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Level 2
Unit No:
Guided learning hours:
17 hours

Assessment Guidance

Portfolio of Evidence.


This unit introduces the learner to different types, signs and symptoms of dementia.

Unit Learning Outcomes


Understand what dementia is.

Learning Outcome 1: Indicative Content 

The definition of the term dementia may include:

  • decline in mental ability severe enough to interfere with daily life
  • that it is not a specific disease
  • it is an overall term for a decline of memory or other thinking skills
  • Alzheimer's disease and vascular dementia are most common types

Key functions of brain affected by dementia may include:

  • damage to brain cells so brain cells can no longer communicate with each other
  • when cells in a particular region are damaged that region cannot carry out its functions normally e.g. memory, judgement, movement

Assessment Criteria

  • 1.1
    Explain what is meant by the term ‘dementia’.
  • 1.2
    Describe the key functions of the brain that are affected by dementia.
  • 1.3
    Explain why depression, delirium and age related memory impairment may be mistaken for dementia.


Understand key features of the theoretical models of dementia.

Learning Outcome 2: Indicative Content  

Key features of the medical model and social model of dementia may include:

a) medical - clinical approach

b) social - about the person and how it affects them as an individual

Reasons why dementia should be viewed as a disability may include:

  • people with learning disabilities and in particular Down's Syndrome are at greater risk of developing dementia
  • similar symptoms between those with disabilities and dementia e.g. memory loss, difficult with thought processes, problem solving or language. Other common symptoms include mood or behaviour changes

Assessment Criteria

  • 2.1
    Outline the medical model of dementia.
  • 2.2
    Outline the social model of dementia
  • 2.3
    Explain why dementia should be viewed as a disability.


Know the most common types of dementia and their causes.

Learning Outcome 3: Indicative Content  

Common types of dementia may include:

  • Alzheimer's disease
  • vascular dementia
  • fronto-temporal dementia
  • Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease

Signs and symptoms may include:

  • memory is getting significantly worse
  • difficulty remembering recent events
  • find it hard to follow conversations
  • leave objects in unusual places
  • difficulty solving problems 
  • feel confused in familiar environments

Risk factors may include:

  • age related - increases significantly 65+
  • genetics
  • lifestyle e.g. higher blood pressure in mid-life

Prevalence rates may include:

  • An 80 year old is more at risk of developing dementia than a 30 year old
  • Rare to get dementia before 65
  • After the age of 65 the risk of developing Alzheimer doubles approximately every 5 years
  • Dementia affects approximately 1 in 14 people over the age of 65 and 1 in 6 over the age of  80

Assessment Criteria

  • 3.1
    List the most common causes of dementia.
  • 3.2
    Describe the likely signs and symptoms of the most common causes of dementia.
  • 3.3
    Outline the risk factors for the most common causes of dementia.
  • 3.4
    Identify prevalence rates for different types of dementia.


Understand factors relating to an individual’s experience of dementia.

Learning Outcome 4: Indicative Content  

Living with dementia may include:

  • ability to maintain independence as long as possible
  • need to access services on a day-to-day basis
  • as a person gets older physical deterioration and dementia may necessitate other forms of support
  • increased levels of confusion and concerns for safety

Impact of other people's attitudes and behaviour may result in:

  • depression
  • isolation as the person does not want to go out
  • people become more supportive and caring following the diagnosis

Assessment Criteria

  • 4.1
    Describe how different individuals may experience living with dementia depending on age, type of dementia, and level of ability and disability.
  • 4.2
    Outline the impact that the attitudes and behaviours of others may have on an individual with dementia.

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