Course Title: Establish and maintain communication and relationships to support the recovery process

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2014

Course Code: OHTH5556C

Course Title: Establish and maintain communication and relationships to support the recovery process

School: 365T Global, Urban & Social Studies

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4328 - Certificate IV in Alcohol and Other Drugs

Course Contact : Xenia Girdler

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4660

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Wayne Harrington


Nominal Hours: 40

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Not applicable

Course Description

This course will enable students to communicate effectively with people experiencing mental health issues.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CHCMH403A Establish and maintain communication and relationships to support the recovery process


1. Develop communication strategies to effectively engage with people

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Identify the person's strengths and interests that
may provide an opportunity to establish rapport
1.2 Apply appropriate communication strategies to
establish rapport with person with mental health
condition, their family, carer/s and work team
1.3 Apply communication strategies in a manner that
acknowledges individual time requirements to establish
1.4 Apply communication strategies in a manner that
acknowledges cultural barriers to establishing rapport
1.5 Identify and respect the client's choice to involve
others (e.g. carer/s, family and friends)
1.6 Apply communication strategies that
acknowledge the client's recovery experiences


2. Maintain an effective working relationship with person affected by mental health condition

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Identify communication requirements to maintain
an effective working relationship with the person
2.2 Deliver any supports collaboratively and in a
manner that maintains an effective working relationship
with the person
2.3 Collaboratively work with the person, giving
them control over their own lives


3. Develop and maintain effective working relationships with family, carer/s, friends and others

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Identify the information and support needs of
family, carer/s and friends
3.2 Use communication that is readily understood by
carer/s, family and friends
3.3 Communicate with family, carer/s and friends in a
manner that respects the dignity, choices and
confidentiality of the person with the mental health

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

All courses and learning activities will be supported and complimented by RMIT’s e-learning tool "Blackboard".

Learning activities have been designed to be holistic and take into account the many and varied aspects of alcohol and other drug work. Therefore, learning in this course will complement and enhance your learning in other courses within the Certificate IV Alcohol and Other Drug Use over the year.

This course describes the knowledge and skills required to work as part of a team to develop and maintain effective and trustful communication and relationships with people affected by a mental health condition, their family, carer/s and friends that contribute to recovery and independence.

Application of this course applies to work with clients affected by mental health condition in a range of community services work contexts.
This work provides a person-centred approach to care, involving a variety of health and community service professionals working collaboratively with the client, their carer/s and family.

There are also activities which take place outside the nominated class time. In first semester you will go on a number of field trips:

Aradale Psychiatric Hospital in Ararat. This field trip will provide you with an understanding of the socio-political history of Victoria’s mental health service system and insight into the days of the large institutions.
Dax Gallery - an art gallery which houses one of the largest displays of art work created by people with mental illness (including addiction). This exhibition provides you with further understanding of our recent treatment of people experiencing a range of complex care issues.
The Neighbourhood Justice Centre - a specialist magistrates court for people experiencing a range of complex social and health issues.

In addition to these field trips, you will also undertake:

Standard Mental Health First Aid program.

This fourteen (14) hour program will be delivered in the first three weeks of semester one. Completing the Mental Health First Aid program will provide you with basic skills and knowledge to assist people experiencing a range of mental health issues - including addiction.
Two day Motivational Interviewing workshop
Two day workshop exploring the impact of addiction and incarceration on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Island population
Workshop exploring working with people who hear voices
Workshop on undertaking a mental state exam with a client

Teaching Schedule

Please note: While your teacher will cover all the material in this schedule, the weekly order is subject to change depending on class needs and availability of speakers and resources. This course  - CHCMH403A Establish and maintain communication and relationships to support the recovery process wil be delivered and assessed alongside the course CHCMH402B - Apply understanding of mental health issues and recovery processes

 1 Exploring the importance of relationship building and person centered practice (Part a)
2Further exploration of person-centered and strength based principles of practice
3Examining the impact of mental illness
4Introducttion to working effectively with people impacted by mental illness
5Working with family and carers

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems and access to specialised facilities and relevant software.
The University Library provides extensive services, facilities and study space as well as comprehensive collections of books, periodicals and other course related materials, such as DVD’s, magazines, slides, films etc. Computer laboratories with access to a wide range of desktop publishing software are also available.

