The Care and Protection of Children and Families - SA531

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Module delivery information

This module is not currently running in 2020 to 2021.


In broad terms, this module explore the workings of child social care and relationships between children, families and the state. This includes a range of interventions and service provision – covering the areas of family support, child protection and out-of-home care for looked after children. In social scientific terms, the focus is on the dynamic social construction of problems such as child abuse or neglect, their intersection with social divisions and the shaping of state and civil society responses.

The following is an indicative list of topics:
• Social Work & Social Care for Children
• Supporting Families and Children in Need
• Child Protection – An Historical Overview
• What is Child Maltreatment? Contemporary Debates
• (Re)Discovering Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation
• Understanding Child Maltreatment: private troubles and public issues
• The State as Parent: Looked After Children and Leaving Care
• Adoption: Private Lives and Public Policy
• Interethnic and International Adoption
• Child Welfare and Disabled Children


This module appears in the following module collections.

Contact hours

The module will be taught by lectures, seminars and private study.
Total Contact Hours: 22
Private Study Hours: 128

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
Exam – 2 hours: 50%
Essay – 2,500 words: 35%
Seminar Participation Mark: 15%

Indicative reading

Davies, M. (ed) (2012) Social Work with Children and Families, Basingstoke: Palgrave
Frost, N. & Parton, N. (2009) Understanding Children's Social Care: Politics, Policy and Practice, London: Sage
Kirton, D. (2009) Child Social Work Policy and Practice, London: Sage
Rogowski, S. (2013) Critical Social Work with Children and Families, Bristol: Policy Press
Stein, M. (2009) Quality Matters in Children's services : messages from research, London: Jessica Kingsley
Holland, S. (2011) Child and Family Assessment in Social Work Practice. London: Sage
Jowitt, M. and O'Loughlin, S. (2012) Social Work with Children and Families (3rd edn) Exeter: Learning Matters

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

Demonstrate understanding of the key policy and practice issues associated with family support, child protection, and substitute (family) care, including adoption

Demonstrate familiarity with competing perspectives relating to child care – their differing interpretations of, and emphases upon; the rights of children's and families, and the role of the state – and their influence on policy and practice

Demonstrate a critical understanding of the legal framework within which social care services for children and families are delivered

Demonstrate a critical appreciation of 'evidence-based practice' in relation to work with children and families


  1. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  2. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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