Louise Phillips

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Louise worked for many years supporting people with learning disability and challenging behaviour in a direct support capacity. Louise is currently a PhD candidate at LaTrobe University in Melbourne Australia. She is undertaking a qualitative project; investigating how support staff respond to challenging behaviour and why they respond as they do. Louise is also a Research Assistant with the Living with Disability research team at LaTrobe University, and is involved in researching Active Support implementation and Practice Leadership in residential group homes across Australia.


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Staff training for challenging behaviour – what impact does it have?

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Training for staff in understanding and responding to challenging behaviour – must be a good thing… But how much do we know about the impact of this training on subsequent staff performance and levels of challenging behaviour?

Here, Louise Phillips looks at a review of the literature that set out to explore these questions in more detail.

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Understanding depressive symptoms in adults with mild intellectual disability


Whilst rates vary in the literature, depression is probably more common in people with learning disabilities than in the general population, though it can be easily missed.

Here Louise Phillips looks at a study which set out to look at differences between self-report and carers’ descriptions of depressive symptoms.

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Support worker attitudes a key influencer of outcomes for people with learning disabilities, but new scales needed to measure these


Although the research base is small, it does strongly suggest that the attitudes of support workers can be key influencers of outcomes for people with learning disabilities and this would seem to be an entirely reasonable assumption. Here, Louise Phillips looks at a study which set out to not only explore the attitudes of a number of support workers in one service, but also to consider whether existing attitude measurement scales capture the range of attitudes expressed.

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Achieving increases in active support through practice leadership needs systematic development of skills and management focus says exploratory study


Active support is about ensuring staff have working practices and organisational procedures to improve levels of participation and engagement in activities.

In her debut blog for the Learning Disabilities Elf, Louise Philips describes a study which set out to look at whether the quality of practice leadership was a factor in developing active support.

Louise also sets out an excellent breakdown of exactly what practice leadership is what managers need to do to ensure this framework for practice development is robust.

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