Graduate certificate in child welfare and protection – Level 3 & 4

Who is it for?

Staff whose work involves them in frequent or periodic contact with child care and protection cases and who are, as a consequence, expected to perform to a consistent standard of professional competence.


Course content overview

The Certificate is aimed at professionals working in the field of child welfare and protection. It is designed to be accessible and relevant to workers from Health, Social Work, Education, Police and associated disciplines. The programme is delivered over one year of part-time study, with a mixture of direct teaching and guided study through the use of course materials and web-based learning opportunities.


Programme Content

Module 1:

Understanding Children’s Needs: Context and Frameworks

In this module, students are oriented to the programme, study resources and the historical, political and theoretical background to the current context for child welfare and protection. Direct teaching by experienced practitioner academics covers essential learning in areas of child development and parenting capacity. Law tutors provide direct teaching on key legislation.

Module 2:

Understanding Children’s Experiences: Assessment and Decision Making

Assessment of risk and need have received significant attention in practice and academia in recent years. Set within an ecological framework this module helps students make sense of current assessment models and practice by examining the components of accurate and empathic assessment of the impact of adversity on children and young people. Students will gain an improved understanding of the processes of analysis, judgements and decision making. Psychological, sociological and practice-specific research will be used to help students explore their own practice and consider how individual and agency practice can be further developed.

Module 3:

Improving Outcomes for Children and Young People

This module focuses on multi-disciplinary plans to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and young people. With a solution-focused approach and drawing on the concept of resilience the module will enhance and promote interventions that are focused on the needs of the children. Consideration of outcomes for children and young people will be at the heart of planning, implementation and review of care plans. The module will facilitate a better understanding of the student’s own role and the roles of others, including the wider community, within the widening agenda for child welfare and protection.


Learning outcomes:

By the end of this learning event you will have developed knowledge and understanding of:

  • the law as it relates to children, child maltreatment and abusive individuals.
  • child development and the significance of this work with maltreated children and those at risk of maltreatment.
  • the content and impact of government and agency practices and procedures as they relate to child care and protection work.
  • your own professional role in work with child maltreatment.
  • the professional roles of others and to foster skills in co-operative working.


What you need to do before attending?

You must complete a Personal Bond


How long does this course last?

20 days, which should be completed within one year.

The university regulations allow for the learning event to be undertaken on a full time or part time basis.


Who will provide this training?

Learning and Organisational Development Team in association with relevant university.