Graduate Diploma in Child Health

Course Description

2024 Applications now open. Register your interest to receive more information.

If you're looking for CPD education, check out the SCHN: Essential Paediatrics Program here.

This Graduate Diploma in Child Health (GDCH) is delivered by The Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network (SCHN) in partnership with Western Sydney University (WSU). It is designed for health professionals working in a variety of clinical professions, from general practice, to nursing and allied health. 

The GDCH provides students with a broad range of paediatric subspecialties relating to evidence-based care and practice, as well as detection and diagnosis of common childhood presentations. Students will learn to evaluate how social determinants can impact the care for children and make great impact in their role in advocating for paediatric patients. Program material will cover treatment and prevention strategies focused on delivering safe and effective child-centred health care. Completing this program will provide students with a stronger foundation in paediatric experience to support their daily practice in local region(s).

Completion of the first four subjects will satisfy RACGP's Paediatrics term requirement provided that students have also had adequate clinical exposure to children. Please refer to RACGP's Paediatrics term requirement page

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Learning outcomes

The program is divided into eight subjects reflecting a journey of learning in paediatric education covering areas from neonates to adolescents. Upon completion, students can expect to:


Evaluate child health care frameworks, common developmental and behavioural issues and how health inequities impact on the care for children.


Assess and examine common paediatric presentations according to current best evidence.


Conduct appropriate investigations to assist with reaching a diagnosis aligning with best evidence.


Develop evidence-based multi-disciplinary management plans of common paediatric problems.


Communicate diagnosis and management of patients and their needs to parents/carers.


Reflect on Australian and international requirements for ethical conduct and professional standards to inform practices in the field of child health.


Advocate for vulnerable paediatric patients early intervention to improve health outcomes for children and families.


Qualification for this award requires the successful completion of 80 credit points which include the subjects listed below. Students are required to do subjects 1 to 4 before enrolling in subjects 5 to 8. Each subject is worth 10 credit points. Students can register for up to 2 subjects per quarter (January, April, June, September). Students may exit with a Graduate Certificate in Child Health after completing the first 4 subjects. 

Subject 1 - 4

  • Students will be able to:
  • assess common conditions in infancy
  • arrange appropriate investigations and timely referrals
  • manage common newborn and infant disorders
  • advocate for improved health outcomes and communicate effectively with new parents
  • Students will be able to:
  • engage with children and assess common child developmental and behavioural issues
  • use an evidenced based approach to investigations in children with suspected development disabilities
  • develop and communicate a multi-disciplinary management plan for children with behaviour and developmental concerns
  • advocate for early intervention to improve health outcomes for children and families
  • Students will be able to:
  • assess common adolescent and mental health issues
  • arrange appropriate investigations to assist with diagnosis and minimise distress to adolescents
  • formulate differential diagnoses for common adolescent conditions and develop age-appropriate management strategies based on variety of evidence and sources
  • advocate and promote access to appropriate healthcare to improve health outcomes adolescents and at-risk populations
  • Students will be able to:
  • recognise and assess common emergency presentations utilising primary and secondary resources to support
  • facilitate timely and appropriate investigations in an emergency setting
  • initiate emergency management prior to escalation of care
  • advocate for appropriate access to services for children at-risk based on Australian and international requirements for ethical conduct and professional standards

Subject 5 - 8

  • Students will be able to:
  • examine common cardiorespiratory, ENT and allergy related presentations in children
  • implement appropriate investigations to support diagnosis while minimising unnecessary cost and distress to the patient
  • design and implement age-appropriate management strategies for common respiratory and ENT conditions
  • communicate effective management and prevention strategies with parents and children to maximise health outcomes
  • Students will be able to:
  • detect, evaluate, and assess common gastroenterological and urological presentations
  • use an evidence-based approach to investigation to support diagnosis
  • devise management strategies for common gastroenterological and urological conditions to maximise health outcomes
  • promote health awareness on common issues such as bedwetting and urinary tract infections in children based on Australian and international requirements for ethical conduct and professional standards
  • Students will be able to:
  • assess and diagnose common paediatric infections
  • use investigations aligned with ethical and professional standards to support the diagnosis of common childhood infections and autoimmune conditions
  • devise evidence-based management strategies
  • communicate effective management with parents and families and advocate for improved health outcomes at population level
  • Students will be able to:
  • assess common neurological, musculoskeletal and surgical presentations in children and young adults based on evidence-based approach
  • arrange appropriate neurological investigations to assist with diagnosis minimising cost to the patient and the system
  • formulate and communicate evidence-based management plans to maximise clinical outcomes in neurological and surgical conditions
  • provide long-term patient surveillance and family support for complex neurological conditions


The program content is designed to be clinically relevant and engaging, and assessments will include online quizzes, video communication tasks, written reflections, and two major works. Students will be required to complete the following assessment tasks:

Learn with expert clinicians

Clinicians Data
Dr Philip Britton

Staff Specialist Infectious Diseases Physician…

SCHP webcast Antibiotics and Resistance, Meningitis
Dr Patrina Caldwell

Associate Professor, Discipline of Child and…

SCHP webcast Urinary and Faecal Incontinence in Children
Ms Louise Butler

Clinical Psychologist

SCHP webcast Behavioural Problems in School Age Children/Infants/Toddlers
Dr Elena Cavazzoni

Senior Staff Specialist

SCHP webcast Paediatric Resuscitation

Fee Information

The total program fee for 2024 is


Fees are charged per subject.
  • fee FEE-HELP is available for eligible applicants
  • Trainees Level 8 Graduate Diploma qualification
  • installments Use of GDCH postnominal

Learn more about the Graduate Diploma in Child Health

To receive more information about the course content, study options, admission requirements or to simply find our more, register your interest below and we will be in touch. The Graduate Diploma in Child Health is jointly delivered by The Sydney Children's Hospitals Network and Western Sydney University.

The Sydney Children's Hospitals Network provides a range of paediatric learning opportunities to healthcare professionals in the community. Sign up to our Learning Platform to browse all courses.