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Graduate Course Proposal Form Submission Detail - SOW6243
Tracking Number - 2609

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Current Status: Approved by SCNS - 2012-06-14
Campus: St Petersburg
Submission Type: New
Course Change Information (for course changes only):
Comments: St. Pete approved. To USF Sys 1/18/12. to SCNS 1/26/12. Apprd eff 6/1/12. Sub as 6242. Appd 6243

Detail Information

  1. Date & Time Submitted: 2011-09-06
  2. Department: Social Work
  3. College: AS
  4. Budget Account Number:
  5. Contact Person: Dr. Susan Allen
  6. Phone: 7278734969
  7. Email:
  8. Prefix: SOW
  9. Number: 6243
  10. Full Title: Working with Systems of Care to Benefit Infants and Toddlers
  11. Credit Hours: 3
  12. Section Type: C - Class Lecture (Primarily)
  13. Is the course title variable?: N
  14. Is a permit required for registration?: Y
  15. Are the credit hours variable?: N
  16. Is this course repeatable?:
  17. If repeatable, how many times?: 0
  18. Abbreviated Title (30 characters maximum): Systems of Care Infants
  19. Course Online?: O - Online (100% online)
  20. Percentage Online: 0
  21. Grading Option: R - Regular
  22. Prerequisites: CLP 6xxx - Infant Family Mental Health
  23. Corequisites: N/A
  24. Course Description: Course includes theoretical approaches for IFMH services at the systems level, analyzing family, agency, and community systems and how they interact. It reviews social policy and service system dynamics that impact infant/toddler and family development.

  25. Please briefly explain why it is necessary and/or desirable to add this course: Needed for new program/concentration/certificate
  26. What is the need or demand for this course? (Indicate if this course is part of a required sequence in the major.) What other programs would this course service? USFSP graduates hired to work in agencies providing direct clinical support, and case management services to families of infants and toddlers have no educational background in infant-family mental health. There is hence a training gap for Pinellas County that would be addressed by this course

    and the certificate program in which it will ultimately be included. Agencies may also collaborate with granting agencies to have current personnel complete the course. Currently, no existing psychology or health science course offered at USFSP or in the USF system explicitly

    focuses on supporting coparenting in families of infants and toddlers, despite the critical need for a workforce capable of understanding and working successfully with the unique needs, dynamics, strengths and challenges presented by diverse family systems caring for infants and

    toddlers. The understandings students will gain in this course will promote their work with families in systems of care (e.g., primary health care, early care & education, foster care, & home-visiting services).

  27. Has this course been offered as Selected Topics/Experimental Topics course? If yes, how many times? No
  28. What qualifications for training and/or experience are necessary to teach this course? (List minimum qualifications for the instructor.) Minimum of 2 years experience in Social Work direct practice, with a focus on infant, toddler, and family services.
  29. Objectives: 1. Promote an understanding of service needs to families of infants and toddlers and models for meeting those needs.

    2. Develop knowledge of different approaches to professional-family and professional team interactions to benefit young children.

    3. Promote the ability to interview co-parents of an infant or toddler and communicate in writing the interviewees coparenting experiences.

    4. Promote an awareness of ethical dilemmas that may arise and an awareness of cultural and socioeconomic factors at play.

  30. Learning Outcomes: After completing this course, students should be able to:

    Knowledge Outcomes:

    1. Demonstrate an awareness of family dynamics in coparenting situations with infants or toddlers.

    Measured by: Coparenting Interview paper; Discussion Board Assignments; Final Exam

    2. Demonstrate an understanding of service needs of families of infants and toddler and strategies for meeting those needs.

    Measured by: Coparenting Interview paper; Community Resource Assignment; Discussion Board Assignments; Final Exam

    3. Demonstrate knowledge of different approaches to professional-family and professional team interactions to benefit young children.

    Measured by: Discussion Board Assignments; Final Exam

    4. Demonstrate knowledge of models of infant-family mental health programming at local, county, and state levels.

    Measured by: Discussion Board Assignments; Final


    5. Demonstrate knowledge of local community resources for vulnerable families with infants and toddlers.

    Measured by: Community Resource Assignment

    6. Demonstrate an awareness of the importance of evaluation and establishing an evidence base in infant-family mental health practice.

    Measured by: Discussion Board Assignments; Final Exam

    Skill Outcomes:

    1. Demonstrate the ability to interview co-parents of an infant/toddler and communicate in writing the interviewees coparenting experiences.

    Measured by: Coparenting Interview paper

    2. Demonstrate the ability to assess the sufficiency of community resources to meet family and child needs.

    Measured by: Community Resource Assignment

    Value Outcomes:

    1. Demonstrate an awareness of ethical dilemmas that may arise in balancing community,agency, and family needs in infant-family mental health practice.

    Measured by: Discussion Board Assignments; Final Exam

    2. Demonstrate an awareness of how cultural and socioeconomic factors come into play in infant-family mental health practice.

