How can educators cope with aggressive behaviour of learners with intellectual or mental health disabilities? And what are the suitable models, techniques and tools which they can adopt?

These are the topics we focus on with our new project “COPE – Enabling Adult Educators to Cope with Aggressive Behaviour of Disadvantaged Learners” (2022-1-ES01-KA220-ADU-000088918). The partners come from Spain, Bulgaria, Lithuania, Greece and Italy and include: Associacio Familiars Persones Amb Discapacitat Intel.Lectual I Del Desenvolupam Ent / L’associació del Taller Baix Camp, Creativity and Educational Studio “ARTIED”, VSI EDUKACINIAI PROJEKTAI (EDUPRO), Corporation for Succor and Care of Elderly and Disabled (FRODIZO), Associació Educativa I Cultural Blue Beehive and Fondazione Istituto dei Sordi di Torino.

The project long-term objective is to provide adult educators, trainers, educational staff of social care institutions, etc. with effective methods for preventing, managing and reducing aggressive behaviour of people with mental and/or intellectual disabilities, and to build educators’ emotional resilience skills to ensure adult learners’ better participation in education and training, thus resulting in their better inclusion in all fields of life.

During the project we will:

1. Create a Database with 2 parts:

  • Part 1) Methods, tools and techniques to identify, prevent or manage aggressive behaviour of people with mental and/or intellectual disabilities.
  • Part 2) Methods, tools and techniques to support adult educators for building their own emotional resilience to better cope with more difficult situations in their work with people with mental and/or intellectual disabilities.

2. Organise a series of online presentations of the data base in each project country (to be video recorded).

3. Develop a SPOOC (Self-Paced Online Open Course) with 7 modules on the following topics:

  • a. Aggression: causes, types, manifestations (recognising the manifestations of aggressive behaviour, understand the cause of aggression; passive aggression).
  • b. Verbal and physical aggression and how to de-escalate it.
  • c. Communication strategies (how to alleviate communication with people having different mental or intellectual disability).
  • d. Body language – clients and specialists (techniques not to provoke aggressive behaviour; some videos to illustrate the points).
  • e. Conflict management, breaking existing assumptions, false attributions, stereotypes about the disability.
  • f. Social and emotional skills of specialists working with people with disabilities (knowledge of emotions in the different contexts of disability).
  • g. Building resilience and positive affirmations of specialists working with people having mental and intellectual disabilities.

4. Organise a Peer-to-peer training in Lithuania (in a form of a LTTA) to test the developed materials and a series of national trainings in each project country to present the created SPOOC course.

5. Develop a mobile app how to communicate emotions. It will support adult educators, trainers, other educational staff of different organization working with people with disabilities, social workers (as well as families, carers, etc) to know better the situation of people experiencing difficulties in communicating their needs (or for the specialists to understand them) and preventively apply activities that take into account these emotions.

6. Organise a series of local multiplier events in the partner countries to present the project results, outputs, outcomes and achievements.

For more information, please check our Facebook profile, the project Facebook account or its website at

The project “COPE – Enabling Adult Educators to Cope with Aggressive Behaviour of Disadvantaged Learners” (2022-1-ES01-KA220-ADU-000088918) is co-funded by the Erasmus + Programme of the EU, through the Spanish National Agency.


This project has been co-funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.