Staff carers’ perceptions of their communication with adults with learning disabilities.
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background. The staff carer is an important communication partner for many adults with learning disabilities (ALDs). Previous research has viewed the carer as having shortcomings in adapting their communication to the individual. Method. A small-scale study was conducted to explore staff carers’ perceptions of their communication with ALDs. Three in-depth semi structured interviews with carers were carried out and data were analysed using an interpretational phenomenological approach (IPA). Results. It was evident from the data that carers were mindful of each individual’s form of communication. The results revealed five main themes: Being client focused; Getting to know the client; Communicative environment affecting communication; Collaborative working with others and Issues on training in communication. Conclusions. The accounts in this study have implications in terms of what constitutes best practice in interacting with ALDs. Further research comparing carer reports with video interactions of their communicative exchanges with ALDs is proposed.
BSc (Hons) Speech and Language Therapy
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