Holistic Counselling Supervision and Practice

Holistic Counselling Supervision and Practice

Unit Description

An introduction to the foundational ethical, social and legal aspects of professional counselling practice.

This 6-credit point unit introduces students to the foundational ethical, social and legal aspects of professional counselling practice. Students will learn the importance of adhering to legal requirements and ethical and professional guidelines in relation to confidentiality, privacy, record-keeping, secure storage of client records in electronic and paper form, making referrals, and writing reports. They will develop skills in using genograms to assess and analyse familial patterns across generations. The practice of clinical supervision as an essential ethical requirement for professional counselling practice is introduced. Students will present counselling clients in supervision and receive feedback on their counselling practice from their supervisor. Professional documents including client contracts, consent to release information forms, and supervision and counselling logs, are introduced in this unit.

Unit Code


Unit Type

Core Unit

Study Period

Semester 2, 2021

Credit Points


Topics Covered

  • Preparation for placement: placement requirements and expectations; student wellbeing and safety while on placement, preparing a CV and contacting placement organisations
  • How to present counselling cases in supervision sessions: demonstration of supervision and template for supervision presentations
  • Report writing for a range of professional purposes and gaining client consent to release information
  • Importance of ethical and professional practice
  • Notetaking, record keeping and practice and supervision logs
  • Contracts and other professional requirements
  • Professional and personal development
  • Application of holistic counselling processes to practice, including use of genogram to assess and analyse familial influences
  • Develop a resource and referral directory

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Identify and apply key legal, ethical and professional requirements in their holistic counselling practice
  2. Understand the role of clinical supervision in the counselling profession and utilise supervision to ensure competent and ethical counselling practice
  3. Prepare and present client cases in supervision sessions to demonstrate the integration of holistic counselling knowledge and skills
  4. Explore familial influences and patterns across generations in practice sessions using genograms
  5. Critically reflect on professional practice areas and personal aspects of self in need of further development
  6. Develop and maintain a resource and referral directory for local services

Assessment Overview

1. Resource and Referral Directory

Develop an accurate, relevant and up to date resource and referral directory for the locality of the student’s practice by networking with local services

(Minimum of 15 services)

Year 1, Semester 2,

Week 5


Non-graded Pass/Fail

1. Ethics Report

Identify an ethical challenge or concern arising in your counselling practice and apply ethical principles and standards and analyse any ethical dilemmas, making reference to the PACFA Code of Ethics (2017)

Length: 1,500 words

Year 1, Semester 2,

Week 9


Non-graded Pass/Fail

3. Reflective Journal

Develop six entries about students’ experience of their work-integrated placement, counselling practice and supervision, using reflective writing, images and source materials from the host organisation

Length: 1,200 words

Year 1, Semester 2,

Week 15


Non-graded Pass/Fail

Unit Resources


Carroll, M., & Gilbert, M. C. (2011). On being a supervisee: Creating learning partnerships(2nd ed). London, England: Bertrams.

Prescribed readings

Corey, G., Corey, M. S., Corey, C., & Callanan, P. (2014). Chapter 9: Ethical issues in supervision. In Issues and ethics in the helping professions updated with 2014 ACA codes (9th ed, pp. 336-369). Pacific Grove, CA: Brooks/Cole Publishing.

Gardner, F. (2014). Chapter 3: Practising critical reflection. In Being critically reflective: Engaging in holistic practice (pp. 51-72). New York, NY: Palgrave.

Isted, L., & Freegard, H. (2008). Chapter 6: Making ethical decisions. In Ethical practice for health professionals (2nd ed.). South Melbourne, Australia: Cengage Learning Australia.

Ryan, S. (2008). Chapter 4: Mindful supervision. In Shohet, R. (Ed.). Passionate supervision (pp. 70-86). London, England: Jessica Kingsley.

Delivery Mode

Workshop intensives on-campus

On-campus workshop intensive 2:

9:00 – 5:30 pm
Six hours of placement and supervision preparation, including use of genograms and report writing.
Six hours of ethics teaching and learning.

On-campus workshop intensive 3:

9:00 – 5:30 pm
Six hours of group supervision (maximum 12 students)
Students may request crisis supervision as needed throughout the semester, which will be provided by the unit coordinator using Zoom.

Student Workload

The total unit workload is equivalent to eleven hours per week over the semester (185 hours in total).

  • On-campus workshop intensive 2: 12 hours of teaching and learning
  • On-campus workshop intensive 3: Six hours of group supervision (maximum 12 students)
  • 67 personal study hours
  • Placement: 100 hours in total, including 10 client practice hours and practice administration

Written by: Mr Reece Jones • Created: 27 Apr 2021, 4:11 p.m.