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date: 20 March 2019

Abstract and Keywords

In the past 30 years, “disability” has moved from the area of pathology into the area of human functioning. New models of disability were developed, such as the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (WHO) and the conceptual framework of human functioning (AAIDD). Accordingly, the focus of professionals moved from diagnosing impairments and limitations to also assessing functional strengths and support needs and resources to enhance human functioning. At the individual level, the concept of quality of life provides a positive aid for aligning personal support goals with supports strategies in the context of individualized supports planning. At the societal level, the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities constitutes an overarching set of internationally accepted values to guiding positive disability policies. The chapter demonstrates the relationships between these concepts and models and points to parallel developments in psychology. Implications of the new strengths-based approach for professional practices are discussed.

Keywords: ICF, UN convention, quality of life, assessment, supports, ecological psychology, interdisciplinary intervention

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