    Measured by: Coparenting Interview paper; Discussion Board Participation; Final Exam

  31. Major Topics: 1. Introduction to course

    2. Systems of care and their effects on infants, toddlers, and their families

    3. Family dynamics during the prenatal, infancy, and toddler periods

    4. Assessing service needs for families and their young children; constructing an ecomap

    5. Special challenges for families living in poverty

    6. Models for professional-caretaker relationships in infant mental health services

    7. Models for interdisciplinary collaboration in and among agencies

    8. Administrative challenges

    9. Medical home model of care applied to infant-family mental health services

    10. Exemplar programs at the county and state level

    11. Introduction to Program Evaluation

    12. Social Policy issues for infant-toddler mental health systems of care

    13. Ethical Dilemmas

    14. Self-care

    15. Review and wrap up

  32. Textbooks: Perry, D. F. & Kaufmann, R. K. (Eds.). (2007). Social & emotional health in early

    childhood : Building bridges between services & systems. Baltimore : Paul H. Brookes.

    Shirilla, J. J., & Weatherston, D. J. (2002). Case studies in infant mental health: Risk, resiliency,

    and relationships. Washington, D.C.: Zero to Three.

    Zeanah, C. H. (Ed). (2009). Handbook of infant mental health (3rd Ed). NY: Guilford.

  33. Course Readings, Online Resources, and Other Purchases: Other Readings -

    Additional required readings are listed in the course schedule. They will be posted on Blackboard.

  34. Student Expectations/Requirements and Grading Policy: Evaluation Criteria

    Discussion Board Assignments (3 at 5 pts. each) 15%

    Coparenting Interview Paper 30%

    Community Resource Assignment 30%

    Final Exam 25%

    Total 100%

  35. Assignments, Exams and Tests: Required Assignments

    1. Coparenting Interview assignment –

    Interview at least two adults together who are providing caregiving support for a child under the age of 3. This can be a family you know or are just acquainted with and can involve any two coparenting adults (e.g., biological mother and father; biological mother and stepfather; custodial father and paternal grandparents). [Note #1: If you are the parent of a young child, your child cannot be the subject of this interview. You must interview adults coparenting a different child.] You will arrange a face-to-face interview with the adults at a place (should allow privacy) and time that is convenient for them. The interview should take about 1 to 1½ hours. The adults need to sign the consent agreement provided by the instructor of this course. If the student would like to audiotape the interview, the interviewees must check that on the form provided. [Note #2: This interview is for informational purposes only and will not involve any counseling interventions.] The interview and paper you will write about the interview will cover the following topics:

    1. Introduction describing the setting for your interview and general information about the people you interviewed, the child(ren), and the family situation.

    2. How has parenting a baby/toddler affected their relationship with each other. When did they first notice changes (e.g. before conception, during pregnancy, when child was born, etc.) and how have these changes evolved?

    3. What are support systems that are involved in helping them provide for the needs of the child. Are the relationships supportive, neutral, or unsupportive and why?

    a) Ask about informal systems such as other family members, friends,neighbors, members of a religious community they belong to

    b) Ask about formal systems, i.e., professionals (e.g. physicians, others at the medical office or hospital, early intervention home visitor) and agencies (e.g., WIC, financial support, child care center)

    c) Diagram these relationships on an Ecomap that can be typed and sent electronically or handwritten and scanned in, faxed, or hand delivered to the instructor. (See Week 2, Module 1 for instructions on constructing an Ecomap.)

    4. What would they suggest to help the relationships characterized as neutral or unsupportive to be more supportive? What at the family, agency, community, or national level would they suggest to help make their coparenting job easier?

    Paper should be about 7 pages in length use subheadings for each section, have a introduction that provides basic information about the family, a conclusion that sums up their experience, and a copy of the signed consent form (1 copy is given to the participants and the other needs to be included with the paper.)

    NOTE: Consent form will be available on BB.

    2. Community Resource assignment - Choose a need area for vulnerable infants/toddlers and their caregiver systems (shelter, nutrition, medical, mental health, etc.) and investigate the resources in your local community that can help meet that need. (Note: For students employed in the community, you must select a resource area different from that provided by you. It could, however, involve a resource area and agencies to which you have or will refer families.)

    Develop a paper/handbook that includes the following:

    A. Descriptions of a minimum of three agencies that are the focus of this assignment. The

    descriptions need to include the following:

    i. Name and location,

    ii. Mission statement

    iii. Services provided (in addition to and including the type that is the focus for this


    iv. Funding source(s)

    vi. Number and credentials of employees at the agency as a whole and involved in the

    delivery of the specific type of services that is the focus for this paper.

    B. Include organizational charts for each agency or, if not available, develop your own.

    Discuss how this organizational structure may impact communication and service

    delivery within each agency and how it may impact inter-agency collaboration.

    C. Develop a case example of an infant/toddler and his/her caregiver system that has the need addressed by your paper. (If you use as the example a family you have actually

    worked with now or in the past, you must disguise all identifying details.) Discuss how you would connect with all or some of agencies to meet the caregiver system’s needs. Explain how and why you would chose to work with these particular agencies.

