University of Glasgow: University Of Glasgow Launches New Course To Support Children And Young People In The Post-Covid Era

A new free online course launching today (Monday 20 June 2022) will look at how young people’s emotional wellbeing has been impacted by the COVID-19 crisis.

The new free two-week online course from the University of Glasgow called “Supporting young people’s mental wellbeing post-COVID”, on the FutureLearn platform, hopes to explore ways to support children and young people post pandemic.

The course brings together expertise and experience from across the University’s School of Education to help address some of the most common issues around young people’s emotional wellbeing in this post-COVID era.

The course will look at the COVID-19 pandemic through the lens of collective trauma and will consider what trauma may do to the developing brain as well as how isolation and loss may have impacted our young people.

The course consists of short videos, readings, discussion tasks and opportunities to reflect. It will also provide theoretical background as well as some specific strategies and tools which may be used by teachers, social workers, parents and others to encourage children and young people to both recognise and discuss their emotions post pandemic.

Dr Christine Hadfield, a lecturer in Initial Teacher Education at the University of Glasgow, has led on the course development along with colleagues Mark Breslin, a lecturer of Health and Well-Being and Initial Teacher Education, and Dr Yvonne Skipper, a Senior Lecturer in Psychology.

Dr Hadfield said: “This course is aimed at anyone who deals with children on a daily basis whether it is parents, guardians or professionals in a variety of contexts.

“We have all been through what I would consider to be a collective trauma during Covid. Over that last two and a half years, we have become increasingly aware of the importance of our emotional and mental wellbeing as well as the importance of our connection with others.

“Through this course we will explore this issue in a bit more depth to see how we can support each other and our young people in the post COVID-19 era. We don’t know the long-term effects of this pandemic for any of us, but we hope that our two-week course will help to start that conversation and also look at how we might support young people to move forward post pandemic.”

She added: “Compassion, connection and community are the principles behind this free online course. We have yet to witness the full impact of the Covid pandemic on our children and young people.

“This course seeks to highlight some key concepts and illustrate how compassion for ourselves and others is paramount. As we reconnect and rebuild our sense of community following the pandemic, the mental wellbeing of our young people must take centre stage.”

Mary Lappin, Lecturer, Grief and Loss Education and Deputy Head of the School of Education, said: ” “For many an experience of loss and bereavement will have had a considerable impact.

“Significant loss can be a painful and lonely experience and the accompaniment of adults, the modelling of healthy grief and a growing understanding of the potential impact of loss can be a most helpful way to support the wellbeing and flourishing of our young people post pandemic.”