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Personal Identity Project

Personal identity represents the amount of self-knowledge (how well do we know our-self), synthesis (how well do we use new information to define our-self) and consistency that a person possesses over time and across situations. Things that happen in our life may significantly impact on our identity.

This project investigates personal identity following acquired brain injury and spinal cord injury to understand how this differs from identity among people who have not experienced injury.

There is currently no research that systematically explores identity using accepted standardised theoretically defined measures among injured individuals and limited empirical evidence base on identity following traumatic injury to guide the development and evaluation of appropriate and targeted psychosocial interventions in this area.

Individuals with acquired brain injury and spinal cord injury who sustained their injury less than 3 years ago.

Individuals from the general population for comparison purposes.

Key Features
There is  a need for more focussed empirical research on identity as a potential psychosocial challenge experienced following injury and the likely role that identity interventions could play when incorporated into standard psychosocial models of care in the rehabilitation setting.

The aim of the study was to explore identity across two injured adult populations (spinal cord injury-SCI and acquired brain injury-ABI) compared to non-injured individuals to develop a framework for fostering identity reconstruction.

The study aimed to foster the adoption of more comprehensive models of psychosocial care within multidisciplinary rehabilitation settings.

This project was funded under a research grant from the Queensland Health Practitioner Research Scheme.

Research / Evaluation Strategies
A cohort of people with SCI and people with ABI less than three years post injury and a sample of age and gender matched controls participants completed a range of standardised questionnaires at two points in time, 3 months apart. This information was used, in combination with the existing literature, to inform intervention frameworks for fostering identity reconstruction.

Outputs and Outcomes
A final funding report has been completed

Findings highlight the fact that people with spinal cord injury and acquired brain injury have more identity-related issues than control participants.

These identity-related issues interact with other psychological and rehabilitation outcomes

Hope is a key factor to incorporate into identity intervention frameworks

There are no publications to date for this project.

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Last updated: 7 September 2017