Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
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The Team

At COGNITION, we want our clients to feel assured they are ‘in good hands’. Our Psychologists adhere to the codes of ethics of the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and the Institute of Private Practising Psychologists (IPPP). Our Social Worker practises according to the Code of Ethics specified by the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW). Each professional in the COGNITION team holds membership of appropriate professional bodies and demonstrates commitment to on-going professional development.

We are confident that our clients will find a practitioner in our multi-disciplinary team with whom they will feel comfortable working. Offering a mix of skills, experience and approaches, the COGNITION team enjoy what they do and look forward to assisting individuals and organisations build their capacity to be better.


Denise Keenan

Denise Keenan

Dr Denise Keenan, PhD, has been registered as a Psychologist since 1986 and has been in private practice as the Managing Director of COGNITION since 1991. Her work has been divided between organisational consulting and individual consultations for clinical and general psychological issues. She has extensive experience in conducting consultations to address well-being issues and also in diagnosing, treating and reporting on psychological conditions, especially those associated with work-related psychological stress and trauma. She utilises a range of therapeutic methods including Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) and Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), amongst others. Denise sees clients through Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs), she accepts work injury, third party, Medicare and private health referrals. She is known for her practical, thorough and compassionate approach.

Denise holds an endorsement as an Organisational Psychologist and her organisational consulting experience includes training and facilitation, coaching, analysing organisational difficulties and designing and implementing intervention programs. She is accustomed to working with senior executive, management, supervisors and general staff across a broad range of industry sectors.

Denise’s particular practice interests are:

  • Prevention, management and treatment of workplace injury, especially psychological injuries
  • Work health and safety, including organisational safety culture and psychosocial influences on safety behaviour. She has sound experience in working on applied safety projects and has worked as a Subject Matter Expert on multidisciplinary project teams focused on operational excellence and safety.
  • Crisis leadership and managing the psychosocial aspects of organisational crisis
  • Early intervention for psychological trauma from both individual and organisational perspectives. Implementing proactive programs for organisations where there is a foreseeable likelihood of the occurrence of traumatic events. Treatment for individuals suffering from traumatic stress injuries.
  • Provision of coaching for individual managers and working with senior leaders.
  • Provision of specialised staff and executive support programs, including Psychological Health Surveillance Programs.
  • Addressing life transitions, in particular preparing for retirement and coping with ageing parents

Denise holds membership of multiple professional organisations, including the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and College of Organisational Psychologists. She is an active contributor to the psychology profession, and spent many years as the President (and Life Member) of the Institute of Private Practising Psychologists. She is frequently asked to present at conferences, including giving key note addresses.

Karen Osborne

Karen Osborne

Karen holds a long-term Associate role at COGNITION and is well-respected. She has earned Master’s degrees in Organisational Psychology and Clinical Psychology, and has AHPRA endorsement and APS College membership in each of these areas of practice. She has been registered to practice as a Psychologist since 2009.

Karen’s approach to working with people is personal and tailored to meet individual needs. Using techniques from Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness, Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), Psychodynamic Psychotherapy and others, she connects with people and draws creatively on an eclectic treatment approach to promote change. Karen brings a sense of calm, curiosity, humour and wisdom to her work and welcomes those experiencing stress, depression, anxiety, trauma, grief, loneliness, anger, conflict (workplace or personal), communication difficulties, the effects of serious disease or ageing, end of life matters and difficulties with employment transition.

Karen’s organisational work sees her providing focussed and goal-directed coaching for management and executives. She is a skilled trainer and facilitator. In addition, Karen holds accreditation as a Mediator and is a full member of the Resolution Institute (formerly IAMA and LEADR). This allows her to offer workplace conflict services, including mediation, conflict coaching, team interventions and cultural reviews.

Karen holds membership of a range of professional bodies, including the Australian Psychological Society (APS) and Colleges of Clinical and Organisational Psychologists, and is a Certified Professional Member of the Australian Human Resource Institute (AHRI).

