Understanding the Role of the Personal Care Assistant

Exploring the role of the Personal Assistant in providing high quality care and assistance.


Why take this course?

This e-learning course is broken down into four easy-to-follow units – an introduction and three study units. Using case studies and examples, it aims to give learners an insight into what a personal assistant’s role is, how the recruitment and employment process works and the funding options available to people with learning disabilities.

The course will also help learners to understand the importance of working closely with a person’s PA, as well as others in their support network, in order to provide the people in their care with the assistance they need.

What you will experience

Unit 1: An introduction to the course.

Unit 2: Describes what Personal Assistants do and identifies why people with learning disabilities can benefit from employing one. Learners will watch and listen to some real-life scenarios where personal assistants provide support. This will give them an insight into how PAs can help those with learning disabilities to lead more independent lives and to have more freedom to make their own choices. Unit 2 concludes by looking at the process of employing a PA.

Unit 3: Provides learners with an understanding of the funding options available for people with learning disabilities, and to define the terms direct payments, personal budgets and individual budgets. This Unit also provides examples of how funding can be used to employ PAs and how this fits in with self-directed support, sometimes referred to as personalisation. Learners will also look at two strategies in place – Putting People First and Valuing People Now and learn about their aims in terms of improving the lives of people with learning disabilities, as well as the people who support them.

Unit 4: Provides learners with more detailed information about helping people to recruit and employ a PA, looks at the steps to take should problems arise and goes on to underline the importance of working closely/co-operatively with  Personal Assistants and others involved in a person’s support network. The course concludes by asking learners to consider how effectively they and other support workers and personal assistants work together, and whether any improvements can be made. 

female with childcare book

Key facts

Mode of study
Distance Learning
Method of study

This course will require you to manage your workload independently, without tutor support.

Subject area

Entry requirements

Previous knowledge or experience would be of benefit but is not essential.

What you will need

Students must have access to a computer with a broadband internet connection.

What you need to know

Anything else?

Please note, this course is not eligible for fee waiver.

Next steps




Duration Fees Code
5 Hours over 1 Month £30.00
Paper applications only

Paper applications

You must submit a paper application form for this course and return it to us completed and signed.

Completed forms should be returned to the following freepost address:

The Student Information & Admissions Manager
North East Scotland College
Aberdeen City Campus

Should you have any problems with your application, please contact the Student Advice Centre:

Telephone: 01224 612330
Email: enquiry@nescol.ac.uk

If you take up a place on a College course, at the start of the course you will be asked to sign an enrolment form. In signing the form and/or taking up a place on a College course, you will enter into a contract with the College and be bound by the North East Scotland College Standard Terms and Conditions of Study. Copies of the Terms and Conditions are available for inspection on notice boards and at various locations throughout the College, at the College Reception, on the College website: www.nescol.ac.uk, or can be obtained on request from the Student Funding and Admissions Manager, North East Scotland College, Aberdeen City Campus, Gallowgate, Aberdeen AB25 1BN. Please note that courses are offered subject to (a) there being sufficient numbers of enrolments and (b) the availability of resources. The College reserves its right (i) not to run courses where the number of students is considered insufficient or where resources are unavailable and (ii) in certain circumstances, to refuse admission to an individual applicant.