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InPsych 2017 | Vol 39

APS Institute

Board-approved supervisor training

Board-approved supervisor training

Following the release of the new guidelines for the 4+2 internship programs by the PsyBA in June 2017, the APS Institute rewrote the relevant sections of the Part 1 online supervisor training program. As part of this review process, the changes from the old to the new guidelines were summarised into a table (see Table 1), which was sent to all previous Part 1 trainees to support their currency of accurate information and procedures as a supervisor of 4+2 interns. In addition, the APS Institute has updated the course material for the Part 2 and Part 3 supervisor training programs.

Maintaining supervisor status: Master Classes

The APS Institute has been mindful of the large number of APS psychologists who were approved as supervisors by the PsyBA under the ‘grandfather’ process in 2013. In order for these psychologists to maintain their status as an approved supervisor, a Master Class will need to be completed as a minimum requirement, prior to 1 July 2018.

To address the needs of APS psychologists to undertake a PsyBA-approved one-day Master Class in the first part of 2018, the APS Institute surveyed existing approved supervisors on their expected training needs.

More than 600 members responded to the survey, with over 85 per cent indicating a desire to attend a Master Class before July 2018. The APS Institute is scheduling Master Classes around Australia, based on the responses from the survey. The APS Institute is working hard to meet the training needs of APS psychologists, for gaining supervisor status and for maintaining PsyBA-approved supervisor status. Please note that all Master Class topics available through the APS Institute meet the minimum requirement of a PsyBA-approved Master Class. APS psychologists might prefer to select a Master Class based on a topic, even if this means travelling to do so, as not all topics can be offered in every location.

Table 1. Highlights of changes to PsyBA 4+2 Guidelines (June 2017)

Topic area Previous September 2013 
4+2 Guidelines
New June 2017 4+2 Guidelines
Competencies Eight core capabilities Eight core competencies
Internship program plan Supervised practice program (focused on the tasks required) Internship program plan (focuses more on the psychological work related to the eight core competencies)
Direct observation Two assessments and two interventions during each 
six-month period
Two assessments and two interventions during each six-month period, but these can include simulated situations to develop skills early in the internship.
Client contact Minimum 40 per cent must be direct client contact; up to 60 per cent client-related activities One thousand hours of direct client contact. At least 850 hours must be real client contact and up to 150 hours can be simulated direct client contact (90 in first year and 60 in second year).
Telephone counselling Up to 250 hours of telephone counselling may be logged as a client-related activity Telephone counselling is listed as a direct client contact activity and therefore is part of the 1,000 hours required.
Assessment tasks Intelligence assessments: five repeated tests 
Memory: five repeated tests
Personality: five tests
Other: five assessments from two categories
One adult test of intelligence; one child test of intelligence; one specialised test of memory; two standardised personality tests; and four other tests or instruments selected from the exam curriculum.
Case reports Six case studies 
(three submitted to Board)
Eight case reports. Four of the eight case reports that are assessed as satisfactory by the principal supervisor must be submitted to the Board for review – two must have an assessment focus and two must have an intervention focus. The case report submission schedule is two per year for Board review.
Ethical dilemmas tasks


Three reports on ethical dilemmas to be completed in the first year.
Diverse groups task


During the first year the provisional psychologist must complete at least one short report or presentation to the supervisor(s). This is not sent to the Board but completion is noted in the next progress report.
Across the life span practice task


During the first year the provisional psychologist must complete at least one short report or presentation to the supervisor(s). This is not sent to the Board but completion is noted in the next progress report.
Practice documents Twelve examples of written communication A practice document portfolio must be developed and contain eight different practice documents written by the provisional psychologist.
Supervision Individual supervision includes Skype but not telephone calls A minimum of 160 hours of supervision; with at least 100 hours being one on one; 150 hours being direct (sight seen – up to 40 hours can be telephone). Other supervision time can be individual, small group, indirect supervision. At least 80 hours must be with the principal supervisor. Up to 10 hours of supervision may be indirect (asynchronous), such as providing written feedback.
Professional development 120 hours 120 hours must be spread across the internship period.
Logbook – Reflective journal Reflection on experiences to be included as part of the provisional psychologist’s daily record of practice The provisional psychologist must document their reflection on practice in the internship at least weekly or following a major professional activity.
Time frame Two-year minimum to five-year maximum An internship is at least 88 weeks duration, but can be completed in less than two years if less than the eight-week annual leave allowance is taken.
Research   Up to 400 hours of supervised applied psychological research may be accepted as part of a psychological role provided it contributes to the core competencies.


Disclaimer: Published in InPsych on December 2017. The APS aims to ensure that information published in InPsych is current and accurate at the time of publication. Changes after publication may affect the accuracy of this information. Readers are responsible for ascertaining the currency and completeness of information they rely on, which is particularly important for government initiatives, legislation or best-practice principles which are open to amendment. The information provided in InPsych does not replace obtaining appropriate professional and/or legal advice.