COUN5971 Working with Children

Graduate Diploma Level Unit

COUN5971 Working with Children

Level: Higher

Credit points: 3

Prerequisites: Counselling Skills 2

Unit description

This unit provides a conceptual framework for understanding concepts, theories and issues for working with children. It also provides students with the skills to communicate with, and apply counselling strategies for, working with children. Emphasis is placed on the particular needs of students and students applying counselling skills and strategies to work effectively with children.

Learning outcomes

On completion of this unit students should be able to: 

  • use terms and concepts for working with children
  • identify the developmental stages in children
  • identify sociological factors in children's issues
  • assess the role of parental issues in working with children
  • identify common presenting problems in working with children
  • demonstrate an understanding of communication issues in working with children
  • apply counselling skills and strategies to working with children

Unit content

  • Children in Context
  • Child Development Theories
  • Personality and Social Development
  • Physical and Emotional Development
  • Sociological and Cultural Factors
  • Role of the Family
  • Parental/Care-giver Issues
  • Discipline and Dysfunctional Behaviour
  • Common Presenting Problems
  • Child Abuse
  • Counselling Strategies
  • Counselling Strategies

Unit workload

The workload for this unit is 9.75 hours per week.

Assignment summary

Regular Term



Word count


Case Study




Academic Essay




Summer School (2014)



Word count


Case Study/ Short Answer Questions



End of on campus week

Academic Essay



10 Days after Assignment 1

Graduate attributes

The following graduate attributes will be developed in this unit:

  • Creative self-expression
  • Reasoned criticism
  • Multiple research methodologies
  • Complex data acquisition techniques and analysis
  • Written expression and reasoned argument from empirical data
  • Evaluating possible outcomes of alternative courses of action

Recommended text

Geldard, K., Geldard, D., Yin Foo, R. (2013). Counselling children: A practical introduction (4th ed.). London, England: Sage Publications.

Relevant journals

Australian Journal of Early Childhood
Australian Journal of Psychology
Australian Social Work
Child Abuse Review
Child Development
Child Protection Report
Children Australia
Children and Society
Counselling and Psychotherapy Research
European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Family Matters
Focus on Exceptional Children
Journal of Clinical Child Psychology
Journal of Counseling and Development
Journal of Mental Health Counseling
Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development
Social Development

Academic misconduct

Ethical conduct and academic integrity and honesty are fundamental to the mission of ACAP. Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the college. Please refer to for full details of the Academic Misconduct Policy.


This unit outline may be updated and amended from time to time. To ensure you have the correct outline please check it again at the beginning of the semester.