WELF 7013 Integrated Practice 1: Self and Story

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 102370

Coordinator Alison Hood Opens in new window

Description This subject explores the concept of 'self' and how stories might shape self-identity or a sense of 'what it means to be me'. The enduring characteristics of stories will be examined alongside their different workings across cultures, traditions, technologies, genres and time. The subject will cover historical and contemporary notions of the unconscious as they inform an understanding of self and story. It will examine how an understanding of the brain, particularly of memory, and the workings of the right and left hemispheres, fit into this exploration. Working with selves and stories, as instruments for change in therapeutic work, will be considered across lifespan and a range of psychotherapies.

School Social Sciences

Discipline Counselling

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 4 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject

Co-requisite(s) WELF 7009


Students must be enrolled in program 1817 Master of Psychotherapy and Counselling

Assumed Knowledge

Concurrent or previous study of any foundational subject in counselling.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Reflect constructively on the concept of 'self'.
  2. Integrate findings from contemporary neuroscience into an understanding of the workings of the unconscious and memory in relation to storytelling and self-narratives.
  3. Critically compare concepts and use of self and story across different approaches to psychotherapy, including Jungian Analysis, Narrative Therapy.
  4. Understand psychotherapy in the broader context of how stories work within a range of other genres, contexts and media.
  5. Analyse how the 'self' is connected to broader familial and cultural narratives.
  6. Demonstrate how story-telling and story-making can unfold within a therapeutic relationship, drawing on the client's and others' stories, through various forms including traditional and popular cultures and new technologies.

Subject Content

1. Introduction to historical and contemporary concepts of the self and identity, as they influence counselling and psychotherapy.  
2. Introduction to the characteristics and workings of stories within and across cultures incorporating oral and written traditions, as well as electronic and digital technologies.
3. Consideration of storytelling genres (myths, parables, fairytales and narratives of survival, redemption and transformation) as shared in various forms (books, TV, movies, music videos, computer games and social media). 
4. Understanding of the context and significance of the use of story in various fields including psychotherapy, and how this relates to ‘self’.
5. Examination of the implications of contemporary neuroscience, particularly its insights into the workings of memory, unconscious processes and structures of the brain, in understanding the self and self-narration.
6. Analysis of how selfhood and story are conceptualised and worked with in a range of contemporary psychotherapies including Jungian Analysis, Narrative Therapy. 


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Essay 1,250 words 40 N Individual
Report 1,000 words 30 N Individual
Reflection 750 words 30 N Individual

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)

Parramatta - Victoria Rd


Subject Contact Alison Hood Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window