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Start Date
January, April, June, September

0.5 year(s) full-time

Time Commitment
10 - 15 hours per week per course

Program Code

Study as
Part-time only

AUD$ 15,250 per annum (per 0.5 EFTSL) for students enrolled in 2024
AUD$ 16,200 per annum (per 0.5 EFTSL) for students enrolled in 2025

English Language Requirements
  • IELTS total [6.5]
  • IELTS reading [6.0]
  • IELTS writing [6.0]
Equivalent English qualifications (PDF)

International Admission by Country
See full entry requirements

Degree overview

  • Develop specialised knowledge of child abuse and neglect, harmful sexual behaviours, child development, and the impact of trauma on vulnerable children, their families and communities.
  • Learn to apply critical thinking and reflection skills when understanding, assessing and responding to childhood trauma.
  • Study a qualification informed by the Australian Centre for Child Protection’s pioneering research, which is producing new approaches to child protection policy and practice.
  • Gain the skills and confidence to work across a range of therapeutic, direct care and advocacy settings.



Study On Demand – this is a 100% online qualification designed specifically for online learning. With UniSA Online, you can take full control over your study, access support seven days a week, plan your study to fit around your life, view learning resources 24/7, and log in to the interactive online environment anywhere, any time and on any device.

The Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma has been designed to meet national strategies for improving the prevention of child abuse and trauma, and offers expert knowledge of child abuse and neglect, harmful sexual behaviours, and the development and impact of trauma.

Developed by experienced practitioners and informed by contemporary research from the Australian Centre for Child Protection, you’ll graduate ready to offer effective support to children exposed to abuse and trauma.

What you'll learn

What you Learn

The Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma will provide you with specialised knowledge and a deeper understanding of how to work therapeutically with vulnerable children.

You’ll learn to better understand, recognise and respond to child trauma from abuse and neglect, exploring important topics including neurodevelopment, attachment, trauma-informed care, case planning, referral and assessment, and reflective practice.

Your studies are complemented by regular community of practice sessions, where you’ll connect with specialists and peers to work through the course content in an interactive and supportive environment. These sessions will be framed by your professional experience, and offer a way to meaningfully reflect on concepts and theoretical learning.

Learn from industry experts and develop evidence-based approaches to effectively support and care for those who have experienced complex trauma. You’ll access relevant case studies and benefit from the advanced research undertaken by the Australian Centre for Child Protection.

Study hours

Studying 100% online means you can engage with course materials at your own pace, whenever it suits you – there is no need to be online at a particular time. It’s flexible around your life so you can control your study schedule week by week. As a general rule, we recommend 10 to 15 hours of study a week for each course.



All assessments, including exams (if required) are 100% online, meaning you’ll never need to travel to submit an assignment or find an exam venue.

Some of your assessments may include:

  • an industry-relevant project
  • an online presentation
  • essays and reports.

Degree structure

Please note, courses may not be displayed in order of study.

Study a Graduate Certificate on demand

Amanda Paton, Deputy Director Practice from the Australian Centre for Child Protection, gives an insight into how this unique qualification will equip professionals with in-demand specialised skills.

UniSA Video

Why Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma

Why this Degree

As domestic and international awareness of the impact of trauma on human functioning increases, childhood trauma has become a fast-growing and prominent field for further learning. Child abuse has recently been recognised as a major public health issue, with governments focused on better protecting children through early detection and intervention, and increased support for victims.

The Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma is designed for those who have studied a related field and could benefit from specialised knowledge, or those already working in a child-related field looking to upskill or complement the practical knowledge gained during your career.

With course materials that draw on world-first research and evidence-based approaches to practice, you’ll graduate with the skills and understanding to move forward in your career.

Career outcomes


Your career

Child abuse is a complex topic, and understanding and responding to it requires a nuanced approach. The skills gained in the Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma will allow you to look at this field holistically and from a trauma-informed perspective.