Karen’s particular practice interests are:

  • Assessment and treatment of broad range of psychological conditions
  • Managing workplace-based conflict
  • Addressing unhelpful communication behaviours (managers and staff)
  • Change leadership
  • Management coaching
  • Addressing issues of loss and grief and end of life with individuals and also with organisations
  • Team interventions (e.g., team culture reviews)
  • The role of empathy in relationships and wellbeing
  • Career development, vocational assessment and career counselling services
Sandra Douglas

Sandra Douglas

Sandra has a wealth of practical experience as a psychologist, having first registered to practise in 1994. She holds an Honours degree in psychology and a Diploma in Hypnotherapy. Sandra studied towards a Master of Psychology (Clinical), completing all bar the thesis requirement. She continues to be active in her professional development, and prefers to attend practical, skills-based workshops where she learns knowledge and skills that she can put to immediate use with her clients.

Sandra also brings background knowledge and skills that help set her apart from many practitioners. For example, she has held a number of positions as a rehabilitation consultant, including for a number of years with SAPOL. She has extensive experience in the provision of return to work services, vocational assessments and assessing the needs of injured workers and their employing organisations.

As a psychologist, Sandra has practised with adults, adolescents and organisations. Sandra enjoys working with individuals presenting with general and clinical conditions and has an interest in the link between gut health and mental health and the neuroscience behind psychological practice. She has a caring approach towards the individuals with whom she works, drawing on a range of therapeutic techniques to help people achieve their best outcomes. For example, Sandra may employ Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), Mindfulness, Schema Therapy and Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR), to name a few.

Sandra also enjoys conducting group work, and she has solid experience in running facilitated group sessions and other worksite interventions following traumatic or distressing events.

Sandra’s particular practice interests are:

  • Anxiety disorders including phobias and PTSD
  • Mood disorders
  • Habit disorders
  • Chronic pain
  • Parenting skills
  • Interpersonal and coping related difficulties, including building self-esteem and confidence
  • Facilitating workplace interventions that support coping and well-being

Sandra has been a valued, long-term Associate with COGNITION. Sandra sees individuals referred under Medicare or private health. She enjoys assisting individuals who have a work injury or Third Party claim and she has sound experience in working with individuals who seek help through Employee Assistance Programs.

Kathleen Wright

Kathleen Wright

Dr Kathleen Wright graduated with a combined Master of Clinical Psychology and Doctor of Philosophy. She holds membership with the Australian Psychological Society and is undertaking the Clinical Registrar program. She has been registered to practice as a Psychologist since 2012.

Kathleen enjoys working with young people, children and their parents. Her PhD thesis evaluated whether Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Children (MBCT-C) could prevent anxiety and depressive symptoms and improve attention, for upper primary school children.

Kathleen’s also is skilled in her work with adults. She provides individual consultations to address a variety of clinical issues, general well-being difficulties, and distress associated with workplace concerns. Her approach to provision of therapy is client-centred, and evidence-based and she enjoys using a range of treatment types, including Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT).

Since joining COGNITION in 2018 in an Associate role, Kathleen has been much in demand. Kathleen provides services through Medicare and private health, Employee Assistance Programs, and the work injury system. Kathleen is keen on supporting and encouraging clients to take an active approach to managing their well-being and is well-known for her calm, considerate and warm-hearted approach.

Kathleen’s particular practice interests are:

  • Prevention and treatment of depression and anxiety in adults, adolescents, and children
  • Helping clients develop a strengths-based approach to improving their mental health and wellbeing
  • Integrating mindfulness-based practices into therapy
  • Self-compassion, self-esteem, and confidence-building
  • Integration of mental and physical health, including recovery-based models of change

Kathleen combines her work as an Associate at COGNITION with her role as a Visiting Research Fellow at the University of Adelaide. Prior to qualifying as a Psychologist, Kathleen had a 10-year career in Brand Management (Marketing), working for multi-national companies in Australia and the United Kingdom and her varied employment background lends itself well to assisting COGNITION clients with a range of concerns.

Linde Viviers

Linde Viviers

Linde moved to Australia in 2020 from her homeland of South Africa, where she had practised as a fully registered Psychologist from 2007.

