Learning disabilities study visit

Monday 14 August 2000

The University of St Andrews is to offer a unique opportunity to staff working in services for people with learning disabilities in Scotland.

Martin Campbell from the School of Psychology and Alex Rougvie, Director of the Centre for Continuing Education are organising a study visit to Los Angeles to examine various services operated by the world-famous Institute for Applied Behaviour Analysis (IABA). IABA is regarded as the world’s leading service provider of its kind.

Next month’s week-long visit – which will focus on services operated by IABA – will include spending time working with staff in services for people with learning disabilities in Los Angeles, as well as a variety of seminars and discussions on best policy and practice. The visit is in the context of the recently announced Scottish Executive’s plans for the next generation of services for people with learning disabilities in Scotland.

The St Andrews staff, who together provide a number of open learning and short courses for direct care staff, nurses, teachers and social workers in various aspects of learning disabilities, will be joined by over 20 social work, health and voluntary sector managers from throughout Scotland, England and Ireland. On their return to the UK, the group’s experiences will be published and made available to interested staff in services around Scotland.

Martin Campbell, Tutor in Learning Disabilities believes that Scotland has a lot to learn from Los Angeles.

Mr Campbell said, “The Scottish Executive’s new review of services includes the closure of all long stay hospitals for people with learning disabilities by 2005. A number of services internationally, like those in Los Angeles, have already gone some way to achieve this objective and now support people, some with quite significant needs, in community based services. By visiting such services and hearing from both policy makers and practitioners, managers in Scottish services are better informed and able to pass on their knowledge to staff in their own service.

“A secondary aim of the study visits is networking, both nationally and internationally. We have had a number of University organised seminars on our return from previous study visits, including a video conference with government ministers in British Columbia. Evaluation of the study visits has shown that delegates highly value the contacts they have maintained with each other and with staff in US and Canadian services”.

The University’s visit to Los Angeles follows similar visits to New York and British Columbia.


Issued by Beattie Media on behalf of the University of St Andrews For more information please contact Claire Grainger on 01334 462530, 07730 415 015 or email [email protected] Ref: losangeles/standrews/chg/15august2000

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