Key Facts

Module Title: NUR-30169: Contemporary Issues in Learning Disability
Mode of Study:Trimester 1/September
Contact Details:Contact School of Nursing and Midwifery - 01782 679611
Faculty: Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Fees: Click for details

This new, exciting and innovative module has been designed to meet the needs of those professionals working in care settings with people who have a learning disability who wish to extend their knowledge and understanding of the contemporary issues surrounding modern day learning disabilities practice. The module will develop the ability of the students to adopt a critical, analytical approach to the delivery and development of care and services.

This module is appropriate to a wide range of professionals working in care settings providing services for people with learning disabilities. The student must have a relevant registration with an approved body and must have at least 6 months recent experience of working with people who have learning disabilities who also may have co-existing complex needs.

A range of student-centred activities enable flexible learning with the module being delivered predominantly through the online Keele Learning Environment (KLE). One of the advantages of studying online is that students can manage their studies to fit with their other life commitments and, to this end, you will require access to a computer and a broadband internet connection. You will benefit from the support of a dedicated online tutor and will complete a number of online learning activities, both as an individual and collaboratively with fellow online students. You will also attend a small number of workshops.

This stimulating module may form part of the Graduate Certificate.

This module is a core module for the BSc (Hons) Clinical Practice (learning disability) Pathway.

This module may be undertaken as a stand alone elective module within the BSc (Hons) award for other pathways however it is normally the Clinical Practice Module is taken alongside the Learning Disabilities Module.

This module is available as a free standing elective.

This is a work based learning module where learning occurs in the practitioner’s work place.

Course Duration: 30 Weeks

Attendance: Combination of lectures and online learning



  • To develop students' capacity to critically analyse the issues underpinning learning disability practice, policy and service delivery in order to further enhance the practitioners' care delivery through the application of critical knowledge and enhanced understanding of learning disability
  • Facilitate students’ critical application of theory to  practice within their area of work;
  • Enable students to augment patient / client centred practice through the critical application of evidence, enhanced knowledge, and understanding within their workplace. The module is delivered over a thirty week period using a blended learning approach. Such an approach creates and provides learning opportunities that are flexible, responsive, and relevant to practitioner’s’ needs.

A professional, relevant, registration with an approved body.
Minimum of 6 months recent experience working in a care setting providing services for people who have learning disabilities.
Students must be working with people with learning disabilities.

The main learning activity for this module will be via blended learning, self directed study supported by tutorials and workshops, hence the content will be delivered thematically with common strands to each themes.

The main themes are:
(Many people with learning disability have epilepsy and often is the main focus of care)

Mental Health
(Evidence demonstrates that more people with learning disability suffer mental health problems than do the general problem.)

Challenging Behaviour
(For a proportion of people with learning disability, challenging behaviour is a major component to their life, therapeutic interventions, research evidence and care delivery is constantly developing.)

Autism Spectrum Disorder
(Knowledge and understanding of this spectrum is growing year on year, professional carers need to be aware of new interventions and contemporary practice.)

Forensic Behaviour
(The number of people with learning disability who are identified with criminal behaviour is increasing, more services are being provided for this group of people).

Physical Health
(Evidence demonstrates that people with learning disability are more prone to physical health problems than the general population)

Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities
(There are between 250,000 and 350,000 people in the UK with such disabilities, there are constant developments in care patterns that allow this group of people to live longer and have a better quality of life.)

Each of these themes will have the following strands running through, thus each theme will focus around:

The family/service user
(The effects of the theme on the family and how this impinges on care delivery to their family member with learning disabilities).

Therapeutic interventions
The delivery of care is driven, in part by the quality of therapeutic interventions: these interventions change with growing evidence and become the key to good quality care delivery.

Legal, ethical and policy development
All care delivery in the practice setting is driven by a range of legal, ethical and policy developments. Currently in learning disability such initiatives are in a positive constant change and professional carers must be able to utilise such change to enhance practice.

Inter-professional Service delivery
Multi-professional working is key to the delivery of a seamless service and care enhancement. Critical knowledge of the processes and development of such services which support people with learning disabilities to live as independent life style as possible

No. 01: Assessment Type: Reflective Analysis
  Assessment Marking Scheme: Assessment rule 40%
  Brief Description: 3000 word client based study
  Contribution to the module mark: 50% Qualifying Mark: 40
  Apply For Exemption from Anonymous Assessment: No
  Optional Detailed Description of Assessment: In relation to the learning outcomes of the module, this assessment will allow the students to explore and critically analyse the care delivered to a client with learning disabilities. The students will use reflective model/s to demonstrate their understanding and critical thinking about contemporary learning disability care.

No. 02: Assessment Type: Poster Presentation
  Assessment Marking Scheme: Assessment rule 40%
  Brief Description: Students are to present an educational poster relating to an identified theme from within the module content
  Contribution to the module mark: 25% Qualifying Mark: 40
  Apply For Exemption from Anonymous Assessment: Yes
  Optional Detailed Description of Assessment: The individual poster will be presented (15 minutes) to peers who will, in conjunction with the module leader, utilise questions and discussions that will ensure theory can be applied to practice.

No. 03: Assessment Type: Essay
  Assessment Marking Scheme: Assessment rule 40%
  Brief Description: 1000 word justification of presentation
  Contribution to the module mark: 25% Qualifying Mark: 40
  Apply For Exemption from Anonymous Assessment: No
  Optional Detailed Description of Assessment: The poster presentation assessment will be supported by a 1000 word supportive paper that will demonstrate how the student utilises current evidence to underpin an aspect/topic selected from the module content.