Foundations of Working with Children

Subject PSYT90031 (2011)

Note: This is an archived Handbook entry from 2011.

Credit Points: 12.50
Level: 9 (Graduate/Postgraduate)
Dates & Locations:

This subject has the following teaching availabilities in 2011:

Semester 1, Parkville - Taught on campus.
Pre-teaching Period Start not applicable
Teaching Period not applicable
Assessment Period End not applicable
Last date to Self-Enrol not applicable
Census Date not applicable
Last date to Withdraw without fail not applicable

Timetable can be viewed here. For information about these dates, click here.
Time Commitment: Contact Hours: 24 contact hours
Total Time Commitment: Not available
Prerequisites: Nil.
Corequisites: .
Recommended Background Knowledge: .
Non Allowed Subjects: .
Core Participation Requirements:

A minimum of 80% attendance at seminars

For the purposes of considering request for Reasonable Adjustments under the Disability Standards for Education (Cwth 2005), and Students Experiencing Academic Disadvantage Policy, academic requirements for this subject are articulated in the Subject Description, Subject Objectives, Generic Skills and Assessment Requirements of this entry. The University is dedicated to provide support to those with special requirements. Further details on the disability support scheme can be found at the Disability Liaison Unit website :


Dr Sophie Havighurst


Toni Langley,
Subject Overview:

The coursework subjects allow participants to develop an understanding of the principal theoretical and clinical concepts associated with individual child treatment, individual adolescent treatment, family work, and work with parents, teachers, and other professionals who are involved in a case. Each subject consists of a series of 12 seminars, held between 9:00 am and 11:00 am on Wednesday mornings. The seminars combine didactic teaching with discussion and experiential learning.

This subject will cover:

  • specific aspects of developmental theory, cognitive-behavioural theory, psychodynamic theory and systems theory perspectives which may be used to understand and work effectively with children;
  • various forms of play and how these may be responded to therapeutically;
  • children's drawings and how these may be understood and responded to appropriately; and
  • the importance of the concepts of limit-setting, holding and containing.

Participants will develop their understanding of:

§ The principal theoretical orientations employed in clinical work with children.

§ The fundamental concepts that these theoretical orientations are based upon.

§ The rationale for selection of one form of treatment over another.

§ The application of appropriate therapeutic interventions.

    An essay of between 4,000 and 5,000 words counts for 100% of assessment. An attendance record will be kept and a minimum of 80% of seminars must be attended. The assessment task will be given out in the second seminar of the semester.
Prescribed Texts: .
Breadth Options:

This subject is not available as a breadth subject.

Fees Information: Subject EFTSL, Level, Discipline & Census Date
Generic Skills:

On completion of this subject, participants should be able to:

§ Establish a therapeutic relationship with children.

§ Identify which interventions might be effectively applied to specific presenting problems of children with whom they work.

§ Develop a treatment plan for specific presenting problems of children with whom they work.

Related Course(s): Graduate Diploma in Mental Health Sciences (Ch.Adol.&Fam.Ment.Health)

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