module specification

SW7016 - Embedding the Mental Capacity Act into Practice (2018/19)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2018/19
Module title Embedding the Mental Capacity Act into Practice
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Professions
Total study hours 300
45 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
207 hours Guided independent study
48 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Written essay
Running in 2018/19 No instances running in the year

Module summary

• This module will enable practitioner to ensure they have in depth knowledge of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards 2007and the implications for their own and others practice.
• It will explore the full range of opportunities and options the act provides to protect an individual’s rights and ensure autonomous decision making is protected as far as is possible.
• Participants will be encouraged to discuss the difficulties and tensions posed by the act and to develop strategies to work though them with families, the adult and fellow professionals.
• The module will explore the impact of case law and research on the development of the act, its implementation and the challenges posed by embedding it into practice.


What is the Mental Capacity Act 2005/Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards? Where did it come from? Why was it needed and what does it do?  L.O 1,3
To include;
Looking at an overview of the act.
Looking at the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards amendment (2007)
Considering the practice in place before the act and why it was needed
Exploring the principles and processes within the act and the amendment.
The role of the Public Guardians and the Court of Protection

Assessing Capacity, the rights, wrongs and legal complexities.  L.O 1,2,4,5
To include;
The capacity assessment tool and how it is used.
The reasons it is often disputed and challenged.
Developing best practice in capacity assessments
Inter-professional disagreements and capacity.
Looking at case law and the legal implications.

Embedding the Mental Capacity Act in day to day practice. Why has it been such a challenge?  L.O 1,2,3,5,7
To include:
The tensions; protection v autonomy.
The unwise decision principle and accountability
Best interest decisions and local mediation
The requirement to assume capacity
The use of I.M.C.A
Section 5 and the return to common sense.

Understanding the impact of case law on deprivation of liberty practice requirements.  L.O 1,2,3,4,5,6
To include;
The HL v UK case at the ECtHR and the Bournewood Gap.
How this developed into the Deprivation of liberty Safeguards
Looking at Cheshire West and P & Q cases and the changes to DoLS including the increased use of COPODL.
Looking at the future: the Liberty Protection Safeguards and their current legal position.
The ‘Acid test’ its importance and application since 2014.

Developing your own and others best practice in some of the most challenging aspects of the Act.  To include;  L.O 1,2,4,5,6
Working with adults who have fluctuating capacity.
Exploring an ethical, person centred approaches to best interest decision making
When is a decision ‘unwise’ and what are the expectations and boundaries on practice
Looking at the practical applications of the unwise decision principle, to include advanced decisions to refuse treatment.
Challenging LPA’s and Court Appointed deputies via the public guardians
Making applications to the Court of Protection

Becoming a confident, competent practitioner in embedding the Mental Capacity Act 2005. To include:  L.O 1,2,3,4,5,6,7
Looking at where your strengths lie and what you find difficult.
Explore how you see the practice of colleagues, managers and other professions.
Develop action plans and strategies to improve your own and others practice.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The richness of adult learning and training is the diversity of the participants. In roles, levels of experience, priorities, levels of understanding, personality, ethnicity etc. This module will enable everyone to have a positive experience of the course, the key messages of the programme will be re-enforced in various ways to ensure people with visual, auditory or kinaesthetic learning styles have equal opportunity to absorb the essential information. This will be achieved by using lots of real examples, chosen to relate as closely as possible to the work place of the specific participants. It should also involve encouraging participants to think of examples themselves in situations they may be part of and in settings they visit. If the sessions feel really relevant and targeted to the participants, they are far more likely to achieve the learning outcomes.

We will ensure participants understand how to access further resources, e learning packages to support their learning is essential in achieving a blended learning approach. Only a limited amount of information can be absorbed at a workshop so it important participants have opportunity for good reflective effective supervision, mentoring and modelling to embed new skills and knowledge and the motivation to seek further information as required.

Learning outcomes

At the end of the module participants will have;;

1. Knowledge and confidence practice in all relevant areas of the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and Deprivation of Liberty 2007 from the principles to the key sections of the Act.
2. Focused on the Mental Capacity Assessment tool, how it is used, what goes wrong and how to improve own and others practice.
3. A good understanding of the development of the act, why it was needed and the history of its development and implementation.
4. Developed clear strategies to support the ongoing embedding of all aspects of the act in their own and others practice.
5. Explored the tensions and challenges posed by the implementation of the MCA and DoLS and have developed strategies to manage them for themselves and others.
6. Considered the impact of case law and on-going research in how the Act has developed since 2007 and looked at future pathways for change.
7. Developed knowledge and confidence towards becoming a competent MCA/DoLS practitioner.

Assessment strategy

An analytical essay exploring what difference the implementation of the MCA/DoLS has made to the lives of adults with care and support needs. This should look at general examples and some specific case studies.



Core Text:
The Mental Capacity Act 2005: A Guide for Practice (Post-Qualifying Social Work Practice Series) Paperback – 5 Oct 2015
Other Texts:
Mental Capacity Act Code of Practice

A Practical Guide to the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Putting the Principles of the Act Into Practice. (2015) Matthew Graham, Jakki Cowley, Alex Ruck Keene (foreword)

Mental Capacity Act Manual by Richard Jones (seventh addition 2015)
Grandpa on a Skateboard (Second Edition): The practicalities of assessing mental capacity and unwise decisions Paperback – 4 Aug 2017by Tim Farmer  (Author)
A critique of the domestic law framework Access to Social Care Human Rights: transforming services? By Bowen, P (2014) London. Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE)

Social Work Theory and Practice (2017) by Lesley Deacon - University of Sunderland, UK Stephen J. Macdonald - University of Sunderland, UK

39 Essex Chambers | Mental Capacity Guidance Note: A Brief Guide ...

Assessing mental capacity: The Mental Capacity Act | The BMJ

The British Journal of Social Work (Oxford journals for BASW)
Professional Social Work. (BASW)
Journal of Social Work  SAGE Publications Ltd
British Journal of Social Work  Social Care Online

39 Essex Chambers
British Association of Social Workers: BASW
Community Care Social Work News & Social Care Jobs
National Institute for Social Work: NISW
The British Journal of Social Work Oxford Academic - Oxford Journals

Electronic Databases:
Social Care Online.
Social Policy & Practice

Social Media Sources