Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine


Dr Jennifer 'Anne' Smith

Quota applies

This unit is quota restricted. Selection is on a first-in, first enrolled basis. For further information please contact the Postgraduate Course Administrator via email postgrad.courses@vifm.org or phone 03 9684 4115.



  • First semester 2016 (Online)


Paediatric forensic medicine encompasses the medico-legal issues arising from the provision of a medical service to children. The unit will largely focus on the medical assessment of cases of suspected child sexual abuse. The aim of this unit is to develop student's skills in the evaluation and management of children and adolescents suspected of being sexually abused. Integral to both evaluation and management will be a knowledge of the relevant legislation, policing and protective agencies, injury patterns, specialised investigative techniques and treatment.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Display a detailed understanding of the roles of health practitioners in assessing cases of suspected child sexual abuse.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of sexual development and behaviour in children.
  3. Demonstrate an awareness of the ethical and legal issues relevant to cases of suspected child sexual abuse.
  4. Describe normal genital anatomy and physiology, and be able to interpret pathological conditions.
  5. Apply medical and forensic principles to the evaluation of cases of suspected child sexual abuse.
  6. Display a broad comprehension of the consequences, treatment and prevention of child sexual abuse.
  7. Recognise the role of the other disciplines involved in investigations; protective workers, police, lawyers.
  8. Recognise the medical and legal implications of a sexually transmitted infection in a child.


Assignment 1 - Workbook questions 2,3,4, and 9 (15%)
Assignment 2 - Case critique (20%)
Assignment 3 - Workbook questions 12, 13, 14 and 15 (20%)
Face to face teaching & case presentation (15%)
Essay (30%)

Chief examiner(s)

Off-campus attendance requirements

Compulsory 2 day workshop.

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study


A registered medical practitioner who is involved in assessing (or may be required to assess) children/adolescents when child/adolescent sexual abuse is suspected.



Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: