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NU7814 Enhancing the experience of Living with Dementia (10 ECTS)

Learning Outcomes

Following completion of this module the student should be able to:

  • MO3.1 Demonstrate a clear understanding of the subjective experiences of the person with dementia and the informal carer MO3.2 Critically discuss the essential components of ‘enabling environments’ for people with dementia to include design and assistive technology
  • MO3.3 Demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of risk and safety promotion when working with people with dementia
  • MO3.4 Differentiate between and critically discuss a range of non-pharmacological interventions to support active living and social connectedness
  • MO3.5 Explain the range of pharmacological interventions (and associated considerations) that can be used in the management of dementia

Module Learning Aims & Rationale

This module was developed to enable students to appreciate the complexity of living with dementia from a variety of perspectives, to include: the person with dementia, informal carers and environmental considerations. The module will enable students to acquire a comprehensive understanding of concepts critical to a range of practice interventions, which can be used to support quality of life.

The aims of the module are:

  • To enhance students’ sensitivity to the subjective experience of living with dementia from the perspectives of the person with dementia and the informal carer/significant others,
  • To develop students’ critical awareness of how the ‘lived’ environment impacts on quality of life in dementia and
  • To enable students to acquire comprehensive evidence based knowledge of a range of interventions that can be used to support active living and social connectedness for people living with dementia.

Methods of Teaching and Student Learning

Preparatory guided readings, podcasts of presentations on session content with module lecturers and interviews with subject specialists, postings on blogs and reflections relating to learning from module tasks and engagement with online learning resources designed to extend learning.

Recommended Reading List

Indicative Resources

  • Aguirre E., Spector A., Streater A., Hoe J., Woods B. and Orrell M. (2012) Making a Difference 2. An Evidence-based Group Programme to Offer Maintenance Cognitive Stimulation Therapy (CST) to People with Dementia. A Manual for Group Leaders. Hawker Publications, London.
  • Alzheimer Society. (2011) Optimising Treatment and Care for People with Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia. A Best Practice Guide for Health and Social Care Professionals. Alzheimer Society, London.
  • Alzheimer Society. (2011) Reducing the Use of Anti-Psychotic Drugs. A Guide to the Treatment and Care of Behavioural and Psychological Symptoms of Dementia. Alzheimer’s Society, London.
  • Cahill S. and Moore V. (2010) Cognitive Impairment and Dementia: A Practical Guide to Daily Living for Family Caregivers. School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity College Dublin.
  • Clarke C., Wilkinson H., Keady J. and Gibb C. (2011) Risk Assessment and Management for Living Well with Dementia. Bradford Dementia Good Practice Guidelines. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London.
  • Downs M. and Bowers B. (2014) Excellence in Dementia Care, Research Into Practice 2nd edn. Open University Press, Maidenhead.
  • Gibson F. (2011) Reminiscence and Life Story Work. 4th edn. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London.
  • Killick J. and Craig C. (2011) Creativity and Communication in Persons with Dementia. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London.
  • Pearce, M., Cahill S., Grey T., and Dyer M. (2015) Research for Dementia and Home Design in Ireland Looking at New Build and Retrofit Homes from a Universal Design Approach. Centre for Excellence in Deisgn, National Disability Authority, Dublin.
  • Perrin T., May H. & Anderson E. (2008) An Occupational Approach for Therapists and Well-being in Dementia. 2nd edn. Churchill Livingstone, Edinburgh.
  • Pollock R. and Marsh T. (2012) Designing Interiors for People with Dementia. Dementia Services Development Centre Stirling, Stirling. (See DSDC Stirling website for a comprehensive list of guides for various aspects of design applied to different care contexts).
  • Sabat S. (2001) The Experience of Alzheimer’s Disease. Life Through a Tangled Veil. Blackwell, Oxford.
  • Schwarz S,, Froelich L, and Burns A. (2012) Pharmacological treatment of dementia. Current Opinions in Psychiatry, 25(6):542-50. doi: 10.1097/YCO.0b013e328358e4f2

*Other readings will be provided by individual lecturers.