Differential Response to Reports of Child Abuse and Neglect

About the Course:

A growing number of State and local child protective services (CPS) agencies are employing some form of differential response. In these systems, families reported for suspected child abuse or neglect may receive either a traditional investigation or an assessment alternative, depending on the severity of the allegation and other considerations. The issue brief upon which this course is based provides an overview of differential response, highlights lessons learned through research and experience, and offers some guiding principles for implementation.


Child Welfare Information Gateway, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Publication Date:

February 2008


Child Welfare Information Gateway staff

Recommended For:

This course is recommended for health care professionals, especially psychologists, counselors, social workers, policymakers, administrators, and nurses who seek knowledge about what differential response is and its effectiveness in dealing with reported cases of child abuse and neglect. It is appropriate for all levels of participants’ knowledge.

Course Objectives:

  1. Define differential response and explain why interest in its use is increasing.

  2. Describe how differential response is being implemented in the field and the effects it has yielded, according to evaluation findings.

  3. Compare and critique guiding principles for implementation of differential response methods.

Materials for Course

Exam Questions

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Course Number: 101530
Credit Hours: 2cr
Exam Fee: $13.94
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Format: Online Article
4.3 out of 5
Popularity: 577 members have taken this course