Helping people with developmental disabilities

Supporting children, adolescents and adults with developmental disabilities is the aim of a newonline initiative led by Griffith in collaboration with La Trobe University and Sydney University.

Launched to coincide with Speech Pathology Week 25-31 August, the N1 Practice in ResearchTraining Package is designed to provide allied health professionals such as speech pathologists,and educators who work with people with developmental disability, with a systematic way ofworking with their clients in order to increase research understanding and improve patientoutcomes.

The training package assists with this by helping allied health professionals and educators toevaluate their clients’ outcomes by using single case experimental designs (also known as N1

“The aim is for these clinicians to better understand the findings of clinical research and learn fromwhat other clinicians already know,” says study leader Dr David Trembath from Griffith’s Schoolof Rehabilitation Sciences. “Therefore the training package is designed to help clinicians think ofeach of their patients as a single research study. Users will be taken through a set of onlinemodules – universal to all disciplines – which they can work through at their own pace.”

An online research community

As part of the next planned phase of the initiative, Dr Trembath said the team will then beencouraging clinicians to share their findings with an online research community setting.

“It is hoped that clinicians will be able to benefit from this shared community, in order that they canenhance their overall research understanding within their particular discipline. This thencontributes to providing higher quality services for patients.”

Dr Trembath said that pilot studies of the research have already reaped positive results.“Talking with the 80 allied health professionals and educators who have participated so far, we’ve
found that after just 90 minutes of using the system, they have reported increased knowledge,confidence and skills in using single case designs in everyday practice.”

Hosted by La Trobe University, more information about obtaining the free package is available at