Linde is well-qualified. She started her professional life as a Dietician, initially graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Dietetics, before choosing to retrain in clinical psychology. Amongst other qualifications, she now holds a Master of Arts (Clinical Psychology) and a Diploma in Life Coaching.
In South Africa Linde worked in a multi-disciplinary team treating individuals suffering from eating disorders and assisting their families. She is accustomed to working with psychological trauma and understands the far-reaching effects of violence.

Since joining COGNITION, Linde has demonstrated her calm and reassuring manner. She has a sunny and generous-hearted disposition, as well as sound clinical skills and experience, all of which blend well to enable her to assist teens and adults with a broad range of mental health and life issues.

Linde practises from a systems approach to therapy, using a range of therapeutic models, including cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), Dialectical Behaviour Therapy and Mindfulness. She enjoys helping individuals set goals, plan and problem-solve. Linde is accustomed to working with individuals, families and groups and enjoys working with both short-term interventions under Employee Assistance Programs and also working more slowly and deliberately over a longer time frame, when appropriate. She welcomes referrals from individuals using private health insurance or a Mental Health Care Plan (Medicare), and is pleased to assist work injury and Third Party claimants.

Linde’s particular practice interests are:

  • Assessment and treatment of a broad range of mental health conditions, especially depression, anxiety, trauma and eating disorders
  • Working with lifestyle diseases
  • Building self-esteem, confidence and self-nurturance
  • Addressing core beliefs and emotional regulation difficulties
  • Provision of Employee Assistance Program (EAP) counselling and related interventions to facilitate and promote coping, stress management and positive mental health in the workplace

Linde also has interest and expertise in assisting people who have moved away from their country of birth and/or are separated from loved ones. She clearly has first-hand experience of this, as well as being able to draw on psychological theory!

Social Work

Yoland Higgs

Yoland is a Senior Social Worker who consults in behavioural wellbeing. She works with adults facing life issues that challenge their mental health, at a point prior to them becoming unwell and needing clinical treatment.

Yoland uses practical, solution and strengths-based practice approaches. She assists individuals understand how their behaviours, mindset and choices affect their wellbeing and how they can make desired changes to achieve goals and a better quality of life.

Yoland is experienced in the provision of workplace-based counselling for individuals and leadership groups who have experienced traumatic events and chronic workplace stress. She backs this up with complementary experience in developing and implementing, well-researched strategies to improve the wellbeing of individuals and organisations.

Yoland’s particular practice interests are:

  • Increasing resilience in those facing change and demands in their workplace or personal lives, by assisting them manage stress, burnout and uncertainty
  • Helping people build more effective interpersonal skills and manage relationships, especially those in the workplace
  • Improving health and wellbeing outcomes by assisting people identify their strengths and abilities and learn new strategies for managing in difficult times
  • Supporting and coaching individuals to elicit clear, achievable, well-defined and motivating goals that empower them to find new ways to improve and do better
  • Assisting individuals make sound decisions and manage associated discomfort
  • Working with loss and grief
  • Facilitating individuals to build self-confidence and self-efficacy and to overcome ‘imposter syndrome’
  • Assisting employees to plan and take charge of their working future

Yoland also brings to COGNITION well-rounded experience across the life span, having worked for over 11 years in the Youth Justice area, in a range of roles (Assessment Social Worker, Senior Practitioner, Program Coordinator). During this time, she developed comprehensive skills in working with adolescents with complex needs and in collaborating with parents and other significant adults to assist these young people meet their full potential.

Yoland has extensive and diverse experience in human services over the course of 26 years. She holds a Degree of Bachelor of Social Administration, from Flinders University and is a member of the Australian Association of Social Workers. Yoland has joined the COGNITION team, as an Associate, specifically to focus on the provision of Employee Assistance Program services (she does not accept referrals for work injury claims or see people using private health or Medicare referrals). She is available for counselling and also to conduct workplace interventions related to her areas of expertise.

Office Support

Mandi Tilley

Mandi Tilley

Glenda Ward-Murcott

Glenda Ward-Murcott

Ang Brown

Ang Browne

Elle Escalante

Elle Escalante