Understanding the complexities of Coercive Control in Domestic and Family Violence SWSPM204

A poor understanding of coercive control in the context of domestic and family violence (DFV) among healthcare, social services, legal and justice system professionals is a significant issue for victim-survivors. It can compromise their safety and impact every aspect of their life, health, and well-being. Coercive control erodes a victim-survivor's agency and autonomy, leading to entrapment and preventing them from leaving the abusive relationship.

This course is tailored for healthcare, social services, legal and justice system professionals. These professionals often provide direct services to victim-survivors experiencing coercive control. They are in a position to provide early intervention and response, thus enhancing safety for victim-survivors and their children.

In this micro-credential, participants will gain knowledge and a shared and consistent understanding of coercive control, recognize behaviours and tactics perpetrators use to coercively control intimate partners, risks and impacts on victim-survivors, document abuse, the systematic patterns of non-physical abuse vs physical violence, legislation and justice responses.

Upon successful completion of this micro-credential, you'll receive:

  • Three PD Points
  • A Certificate of Achievement
  • A UWA Plus Professional Development Transcript, listing all successfully completed micro-credentials
Delivery mode
Course dates
15 July - 23 August 2024

Registrations close

8 July 2024

6 weeks
A total of 75 hours composed of pre-reading (reports, books, articles, research papers) and videos/pre-recorded lectures delivered by experts on coercive control (clinical and legal professionals and lived experience survivors). These will be followed by online workshops with interactive activities, including videos and two case studies. The content will be delivered weekly in online workshops on Thursdays from 6.30-8.00pm WST.
Academic lead
Dr Yvonne Kallane 
$440 inc. GST
Critical information summary
Understanding the complexities of Coercive Control in Domestic Family Violence SWSPM204 [PDF 245KB]


Registrations are open.

Register now


What you'll learn

Participants will be able to:

Recognise and describe coercive control as a significant indicator of domestic family violence.

Explore the individualised, intersecting and cumulative nature of coercive control and differentiate between incident specific DFV and pattern-based abuse.

Recognise and identify the behaviours and tactics of perpetrators.

Identify the impacts and risks that result from coercive control and victim-survivor responses.

Recognise and document signs and perpetrator patterns of coercive control with victim-survivors and refer to specialist support for earlier intervention.

Describe the complexities and impacts of the legal system on coercive control victim-survivors.


Why study this course?

Coercive control and Domestic Family Violence (DFV) is a significant health, social and justice issue in Australia and around the world. Early engagement and response to DFV and coercive control is needed across sectors and health, social and legal professions. This course provides evidence-base knowledge to improve professionals' awareness of coercive control and DFV, to upskill them to identify, respond to, and refer them to support services.

Who should study this course?

This micro-credential is suitable for healthcare, social services, legal and justice system professionals such as psychologists, social workers, doctors, lawyers, magistrates, child health nurses, and police.  

Professionals from any sector can benefit from this course, including those in emergency services, faith-based organisations, media and journalism, government and policy making, education, and human resources.  Friends and family of those experiencing coercive control will also gain valuable insights.


What's next after this course?

This 3 Professional Development Point micro-credential is stackable with other micro-credentials (to total 6 Professional Development Points) for unspecified academic credit towards a relevant course at UWA such as our Graduate Certificate in Child Protection Practice.