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 3, 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 Susan Marks

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.


Not offered in 2016


Paediatric forensic medicine encompasses the medico-legal issues arising from the provision of a medical service to children. The unit will largely focus on developing practitioners' skills required for the medical assessment of cases of suspected non-accidental injury in children. Such assessments require knowledge of the relevant legislation, injury patterns, specialised investigative techniques, documentation and interpretation. Teaching will focus on trauma and forensic principles, childhood development, injury patterns (both accidental and non-accidental), medical conditions that may mimic injurious events presentation of findings and opinions to the courts.


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

  1. Compare and contrast types of injuries and common injury patterns observed in childhood development stages with those observed in non-accidental injuries and abuse;
  2. Accurately assess and document injuries using notes, diagrams and photography;
  3. Apply knowledge of non-accidental injury to the analysis of bones, intra-abdominal and intra-thoracic trauma;
  4. Outline the processes involved in assessing children when there are concerns of neglect;
  5. Critically apply knowledge of the epidemiology of child neglect and physical assault to support injury assessment.
  6. Interpret and apply current legislation concerning offences against children.


Assignment 1 (4 x short answer questions) (750 words each) (20%)
Assignment 2 (3 x case studies) (750 words each) (20%)
Case Presentation (10 minutes) (20%)
Essay (3,000 words) (40%)

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 where there are concerns of non-accidental injury.



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