Child Protection and Child Welfare: Theory and Practice

University of Newcastle

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Child Protection and Child Welfare: Theory and Practice

  • Host University

    University of Newcastle

  • Location

    Newcastle, Australia

  • Area of Study

    Social Work

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Prerequisites

    SPSW1001 or equivalent

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • Host University Units

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
    3 - 4
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
    4 - 6
  • Overview

    Child abuse, child protection and child welfare issues in families remain one of society's most challenging and complex issues. For the human service graduate, practitioners can operate in a range of practice and agency contexts where child abuse is a significant issue requiring difficult decisions focused on protective interventions. Understanding child abuse, child protection and child welfare and being able to effectively respond can be vital in dealing with a range of human service practitioner concerns.
    As such, this course places child protection and child welfare issues in a social and political context and highlights the impact of class, gender and race to the process of policy development and implementation. The course aims to make critical perspectives available to students of child welfare policy and practice, to assist them to understand the context in which policy and practice occur.
    1. The ability to critically analyse the various welfare interventions in the lives of children and families
    2. Identify and analyse the issues involved in defining child abuse and neglect
    3. Describe the social, political and cultural context of child abuse
    4. Explore the effects of child abuse
    5. Analyse the basic assumptions, values, decision making processes and individual experiences of child welfare policy
    Historically, the child welfare system has functioned on the basis of the state as the authority on parental roles and responsibilities for children's upbringing, socialisation and well being. The system has been predicated on the view that children needed to be rescued from those parents who did not have the innate qualities, right values, correct attitudes and appropriate behaviours considered to be necessary for parents to act in a "socially acceptable" way.
    Child welfare interventions usually have been and continue to be, justified as being "in the best interests of the child". This expression has been constantly used as justification for intervention on behalf of the children, with the authority of the state. This rationale for state intervention raises the question about how interests and needs are perceived, and about the potential conflict between the needs and rights of children, the needs and rights of parents and the needs and rights of the state.
    This course will also examine the dynamics and impact of the major forms of child abuse on children and young people, including systems abuse and the effects of such abuse. For the most part such children and young people are from backgrounds of adversity and these backgrounds are examined in some detail.
    Online Learning Activity: Online problem based tasks
    Presentation: Tutorial Presentation
    Essay: Major Essay

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

Credits earned vary according to the policies of the students' home institutions. According to ISA policy and possible visa requirements, students must maintain full-time enrollment status, as determined by their home institutions, for the duration of the program.