Type: Practice Support Portal

This mail is intended to assist registrants who are considering providing a novel or alternative form of service, be that a new type of assessment service or an alternative form of therapy. A previous version of this information was posted for registrant review and feedback as a draft checklist earlier this year. Registrant feedback was reviewed by the Quality Assurance Committee, and a final version of the checklist has now been posted to the College website in the Practice Support section.

It is expected that a registrant considering offering any alternative type of assessment or treatment service will do so only after a careful determination that the service is a psychology service, that it falls within their scope of practice, that it is supported by relevant empirical research, and that it will not pose potential harm to the public. More detailed considerations reflecting these issues are included below. Relevant Code of Conduct standards are indicated in brackets following the checklist items.

  • I have determined that the service and/or opinion I am considering providing falls within the practice of psychology as defined within the Psychologists Regulation. (1.1, Psychologists Regulation)
  • I will not provide any service or opinion that falls outside the practice of psychology as defined within the Psychologists Regulation. (1.1, Psychologists Regulation)
  • My decision to offer the alternative service is informed by appropriate psychological research. It is not an experimental assessment or intervention service that should only be offered in a research context as part of evaluating the service. (3.7, 3.9, 3.10, 3.15, 11.5)
  • I have the appropriate education, training, and experience to provide the service competently and ethically. (3.2, 3.3, 3.5, 3.11, 3.21, 3.22, 3.25, 11.5)
  • I will not provide any service or opinion that falls outside my scope of competent practice. (3.2, 3.3, 3.5, 3.7)
  • I consult regularly with colleagues, both with those who are familiar with the alternative service and with those who offer conventional services and are in a position to offer a potentially challenging or corrective perspective on the alternative service, in order to ensure that I do not overlook any emergent concerns about the alternative service. (3.2, 3.12, 3.21)
  • I maintain awareness of research and professional developments related to the service. (3.2, 3.3, 3.7, 3.9, 3.10, 3.15, 3.21, 3.22, 3.25, 11.5)
  • I will offer the service consistently with all requirements of the Code of Conduct. (2.1, 2.3, 3.1)
  • I will offer the service only if it is as safe as, or safer than, conventional services, and I will cease to offer the service if I become aware that it poses any greater risk to clients than do conventional services. (5.1, 5.26, 8.2)
  • I will not offer the novel service to any client for whom the service could reasonably be considered to be inappropriate or insufficient. (3.23, 5.1, 5.26, 8.2)
  • In addition to observing the basic elements of informed consent, when seeking to obtain informed consent from each client for a novel service, I will:
    • clearly state the novel or alternative nature of the service I am offering;
    • provide clear information regarding any risks of the service; and
    • advise every client of the availability of more established and conventional services where these exist, and the client’s right to choose which service they would prefer to receive. (3.22, 4.1, 4.2, 4.6, 4.8, 4.11, 5.2)
  • I will not make any statements regarding the service that are false, inaccurate, unverifiable, or could reasonably be deemed to have the potential to mislead the public. (3.12, 3.13, 10.1, 10.7, 10.14, 10.15, 10.16, 11.15, 11.17)
  • I will not make any misleading statements about the results a client may expect from my service, including in any advertising and in my direct conversations with prospective clients. (3.12, 3.13, 10.1, 10.7, 10.14, 10.15, 10.16, 11.15, 11.17)
  • I will attend rigorously to requirements for accuracy in my public statements, in my discussions with clients, in any client reports, and in any publications. (3.12, 3.13, 10.1, 10.7, 10.14, 10.15, 10.16, 11.15, 11.17, 11.27, 11.28)
  • I will clearly state any limitations to my opinions in my public statements, in my discussions with clients, in any client reports, and in any publications, including specifically any limitations attributable to the novel or alternative nature of the service. (3.13, 3.14, 3.18, 11.6, 11.9, 11.11, 11.28)
  • I will seek specific informed written consent from every client if my service is being observed or recorded in any way. (4.1, 4.2, 4.11, 4.12)
  • In the event I am conducting research on a novel service, I will clearly advise each prospective client that the service is being offered in the context of research, and obtain specific written informed consent from any client to be included in that research. (4.1, 4.2, 4.13, 4.14)
  • I will not use data obtained from my clients for any research or other publication without their express written consent. (4.1, 4.2, 4.11, 4.13, 4.14)
  • I will not seek any benefit other than appropriate agreed upon monetary compensation from any client to whom I am offering the service. (5.4, 5.5)
  • If I am promoting the use of the novel service to other professionals, I will:
    • ensure that I attend rigorously to requirements for accuracy;
    • provide limitations of my opinions in all of my statements; and
    • ensure I do not promote the use of psychological assessment or intervention techniques by unqualified individuals. (3.12, 3.13, 3.14, 3.15, 3.18, 10.1, 10.7, 10.14, 10.15, 10.16, 11.5, 11.13, 11.15, 11.17, 15.5, 15.8)
  • I will not coerce or induce any client to accept the alternative service, and I will respect their right to choose a conventional service in addition to or in lieu of the alternative service (4.2, 4.6, 5.1, 5.2, 5.5, 5.8, 5.26)
  • I am aware of any relevant legislation related to the service and I am in compliance with any and all applicable laws. (3.8, 18.1)