Using video observation to include
the experiences of people
with dementia in research
The recent social policy focus on providing people with dementia with good quality of care has resulted in a drive to find ways to include their experiences in research. These moves have led to a body of researchers experienced in including the perspectives of people with mild dementia in their research (see Allan 2000; Pratt and Wilkinson 2000). To date, however, the experiences of people with moderate and advanced dementia have largely been excluded from research, as it is not known how to facilitate interaction with this group of people with often profoundly impaired communicative abilities.
Much of the research that has sought a window into the lives of people with more advanced dementia has examined their behaviour using systematic observation measures (e.g. Bredin et al. 1995; Van Haitsma et al. 1997; Ward et al. 1992). One of the most widely used of these measures is Dementia Care Mapping (DCM), where the behaviours of people with dementia are coded by an observer into predefined categories, to give a picture of their quality of experience in care (Bredin and Kitwood 1995). This and other systematic observation measures, such as Bowie and Mountain (1993), are limited in that they can only capture aspects of a