Can an interactive e-learning training package improve the understanding of Personality Disorder within mental health professionals?

Lamph, Gary orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-4099-2812, Sampson, Mark, Smith, Debra, Williamson, Gary and Guyers, Mark (2018) Can an interactive e-learning training package improve the understanding of Personality Disorder within mental health professionals? The Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice, 13 (2). pp. 124-134. ISSN 1755-6228

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Purpose -Personality disorder is reported to elicit strong emotional responses and negative attitudes in mental health staff (Bodner et al., 2015). The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the design and development of a co-produced e-learning training package for personality disorder awareness and an evaluation of its effectiveness. This study was carried out to explore if e-learning is an effective mode of training delivery for raising personality disorder awareness.

Design/methodology/approach - The e-learning was uniquely developed by subject matter experts working in co-production with people with lived experience. Self-reported measures were completed at three separate intervals to evaluate the effectiveness of the training: at pre-, post- and three-month follow up. Quantitative data were collected via these questionnaires.

Findings - The results from this evaluation show that e-learning is an effective mode of delivery for raising the awareness of personality disorder among mental health professionals, achieving similar outcomes to those reported following face-to-ace training.

Research limitations/implications - Attrition at follow-up phase was high which was consistent with other similar studies. The evaluation was led by the lead contributors and in the geographical area of its development. The study was relatively small and the participants were self-selected, therefore findings should be treated with caution.

Practical implications - E-learning can provide flexible training to compliment and act as an alternative to face-to-face personality disorder training. E-learning may provide an alternative refresher course to knowledge and understanding framework or other face-to-face methods. Co-produced training can be mirrored within an e-learning programme, careful planning to ensure the service user voice is heard and that their lived experience is embraced is required.

Originality/value - This is the first evaluation of a co-produced e-learning only personality disorder awareness training.

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