Leadership Practice in Mental Health

Leadership Practice in Mental Health

Level ~ Masters
Teaching period ~ Semester 1
Type ~ Core

With increasing diversity and change within the mental health workforce and the requirement for workers to undertake new models of practice within diverse clinical settings, leadership is emerging as one of the most important capabilities for a recovery-oriented mental health service delivery. Leadership Practice in Mental Health examines contemporary approaches to leadership and how these relate to the challenges presented by the complex environment of mental health care. Leadership practice is explored from the perspectives of mental health policy and practice, inter-agency collaboration, peer support, consumer advocacy, and workplace culture. Contemporary theories and behavioural models of leadership are explored, drawing on research findings in neuroscience, emotional intelligence competencies, and leadership capability frameworks.


Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the unit, students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an advanced and integrated knowledge of contemporary leadership concepts, theories and models and their application to recovery-oriented practice, systems thinking and clinical leadership.
  • Critically evaluate and challenge the concept of mental health services as complex adaptive systems and the implications of this for leadership practice in a risk-averse culture.
  • Critically appraise leadership capability frameworks, to determine and apply the most appropriate capabilities for enhancing leadership practice in mental health.
  • Critically evaluate evidence-based leadership models and practices which enable clarity of purpose, inclusive leadership, empowerment of others, ethical practice and recovery-oriented processes.
  • Advocate for mental health consumers, challenging discrimination and public discourse, ensuring decision making processes meet cultural requirements in an environment of complexity and uncertainty, understanding how these skills are applied in situations of shared leadership between professionals and those with lived experience.

Weekly Schedule
Week 1 What is Leadership?
Week 2 Leadership in Mental Health
Week 3 Leadership Capability Frameworks, Theories, Concepts and Models
Week 4 The Australian Mental Health System
Week 5 Recovery as the context for Mental health Practice
Week 6 Partnership in Leadership
Week 7 Leadership Style
Week 8 Creating a culture of Inclusivity and Mutual Respect in Mental Health
Week 9 Nature of Decision Making in Mental Health
Week 10 Decision-Making Based on Evidence
Week 11 Decision-Making by Consumers
Week 12 Decision-Making to Enhance Partnerships and Collaboration
Week 13 Ethics in Mental Health Practice
Week 14 Ethics of Consumer and Carer Participation
Week 15 Ethical Considerations in Creating Cultures of Inclusion and Diversity