Course taster

The role of shame in working with LD service users

In Unit 4 you looked at bias and shame specifically for those with sexual offending convictions. Shame can be a crucial factor with other offending types as well, due to the social isolation and judgement from society towards these behaviours. Individuals with LD needs also frequently reported being subjected to negative social experiences such as social rejection, humiliation, prejudice and discrimination. This external shame can compound the shame associated with offending behaviour, as well as any internal shame that the individual may have developed through their life experiences. Based on this, it is vital that, as practitioners, we understand the role of shame and how this applies to this population.

In the following activity you'll have the opportunity to further consider the impact that shame can have on service users with LD.


Aim: To consider best practice when working with individuals with LD.

Duration: 30 minutes

Feedback: This activity is not graded, and feedback will not be provided by the course tutor directly. However, there will be an opportunity to share and discuss your reflections in a live session. You can also share these reflections with your clinical supervisor and may wish to include these as part of your practice diary, which will be reviewed by your clinical supervisor.

Task: Read the following paper, which is available through your online reading list, and in no more than 500 words reflect on how shame may impact service users with LD and how, as practitioners, we need to address this in interventions (the links to the papers not available in this course taster).

Clapton, N.E., Willians, J., & Jones, R.S.P. (2017). The role of shame in the development and maintenance of psychological distress in adults with intellectual disabilities: A narrative review and synthesis. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 00, 1–17.

Link your points to the standards of proficiency, highlighting where your reflections are demonstrating competence for the following SoPs:

Standards of Proficiency (SOPs)

2.5 to respect and uphold the rights, dignity, values, and autonomy of service users including their role in the assessment, diagnostic, treatment, and intervention and/or therapeutic approaches process

4.2 to use their skills, knowledge and experience, and the information available to them, to make informed decisions and / or take action where necessary

4.3 make reasoned decisions to initiate, continue, modify or cease treatment or the use of techniques or procedures, and record the decisions and reasoning appropriately

5.1 respond appropriately to the needs of all different groups and individuals in practice, recognising this can be affected by difference of any kind including, but not limited to protected characteristics, intersectional experiences and cultural differences

5.3 recognise the potential impact of their own values, beliefs and personal biases (which may be unconscious) on practice and take personal action to ensure all service users and carers are treated appropriately with respect and dignity

5.4 understand the duty to make reasonable adjustments in practice and be able to make and support reasonable adjustments in theirs and others' practice

12.5 understand the theoretical basis of, and the variety of approaches to, assessment and intervention