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Georgian College Syllabus Fall 2008

MASG 1001 Ethics, Professionalism and Client Relations

Meeting time and place

Thursday: 2:00-5:00
Room H 221

Course Description:

This course will introduce the student to the Code of Ethics and the Standards of Practice for massage therapists and
to the legislative, regulatory and general healthcare principles required for clinical practice. Emphasis will be
placed on development of verbal and non-verbal skills for effective communication with clients and other healthcare
providers as well as exploring professionalism as it relates to massage therapy. The principles presented in this
course will be reviewed, stressed and built upon throughout the student‟s three year learning experience.

McIntosh, N., (2005). The Educated Heart: Professional Boundaries for Massage Therapists, Bodyworkers, and
Movement Teachers. Hagerstwon: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Code of Ethics/Standards of Practice
Regulated Health Profession Act (RHPA)
Massage Therapy Act (MTA)

***Please note that if the Code of Ethics/ Standards of Practice, RHPA and MTA are not available in the bookstore they can
be found on Blackboard in the Massage Therapy Forum. These resources are required for this course and throughout the

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Schedule of Activities:
Please note that he schedule is subject to change

Week Topics Topics Assignments/ Evaluation

1 Orientation  Review course outcomes Create account
Outline evaluation criteria Review sample portfolio
Creating your Google Account/ Set privacy settings
Portfolio Post a picture and short biography
Discuss mutual expectations
2 Code of Ethics Demonstrate an understanding of the Readings
concept of being „professional‟ McIntosh Chapter 1
The RHPA: Health Understand what a social contract RHPA
Professional between the profession and society Code of Ethics/ Standards of Practice
Regulatory requires of massage therapists Handouts
Environment Review the central theme of the
Code of Ethics
Identify the hallmarks of a healthcare
Differentiate personal and
professional values
3 The RHPA: Discuss cooperative learning and Quiz #1 (5%)
Health Professional team-based learning
Regulatory Discuss some trends that may have Theory of Practice Worksheet
Environment an effect on professional norms Readings
Recognize some of the key elements McIntosh Chapter 2
of the RHPA and it‟s role in the RHPA
massage therapy profession Massage Therapy Act
Examine key factors in the Massage Code of Ethics/ Standards of Practice
Therapy Act Handouts
Examine key considerations around
privacy and the client

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4 Massage Therapy Act Discuss various learning styles My Learning Style Worksheet
Examine key factors in the Massage Readings
Standards of Practice Therapy Act McIntosh Chapter 3
Demonstrate an understanding of Massage Therapy Act
what constitutes professional Code of Ethics/ Standards of Practice
competence for registered massage Handouts
Demonstrate an appreciation for the
need for quality assurance in
professional practice
Review the Standards of Practice
related to client care
Identify the accountability
mechanisms the profession utilizes to
demonstrate its accountability to
Discuss potential dilemmas faced by
the therapist working in a
“legislated” environment
5 Standards of Practice Demonstrate an understanding of how Quiz #2 (5%)
the professions‟ Standards of Practice Progress Report
and Code of Ethics documents Readings
facilitate professional competence McIntosh Chapter 5
and accountability Code of Ethics/ Standards of Practice
Review the Standards of Practice Handouts
related to client care
Discuss potential dilemmas faced by
the therapist working in a
“legislated” environment

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6 The CMTO Discuss the role that the CMTO plays Readings
in the regulatory environment Handouts
Explain the structure and function of
CMTO subgroups
Develop personal strategies for
professional development using the
QA program as a resource
7 Socio-cultural Demonstrate an understanding of Mid-Term: (20%)
diversity in the what it means to respect a the client Progress Report
health care setting and protect his or her vulnerability Diversity Worksheet
Understand how practicing informed Conflict Resolution Worksheet
consent and maintaining client Readings
privacy and confidentiality serve the Handouts
well-being and best interests of the
Define “cultural bias” and “personal
Identify “cultural” variations and
what effect it might have on the
therapeutic relationship
Discuss principles of culturally
sensitive care
Recognize stereotypical behavior in
Identify individual sources of personal
Investigate conflict resolution

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8 The Health Care Appreciate the need for a conscious Readings
Journey: from rational process for decision making McIntosh Chapter 4
student to clinician Demonstrate the ability to apply the Handouts
model for decision making to a
The OMTA and the practical case study
massage therapist Explore barriers to ethical decision-
Understand the value of practicing
preventative measures in maintaining
ethical and legal accountability and
limiting liability
Develop key skills in relation to
problem solving and critical thinking
Discuss the concept of life-long
learning from personal and
professional perspectives
9 Boundaries Demonstrate an understanding of the Readings
need for professional boundaries in McIntosh Chapter 4
massage therapy practice Handouts
Review some of the challenges to
Review some of the privileges of
Examine concepts related to
boundaries and their maintenance in
the health care field
Distinguish the key concepts of
transference, counter-transference
and dual relations

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10 Boundaries List 4 goals of successful verbal Quiz # 3 (5%)
communication Due: Newsletter (20%)
Identify 4 important factors in Readings
creating successful communication McIntosh Chapter 10
Recognize problems that arise with Handouts
the use of inappropriate vocabulary
Compare useful and destructive
11 Verbal Recognize the impact of a patient‟s Communication Worksheet
Communication mental status on communication Readings
Recognize various levels of listening McIntosh Chapter 6
and describe their relevance to Handouts
patient-client interaction
List 5 steps towards effective
12 Non-verbal Recognize the importance of non- Quiz # 4 (5%)
Communication verbal communication Due: Portfolio (20%)
Describe how demonstration can Readings
complement verbal communication Handouts
Describe some of the consequences
of being in a profession that involves
touching the client
Describe Hall‟s 4 “distance
zones” and provide examples

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13 Respectful Explain considerations in treating Review
interaction in those that are dying Newsletter Presentation (5%)
challenging or Identify 3 potential sources of Readings
difficult situations difficulties in professional-client McIntosh Chapter 11
interaction Handouts
Discuss how disparity in power can
lead to anger and frustration on the
part of the client
List and evaluate guidelines that can
help to respond constructively to a
“difficult” client
List and evaluate techniques to help
change a difficult working
14 FINALS Final Exam (25%)

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Tests and assignments must be completed at the time specified. Requests for adjustments to that schedule must be
made before the date in question. Failure to do so will result in a mark of “0” unless an emergency/illness can be
proven with appropriate documentation. The student must attain 50% to be successful in this course. The evaluation
will be weighted as follows:
Written Quizzes (4@5%) Portfolio (20%)
Mid-Term (10%) Newsletter (25%)
Final Exam (25%)

Expectations for success:

This call will be a combination of lecture and group work. It is expected that you attend all classes and come
prepared to participate in class. Pagers and cell phones MUST be turned off in class. Also please note that College
Policy does not allow for the consumption of food or liquids (with the exception of water) in the classroom.
Please note that this course will adhere to all College Policies with respect to academics.

Teacher’s name: Iain Robertson

Office location: E203H

Hours of availability:
Thursday: 12:00-2:00

Please note that during office hours I can also be reached via instant messaging at In addition, I will be available extensively on Wednesdays and Fridays
by means of instant messaging (IM) as well as e-mail.

E-mail address:

Phone and voice-mail numbers: 705-728-1968 ext. 1810

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