About the Framework

The National Dementia Education and Training Standards Framework provides a guide to understanding key learning areas, levels and desired outcomes from dementia education across different education settings.

Education and training providers across Australia offer a variety of accredited and non-accredited dementia education and training programs. The National Dementia Education and Training Standards Framework provides a guide to what outcomes students should expect to achieve at different educational levels, and what topic areas and themes should be covered to best support and enhance the lives of people living with dementia.

At Learning Pathways, all our learning opportunities are aligned with this Standards Framework. Enabling users to self-assess their knowledge level and pinpoint areas of personal interest. By doing so, individuals gain the power to select the most suitable, evidence-based learning opportunities in order to enhance their skills and their careers.

Domains (Topics of Interest)

Learning Pathways uses Topics of Interest to categorise learning opportunities under key subject areas in dementia education. These topics directly correlate to the 14 Domains of Learning outlined within the National Dementia Education and Training Standards Framework . See all Domains and their descriptions below.

Explores recognising signs and symptoms of the various types of dementia, including young-onset and childhood dementia, accessing diagnosis, support, and services, the impact of neurological changes, reducing stigma, and promoting inclusion and strategies for reducing the risk of developing dementia.

This Domain covers recognising and understanding the early signs and symptoms of dementia, assessments, and timely diagnosis in different age groups, advance care planning, immediate post-diagnostic support, and connection to services.

This Domain includes capacity, informed consent and informed decision making; disability, equality and non-discrimination; the right to risk and to take risks, the right to take risks, and dignity of choice; privacy and confidentiality; legal and policy frameworks; preventing abuse and neglect; ensuring equal access to treatment and services; and minimising the use of restrictive practices.

This Domain includes understanding different paradigms and models of care for dementia, the importance of individuality and identity, addressing the human needs of individuals living with dementia, culture change in care and support, utilising an individual's life history to maintain personhood, fostering relationship-focused and person directed care, and understanding the impact of malignant social psychology and stigma on individuals living with dementia.

The focus of this Domain are valuing carers and families as care partners in decision-making, assessing carers needs, access to support and information for families and carers, conflicts of interest and balancing needs and choices, diversity, culture, and beliefs in the caring role, and supporting young carers and family members.

The themes covered in this Domain include supporting choice, autonomy, and supported decision making, supporting independence and function, multi-disciplinary approach to holistic care, access to rehabilitation services, enablement and reablement approaches, and driving.

The themes covered in this Domain include the impact of cognitive changes on communication, emotional intelligence, communication skills and techniques, enabling communication, cultural and language considerations, loneliness and isolation, and promoting connectedness.

The themes covered in this Domain include the expression of spirituality, meaning and finding purpose, personal growth, sense of emotional security, experiencing joy, mental health comorbidities, and engagement and socialisation.

The themes in this Domain include delirium, reducing overmedication (polypharmacy), managing pain, sensory impairment, and other comorbidities, mobility and physical activity, nutrition and hydration,continence issues, and sleep.

This Domain covers understanding and applying the relevant principles of design that contribute to a person-centred built environment, assessing the impact of the environment on a person's quality of life and adapting it, utilising assistive technology, supporting community access to the outdoors, self-engagement, leisure, and recreation and developing meaningfully engaging spaces.

This domain covers understanding of behaviour as communication, the causes of illbeing and distress that lead to changed behaviour, and positive approaches to meeting the needs of people living with dementia, including psycho-social-spiritual engagement (which includes activities, therapies and engagement that help meet a person's need for emotional and social support, and spiritual wellbeing).. Other themes include access to information and support, the use and limitations of pharmacological interventions, language and labelling, and psychological symptoms.

This domain encompasses respecting diverse backgrounds and cultures, developing cultural competence, understanding sexuality, gender, and body diversity, specific challenges faced when living with dementia in regional, rural and remote areas, and recognising the impact of cultural perceptions and beliefs on the experience of dementia.

The focus of this domain is building cultural competence, increasing community awareness and understanding, and access to culturally safe and appropriate services, the prevalence and incidence of dementia in Indigenous communities, developing culturally responsive assessment and diagnosis practices, and understanding the importance of community-based care in this population.

The themes of this domain include the importance of end of life care and palliative approaches that uphold high standards of clinical practice and ethical considerations, reduce pain, distress, and suffering as much as possible, physical care needs, respecting choices in end of life conversations and decisions, and cultural and spiritual needs, through to supporting both individuals and their families through bereavement and grief.

Tiers (Knowledge Levels)

Learning Pathways uses Knowledge levels to classify learning opportunities and act as a guide to what outcomes students should expect to achieve at different educational levels, with each building on the previous. These levels directly correlate to the 4 Tiers of Learning described within the National Dementia Education and Training Standards Framework. See all the Tiers described below.

1. Introductory

I am new to supporting people with dementia and/or I would like to develop basic or introductory dementia knowledge about this topic.

2. Foundational

I already have some basic knowledge or experience of dementia in this topic and would like to increase my knowledge and understanding to support or care for a person living with dementia.

3. Enhanced Practice

I already have foundational knowledge in this topic and would like to develop a deeper knowledge and skill base to support people living with dementia and their carers and/or progress to becoming a dementia specialist practitioner.

4. Advanced Practice/ Expertise

I have in-depth knowledge or experience built on the previous three levels in this topic and seek advanced dementia knowledge and skills to support and lead innovation and practice and/or become a dementia specialist practitioner or researcher.