Ayres' Sensory Integration Therapy
Helping children and adults with SI difficulties
Thank you for your posts.
Re the closed Facebook Groups - these are Network resources, set up to provide access to general questions and discussions about SI, recent research, equipment suggestions etc. We know not everyone will want to or be able to access them, but they are there for those who enjoy engaging with others via Social Media. If they are not useful for you or your colleagues, we understand.
Re wanting to raise clinical issues and questions in this forum - this is an open space, so only suitable for general posts and discussions. Also as a training organisation, not a regulatory body, we are only able to give general responses, not specific advice to individuals or groups (see forum rules above).
The SI Network is part of ICEASI and committed to safeguarding and developing standards of SI training internationally. We cannot advise on what a therapist can do without any sensory training. You would need to refer to the HCPC guidelines for this.
After completing the SI Network’s Understanding Sensory Difficulties in Everyday Life 3 Day Course a therapist can use the knowledge gained on the course to inform their everyday practice, as outlined in the course information, but they cannot call themselves an SI practitioner. This course is suitable for all and not aimed at therapists. We recommend therapists undertake modular training, if they are interested in SI.
After successfully completing and passing Module 1 a therapist can use the knowledge gained on the course to inform their everyday practice, as outlined in the course information, but they cannot call themselves an SI practitioner.
Only after successfully completing and passing module 2/3 can a therapist call themselves an SI practitioner.
Good practice recommends that all sensory integration therapy must be supervised by a therapist with post graduate education in sensory integration (minimum module 2/3 or equivalent), who will monitor and adapt the assessment and treatment programmes as required.
If you require more specific advice about how you and your colleagues can use your SI knowledge in your everyday work, we would recommend contacting an SI trained mentor/clinical supervisor with the appropriate skill set, to support and advise you in your individual setting (see www.no1therapist.com).
Cathy Maguire (Director of Membership Services)
Thank you for your response.
In relation to the closed Facebook peer support group, this does not seem an appropriate solution in order to address the issues that I have raised; Facebook is firewalled in our Trust & so we would not be able to access the site via computers within the workplace. Also, not all of my colleagues have Facebook accounts & I personally do not feel comfortable discussing clinical matters on a social networking site, albeit it in a closed group.
Given that membership to the Sensory Integration network is something that members pay for, I think it is very disappointing that clinical issues and questions raised cannot be addressed through this forum, especially for those of us working in settings where Sensory Integration isn't an established or integral part of the service.
The Mental Health Lead has picked up the thread and suggests you may like to join the closed Facebook peer support group for therapists working in mental health settings. Here is the link to the group:
SI Network Mental health and Wellbeing https://www.facebook.com/groups/SINetworkMentalHealthandWellbeing/
Good luck with your SI journey and very best wishes,
Thank you for that, much appreciated.
I have passed your query on to some of our experts working in mental health settings and asked them to pick up this thread and come back to you with more information about using your SI knowledge in this type of setting.
Thank you for your reply. It is helpful to know what further training in modules 2 & 3 enables you to do.
You mention in your post that "until you have completed module 2/3 you should not call yourself an SI practitioner but you can use your SI knowledge to inform your every day practices".
My original post was really asking specifically how SI knowledge can be used to inform every day practices with the following stages of training:
- Sensory Integration Module 1
- Understanding Sensory Integration Difficulties in Everyday Life (3 day course)
- No sensory training
It is highly unlikely in the setting I work in (acute mental health working with adults) that staff would undertake training in modules 2&3. Staff are keen to know exactly what interventions they can and can't deliver given their current level of training/experience of SI.
To have clarification of this from the SI network would be helpful; "sensory" appears to be a bit of a buzz word in mental health services at present, and staff are keen to have reassurance that they are working within their remit.
Great question. This is what we recommend:
This module is designed to provide the foundation knowledge for you to understand the theory and practice of sensory integration theory and the evidence base. In addition, you will be able to draw on this knowledge to interpret structured clinical observations. The subsequent modules build on your knowledge and understanding of the theory of Sensory Integration from SI Module 1: Foundations and Neuroscience to SI Module 2/3: From Assessment to Practice to enable therapists to use this knowledge in the assessment and clinical reasoning process to identify sensory integration problems in the context of their specific client group and to outline the possible goals and intervention plan.
Successful completion of the courses and assignments for SI Module 1 (online or face to face) and SI Module 2/3 by an occupational therapist, physiotherapist or speech and language therapist confers Sensory Integration Practitioner status. It aims to equip therapists with independent practitioner level skills. SI Module 4 explores intervention through teaching, mentored clinical practice and peer presentation. Successful completion of the assignment and presentation of SI Module 4, together with previous SI 1 and 2/3 assignment completion, entitles the therapist to Advanced SI Practitioner status.
Good practice recommends that all sensory integration therapy must be supervised by a therapist with post graduate education in sensory integration (minimum Module 2/3 or equivalent), who will monitor and adapt the assessment and treatment programme as required. Therefore, you should complete SI Module 1 and SI Module 2/3 in order to practice sensory integration therapy.
So until you have completed module 2/3 you should not call yourself an SI practitioner but you can use your SI knowledge to inform your every day practices.
I have posted on here previously about what sensory work OT's trained in Module 1 can be delivered from a competency perspective.
I work with adult clients in acute psychiatry, and would like clarification about what sensory interventions staff can deliver according to their training experience?
Within our service, we have two staff members who have studied Module 1; to date, the staff have facilitated a ward-based sensory group that introduces the sensory systems, preferences and coping strategies, including the sensory toolkit. The staff concerned have also worked on a 1:1 basis with clients, completing a “sensory preference checklist” and devising a self-help sensory booklet from this outlining stressors, early warning signs and relaxation strategies in relation to the sensory systems.
A third member of staff has undertaken the 3-day training course (Understanding Sensory Integration Difficulties in Everyday Life); to date, this member of staff has worked on a 1:1 basis with people using sensory as a graded engagement tool. e.g. using hand held sensory items to assess individual’s sensory preferences, and providing further sensory items to support preferences identified.
It would be really helpful to clarify what the following training levels enable staff to deliver from a sensory perspective:
- Sensory Integration Module 1
- No sensory training
Thank you for your help.
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