Available in 2022
Course code



10 units


6000 level

Course handbook


This course provides students with knowledge about the needs of families of children with disabilities as well as the roles of professionals working with children with disabilities and their families. The focus is on understanding family perspectives and implementing a family-centred approach to early intervention. Students will examine the development of effective parent/professional relationships and consider their application in relation to assessment and the development and implementation of Family Service Plans and Individual Education Plans.



  • Semester 2 - 2022

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate understanding of the impact of disability on family life

2. Have skills that support the empowerment of parents of children with disabilities or additional needs

3. Understand the legal and philosophical bases for providing family-centred and interdisciplinary services to infants and young children with disabilities.

4. Have knowledge of the factors that may inhibit or enhance the implementation of effective interdisciplinary and family-centred approaches to early childhood intervention

5. Have knowledge of effective inter-personal skills for developing and maintaining productive collaborative partnerships


Topics will include:

  1. Understanding the needs of families
  2. Family-centred practice
  3. Roles of educators and health-related professionals
  4. Trans-disciplinary approaches
  5. Multi-disciplinary approaches
  6. Inter-personal skills and collaborative practices
  7. Assessment and programming
  8. Individual Family Service Plans
  9. Individual Educational Plans

Assumed knowledge

Two years of relevant professional experience and/or a relevant graduate qualification

Assessment items

Online Learning Activity: On-Line Discussion Board Contribution and Participation - Reflections and Analysis of Topic Readings

Essay: Essays/Written Assignments - Effective Collaborative Practices

Contact hours


Integrated Learning Session

Online 26 hour(s) per Term Full Term

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.