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Best Interests Assessor

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Best Interests Assessors are needed to ensure that decisions about patients/ service users which affect their liberty are taken with reference to their human rights and to safeguard their best interests (Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards).

Who the module is aimed at 

Professionals including Social Workers, Nurses, Occupational Therapists and Chartered Psychologists who already demonstrate a high level professional practice in their specialism. You will be able to work independently and autonomously and have a working knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act (2005) and human rights legislation.

You will have a minimum of 2 years post qualifying experience.

Benefits of taking the module to the individual, the organisation and the patient

Health and social care organisations have to request assessments on those patients and service users where decisions need to be taken.  This module meets the requirements of the DoLS regulations, covering the expected skills and knowledge of a Best Interest Assessor.

Patients need the safeguards to be in place to ensure any decisions about their health and care are taken in their best interests and to help protect their liberty.

What you learn 

Aims are to equip you to have legal and policy knowledge and practice assessment skills to be able to undertake the role of BIA to a competent level.

You will be able to gather relevant information from a range of sources, weigh up evidence to inform sound decision making and complete legal paperwork to a high standard.

General areas covered 

  • Mental Capacity Act (2005) and DoLS Codes of Practice
  • Other legislation - e.g. Human Rights and Mental Health Act (1983)
  • Assessment, judgments and decision making in complex risk situations

If you are being sponsored by your employer (not via NHS LBR/SSPRD funding) then please fill in the Pg Application Form listed under How to apply / self-funder information below.  Please attach to your application a letter of sponsorship including the following information:

  • Applicant's name, course and academic year
  • The amount of the fees they have agreed to pay (i.e. 100%)
  • The company name, address, telephone number and authorised signature
  • The invoice address and any purchase order number

Fees and Funding for 2019/20

Indicative price for stand-alone module

Home / EU student: £670

International students: £1,125 - this is part-time study and therefore cannot provide sponsorship for Tier 4.


This module attracts Learning Beyond Registration/Specialist Skills and Post Registration Development (LBR/SSPRD) funding by the following schemes:

How to apply

To apply for a self-funded place, please complete and return the application form below:

To apply for a Learning Beyond Registration/Specialist Skills and Post Registration Development (LBR/SSPRD) funded place, please complete and return the relevant application form below:

Further information and LBR/SSPRD online application form

  • Entry requirements

    • Relevant professional qualification - Social Work, Occupational Therapy, Nursing or Chartered Psychology (in practice)

    • A minimum of 2 years post-qualification work experience in Health and Social Care

    • Experience of carrying out capacity assessments and knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act

    • Access to shadow 3-4 BIA/DoLS assessments must be available

    If you are being sponsored by your employer, please indicate on the application form that they are offering you the required shadowing opportunities.  If you are self-funded or your employer does not have DoLS responsibilities, they you must provide a letter from a DoLS Team Manager stating that they are willing to offer you the shadowing opportunities.

  • Attendance

    Delivery Method:

    This module is delivered at our City Campus

    View our statement on notional study hours »

    Provisional timetable

    This module has two planned intakes as follows:

    • November 2019: with attendance at the University required on 11th, 12th & 13th November 2019 and 16th, 17th and 18th December 2019.  The Viva assessment will be held w/c 20th January 2020
    • April 2020: with attendance at the University required on 13th, 14th and 15th April 2020 and 18th, 19th and 20th May 2020.  The Viva assessments will  be held w/c 22nd June 2020.

    View our statement on timetable changes »

  • Assessment

    Module assessment is made up of one or more assessment tasks. The assessment task(s) for this module are:

    • Written Assignment
    • Viva: typically, a combination of a presentation/demonstration to one or more academics, with discussion, questioning and oral feedback

    Successful completion of this module will earn you 15 level 7 credits

Further details

For further information please contact the module leader Alan Marshall - or contact the student experience team:

(0114) 225 2373

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