You’ll be able to apply your knowledge across a range of sectors, including child protection, government and human services, social and youth work, education, and health.

If you work as a case manager, psychologist, social or youth worker, educator, nurse, or even as a police officer, this program will equip you with the skills to make a meaningful impact when supporting vulnerable children.

Enquire now to study with UniSA Online

Control how and when you study with our 100% online degrees.

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Your study experience and support

Study On Demand

Our online career-focused degrees give you full control and ultimate flexibility over your study. It’s Study On Demand, on your schedule, on your terms.

  • Study 100% online - no need to come onto campus
  • Choose from two start dates in January and June
  • Learn in 10-week blocks
  • Get support seven days a week - including on weeknights
  • Access learning resources 24/7
  • View course content before your term starts
  • Work while you study
  • Plan your study schedule ahead of time
  • Fast-track your studies and receive credit for past study and/or work experience.

Why UniSA Online?

Student services

Our graduates get jobs

UniSA is ranked as the number one university in Australia for graduate employability.1 Join a university known for its employment outcomes. Your UniSA Online degree is more than just a piece of paper – it will prepare you to start your career or take it to the next level.

Specifically designed for online learning

Our team of academic and online experts have created interactive and media-rich course material using innovative digital technology and state-of-the-art teaching and learning resources. Every degree has been specifically designed for online learning to ensure you graduate with the skills and knowledge for your future career.

Backed by industry

Every UniSA Online degree is overseen by an experienced industry advisory board. We've also consulted with industry experts with a wealth of experience to design course content that reflects the most cutting-edge developments in your field. Our industry connections will enrich your online study experience - you'll be presented with industry problems that real organisations face. You'll also gain the skills and knowledge that industry are telling us they need in graduates.

Expand your professional network from wherever you are

Online study doesn’t mean studying on your own. You’ll connect with a community of other like-minded students – you’ll be able to share, debate and collaborate ideas through virtual classrooms, online chat, video conferencing, and online communication tools.

1 QILT Employer Satisfaction Survey, 2020-22 – Employability Skills Indicator. Public universities.

Student support

Student services

Studying can be challenging, especially when you’re also juggling work and other life commitments. You’re not studying 9-5, Monday to Friday, which is why we provide personalised, extended hour support services – including on weekends – so you can get help when you need it. 

Dedicated Student Adviser support

Our Student Advisers will be an important part of your student journey – they’ll help you enrol, discuss your study goals, communication preferences, and will be your first point of call for all your general study questions. They’ll link you to an extensive range of support services and resources across the University and will help schedule appointments with specialised services if required.

Online academic support seven days a week

You’ll be supported by our highly experienced academic team of Online Course Facilitators and Online Tutors. Our academics will guide you through your learning and ensure you have an outstanding, high-quality education.

They can help you with your course materials and assessments, provide feedback on your work, assist you with referencing as well as answer any other course-specific queries. You’ll be able to contact your academics via email, online discussion forums and live messages in the online learning environment. You can also communicate in real-time and chat face-to-face with your academics online.

24/7 tech support

Our IT Help Desk is available 24/7 to provide assistance with your computer set up, student email, software requirements and other UniSA apps and student applications. You’ll be able to get support no matter what time it is.

24/7 digital environment

Our interactive online environment supports all your study needs. You’ll be able to track your progress through the student dashboard, plan your study schedule, receive reminders on due dates for tasks and assessments, as well as collaborate and network with a community of other like-minded students.

Using innovative technology in online education, your study experience will be highly personalised based on your learning activities throughout your degree. Just like your own personal study coach, you’ll get tailored feedback to enhance your learning outcomes and ensure you’re successful in your studies.

Student services

What others are saying

After working in child protection for several years, I was thrilled to learn that I had been nominated by my manager to undertake this program and further my understanding of childhood trauma. I had studied with UniSA on-campus before, but I was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to study online, especially while working full-time.  

