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Nothing about us, without us.

July 15, 2012

I found a great web site that I want to share with you. It is located at

I found this web site after finding a little bit of information about a research project called Talking about sex and relationships: the views of young people with learning disabilities. This research project was completed in the United Kingdom. In Canada we tend to use the terms developmental or intellectual disability rather than learning disability. I will have to find out what term is used in the UK for what in Canada we call a learning disability. I’ll do that another day.

Anyways, the information gained during the research project was interesting. However, even more interesting for me were the methods used to complete the research and to disseminate the information. Drama was used to make it more comfortable for young people with intellectual disabilities to discuss relationships and sex. The research team likely gained more information from the young people by completing the research in this way. The research report had a very accessible section with lots of clear line drawings. The supposedly less accessible section was written very clearly with little to no jargon. It was easier to read and understand than this blog post is.

There is a saying in the disability rights movement “Nothing about us, without us.” This research project is a great example of effort being made to include those people traditionally called research subjects as researchers and sharers of newly discovered information. It also ensures that more people will be able to use the information by producing a very accessible research report.

At the web site I listed above, there is a free booklet with guidelines on how to make written material easier to read and understand. Later this week, I am going to start providing some blog posts that are readable by a greater variety of people. Your feedback on that process is more than welcome.

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