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  3. Transcultural Mental Health

Transcultural Mental Health (PSYT90014)

Graduate courseworkPoints: 6.25Online and On Campus (Parkville)

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Year of offer2019
Subject levelGraduate coursework
Subject codePSYT90014
June - Online
June - On Campus
FeesSubject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date

Transcultural psychiatry concerns itself with the:

  1. nature of mental illness;
  2. causes and distribution of mental illness in different populations;
  3. culture and clinical practice, including the clinician-patient relationship; and the
  4. design of mental health services in multicultural societies.

Students will examine the role of culture in the development and the treatment of mental illness, and will be provided with a short introduction into the education of mental health professionals, and the construction and operations of health systems. They will integrate cultural with biological, psychological and social considerations in their thinking about clincial practice and briefly consider the design and operations of the mental health service settings in which they work. Students will consider the cultural and linguistic diversity of the Australian community and the implications of such diversity for clinical practice. They will examine the cultural construction of concepts of mental illness and the cultural assumptions and commitments of contemporary psychiatry. Prevalence of mental illness in immigrant, refugee and Aboriginal communities will be explored as will the patterns of mental health service utilisation. Students will develop knowledge and skills i ncultural assessment, cross-cultural diagnosis and treatment.

Intended learning outcomes

  • Describe the cultural diversity of Australian society, and the mental health implications of this diversity
  • Differentiate new ways of thinking about concepts of culture, and concept of psychiatric illness across different cultures, and to apply these concepts in day-to-day clinical work
  • Describe the differing patterns of mental health service utilisation by different ethnic communities in Victoria, and the factors that may be responsible for these different patterns of service use such as the epidemiology of mental illness across cultures
  • Discuss frameworks for thinking about public mental health policy, and service design and evaluation, in relation to people from different cultural backgrounds
  • Demonstrate skills in the integration of cultural competence into psychiatric assessment and diagnosis
  • Demonstrate skills in the integration of cultural competence into psychiatric management.

Last updated: 19 June 2019