Caring for adults
Caring for adults

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Free course

Caring for adults

Why study this course?

John Rowe, one of the authors of this course, will now give you a bit of background into why you might like to study this course.

Download this video clip.Video player: Welcome and introduction from the author
Skip transcript: Welcome and introduction from the author

Transcript: Welcome and introduction from the author

Welcome and introduction from the author

Hello, and welcome to Caring for adults. If you are working in a caring role, we hope that by studying this course you’ll be taking your first steps towards a more fulfilling future within the adult social care sector. If you are caring for a family member, or in an unpaid voluntary caring role, we also hope there is much to gain from studying this course, in terms of extending your current knowledge and skills.
There may be many reasons why you have chosen to study Caring for adults. It might be to support your development as you move into a social care role or for your professional development as a paid carer. The skills and knowledge you will develop are relevant if you provide direct care to patients and other cared-for people.
Caring for adults is made up of five sections. Section 1 looks at ways of communicating and developing your listening and other interpersonal skills, as well as offering tips for good recording and reporting. Section 2 considers types of mental health problems, for example mood disorders like depression and anxiety and cognitive disorders like dementia, and how they affect the cared-for person and the role of the carer.
Section 3 examines how care is provided for people who are receiving palliative and end-of-life care and what is meant by a ‘good death’. Section 4 explains why it is important to balance safe care with positive risk-taking to promote a more fulfilling life for the cared-for person. And Section 5 looks at the importance carers should put on looking after their own physical and emotional well-being and ways to manage stress.
The course is brought to life with lots of podcasts and interactive activities which we hope you enjoy. There are also guided activities throughout which will help you learn and reflect upon your own caring role.
The course is flexible, and there is no time limit for completion. You can go through it in small chunks, maybe a section at a time, fitting it in around your other commitments. You can study each of the five sections in any order. And if you complete your short assessment quizzes at the end of each section, you will be able to collect a digital badge for that section. These badges provide a form of recognition for your learning. And you can display them on your social media profiles, such as Facebook and LinkedIn.
If you complete all five sections, you can also download a free statement of participation. Your statement of participation acknowledges the learning outcomes you have achieved. This gives you something to show for your learning, perhaps to your employer, or a prospective employer.
At the very end of the course, you will find information on next steps. Here we detail a number of links and signposts to other resources and courses that may be of interest to you, if you are inspired to take your learning further.
We really hope you enjoy Caring for adults and wish you luck for your future development as a carer.
End transcript: Welcome and introduction from the author
Welcome and introduction from the author
Interactive feature not available in single page view (see it in standard view).

If you are already a carer, you will find it helpful to consider how your role and experience matches the topics covered in the course. The guided activities throughout this course will help you to learn and reflect on your own role. If you are in a paid carer role, completion of Caring for adults will allow you to demonstrate to your employer your understanding of what it is like to be a carer. Your employer might also ask you to study this course as part of your induction into a new role, or for your professional development.

Although this course is primarily for carers, it also considers some issues experienced by both carers and cared-for people, for example stress, tiredness, depression and anxiety. We have therefore devoted Section 5 to looking after your own health and well-being, with much of the advice also applicable to the people you care for.


Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371