University of Technology Sydney

92685 Working Within a Strengths-Based Midwifery Model

Warning: The information on this page is indicative. The subject outline for a particular session, location and mode of offering is the authoritative source of all information about the subject for that offering. Required texts, recommended texts and references in particular are likely to change. Students will be provided with a subject outline once they enrol in the subject.

Subject handbook information prior to 2024 is available in the Archives.

UTS: Health
Credit points: 6 cp
Result type: Grade and marks

There are course requisites for this subject. See access conditions.


This subject examines the role of the midwife when working with women and families who experience social or emotional complexities which impact on maternal and infant wellbeing. The subject builds on students' understanding of the community resources available to women and their families who require additional support.

Students gain a deeper understanding of the diverse complexities for some women and their families by developing an understanding and knowledge base around ethically challenging areas including domestic violence, stillbirth, grief and loss during pregnancy and child protection, female genital mutilation, perinatal mental health, admission to a psychiatric facility in the puerperium. Students enhance their health literacy to take into account the unique needs of each woman and family. Students develop their midwifery knowledge and skills to enable them to work to the full scope of midwifery practice including understanding the midwives role and responsibility of consultation, referral and escalation in situations that sit outside the midwife’s scope of practice. Legal, ethical and professional issues regarding the challenges in midwifery care are also be explored.

Understanding appropriate referral pathways are explored as well as working effectively within a multidisciplinary team.

Students further develop their communication skills through role play to enhance engagement with women in challenging situations in a safe facilitated space.

Subject learning objectives (SLOs)

Upon successful completion of this subject students should be able to:
A. Identify the impact of significant physical, psycho-social, spiritual and cultural challenges on the woman, baby and her family.
B. Analyse the role of the midwife when working with women and families with multiple social and emotional complexities.
C. Identify the role and responsibilities of the midwife in complying with child protection legislation.
D. Critically reflect on the needs of the woman experiencing multiple social and emotional complexities related to childbirth and propose culturally appropriate supportive interventions.
E. Describe referral pathways and community support available for women and families experiencing challenges in the early postnatal period.