Subject details

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Define 'complex and challenging needs' within the context of disability practice
  2. Synthesise complex information about different theories of behaviour and their application to the 'complex and challenging needs' of people with disabilities
  3. Critically evaluate a behaviour support plan
  4. Analyse critically the obstacles to the successful implementation of behaviour support intervention that are likely to exist in various settings
  5. Develop and defend a behaviour support plan for a person with disability who displays complex and challenging behaviours.
    • Attachment Theory
    • Positive Behaviour Support
    • Psychologically Informed Environments
  • Study resources

    • Instructional methods

      • Embedded Multimedia
      • Discussion forum/Discussion Board
      • Web links
    • Online materials

      • Resources and Links
      • Audio-Video streaming


In order to enrol in this subject, students are required to apply to OUA's Postgraduate Single Subjects program (OUA-PSU-GCE).

Special requirements

No special requirements

Many people with disabilities have complex support needs related to the interplay of social disadvantage and multiple other factors such as poor health or mental health, cognitive impairment, autism or limited communication that leads to challenging behaviours and their exclusion from services, the imposition of restrictive practices or incarceration in the criminal justice system. In this subject, students will explore the various sub-groups of people with disability who have complex support needs and explore different theoretical approaches to understanding and supporting challenging behaviours, such as positive behaviour support, psychodynamic theory and enabling environments.

Theories of behaviour forum - Forum postings on readings around theories of behaviour support. Support Plan Critique - Students to critique a support plan based on a given scenario. Support Plan Development - Students to develop and justify/defend a support against given criteria.

  • Theories of behaviour forum (500-word equivalent) (10%)
  • Support Plan Critique (2,000- word equivalent (40%)
  • Support Plan Development (2,500-word equivalent) (50%)

Textbook information is pending.

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