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Caring for Vulnerable Children

Develop an understanding of some of the approaches involved in caring for vulnerable children, with this free online course.

101,173 enrolled on this course

Caring for Vulnerable Children
  • Duration

    6 weeks
  • Weekly study

    4 hours

In times of austerity and shrinking public services, the task of identifying and caring for vulnerable children has never been more challenging. In this free online course, we’ll help you explore some of the issues involved in undertaking this task.

Understand risk and vulnerability, in theory and practice

We’ll consider what we mean by risk and vulnerability, as well as how we define good enough parenting. We’ll think about how children grow and develop, and how we can provide them with containment and security via meaningful relationships and attachments. And we’ll look at the particular skills involved in communicating with children and young people.

We’ll go on to learn about the characteristics that define different methods of practice and how some approaches can help us to resist risk-averse thinking. We’ll consider different possible interventions and how, in Scotland, this is managed within the Children’s Hearing System.

We’ll conclude by reflecting on the current politics of caring for vulnerable children in a context of budget cuts and increasing child poverty.

Develop your career in child care or social work

The knowledge you gain from this course may prompt you to explore or extend a career in child care or social work services. You’ll also consider the role you play in responding to and caring for the children and young people who you encounter in different aspects of your life. We hope to inspire and challenge you to think differently about how we, as a society, care for vulnerable children and the future lives we help them to create.

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What topics will you cover?

  • What is meant and understood by the term vulnerability and risk?
  • Assessing risk in various scenarios: exploring the links between poverty and risk and examine how risk is portrayed by the media and government
  • Exploring theories of attachment and child development
  • Examining developmental theories around the concept of containment
  • Important considerations when communicating with children
  • The power of touch and some of the problems associated with touch
  • Elements and characteristics of child care practice
  • Love and other important aspects of caring for vulnerable children?
  • The challenge of caring for children in a risk averse context
  • The Children’s Hearings System in Scotland explained
  • Debates on the subject of care in today’s society
  • Will the future bring changes in the way we care for vulnerable young people?

When would you like to start?

  • Date to be announced

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Learning on this course

You can take this self-guided course and learn at your own pace. On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Explain the concepts of vulnerability, risk and good enough parenting
  • Explore the concepts of attachment, containment and child development
  • Evaluate the ways in which adults and carers can communicate with children and young people
  • Explore possible ways to intervene in the lives of children and young people who are experiencing vulnerability and risk
  • Reflect on the events surrounding the assessment and removal of vulnerable and at risk children and young people from their family homes
  • Reflect upon some of the current challenges involved in responding to, and working with, vulnerable children and young people

Who is the course for?

This course will be suitable if you:

  • have no direct experience of the child care field, but want to develop your career towards it;
  • have recently entered the field and have little experience;
  • have some experience and are interested in developing your qualifications further;
  • find it difficult to access opportunities for training and development.

Who will you learn with?

I am a Senior Teaching Fellow based at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland and am Course Leader for the international MSc in Child and Youth Care Studies by Distance Learning

Who developed the course?

University of Strathclyde

The University of Strathclyde is a leading international technological university located in Glasgow, Scotland’s biggest city, committed to useful learning.

CELCIS

CELCIS improves children’s lives by supporting people and organisations to drive long-lasting change in the services they need, and the practices used by people responsible for their care.

Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps, but you can complete them as quickly or slowly as you like
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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