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Professional Development Program

Forensicare’s Forensic Mental Health Professional Development Program (FMHPDP), delivered in collaboration with the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, provides a professional development program for individuals, teams and organisations looking to expand their knowledge and understanding of forensic behaviour and mental health issues. Workshops are provided throughout the year and are also available on request.

Improving Knowledge, Improving Practice

Our training program aims to promote knowledge and skills utilising evidence-based expertise developed on a foundation of advancing consumer-informed best practice.

As a specialist service, trainers from Forensicare and the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science include some of the most highly regarded and experienced clinicians and researchers in the field of forensic mental health. Our current program will be of interest to a wide cross section of individuals and organisations including those who work in health, community, and criminal justice sectors.

Workshop program

Please note: at this time, we have two workshops available both in person or online – ‘Working remotely with justice involved clients: challenges and opportunities,’ presented by Professor Michael Daffern (12 April) and ‘Identifying and assessing individuals at risk of grievance-fuelled violence,’ presented by Professor Michelle Pathé (29 June). When booking you will be able to select your preference. If attending online, a link will be emailed to you one week prior to the training.


Friday, 17 June 2022

9.00am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Working with people who commit sexual offences

Presenters: Dr Raj Darjee and Dr Marie Henshaw

Fear, hatred, disgust and banishment dominate societal discourse about those who commit sexual offences. Legal measures to control the risk posed by sexual offenders are expanding. In this context, it is important that practitioners and services understand the research evidence base and best practice in the assessment, treatment and management of those who sexually offend.

This full-day workshop will give attendees an up-to-date detailed and evidence based overview of: the nature and prevalence of sexual offending; theoretical models of sexual offending; the relationship between sexual offending and mental disorders; risk factors, protective factors and risk assessment; managing sexual offenders; pharmacological treatment; psychological treatment; and, online sexual offending.

It is suitable for practitioners from mental health, correctional, police or legal backgrounds who want to develop their knowledge of sexual offenders.

Dr Raj Darjee is a Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist and Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychiatry at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.

Dr Marie Henshaw is a Clinical and Forensic Psychologist at Forensicare and senior research fellow at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.


Wednesday, 29 June 2022

12.00pm – 2.00pm

AVAILABLE IN PERSON OR ONLINE

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $50 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Identifying and assessing individuals at risk of grievance-fuelled violence

Presenter: Professor Michelle Pathé

Violence by lone individuals driven by a perceived injury or injustice can have devastating outcomes. This training provides a theoretical and practical overview of the concept of lone actor grievance-fuelled violence, including lone actor terrorism, the significance of mental illness and the role of clinicians and other service providers in the prevention of targeted violence. The training will enhance awareness of the threat posed by individuals with pathological grievances, radicalisation to violent extremism, and risk management options.

The training is suitable for all mental health practitioners in general, forensic, adult and youth sectors, as well as professionals in justice, education and law enforcement settings.

NOTE: This workshop is available in person OR online. When booking you will be able to select your preference. If attending online, a link will be emailed to you one week prior to the training.

Professor Michelle Pathé was previously a Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist with Forensicare and a Professor at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science. She was instrumental in establishing the Queensland and Victorian Fixated Threat Assessment Centres and has played a key role in developing Australia’s policy responses to lone actor grievance-fuelled violence.


Thursday, 21 July 2022

9.30pm – 4.00pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Assessment of personality disorder for adults in forensic services

Presenters: Professor Jim Ogloff AM, Ms Claudia Mulder and Dr Nik Loft

There is a well-documented need for practitioners to have skills in identifying, assessing and providing clinical intervention for people with personality disorders. This workshop will focus specifically on the clinical and psychometric assessment of personality disorders. It will explore what personality and personality disorder is, and how the way clinical assessment of it has changed over time. It will offer an overview of categorical versus dimensional models of personality disorder, in addition to outlining a range of different approaches and tools to aid clinical assessment. Key considerations and challenges for assessing personality disorder will be discussed within the context of forensic services which will also include assessment of personality disorder for the courts.

The workshop will be targeted to clinicians who assess and treat personality disorder as part of their work.

Professor Jim Ogloff AM is Director of Psychological Services at Forensicare, University Distinguished Professor at the Swinburne University of Technology, and Director of the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.

