Social and Medical Disability Models

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Introduction In this assignment, I aim to provide the reader with an overview of two prominent models of disability: the medical model and the social model. More specifically, I intend to outline the differences between these models, especially their theory and practice. Firstly, I will note the definition of what a model of disability is and point to its relevance in disability studies. I will also briefly examine the origins of both the medical and social models, but mainly outlining the contributions of their respective theoretical content and influence in society. Overall, the main aim of the assignment is to be achieved by providing a general outline of the social and medical disability models, which can be used to highlight the differences in the theoretical basis and practice methods. This will serve the reader with an overview of both disability models, which acknowledges the differences to how disability can be defined and approached in society. Outlining the differences of the medical and social models of disability, giving detail of their respective theory and practice Impairment, disability and the use of models of disability A clear definition of the term disability, it can be widely presumed, has never been universally agreed upon by any lay or in-depth study. This can be due to disability pertaining to different viewpoints; ultimately, the person who experiences the impairment and the person who does not. Another factor can be the norms found in various world cultures (Thomas, 2002). There is also conflicting discussion on the contextual nature of impairment, which is vital to denoting disability. Usually when signifying dysfunction of a bodily organ or appendage, examples of impairment woul... ... middle of paper ... ...dine, M. & Dukelow, F. 2009. Irish Social Policy: A Critical Introduction. Dublin: Gill & Macmillan Hammell, K. 2006. Perspectives on disability & rehabilitation: Contesting Assumptions; Challenging Practice. Philidelphia: Churchill Livingstone McClaren, N. 1998. ‘A Critical Review of the Biopsychosocial Model’, Australian and New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry, Vol 32, No. 1: pp. 86 - 92 Oliver, M. 1990. The Politics of Disablement. London: The MacMillan Press Ltd Oliver, M. 1996. Understanding Disability: From Theory to Practice. Hampshire: Palgrave Royal Association for Disability Rights (RADAR). 2010. Accessed from on the 6th November 2010 Thomas, C. (2002). ‘Disability Theory: Key ideas, Issues and Thinkers’, In: Barnes, C., Barton, L. & Oliver, M. Disability Studies Today. Cambridge: Polity Press. pp: 38 - 57
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