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Purple Patch work alongside academics and researchers across a range of disciplines to support cutting edge research on learning disability policy and practice. Our work is featured in academic studies and profiled in sector based publications. Recent work includes:















































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"Having Purple Patch Arts present their unique training seminar to my BA Social Work students has

provided them with valuable skills, knowledge and the confidence

to work with people with a

learning disability. My students found the training session informative, engaging and, most importantly, fun!"


– Dr Stephanie Steels, University of Leeds







Research into the social history of learning disability which was then transformed into an accessible animation and presented at the Open University’s Social History of Learning Disability conference. See the animation at https://vimeo.com/130333304

Oral history research with former residents of long stay institutions with Dr Helen Atherton, School of Healthcare, The University of Leeds.  

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Re-defining 'value' in education settings with Dr Katherine Runswick-Cole, Senior Research Fellow in Disability and Psychology, Manchester Metropolitan University. See the blog for more detailed information: https://valuingcreativity.wordpress.com/

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Measuring the impact of creative learning methods in delivering healthcare with Dr Stephanie Steels, School of Social Work, The University of Leeds.

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Exploring the concept of 'risk' in arts practice with people with learning disabilities. Working with Dr Alice O’Grady School of Performance and Cultural Industries and Dr Stephanie Steels, School of Social Work, University of Leeds.

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“The Social History of Learning Disability” Co-Authored by Director of Creative Learning, Vicky Ackroyd in Learning Disability Practice (May 2016), Volume 19, Number 4, Pages 14 – 17 http://journals.rcni.com/doi/abs/10.7748/ldp.19.4.14.s19

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We supported specialists 'Achievement for All' Education to look at the education experience of young people with learning disabilities in the youth justice system. With funding from the Department for Education we trained staff from Achievement for All and evaluators from Manchester Metropolitan University in accessible and inclusive approaches to both deliver work and gather data.

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Running workshops for young people with learning disablities as part of Around the Toilet, a cross-disciplinary, arts-based research project funded by the AHRC Connected Communities programme, which explores the toilet as a place of exclusion and belonging.

Running arts retreats as part of 'Living Life to the Fullest', a research project which seeks to forge new understandings of the lives, hopes, desires and contributions of children and young people with ‘life-limiting’ or ‘life-threatening’ impairments - www.livinglifetothefullest.org. BBC Breakfast have made a film about the first retreat - you can watch it here!