Implications for practice - Supported self-assessment
Benefits and challenges of supported self-assessment
The benefits of supported self-assessment include:
- choice, independence and flexibility in assessment for the individual, and a less intrusive process
- empowerment of the individual, as they are a partner in the process which recognises and draws on their knowledge and expertise, rather than being at risk of being seen as inferior in comparison to the professional assessor
- 24/7 access to supported self-assessment (when available online) – this enables the individual to carry out the assessment at a time convenient to them
- time for the individual to reflect on their situation, and consider their future needs
- an opportunity for the professional to guide the individual undertaking the supported self-assessment to relevant sources of help when they call on the professional to do so.
The challenges of supported self-assessment include:
- the need to ensure that the supported self-assessment process is accessible – for example, through multilingual versions of forms, access to the internet and the use of clear and plain English
- being aware of the potential lack of accuracy in the supported self-assessment and that there might be a tendency for individuals to overstate or understate needs – this needs to be considered particularly during the assurance process following completion of the supported self-assessment and may require additional follow-up
- appreciating the role of the practitioner in the supported self-assessment process: it is a supported process, based on joint working between the individual and the local authority, but ultimately it is the practitioner’s responsibility to determine if the supported self-assessment is complete and accurate, drawing on their experience and knowledge of the individual.