Course Title: Communication Skills for Health Professionals

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Communication Skills for Health Professionals

Credit Points: 12.00

Course Coordinator: Dr Sophia Xenos

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 1081

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 201.03.013

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities


Course Description

This course will enable you to gain a better understanding of communication skills important for health professionals, as well as an awareness of common psychological conditions that can impact on therapeutic engagement. The course will introduce you to a range of communication techniques that are essential for health professionals, including rapport building and interviewing skills, strategies for developing and maintaining good therapeutic alliance, an introduction to professional ethics, and the concept of professional identity. Focus is also placed on common psychological conditions that can impact on therapeutic engagement, such as anxiety, depression and dementia. You will also be introduced to strategies to tailor communication for specific audiences, with consideration to age, gender and culture.

Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

This course contributes to the following Program Learning Outcomes for BP321 Bachelor of Applied Science (Medical Radiations) (aligned to the Accreditation Standards of the Medical Radiations Practice Board of Australia):

Standard 1.1

  • Practise in an ethical and professional manner, consistent with relevant legislation and regulatory requirements (1.1a)
  • Provide each patient/client with an appropriate level of dignity and care (1.1b)

Standard 1.2

  • Communicate clearly, sensitively and effectively with patient/client and your family or carers (1.2a)
  • Collaborate with other health practitioners (1.2b)

On successful completion of this course you should be able to:

  1. Describe the key principles of good communication in health care.
  2. Demonstrate an awareness of the concept of professional identity including the role of the healthcare professional, codes of conduct for healthcare professionals and the concept of patient-centred care.
  3. Describe common psychological conditions that impact on therapeutic engagement.
  4. Demonstrate awareness of the need to tailor communication for specific audiences in the healthcare setting.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will learn through a range of activities including lectures, tutorial classes, self-directed study and team-based discussions. This course is supported by RMIT's online learning management system (LMS).

Teacher Guided Hours: 48

Learner Directed Hours: 96

Overview of Learning Resources

The learning resources associated with this course include targeted readings taken from a range of both primary and secondary sources. All material will be digitally available, with lecture material delivered via online media. RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through online systems.

Overview of Assessment

This course has no hurdle requirements.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task 1: Case Study

Weighting 30%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2 & 3

Assessment Task 2: Reflective short essays

Weighting 30%

This assessment task supports CLOs 2, 3 & 4

Assessment Task 3: Examination

Weighting 40%

This assessment task supports CLOs 1, 2, 3 & 4