Ms Claudia Mulder is a Principal Psychologist and Lead Clinician with Forensicare’s Personality Disorders Initiative.

Dr Nik Loft is a Principal Psychologist at Forensicare’s Thomas Embling Hospital.


Wednesday, 27 July 2022

9.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Formulation of complex and potentially harmful behaviour

Presenter: A/Professor Troy McEwan

One of the most challenging aspects of working in forensic contexts is responding to behaviours that have the potential to cause significant harm (e.g., violence, threats, harmful sexual behaviour, stalking). To work effectively with such clients, professionals need to be able to formulate the client’s behaviour; i.e. understand and explain the behaviour and harm potential, and use knowledge this to guide risk management and intervention. Formulation of problem behaviour is particularly important in cases where there are multiple interacting comorbidities and co-occurring biopsychosocial challenges; in client groups with whom it can be difficult to establish a rapport; and in cases where there is a high risk of inconsistent management across agencies and over time.

The aim of this workshop is to teach a method of formulating problematic and potentially harmful client behaviour that goes beyond the application of structured risk assessment guides. The workshop will involve both didactic learning and case study-based practice.

Participants will finish the workshop with a framework for formulation that they can use to understand and communicate about concerning client behaviour, and to shape risk reduction and intervention efforts. This workshop is intended for health and human services professionals who are keen build their ability to work with clients who present with problematic and potentially harmful behaviour towards others.

A/Professor Troy McEwan is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, and a Senior Psychologist with Forensicare’s Problem Behaviour Program. She also convenes the Doctorate of Psychology (Clinical and Forensic) training program and the Graduate Diploma of Forensic Psychology at Swinburne University of Technology.


Thursday, 4 August 2022

9.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Management of people with personality disorders who have offended or pose a risk of offending

Presenter: Dr Raj Darjee, Ms Claudia Mulder and Dr Aleksandra Belofastov

This training is aimed at practitioners working in community, justice and mental health settings who work with clients who are “challenging” or “complex”, including mental health, correctional, law enforcement and third sector professionals. It will provide practitioners with the theoretical and practical knowledge required to safely, ethically and effectively work with people with personality disorders who have offended or pose a risk of offending.

The morning will be focused on knowledge, covering: the challenges of working with this client group, useful theoretical frameworks to guide interventions, general principles of working with people with personality disorders, an overview of specific psychological treatments, offence specific treatment for people with personality disorders, the role of psychopharmacological treatment, psychologically informed management, multi-disciplinary and multi-agency working, reflective practice and supervision.

The afternoon will be focused on practice and will use case studies to help participants consider how to work safely and effectively with people with different personality disorder traits and presentations.

Dr Raj Darjee is a Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist and Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychiatry at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.

Ms Claudia Mulder is a Principal Psychologist (Forensic & Clinical), Forensicare.

Dr Aleksandra Belofastov is the Director of Psychological Services, Forensicare.


Monday, 22 August 2022

9.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Assessment and treatment of offenders with cognitive disabilities

Presenter: Dr Matt Frize

This training provides a summary of the current evidence base for risk assessment and treatment of offending behaviours of people with cognitive disabilities. By the completion of this training session, participants will have knowledge regarding the impact of cognitive disability on offending. Participants will also have knowledge regarding the validity and reliability of risk assessment measures for this population. Both cognitive behavioural and behavioural interventions will be explored, with a particular focus on the application of positive behaviour support and applied behaviour analysis. This full day session is appropriate for clinicians who work with people with a cognitive disability in the community or custodial settings.

Dr Matt Frize is the Director, Forensic Disability & Secure Welfare Services.


Friday, 23 September 2022

9.30am – 4.30pm

AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY*

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Pharmacological treatment of paraphilic and paraphilia related disorder

Presenter: Dr Raj Darjee and Dr Danny Sullivan

This training will provide psychiatrists with the theoretical and practical knowledge required to assess and treat men with paraphilic and paraphilia-related disorders who may benefit from treatment with sex drive reducing medication.

The training will cover:
• the biology of male sexual behaviour
• paraphilic disorders and compulsive sexual behaviours
• the medications available
• the evidence base for psychopharmacological treatment
• treatment guidelines
• clinical assessment and treatment
• relevant investigations and monitoring
• integrating treatment with other aspects of management
• relevant legal and ethical issues.