The library also has an expanding virtual collection of electronic resources and networks, including product data, e-books, electronic journals and newspapers, web based tutorials, online reference and document delivery services etc., all of which are accessible on campus, and off campus 24 hours per day. More information on library resources and services can be found at:

If you need additional support, visit RMIT’s Learning Lab, either in person or online:

Overview of Assessment

For assessment Students complete a range of tasks applicable to an introduced case study client  

Assessment Tasks

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks. Summative assessment tasks in this course are graded.

Feedback throughout the course may be written for written assessments, verbal for verbal assessments or a combination of both

To demonstrate competency in this course you need to complete each one of the following pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard.

Students will undertake the complete Mental Health First Aid program and demsontrate their ability to complete a comprehensive MHFA Action plan based on one of the program’s case studies.

Students will be required to demonstrate their effective communication skills during their 180 hours of placement. Their ability to form relationships and support people impacted by mental health issues will be assessed during a work-place visit by an RMIT assessor in addition to a Third Party sign off by their work place supervisor.


Grades which apply to courses delivered in accordance with competency-based assessment (not graded).

CA Competency Achieved
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

Assessment Matrix

Other Information

The major learning experience involves a combination of in-class exercises complimented by practical placement. It is strongly advised that you attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

You will receive feedback verbally for verbal presentations and written for written presentations by teachers on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your competency.
Student feedback at RMIT :;ID=9pp3ic9obks7

Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. Student progress policy :;ID=vj2g89cve4uj1

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This signed sheet acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.

Applying for Special Consideration
If you are seeking an extension of more than seven calendar days (from the original due date) you must lodge an Application for Special Consideration form, preferably prior to, but no later than two working days after the official due date. Late applications will only be accepted in exceptional circumstances. For information about Special Consideration and how to apply, see:

Penalties for Late Submission
If you have not been granted an extension or special consideration, late submission will be penalised as follows:
Assessment tasks submitted after the due date of submission shall receive a penalty of five per cent of the grades available for that assessment per day for each day late.
No assessment task shall be accepted more than three weeks after the due date without special consideration.

Assessment Appeals
If you believe your assessment result or final result is wrong please contact the course coordinator and provide the reason why you think your result is incorrect. Valid reasons for seeking a review of results include:

You believe an error has occurred in the calculation of the grade; or,
You believe the assessment did not comply with criteria published in the Course Guide; or,
You believe the assessment did not comply with University Policies on Assessment (i.e. an error in process has occurred).
Full details of the procedure (including appeals procedure) can be located at this RMIT site:

Academic Integrity
Academic integrity means honesty and responsibility in scholarship through respecting the work of others whilst having the freedom to build new insights, new knowledge and ideas. RMIT University upholds the values of academic integrity as fundamental to the scholarship undertaken by all members of its community. Whenever you refer to another person’s research or ideas (either by directly quoting or paraphrasing them) you must acknowledge your source.
If you are even in doubt about how to properly cite a reference, consult your lecturer or the academic integrity website: The RMIT library provides tools to assist with your referencing

Plagiarism and Collusion
Plagiarism and collusion constitute extremely serious academic misconduct, and are forms of cheating. You are reminded that cheating, whether by fabrication, falsification of data, or plagiarism, is an offence subject to University disciplinary procedures. Plagiarism is the presentation of the work, idea or creation of another person as though it is your own. It is a form of cheating and is a very serious academic offence that may lead to expulsion from the University. Plagiarised material can be drawn from, and presented in, written, graphic and visual form, including electronic data, and oral presentations. Plagiarism occurs when the origin of the material used is not appropriately cited. Plagiarism is not acceptable.
Examples of plagiarism include:

Copying sentences or paragraphs word-for-word from one or more sources, whether published or unpublished, which could include but is not limited to books, journals, reports, theses, websites, conference papers, course notes, etc. without proper citation;
Closely paraphrasing sentences, paragraphs, ideas or themes without proper citation;
Piecing together text from one or more sources and adding only linking sentences;
Copying or submitting whole or parts of computer files without acknowledging their source;
Copying designs or works of art and submitting them as your original work;
Copying a whole or any part of another student’s work; and
Submitting work as your own that someone else has done for you.
Enabling Plagiarism: the act of assisting or allowing another person to plagiarise or to copy your own work is also an offence.

For further information, please see the RMIT Plagiarism Policy –;ID=sg4yfqzod48g1 – and the RMIT Student Discipline Statute and Regulations -;ID=11jgnnjgg70y

Plagiarism Software
The originality verification software Turnitin may be used in this course. For details, see:

Course Overview: Access Course Overview