New Perspectives on Assessment and Observation - SOCI9290

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 7 20 (10) Aravinda Kosaraju checkmark-circle


This module provides professionals with in depth knowledge about current assessment practice including the Attachment and Relationship-Based Practice Project. The likelihood of maltreatment is significantly higher where a child demonstrates disorganized attachment behaviour and this thread runs throughout the module, paying special attention to the behaviour of the caregiver. The module is suitable for a wide range of professionals who work with complex family circumstances.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 32
Private study hours: 168
Total study hours: 200 hours


Advanced Child Protection (Distance Learning) MA

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods

Coursework – assignment – essay (5000 words) – 85%
Coursework - online forum participation – 15%

The written assignment must be passed in order for the module to be passed overall

Reassessment methods

100% coursework.

Indicative reading

Corby, B., Shemmings, D. and Wilkins, D. (2012). Child Abuse. Maidenhead: Open University Press.
Department for Health (2000). A Framework for the of Children in need and their Families
Department for Education (2015). Working Together. A guide to inter-agency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
Fonagy, P. and Allison, E. (2012). 'What is mentalization? The concept and its foundations in developmental research'. in: Midgley, N. and Vrouva, I. eds Minding the Child. Routledge.
Out, D., Bakermans-Kranenburg, M.J. and Van Ijzendoorn, M.H. (2009). The role of disconnected and extremely insensitive parenting in the development of disorganized attachment: validation of a new measure. Attachment and Human Development, V.11(5), pp.419-443.
Shemmings, D. and Shemmings, Y. (2011). Understanding Disorganised Attachment. London: Jessica Kingsley.
Shemmings, D. and Shemmings, Y. (2014). Assessing Disorganized Attachment Behaviour in Children: An Evidence-Based Model for Understanding and Supporting Families. London: Jessica Kingsley.

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

8.1 Possess a systematic understanding and critical awareness of models and methods of assessment, including factors underpinning the
selection and testing of relevant information, the nature of professional judgement and the processes of risk assessment
8.2 Systematically assess human situations, taking into account a variety of factors including agency perspective
8.3 Demonstrate systematic knowledge and critical awareness of approaches and methods of intervention in child protection including factors
guiding the choice and evaluation of these.
8.4 Have a comprehensive and systematic understanding of relevant social research and evaluation methodologies on planning and
intervention in child protection
8.5 Develop on a systematic basis relevant expertise and critical awareness in theoretical knowledge, particularly in attachment theories whilst
maintaining a clear focus on the importance of the child,
8.6 Identify and apply systematically and creatively the place of theoretical perspectives and evidence in assessment, decision-making and
intervention processes in child protection practice.
8.7 Have developed systematic knowledge of communication techniques with children/young people and of the elements of working in
partnership with parents in child protection
8.8 T A comprehensive understanding of the techniques for the processes of reflection and evaluation, including familiarity with the range of
approaches for evaluating welfare outcomes, and systematic knowledge and critical awareness of their significance for the development of
practice and the practitioner.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:

9.1 Demonstrate advanced level communication skills commensurate with postgraduate study and the ability to interpret and use research and
empirical data at an advanced level .
9.2 Collect,collate and interpret on a systematic basis library and web based research and resources on child protection issues at an
advanced level appropriate for postgraduate study
9.3 Synthesise and systematically evaluate complex knowledge and theoretical perspectives from different disciplines and countries
9.4 Use IT resources to support achievement of a systematic and critical awareness of the material provided in recorded online lectures and
web based material
9.5 Summarise the material used for private study on a systematic, critical and coherent fashion in order to contribute critically and with
originality to web based discussions
9.6 Work systematically with others during study days and in online forums to prepare and critically discuss complex topics
9.7 Organise and manage their studying independently and with originality with online and phone support from their tutors


  1. Credit level 7. Undergraduate or postgraduate masters level module.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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