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  MA - Understanding Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse CPD (Continuing Professional Development) options

Goldsmiths, University of London    Department of Social, Therapeutic and Community Studies

Social Work (32)

FindAMasters summary

The MA in Understanding Domestic Violence and Sexual Abuse offers a comprehensive programme that combines various theories to explore the impact of abuse. This course covers a wide range of topics, including the effects of abuse on children, working with adults who have experienced abuse, adolescent victims and perpetrators, and the psychological impact of trauma. The programme is designed for individuals with a relevant undergraduate degree or significant experience in health and social care, psychological therapies, or the third sector. It can be completed on a full-time or part-time basis, and also offers distance learning options. Join us to gain valuable knowledge and skills in addressing domestic violence and sexual abuse.

About the course

This programme synthesises psychodynamic, systemic, cognitive behavioural and social theories to examine the impact of being abusive or of being abused.

  • It focuses on practice and research from these theoretical perspectives and will consider abusiveness and its impact in different international, cultural and social contexts from childhood to older age.
  • All of our courses have a creative and innovative focus and draw on the expertise of practitioners and academics working across the field of violence and abuse.
  • The courses make use of a blended learning approach that encourages full participation in discussion and exploration as well as access to online resources.

This programme is also available via Distance Learning or as a 1 year full-time or 2-year part-time programme

Read more about this course

Entry Requirements

You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a relevant/related subject. You must also be able to demonstrate significant experience in either health and social care, psychological therapies, or experience from the third sector in a specialist abuse service.

You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.

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 Course Content

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Where will I study?

Where is Goldsmiths, University of London


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Student Profiles


Goldsmiths gave me a foundation and appreciation of culture on practice due to the multicultural nature of the university and course. This has supported me to move from working in the UK to working in Australia. The MA structure and the variety of staff and knowledge ensured a strong foundation in networking across the profession and understanding the value of research, continual development and growth; it's incredible how one course and class can reach across the globe in such a wonderful way. Due to this variety of knowledge underpinning the programme I have been able to work within forensic settings, statutory and voluntary sectors and across two continents in roles I am truly passionate about being part of.

Since qualifying I have been lucky enough to work within pilot programs in the UK being part of a team that set up a consultation service to Social Care to support the understanding and development of interventions with families subject to child protection.

Building on this I was able to speak at a conference on trauma and attachment on the subject of supporting foster carers and pre and post adoptive parents to support children who have experienced disrupted attachments and trauma. This has stood me in good stead for my career.

I am now working as an Expressive Therapist in a young families' homelessness refuge setting up an new Expressive Therapies service within the refuge to support the young parents and children. Families are under the age of 25 years old with children in their care and who find themselves homeless for a number reasons – from domestic and family violence, transitioning from foster care, under child protection plans for concerns for their care of their children or working on restoration of their children back into their care. The service works with parents to support building a healthy attachment relationship with their children and address mental health needs, trauma presentations and parenting support.


I have always been a dreamer, with a strong connection to the lives around me, particularly to those most in need: people, animals, and even plant life. This deep connection, having led me to engage with the arts from a very young age, has taken me through winding and unexpected paths. I have studied degrees, quenching my immediate thirst, while learning that I need more, and sometimes in quite different directions.

My love for the earth and for plant life, and for utilizing plants for the greater good, led me to study Agricultural Engineering at the University of Tehran for my first degree. However, I could not sympathize with the strict engineering atmosphere in the college, though I studied the degree to the end. I felt that this “greater good” was calling me through a different vocation. I decided to pursue a path in art. After studying for the national examinations for entry into graduate study, I received the first rank in the country for Advanced Studies of Art at University of Tehran. This second course allowed me to familiarize myself with the vast domain and potentials of art. I wrote my dissertation on the psychology of intuition in art, as a “knowing” that can be deemed the exclusive property of art. This “knowing” could be utilized through art to reap many benefits for those who were in need of it.

After graduating and having in mind what I had learned in my thesis, I worked with diverse clients, from children with severe autism, to people with physical disabilities and also normal children, using the arts to educate, entertain, and heal. Nevertheless, I saw that in order to correctly unleash the powers of art with people, I need to have a proper knowledge base in psychology. Thus, I pursued my second BA degree in Psychology, online, with a university based in the United States. This first experience of studying at an overseas university transformed my life in so many ways, leading me to appreciate and cherish the value of a first-class education. During this time, I started my own art class for young children, while I also received commissions for paintings and worked at such odd jobs as sketching faces in a café as a resident artist.


10% fee discount to home alumni, and the equivalent amount in pounds sterling to international alumni.

Value of Scholarship(s)

10% fee discount to home alumni, and the equivalent amount in pounds sterling to international alumni.


The award is available to the following Goldsmiths graduates:

- Home and international graduates (full-time and part-time)
- Study Abroad graduates
- Goldsmiths, University of London LaSalle graduates
- Goldsmiths, University of London Distance Learning programme graduates who have been awarded a BA in English, BSc in Computing and Information Systems, or a BSc in Creative Computing

You must be applying to start a taught Masters programme (MRes and PGCE programmes are not included).

Application Procedure

The fee discount will be applied automatically after full enrolment has been completed.

Please note: this award cannot be combined with the Goldsmiths Excellence Fee Waiver.

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