    D. Critique the services provided in the community to meet the particular need. For the critique, you should address the following questions:

    i. How well do these community agencies interact? Do their services complement or compete with each other? Explain.

    ii. Are additional agencies/services needed in this community to address this specific need? Why or why not? If you evaluate the current services as inadequate, specify what would be needed to remedy this situation and, if

    applicable, how this would be funded.

    3. Discussion Board assignments (3) –

    The purpose of the discussion board assignments is to demonstrate your understanding of the material in the readings and class lectures throughout the course and your ability to apply material to real life situations (i.e., case studies from Shirilla & Weatherston & videos shown in online modules). Three discussion board assignments are scheduled throughout the semester. Students will respond to at least one concept and at least one application question posed by the instructor on the focal topic. Discussion board entries will be graded on the basis of the following:

    15% Language & Grammar - professional and respectful language, correct grammar; a total of at least 100 words for each question answered.

    25% Organization - logical and clear in respect to expression and sequencing of ideas; responsiveness to other student entries

    60% Content - relates appropriately to focal topic; applies content covered in readings and online modules; demonstrates an understanding of course content and critical thinking skills.

    NOTE: Date and time limits for each Discussion Board assignment will be posted in the calendar on BB.

    4. Comprehensive Final Exam – This will be a timed exam done at home and submitted electronically. This exam must be done individually by the student of record in the course and reflect their independent work. This exam will include objective questions (multiple choice, true false, and fill in the blank) that draw on material from course readings, lectures, group activities, and discussions. It will test students’ knowledge of course material and their ability to apply this material to case examples. An ungraded practice exam with answers provided will be available on BB a week before the scheduled exam to help students prepare for the exam and anticipate the kinds of questions that will be included.

  36. Attendance Policy: Course Attendance at First Class Meeting – Policy for Graduate Students: For structured courses, 6000 and above, the College/Campus Dean will set the first-day class attendance requirement. Check with the College for specific information. This policy is not applicable to courses in the following categories: Educational Outreach, Open University (TV), FEEDS Program, Community Experiential Learning (CEL), Cooperative Education Training, and courses that do not have regularly scheduled meeting days/times (such as, directed reading/research or study, individual research, thesis, dissertation, internship, practica, etc.). Students are responsible for dropping undesired courses in these categories by the 5th day of classes to avoid fee liability and academic penalty. (See USF Regulation – Registration - 4.0101,

    It is expected that students will watch all video modules.

    Attendance Policy for the Observance of Religious Days by Students: In accordance with Sections 1006.53 and 1001.74(10)(g) Florida Statutes and Board of Governors Regulation 6C-6.0115, the University of South Florida (University/USF) has established the following policy regarding religious observances: (

    In the event of an emergency, it may be necessary for USF to suspend normal operations. During this time, USF may opt to continue delivery of instruction through methods that include but are not limited to: Blackboard, Elluminate, Skype, and email messaging and/or an alternate schedule. It’s the responsibility of the student to monitor Blackboard site for each class for course specific communication, and the main USF, College, and department websites, emails, and MoBull messages for important general information.

  37. Policy on Make-up Work: Preparation and Make-Up Work.

    Students are expected to have completed all readings and written work by their assigned date. Because the due dates for each element of the portfolio are already known, late submissions for any assignment will be penalized 2 points for each day late. Make-ups for final exam will only be allowed in very special circumstances arranged ahead of time with the instructor.

    Recordings of the Class.

    All unauthorized recordings of class are prohibited. Sharing of materials used in Blackboard Powerpoints with other individuals or agencies without expressed instructor consent is prohibited. Recordings that accommodate individual student needs must be approved in advance and may be used for personal use during the semester only; redistribution is prohibited.

    Academic Dishonesty Policy

    See the USF Graduate Catalog.

    Students are reminded that all program participants have signed the school of social work statement on plagiarism and academic dishonesty and have been provided with this statement as well as the NASW Code of Ethics.

    The University of South Florida has an account with an automated plagiarism detection service that allows instructors to submit student assignments to be checked for plagiarism. I reserve the right to 1) request that assignments be submitted to me as electronic files and 2) electronically submit assignments to the plagiarism service. Assignments are compared automatically with a huge database of journal articles, web articles, and previously submitted papers. The instructor receives a report showing exactly how a student’s paper was plagiarized.

    Notes or tapes are not permitted for purposes of sale.

  38. Program This Course Supports: Support Infant-Family Mental Health Certificate program, under review: Does not specifically support a degree program, but can be electives in degree programs.
  39. Course Concurrence Information: Certificate Program in Infant-Family Mental Health (under review)

    No specific concurrence as this course is unique, and could benefit those in the following types of programs:

    Masters in Psychology

    Masters in Social Work

    Other graduate social science degrees

- if you have questions about any of these fields, please contact or