Establishing a work-based learning programme: vocational rehabilitation in a forensic learning disability setting

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This paper is a reflective account of a work-based learning programme designed for patients within a forensic learning disability service. The literature review indicated a shortage of published work in this field and reference is made to developments in mental health settings. A commentary is provided of the three partners involved and the working relationship between the hospital, the workplace and the further education college. As a specific vocational rehabilitation programme, it was important to consider the context of a work placement and the process of introducing an award-bearing course.

The paper provides a description of the current developments in the qualification structure at entry level and the progress of a pilot group. Views were sought from the patient group about their involvement in the programme and the advantages of collaborative work are stated, with the joint delivery by an occupational therapy student, a teacher and the nursing team. It is suggested that the narrative of this paper could be built on, with the application of an assessment tool to provide a quantitative analysis of the impact of the programme. It is the intention that the descriptive elements of the paper will inform other practitioners and contribute to a model of good practice.


Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2010

More about this publication?
  • The British Journal of Occupational Therapy (BJOT) is the official journal of the College of Occupational Therapists. Its purpose is to publish articles relevant to theory, practice, research, education and management in occupational therapy internationally.

    BJOT publishes research articles, critical reviews, practice analyses, opinion pieces, editorials, letters to the editor, book reviews and an annual index. Please refer to the author's guide at

    Submissions can be made at

    The 2013 Impact Factor for The British Journal of Occupational Therapy is 0.897.

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