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Child Abuse Assessment and Reporting in California

Author: Teresa Crowe, PhD, LICSW
(Click author's name for bio)

Course Created: 2021

Practice Level: Intermediate

No book to buy Duration: 7 hours
4.6 out of 5.0, Based on: 2,418 reviews

Course Summary

Child maltreatment is a serious public health concern that imposes a range of deleterious consequences for victims' mental and physical health across the lifespan. This course is designed for social workers, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, and counselors needing to familiarize themselves with California's procedures and regulations for assessment and reporting, as these professionals play critical roles in child maltreatment intervention and must be able to take particular steps in response to child maltreatment.  Often this takes the form of child abuse or neglect assessment and reporting to law enforcement or child protective services personnel. The course explores the definitions, risk and protective factors, and signs and symptoms of child maltreatment with culture, context, and environment as critical elements in evaluating and responding to maltreatment. This course focuses on screening, child protective services, mandatory reporting, and the roles and responsibilities of professionals who suspect child abuse or neglect.  In this course, the professional will learn the steps for making a report to child protective services, the process of investigation by child protective service personnel, and specific considerations, such as privileged communication and penalties for failure to report child maltreatment. The course identifies and examines current California state laws, statutes, regulations, and codes that guide practitioners and institutions in identifying and responding to child abuse and neglect.

Course Format

This course contains downloadable online lessons (PDF) and a practice test. When you're ready, purchase the course by clicking the "Add To Cart" button. This will let you take the test, complete the course evaluation and receive your certificate for CE credits.

Learning Objectives

  • Define child abuse and neglect.
  • Recognize risk factors, signs, and symptoms of child maltreatment
  • Identify laws that address child abuse and neglect.
  • Explain adverse childhood experiences and psychiatric manifestations of child abuse and neglect.
  • Differentiate between corporal punishment and child abuse.
  • Describe the significance of culture, context, and environment in child abuse and neglect.
  • Explain special considerations in abuse and neglect for children with disabilities, sex trafficking, and/or infant prenatal exposure to substances.
  • Describe the prevalence of child abuse.
  • Explain the effects of the pandemic on the assessment and reporting of child abuse and neglect
  • Identify the purpose, roles, and responsibilities of child protective services.
  • Explain the steps for investigation of child maltreatment.
  • Describe the components of a comprehensive family assessment
  • Describe the legal context of protective services involvement.
  • Explain mandatory reporting requirements and penalties.
  • Identify physical, behavioral, and psychological indicators of abuse and neglect.
  • Differentiate between parenting practices and abuse.
  • Describe varied assessment practices with infants, young children, and adolescents.
  • Explain the significance of intergenerational transmission of child maltreatment.
  • Explain how resilience skills can help overcome adversity.
  • Describe treatment and prevention.

Course Syllabus

INTRODUCTION

PART I: CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT
CHILD MALTREATMENT DEFINITIONS
                    Specific Child Maltreatment Terms
RISK FACTORS, SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS FOR CHILD MALTREATMENT
                    Risk Factors
                    Signs of Child Maltreatment
                    Symptoms of Child Maltreatment
FEDERAL DEFINITIONS OF CHILD MALTREATMENT
                     Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act
                     Trafficking Victim Protection Act
                     Safe Harbor Laws
STATE CIVIL AND CRIMINAL LAWS
                     Parental Substance Use
                     Child Abandonment
                     Medical Neglect
                     Educational Neglect
EMPIRICAL AND ACADEMIC DEFINITIONS OF CHILD MALTREATMENT
                    Adverse Childhood Experiences
                    Psychiatric Definitions
                    Corporal Punishment vs. Physical Abuse
CULTURE, CONTEXT, AND ENVIRONMENT
                    Culture
                    Racial and Ethnic Factors
                    Poverty
                    Environment
                    Family Exposure to Violence
                    Child Marriage in the United States
SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS
                    Children with Disabilities
                    Sex Trafficking
                    Infants with Prenatal Drug Exposure
INTERNATIONAL PREVALENCE OF CHILD MALTREATMENT
PREVALENCE OF CHILD MALTREATMENT IN THE UNITED STATES
CHILD MALTREATMENT DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
PART I SUMMARY

PART II: CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES AND MANDATORY REPORTING
PART II INTRODUCTION
CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES
                    Roles and responsibilities of child protective services
                    Purpose, processes, and strategies of child protective services
                    Necessary approaches to CPS intervention
                    Processes of reporting
                    Stages of reporting and investigation
  Steps for investigation and planning in child maltreatment cases
COMPONENTS OF A COMPREHENSIVE FAMILY ASSESSMENT
                    Conducting a family assessment
                    Developing a family plan
                    Selection and implementation of appropriate interventions
                    Evaluation of change
                    Closing a case
LEGAL CONTEXT FOR PROTECTIVE SERVICES INVOLVEMENT
MANDATORY REPORTING
                    Mandatory reporting professionals
                    Institutional reporting
                    Rights and responsibilities of reporters
                    Crisis Counseling Techniques
                    Penalties for failure to report
                    Caring for a child's needs after reporting
                    Thresholds and standards for reporting and investigating
                    Privileged communication
                    Overview of state-specific laws
PART II SUMMARY

PART III: UNDERSTANDING, ASSESSING, AND RESPONDING TO ABUSED AND NEGLECTED CHILDREN
PART III INTRODUCTION
ASSESSMENT OF CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT
Case Example: American Indian and Alaskan Native Communities
Information Gathered for a Risk Assessment
Physical Indicators of Abuse and Neglect
Behavioral Indicators of Abuse and Neglect
Psychological Indicators of Abuse and Neglect
Considerations for Children and Adults with Histories of Child Maltreatment
SCREENING AND INVESTIGATION
TRAUMA-INFORMED CHILD WELFARE
EVIDENCE-BASED ASSESSMENT TOOLS
                     Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACES) Family Health History and Health
Appraisal Questionnaire
ACEs Screening Tool for Children and Adolescents
Other Screening Tools
Conducting Screenings
Parenting Practices versus Abuse
NEEDS OF CHILDREN AND ADULTS EXPOSED TO CHILD MALTREATMENT
Developmental Differences
Neurobiological Effects
Other Effects
Infant Assessment
Young Child Assessment
Adolescent Assessment
FAMILY DYNAMICS
Clinical Example
Intergenerational Transmission of Maltreatment
CHILD FATALITIES FROM MALTREATMENT
SOCIAL DETERMINANTS OF MALTREATMENT
Ecological-Transactional Framework for Understanding Child Maltreatment
Perpetrator Characteristics
RESILIENCE SKILLS AND OVERCOMING ADVERSITY
Clinical Example: Using Play as Resilience Building Tool
Other Resources for Resilience
Methods for Treatment
Evidence-Based Treatments
Prevention
PART III: SUMMARY
REFERENCES
PART I
PART II
PART III

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