The highlight of this program has been the community of practice sessions, where I’ve been able to connect with other students and hear about their experiences and the positive impact they are making on the lives of children, young people, families and communities across Australia. The teachers and tutors have been supportive, helpful, and knowledgeable, and have provided a safe space for students to share their knowledge and ask questions.  

Emma Drummond

Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma
Sanctuary Practitioner - Therapeutic Residential Care | Department for Child Protection


Emma Drummond

Graduate Certificate in Childhood Trauma
Sanctuary Practitioner - Therapeutic Residential Care | Department for Child Protection

IT Requirements

Generally, any desktop or laptop computer purchased in the past three years should be capable of meeting your online learning needs. While mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones will be able to access most of your online course content, there are likely to be elements of most courses where we recommend you use a desktop or laptop computer. Your computer should be able to:

  • run a modern browser (Microsoft Edge, Firefox 24, Safari 5, or Chrome 32 or later versions)
  • run Java
  • run programs to create documents, spreadsheets and presentations
  • use a web camera and headset (or ear pods with microphone)
  • Some UniSA Online degrees require an online exam. The online exam software – Remote Proctor Now – has specific capability requirements. Please refer to the system requirements prior to conducting your exam to ensure your computer is compatible.

Access free IT software and resources

As a UniSA Online student, you'll:

  • Get free access to the full Office 365 ProPlus suite, which includes full versions of Word, PowerPoint, Excel, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher, Access and Lync software. Install the full suite on up to five different devices (PC and Mac compatible). 
  • Get 1Tb of personal storage that syncs with your PC or mobile device through OneDrive - it's like an extra hard drive that allows you to open any of your files from any of your devices, whenever you need them. 
  • Get free access to LinkedIn Learning - Access more than 5000 video courses on a broad range of topics such as: the Microsoft Office suite, time management and study skills, health and wellbeing, communication and presentation skills, photography, film making and designing your own games or mobile apps.
  • Be able to connect with others using Microsoft Teams, Yammer and the Outlook Web App.

There are some degrees that have specialised software requirements. We've made this software available to students to access for free - you'll be able to download and install any of the required programs on your own device anywhere and anytime. See if your degree requires specialised software.

Check your device

Our computer system test will determine if your device has the base system resources and software required to study online. It'll also check the speed of your internet connection.

See if your computer, laptop or device is all set up and ready to go – it takes just a few seconds.

How to apply

The application process is easy – just follow these simple steps:

  1. Submit an online enquiry

    If you're ready to apply, the first step is to fill out and submit our online enquiry form. Here you'll be asked a series of questions to see if you're eligible. Following your online enquiry, one of our Degree Advisers will contact you at your preferred time to discuss the application process.

    Enquire now >

  2. Speak to a Degree Adviser and start your application

    If you're eligible, you'll receive an email outlining the entry requirements and the relevant documentation you need in order to be considered.

    In order to verify your academic qualifications, you'll need to upload relevant documents like your official parchment, certificates or transcripts. If you have work experience, you will need to upload your CV as well as any other documents like work references, professional recognition or accreditation or your training certification.

    Your email will contain information on the specific documents you need to provide as well as a link to begin your application. You'll be asked to create an account and set your own password.

  3. Complete your application and send through your documents

    In order to proceed with your conditional offer, you’ll need to complete your application and provide required evidence of your previous study or work experience.

    Enquire now >

Online Course Facilitator

As an academic practitioner, I bring my industry experience from the Australian Centre for Child Protection to inform this practical and important program. This qualification has been designed to help frontline practitioners develop their own trauma-informed lens to better understand what they’re observing in their roles, with the opportunity to share and learn with experienced peers. Graduates will learn how to be curious in an informed way, question their own bias, and be truly considered in their approach to working with children and young people who have experienced the devastating impacts of trauma.  

Amanda Paton

Australian Centre for Child Protection
Practice Lead

Portrait image for Amanda Paton
Portrait image for Amanda Paton

Amanda Paton

Australian Centre for Child Protection
Practice Lead


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