Safeguarding in an International Context MSc

Safeguarding in an International Context MSc

School of Community Health and Midwifery


Post- graduate




Online Only

Contact UCLan

Course Enquiries
University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, UK.

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

  • Duration:

    2-5 years

  • Level:


  • Mode:


  • Delivery:

    eLearning, Full-time and Part-time

  • Campus:

    Online Only

  • Start Date:

    September, January

  • Award Type:


Why study this programme?

The first course of its kind in the world, our Safeguarding in an International Context Master’s degree is ideal for agencies involved with the protection of people. Delivered completely by distance learning, you can study from home, making it accessible worldwide. Safeguarding children and safeguarding vulnerable adults are issues which involve multi-disciplinary, inter-agency working. Issues such as trafficking of people and international collaboration between agencies are high on the global agenda. International safeguarding involves a variety of topics that can be explored in this programme. As this course incorporates modules from a variety of Schools across the university, you’ll be able to follow a path which is of personal interest to you or will be of use in your area of employment.

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Entry Requirements

In order to study at postgraduate level applicants are expected to have an honours degree, or equivalent (a portfolio of evidence may be submitted for consideration), as a minimum entry requirement

International students are required to have English at: IELTS 6.5, or equivalent, with no individual component below 6.0.

A maximum of one third of the programme can be Accredited Prior (Experiential) Learning (AP(E)L. Please discuss this with the course leader.

Deadline for January applications: 4th December 2019

Programme at a Glance


Each module that students will study has a credit rating. A standard module = 20 credits. The course is available at MSc (180 credits) with exit awards of post graduate certificate (60 credits) or post graduate diploma (120 credits). Students are required to undertake either Safeguarding Children or Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults as a core module (each = 20 credits). There is also the option to study both modules. Students are also required to undertake a research module, which is 20 credits, and either a dissertation or a psychology project, which are both 60 credits. Students are then required to make up the remaining credits, depending on which award they are studying for, with a selection of option modules. This allows for the student to access and study modules that are of interest to them and/or relevant for their professional needs.

  • NU4075 Safeguarding Vulnerable adults in an International Context
  • SW4035 Safeguarding Children in an International Context
  • NU4025 Introduction to Post-Graduate Research
  • NU4503 Dissertation
  • PS4908 Safeguarding Psychology Project
  • NU4069 Trafficking of People
  • FZ4717 Safeguarding – Investigation of Child abuse
  • PS4403 Safeguarding Children and Young People in the Online Environment
  • PS4404 Advanced Topics in the Safeguarding of Children and Young people from Online Sexual Exploitation
  • LA4501 International Criminal Law and Security
  • LA4502 Maritime Law and security
  • LA4504 Transnational Regulation of Human Trafficking
  • HP4007 Student Initiated Module

Further Information

The course can be undertaken over 2-5 years, exiting with a Master of Science (180 credits). It consists of some core modules, which have to be taken by each student. These include a research module and an introductory module in either safeguarding children or safeguarding vulnerable adults in an international context. Students will also undertake either a dissertation or a psychology project in their final year. These modules equate to 100 credits. There will, therefore, be 80 credits of option modules, depending on the students area of interest. If students do not wish to progress to a Masters Degree, there will be exit awards available: Certificate (60 credits) or Diploma (120 credits).

Academic Expertise

Ruth Broadhead is module leader for Safeguarding Vulnerable Adults in an International Context. She has expertise in sexual health and has a Masters Degree in Law.

Fiona Harbin is a qualified social worker and has worked in children's services as a senior child protection practitioner, specialising in parental substance misuse. She is a senior lecturer in the School of Social Work and is module leader for Safeguarding Children in an International Context.

Dr Jo Bryce is Director of the Cyberspace Research Unit. Her research interests focus on the psychological, social and forensic aspects of the Internet and related technologies, with a specific focus on their use by young people, associated risk exposure and esafety. Other interests include: the role of ICTs in the commission of criminal offences; online privacy and security; online piracy and filesharing. She is also School equality and diversity lead and Vice-chair of the ethics committee in the school.
Jo is research active within the area of psychology and is a member of the Aggression Research Group.

Dr/Professor Michael Salter teaches and researches on war crimes trials, international criminal law and jurisprudence, and European and international human rights. He has published extensively on the involvement of intelligence officials in the war crimes trials process

Steve Riley is a lecturer in policing. He spent thirty years with Merseyside police in a variety of roles. Having specialised in investigative training, as a detective inspector, Steve manages the Professionalisation of Investigation Programme.

Keyuan Zou is Harris Professor of International Law at the School of Law and Social Science. He specialises in international law and Chinese law. He has published about 50 peer reviewed English papers in more than 20 international journals including Asian Yearbook of International Law, Asia-Pacific Journal of Environmental Law, Chinese Journal of International Law, Columbia Journal of International Affairs, Criminal Law Forum, International Journal of Marine and Coastal Law, International Lawyer, Journal of Environmental Law, Journal of International Maritime Law, Journal of International Wildlife Law and Policy, Journal of Maritime Law and Commerce, Lloyd's Maritime and Commercial Law Quarterly, Marine Policy, Maritime Policy and Management, Netherlands International Law Review, Ocean Development and International Law, Ocean Yearbook, Singapore Journal of International and Comparative Law, and Yearbook Law and Legal Practice in East Asia.

Jean Duckworth is currently the Chair of the Research Ethics Committee for the Society of Homeopaths. She also sits on the Board of the European Network of Homeopathy Educators. Her research interests include practice development and continuing professional development. She is currently undertaking a PhD entitled 'Straddling Paradigms: an interpretive phenomenological exploration of the experience and practice of midwife homeopaths'. A major focus of her interest is in the professional development of practitioners.

How to Apply

Our Postgraduate section has more information around applying including visiting UCLan and the support available.

If you want to continue and apply now, you can apply for many of the postgraduate UCLan courses using our Online Application System.

For other postgraduate courses you can apply directly to UCLan by downloading a Postgraduate Application Form (.pdf 190KB) please also see our Postgraduate Application Guidance Notes (.pdf 158KB).


For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.


Apply now or see further information about postgraduate study and research. International students should visit our international pages.

Contact Us

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400


Fees 2020/21

Full-time: £6,900 (UK/EU)
Part-time: £765 per 20 credits (all residences)

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

UK Government Postgraduate Loans Scheme

If you're thinking of studying a master's or doctoral degree you could be eligible for a loan from the Government to help you study.

For additional help with financing your studies, UCLan offers a range of Postgraduate scholarships, studentships, bursaries and the Alumni loyalty discount.

View further information

Case Studies

Learning Environment and Assessment

The course is delivered totally online. The UCLan library will give access to online books and journals. Each module will have dedicated Blackboard space.

Each module has an assessment. All assessments must be passed with a minimum mark of 50%.


Course highlights

Accessible world-wide

Study at home - totally distance learning

Increase employability internationally

Study in a truly multi-disciplinary environment


  • To promote the evolution of an safeguarding specialist who is adaptable and responsive in recognising international safeguarding issues.
  • To promote the development of a safeguarding specialist, who is socio-politically aware of international safeguarding issues, has the values, attitudes, skills, knowledge, professional confidence and personal motivation commensurate with safeguarding practice. 
  • To support students to critically reflect and synthesise evidence-based outcomes to support effective problem-solving and decision-making skills within a multidisciplinary arena.
  • To ensure that personal, professional and educational development needs are met through the provision of a range of learning opportunities informed by scholarship, professional activity, advances in technology and research.
  • To promote independent, shared and autonomous learning.
  • To promote students awareness of global issues in safeguarding