PSYCHIAT 766 : Youth Addiction and Co-existing Problems

Medical and Health Sciences

2021 Semester Two (1215) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

An overview of key principles required to manage alcohol and drug problems within a Child and Adolescent Mental Health (CAMH) context. Includes a range of topics including aspects of screening, assessment and brief interventions, harm reduction, an introduction to motivational interviewing, and CBT in addiction treatment.

Course Overview

This course will provide clinicians working in CAMHS, youth addiction, youth health and related settings with practical clinical knowledge about addiction in youth and its relationship to development and adolescent mental health disorders. The course has an emphasis on supporting clinicians to apply this knowledge to their current practice and transferring established clinical skills towards management of addiction in young people.  

Course Requirements

No pre-requisites or restrictions

Course Contacts

Ben Harvey - Phone: 64 9 923 7284 | Email: 

Vas Ajello: Mobile: 021 991 828 (welcome to call or text for a call back) | Email:

Grant Christie: Mobile: 021 223 7018 (preferably text for a call back) | Email: 

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 4: Communication and Engagement
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity
Capability 6: Social and Environmental Responsibilities
Graduate Profile: Master of Health Practice

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Describe common substances associated with addictive disorders in adolescents, their effects and harms. (Capability 1.1 and 1.2)
  2. Understand the principles and practicalities of harm reduction as it applies to this age group. (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 2.2 and 6.2)
  3. Demonstrate aptitude in, screening and brief interventions and the promotion of these in primary and secondary care (Capability 1.2, 3.1, 3.2, 4.1 and 6.2)
  4. Apply motivational interviewing spirit and skills in practice with young people and their families (Capability 1.1, 1.2, 4.2 and 5.1)
  5. Demonstrate awareness of the application of CBT in youth addiction (Capability 1.2, 2.2, 3.2 and 4.2)
  6. Understand issues related to the managment of co-existing problems in young people including awareness of developmental and cultural considerations (Capability 2.2, 3.1, 3.2, 4.2, 5.1, 6.1 and 6.2)
  7. Experience specific aspects of addiction treatment less commonly seen in CAMHS settings (e.g., Opiate Substitution Treatment, Detoxification service, Residential rehabilitation, 12 step programmes, Needle exchange, Pain teams) via visits or discussions with service providers (Capability 2.1, 3.1, 4.1, 5.1 and 6.1)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Reports 30% Individual Coursework
Presentation 14% Individual Coursework
Quizzes 32% Individual Test
Reflection 24% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 20 hours of lectures,  80 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 50 hours of work on assignments and/or test preparation.

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience or Online

This course is offered in two delivery modes:

Campus Experience

Attendance is required at the scheduled teaching block on campus over 2 days. 


Most of the course is completed online via CANVAS.

Attendance is required at scheduled online activities including the introductory session and the presentation assignment.

This course runs to the University semester/quarter timetable and all the associated completion dates and deadlines will apply.

Student Feedback

At the end of every semester students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback and respond with summaries and actions.

Your feedback helps teachers to improve the course and its delivery for future students.

Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the department and faculty staff-student consultative committees.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and your assessment is fair, and not compromised. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the University Website for information about how to proceed.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 02/12/2020 12:50 p.m.