Desuto Tools Used to Train Social Workers

Safe and Realistic Learning Opportunities

Leeds University have utilised the Desuto Mental Capacity Assessment tool in their Social Worker Training Course.

Third year students were challenged to watch a documentary about a lady on a hospital ward.  The staff are concerned she has dementia and is unable to make the decision about going home.  There is a suggestion that the staff and doctors are misusing the MCA because when she is at home she constantly calls 999 for help.  The students were tasked with completing an assessment of Mental Capacity using the MCA tool and reporting on their findings. 

The Module Lead, Adam Boyes, said "the tools allow our students to be guided through complicated assessments in a logical manner and provide immediate access to the facts they need to know.  For the students, this provides instant feedback.  As the educator, I’m provided with a detailed report at the end that I can analyse.  With this, I can assess my own teaching, provide individual feedback to the student or prompt further learning... I strongly believe this tool should be rolled out to all the professions within the School of Healthcare.  It shouldn’t just be Social Workers who have an understanding of the MCA."

Our first survey of users suggested that in addition to providing decision support and report writing functions the tools are powerful training aids that support the transfer of knowledge to practice. We are pleased to see this being recognised in one of our leading Universities.  

We are planning a further, more rigorous evaluation of the system with Plymouth University in May this year and will report on our progress.