Skip to main content
Short courses
Education, Early Childhood & Youth

Understanding Children with Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties


Course overview

You consider what it means to be a child growing up in a challenging environment including homes where there is poverty, mental illness, domestic violence, abuse and neglect. You examine the impact of these circumstances on children’s physical and mental health, social and emotional development, behaviour, relationships, educational outcomes and life chances. You are introduced to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and trauma, and discuss some strategies for managing and beginning to address and heal the difficulties. You also consider the rewards and challenges of working with these children.

This course contains content not appropriate for those under the age of 18.

This course will be delivered online. Please check the entry requirements tab before making your application to ensure you meet the entry criteria and have all the minimum equipment necessary to take part.

Group A (NOW FULL): Starts Tuesday 2 June, Tuesdays and Thursdays for three weeks, 6.00pm-9.00pm.
Group B: Starts Saturday 6 June, Saturdays for six weeks, 9.30am-12.30pm.
Group C: Starts Monday 27 July, Monday-Friday for one week, 9.30am-1.00pm.

This course is delivered through a combination of live elements and pre-recorded material. Tutor support will be available throughout the specified weekly times and collaborative learning will be available via a discussion board on our online learning platform.

You can study up to 30 credits at Summer University and you can select up to three modules on the same application form. If you would like to add a module later, or change one of your choices, then please let us know by emailing

See more Summer University courses


Course details

What you study

- The impact of growing up in a 'challenging' environment on physical and mental health.
- What constitutes adverse childhood experiences.
- Understanding different types of trauma.
- The impact of ACES / trauma on educational outcomes and life chances.
- Some ways of managing and helping to buffer adversity.
- The importance of relationships and resilience.
- The challenging of working with children living with adversity.

How you are assessed

Case study (1,500 words) – a critical evaluation of a child or young person (from an example given by the tutor) experiencing an adverse childhood. Suggestions should be given as to the impact this could have on their physical and mental health, education and future and recommendations of suitable interventions to manage and treat them.


Entry requirements

Entry requirements

As this is an online course it is necessary that you have access to a computer and that you are comfortable learning via an online platform.

This course contains content not appropriate for those under the age of 18.

International applicants must have an IELTS overall score of 5.5 or equivalent.



2020 entry

  • Length: Credits: 10, Level 4, Fees: £50.00
  • Online
  • Enrolment date: Please see course description for delivery dates.

Apply online