This training is primarily aimed at psychiatrists who work in community, justice and hospital settings where sexual behavioural problems or people who pose a risk of sexual offending are encountered. It may also be of interest to other medical practitioners or non-medical professionals who work with these client groups, particularly if they work with men who are on relevant medications.

Dr Raj Darjee is a Consultant Forensic Psychiatrist and Senior Lecturer in Forensic Psychiatry at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.

Dr Danny Sullivan is the Executive Director of Clinical Services at Forensicare.

*For online workshops, a link will be emailed to you one week prior to the training.


Friday, 30 September 2022

9.30am – 11.30am

Venue: The Paul Mullen Centre, 505 Hoddle Street, Clifton Hill

Cost: $50 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Working with families and carers in forensic mental health

Presenter: Ms Claudia Brophy-Odgers, Mr Grant Burkitt and Ms Shelley Turner

Using contemporary knowledge and interactive case studies, this training will provide individuals with the fundamental skills to effectively engage and support families and carers of consumers in secure and non-secure mental health settings. Common service challenges and barriers to engagement will be explored, and strategies to address these will be provided.

At the completion of this workshop, participants should develop an understanding of the strategies and skills needed to initially engage with families and meet their educational and support needs. Participants should also feel more comfortable navigating privacy and confidentiality challenges and understand how to involve families and carers in case planning. Finally, participants will learn skills
to develop a more culturally sensitive practice.

This 2-hour workshop is designed for clinicians working with families and carers in forensic mental health or justice-involved mental health settings.

Ms Claudia Brophy-Odgers is a Social Worker, Forensicare.

Mr Grant Burkitt is a Lead Social Worker, Forensicare.

Ms Shelley Turner is the Chief Social Worker, Forensicare.


Friday, 21 October 2022

9.30am – 4.00pm

Venue: The Paul Mullen Centre, 505 Hoddle Street, Clifton Hill

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Working with complexity

Presenter: Mr Mark Magella and Ms Danielle Ashley

This full day workshop offers the opportunity for case managers and therapists to enhance their knowledge and skills in the engagement and management of clients who present with complex needs, who are often mandated to engage with services. The clients that will be discussed are those who: have co-morbid health and mental health disorders, are reluctant to engage, pose risks to either themselves or others, have multi service involvement, and have been mandated for treatment by either civil or criminal justice orders. We will explore contemporary evidence based practices regarding, the links between mental illness and offending, balancing risk mitigation and client recovery and client centred approaches to risk management. The ethical dilemmas and challenges of client confidentiality, particularly when communicating identified risks with other services will also be discussed. This will be an interactive session using case studies and there will be opportunities to
reflect upon practice.

This session is suitable for experienced workers in both the government and non-government sectors and in the fields of mental health, disability, drug and alcohol, child protection and corrections.

Mr Mark Magella is a Senior Accredited Mental Health Social Worker who works on Forensicare’s court based Mental Health Assessment & Referral Service (MHARS).

Ms Danielle Ashley is an Occupational Therapy Educator and the Allied Health Graduate & Psychology Registrar Program Project Lead at Forensicare.


Thursday-Friday, 27-28 October 2022

9.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $750 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Planning and delivering effective forensic group programs

Presenter: Dr Flora Gilbert and Dr Marie Henshaw

This two-day training covers theoretical, evidence-based and practical aspects of planning, implementing and delivering group programs to justice-involved individuals. At the completion of the training, participants will understand the theory and evidence-base underpinning forensic group interventions, the key considerations for effectively planning and running groups in the forensic context, and the core skills required to facilitate change in the group therapy environment. The training will be interactive and involve experiential reflective and practical exercises designed to build effective group facilitation skills. This two-day training is suitable for clinicians involved or interested in the delivery of group programs within forensic mental health or correctional settings.

Dr Flora Gilbert is a Clinical and Forensic Psychologist. She is the Principal Psychology Educator, Forensicare.

Dr Marie Henshaw is a Clinical and Forensic Psychologist and Research Fellow at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.


