Strategies & Skills Learning & Development
Conceptual Advantages
  • As SSLD understands the problems presented by our clients in terms of skills deficiency and learning needs, it does not carry the value, judgement or stigmatisation implied by other systems of intervention (e.g., sickness, delinquency).
  • Although the procedure itself is explicitly directive, the outcome of the training is the expansion of the client's repertoire of behaviour, and thus his or her range of personal choice. This feature of SSLD is compatible with the values of self determination empowerment and developing the full potential of the client. It can be easily adopted by programs aiming at empowerment and/or advocacy.
  • Focus on observable behavioral change offers helpful clues to and specific illustrations of personal and social meaning. This focus provides a firm anchorage for program development and monitoring progress.
Technical Advantages

The client participates in defining the intervention objectives and articulating personal goals. The motivation comes directly from the client's conscious effort to attain such goals. Resistance, which usually arises out of the perceived discrepancy between the trainer's objectives and those of the client, is minimized.

  • Easy measurement of outcome for practice, service evaluation and research purposes.
  • Draws on the extensive body of empirical research associated with the development of social cognitive theory and with service programs utilizing social skills learning and training procedures.
  • Uses a well-structured method with very a systematic procedure; this makes learning and mastery by practitioners relatively easy.
  • Lends itself readily to time-limited interventions, and is particularly suited to group intervention programs. These features enhance cost-effectiveness.
Practical Advantages
  • As an active and action oriented approach, SSLD is particularly valuable in settings requiring active input of the practitioner (e.g., classes/training, residential, parenting, outreaching, community work).
  • The learning and educational orientation fits in very nicely with certain cultural expectations of helping professionals.
  • Wide range of application, including clients with severe psychiatric problems, developmental challenges, young children and very sophisticated clients.
  • Can readily be used in combination with other intervention or treatment modalities.
  • Since SSLD is conducted in an incremental manner with cumulative results. Negative effects due to staff turn-over can be minimized. In the case of a transfer, the new practitioner may establish a working relationship with the client in order to continue with, and build upon, the learning previously completed.