Please note: there may be some adjustments to the teaching arrangements published in the course catalogue for 2020-21. Given current circumstances related to the Covid-19 pandemic it is anticipated that some usual arrangements for teaching on campus will be modified to ensure the safety and wellbeing of students and staff on campus; further adjustments may also be necessary, or beneficial, during the course of the academic year as national requirements relating to management of the pandemic are revised.

Complex Care Needs & Positive Behaviour Support MED5634

  • Academic Session: 2022-23
  • School: School of Health and Wellbeing
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No
  • Taught Wholly by Distance Learning: Yes

Short Description

Many individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities with challenging behaviours also have multiple, long term conditions that have a significant, negative impact on quality of life. The interaction of these long-term conditions with challenging behaviours creates a level of complexity that is challenging to health and social care practitioners and services. This course will enable students to develop knowledge and skills relevant to the delivery of positive behaviour support alongside health improvement programmes for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.


Teaching will be delivered via lectures and other online learning materials in semester 1.

Requirements of Entry


Excluded Courses





Essay: write an essay focused on co-existing condition(s) and with reference to the literature (40%, 1,500 words). ILO 1&2


Intervention plan: design a practice-based intervention accompanied by a short report (60%). ILO 3&4

Course Aims

The aims of this course are for students to:

■ develop knowledge of how conditions commonly co-exist with challenging behaviours in people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, interact and create complexity (ILO1 and ILO2)

■ develop skills relevant to the design and delivery of PBS interventions for individuals with complex care needs, across a range of health and social care settings. This will include using vignettes and case examples to support student learning on how to implement effective PBS interventions (ILO3)

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

1. Critically appraise the research evidence in relation to complex care conditions in people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

2. Critically discuss how co-existing long-term conditions interact with challenging behaviours to create complex care needs in people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

3. Formulate ways in which co-existing long-term conditions impact on challenging behaviours experienced by people with intellectual and developmental disabilities

4. Develop intervention strategies to deliver effective PBS for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who have challenging behaviours and complex care needs.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.