Wednesday, 9 November 2022

10.30am – 4.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Formulation of complex and potentially harmful behaviour

Presenter: A/Professor Troy McEwan

One of the most challenging aspects of working in forensic contexts is responding to behaviours that have the potential to cause significant harm (e.g., violence, threats, harmful sexual behaviour, stalking). To work effectively with such clients, professionals need to be able to formulate the client’s behaviour; i.e. understand and explain the behaviour and harm potential, and use this knowledge to guide risk management and intervention. Formulation of problem behaviour is particularly important in cases where there are multiple interacting comorbidities and co-occurring biopsychosocial challenges; in client groups with whom it can be difficult to establish a rapport; and in cases where there is a high risk of inconsistent management across agencies and over time.

The aim of this workshop is to teach a method of formulating problematic and potentially harmful client behaviour that goes beyond the application of structured risk assessment guides. The workshop will involve both didactic learning and case study-based practice.

Participants will finish the workshop with a framework for formulation that they can use to understand and communicate about concerning client behaviour, and to shape risk reduction and intervention efforts. This workshop is intended for health and human services professionals who are keen build their ability to work with clients who present with problematic and potentially harmful behaviour towards others.

A/Professor Troy McEwan is an Associate Professor at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, and a Senior Psychologist with Forensicare’s Problem Behaviour Program. She also convenes the Doctorate of Psychology (Clinical and Forensic) training program and the Graduate Diploma of Forensic Psychology at Swinburne University of Technology.


Friday, 11 November 2022

9.00am – 4.30pm

Venue: The Paul Mullen Centre, 505 Hoddle Street, Clifton Hill

Cost: $375 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Instilling trauma-informed care when working with justice-involved clients

Presenter: Dr Bonnie Albrecht

This training provides an overview of trauma-informed care and considers opportunities for instilling trauma-informed care and practice within services working with justice-involved clients. At the completion of this training, participants should have an understanding of the ethos, principles, and research underlying trauma-informed care, and practical approaches to enlivening trauma-informed care in their workplace. As part of this, participants will be invited to undertake personal reflection about their approaches towards clients, colleagues, and self-care. This full-day training is suitable for clinicians working with justice-involved clients, whether in community, inpatient, or custodial settings. This training is also suitable for those who manage or supervise clinicians in such client-facing roles.

Dr Bonnie Albrecht is a Senior Psychologist with the Problem Behaviour Program, Forensicare and a Clinical Associate, Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Bonnie has been actively involved in trauma-informed care initiatives at Thomas Embling Hospital and the Problem Behaviour Program.


Tuesday, 29 November 2022

9.00am – 12.30pm

Venue: Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science, Level 1, 582 Heidelberg Road, Alphington
Cost: $175 (+GST)

Book your place

 

Working with young people who display sexually inappropriate behaviours

Presenter: Dr Stefan Luebbers and Dr Nina Papalia

Young people account for a significant proportion of instances of sexual abuse, particularly against children or younger siblings. This workshop will focus on key issues and the needs of young people who engage in sexually abusive behaviours. An overview of the nature and extent of the problem and a framework for screening and assessment will be presented. The workshop will provide practical advice on case formulation and intervention planning, including discussion of therapeutic responses to problematic sexual behaviours among children and adolescents. Furthermore, we will draw on understandings of the vulnerability and contextual factors of sexual abuse to enhance protective planning and therapeutic care.

This half-day workshop will be suitable for those working in or interested in youth focused services.

Dr Stefan Luebbers is a Principal Psychologist with the Youth Forensic Specialist Service / Parkville Youth Justice Centre and an Adjunct Lecturer at the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science.

Dr Nina Papalia is a Clinical and Forensic Psychologist, Senior Research Fellow with the Centre for Forensic Behavioural Science and Fullbright Scholar.


Cancellation policy

The FMHPDP team reserves the right to cancel workshops, in which case, all fees will be refunded. If participants withdraw up to 72 hours prior to the commencement of the workshop, 50% of the fee will be refunded.

There will be no refunds for cancellations within 72 hours of the workshop.

Bookings are non-transferable to future workshops, but bookings for a particular workshop can be transferred to another person.

Customised training

We also provide customised training and related services based on your needs and specific requests. This includes a range of organisational services including individual and team supervision, facilitation of team processes, and organisational advisory services drawing on specialist clinical, management and service delivery experience.

More information

For more information, please email the Forensic Mental Health Professional Development Program team: FMHPDP@forensicare.vic.gov.au.