours of phone supervision for all internships without Board approval and provision for more to be approved in special circumstances
  • no limitations on remote face-to-face supervision such as videoconference
  • recognition of up to 10 hours of indirect supervision (e.g. written feedback)
  • allowance for up to 40 hours of supervision to be accrued in sessions of less than 1 hour each, and
  • supervisor discretion to vary the duration and frequency of supervision sessions throughout the internship as appropriate.

An advance copy of the new guideline is available on the 4+2 internship program page together with supporting information and FAQ.

All 4+2 supervisors are asked take some time to familiarise themselves the new guideline. New applications to commence the 4+2 internship program will be assessed under the new guideline from 1 June 2017.

The Board has published supporting information about transitioning to the new guideline. This includes detail about how case studies and other assessment tasks already completed will be counted towards the new requirements and a checklist tool to help interns and supervisors work out what they need to do to finish the internship under the new guidelines.

The Board is confident that the change-over provisions are fair and nobody will be disadvantaged by the new guidelines.

Principal supervisors of current 4+2 interns are asked to review this information and make some time to discuss the new guideline with their trainees. You can start incorporating new flexibilities available under the new guideline into current internship plans right away. Minor changes to the internship plan including adjustments to hours of practice and supervision can be agreed to between the intern and supervisor without needing Board approval. Board approval will only be necessary for major changes such as a new or significantly revised work role.

From 1 June 2017 the Board will accept applications for general registration from 4+2 pathway provisional psychologists who have met the requirements of the new internship and whose supervisors have completed a new version of PPAC-76 final assessment of competence.

As the new guidelines are much more flexible, interns will generally find it advantageous to change to the new guideline immediately. However to ensure that there is no disadvantage for interns close to the end of their internship, there will be a three-month cross-over period and the old PPAC-76 will continue to be accepted until 1 September 2017.

There will also be a three-month cross-over period until 1 September 2017 for submitting case studies for Board review. This allows interns who are already working on a case study using the old format to finish it and submit it for assessment.

The Board will also be writing to all current 4+2 pathway provisional psychologists about the new guideline and other resources now available on the website.

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Supervisors of provisional psychologists in a transitional program - revised guideline

The Board will soon be publishing a new Guideline: Transitional programs for overseas qualified applicants, with information for overseas-applicants, their employers and their supervisors. Further information about the program and other relevant information is published on the overseas applicants section of the website.

The core requirements for transitional programs (as set out in the Registration standard: General registration) are not changing; however the new guideline provides extra information about skills and knowledge to be covered in the program. There is also guidance on applying for an exemption from the transitional program.

Overseas psychologists currently doing the transitional program and their supervisors will not be impacted by the new guideline; all current programs continue as before.

Supervisors still need to complete the same form - Assessment of capabilities - transitional program for provisional psychologists - ACTP-76 at the end of the program; the new list of competencies in the guideline should be helpful for this assessment. In addition to ensuring all required content has been covered, you must be confident your trainee can practise competently and ethically in Australia to at least the standard of an Australian-trained entry-level general psychologist before you complete ACTP-76.

The Board doesn't have a specific supervisor-approval category for the transitional program because overseas applicants come to Australia from a variety of cultural, educational and professional backgrounds, and therefore have different supervision needs. As you are already a BAS for at least one supervision category you can potentially act as a transitional program supervisor to any overseas applicant granted registration to do the program. When deciding whether to act as a transitional program supervisor you should use your professional judgment to determine if you are able to meet the supervision needs of the particular individual.

Some overseas applicants will be very prepared for practice in Australia and only need to demonstrate their existing skills and knowledge to you in the Australian context. This may require you to observe their practice, discuss what they have learned in self-directed study, and provide some guidance on adapting to the Australian context. Such applicants may easily complete the program within the minimum supervision and practice hours. Other overseas applicants may be less prepared and need you to help them develop new skills, acquire new knowledge and prepare for the national psychology exam. These applicants may need more than the minimum supervision and practice hours before you can complete the Assessment of capabilities form. It is important that you always discuss these matters and clarify expectations before commencing as a transitional program supervisor.

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2017 review of supervisor guidelines

The Guidelines for supervisors and supervisor training providers came into effect in July 2013. In 2017, the Board will be commencing a review of these guidelines and associated policies: Policy on refusing or revoking Board-approved supervisor status and Policy on the revocation of Board-approved supervisor training provider status.

As a Board-approved supervisor, you will be invited to provide feedback. For the opportunity to have your say, keep an eye on the Board's communiquès and newsletters for details of the consultation. The current guidelines and policies can be found on the Board's website.

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Using your supervisor online service portal

As a Board-approved supervisor, you can use the supervisor online services portal to:

  • check which supervisor types you are approved for
  • check when your current supervisor approval expires - this can help you plan your refresher training
  • change whether you are available or not available to be contacted by potential supervisees, and
  • update your nominated email address for receiving messages via the online supervisor search (this is not linked to the email address you nominate for regular registrant communication from the Board, so consider if you wish to update both).

Supervisor online services are available via the practitioner login, accessed by clicking the login button at the top of the AHPRA and Board websites. You will need your 10-digit ID number (this is different to your registration number) and password. If you don't know your ID number or password, you can get it by contacting the AHPRA customer service team.

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Keep in touch with the Board

  • Visit the Psychology Board website for information on the National Scheme and for the mandatory registration standards, codes, guidelines, policies and fact sheets.
  • Lodge an online enquiry form.
  • For registration enquiries call 1300 419 495 (from within Australia) or +61 3 8708 9001 (for overseas callers).
  • Address mail correspondence to: Prof. Brin Grenyer, Chair, Psychology Board of Australia, GPO Box 9958 Melbourne VIC 3001.

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Page reviewed 23/03/2017