Illinois Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training


The Illinois Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training course is designed to educate dental healthcare providers (DHCP) on the signs of child abuse and neglect and how mandatory reporters in Illinois report child abuse and neglect cases.

The United States Federal Government defines child abuse and neglect as when the actions or inactions of a caregiver lead to the risk or impact of harm to a child. Learners will study how to combat child abuse and neglect after the completion of this course.

What You’ll Learn

  • Types of child abuse and neglect
  • Signs of abuse
  • Requirements for Mandated Reporters
  • Standards for Making a Report
  • DCFS Involvement
  • Helping an Abused or Neglected Child


Course length: 1 hour; CEU: 1.

Languages: American English

Key features: Audio narration, learning activity, and post-assessment

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Illinois Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training Course

Before studying how to combat child abuse and neglect, it is essential to understand what constitutes child abuse and neglect. Care providers must learn how to identify the signs of child abuse and neglect in order to prevent it. The Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) provides a detailed definition of sexual abuse. It offers a template for individuals to use to identify child abuse and neglect. Learners will understand this definition and how to apply it in subsequent modules. 

Types of Child Abuse and Neglect

Physical abuse is a non-accidental physical injury to a child caused by a parent, caregiver, or another person responsible for a child. Note that there is a distinction between physical discipline and physical abuse. If physical discipline does not cause bodily harm to a child and is reasonable, it does not constitute abuse. Learners will further study the distinctions between physical abuse and physical discipline with this course. The course also details examples of physical abuse. Furthermore, learners will study more specific forms of child abuse, including sexual abuse, emotional abuse, parental substance use, abandonment, human trafficking, and more. Dental healthcare providers (DHCP) must be able to identify these instances of abuse to intervene.

Signs of Abuse

Dental healthcare providers must recognize signs of abuse in order to report them. Furthermore, care providers identify the signs of abuse in both children and their parents. Providers should be aware that children with unexplained injuries, absences from school, changes in habits, and more are all signs of abuse. Learners study the specific signs of child abuse in this course.

Care providers identify signs of abuse with caregivers, as well. Adults who cannot explain children’s injuries, who don’t seem to care about the child, or who show disdain for the child may be abusing their child. Learners study all of the signs in adults of child abuse in adults to better identify issues that need to be reported.

Requirements for Mandated Reporters

Mandated Reporters must report instances of child abuse if they believe a child is being harmed. Dental healthcare providers have contact with children and are in a position to report instances of abuse. Mandated reporters are the state’s early warning system to protect children. Mandated reporters have great power and responsibility. First, they are required to report any case where they think a child is in danger. Second, mandated reporters are protected legally as long as they are acting in good faith. Finally, they must confirm all reports in writing. Learners will study the specific requirements for mandated reporters so they can protect children from harm. 

Standards for Making a Report

If a reporter or other workers believe a child is in danger of child abuse or neglect, they must file a report. Furthermore, they must file a report if any evidence suggesting a child was abused or neglected exists. The state applies certain requirements on reports that are filed. These requirements suspend rules around privileged communication. Furthermore, there are specific regulations that require the identity of a reporter to be disclosed in a report. Additionally, DCFS investigators contact reporters after a report has been filed. Mandated reporters must understand all of the requirements and best practices surrounding reporting. Learners will understand every best practice upon completion of this course.

Consequences for Failure to Report

A provider commits a crime if they obscure a case of abuse. Because of this, mandated reporters must identify instances of child abuse or neglect to comply with the law. Moreover, a reporter who provides a false report to authorities is also guilty of a crime. Overall, it is essential that reporters always comply with authorities and tell the truth at all times. It is a class 4 felony if they fail to do so multiple times. Learners study the importance of reporting abuse and the legal ramifications of failing to do so.

Online Illinois Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse and Neglect Training

A published study (Roberts, 2022) revealed that interactive techniques such as the use of videos, group discussions, and the use of real-world examples were more effective training strategies. They all stood out and were easily remembered by the participants. This contributes to the awareness of what training design and delivery work best for future training.

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