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    Story Stem Assessment Profile Training

    The Story Stem Assessment Profile (SSAP) is a clinical and research assessment tool for use with clinical and maltreatment populations.

    About this training

    The Story Stem Assessment Profile (SSAP) (Hodges and Hillman, 2004) asks children to respond to a set of narrative story stems where they are given the beginning of a ‘story’ highlighting everyday scenarios with an inherent dilemma. Children are then asked to "show and tell me what happens next". This allows some assessment of the child’s expectations and perceptions of family roles, attachments and relationships, without asking the child direct questions about their family which might cause them conflict or anxiety. 

    The SSAP is a clinical and research assessment tool which is a technique specifically for use with clinical and maltreatment populations. It has proved a valuable and non-intrusive tool for examining young children’s mental representations of attachment and relationships, both in research and in clinical practice. Normally, it is best used with children aged between about four and nine years. 

    Previous research has shown that children’s response to these story stems reflect both current and past features of their family life and attachment histories. The technique allows the child’s attachment representations to be evidenced in a displaced way which is usually enjoyed by the child and not experienced as unduly threatening.

    National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE; 2015) recommends the SSAP for accessing attachment difficulties in children in all health and social care settings.  It is recommended to guide decisions on interventions for children who have or may have attachment difficulties.

    This is a four-day training course teaching the administration, coding and clinical application of the Story Stem Assessment Profile (SSAP) within both clinical and research domains.

    Aims of the training

    • To teach the administration, coding and clinical applicability of the Story Stem Assessment Profile (SSAP)

    • To allow for professionals working with children in this age bracket to become trained and qualified to use the tool both clinically and within the research domain.

    • To provide professionals with a shared forum/platform to think clinically about the material they are working with.

    Who is this training for?

    Attendees will need to be working with children (aged 4 to 9) within a clinical or research setting. Those who can book on to this training include:

    • Qualified practitioners, with a degree-level qualification, in child mental health or social work;

    • Post-graduate researchers.

    Saul Hillman

    Saul Hillman

    Story Stem Assessment Profile (SSAP) Coordinator/Trainer

    Gabrielle Lees

    Art Therapist and Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist

    Octavia Wilkinson

    Octavia Wilkinson

    Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist

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