In January 2014 InnerSense initiated a research and development project in collaboration with Professor Adam Ockelford of Roehampton University. Professor Ockelford led the team at Sounds of Intent who devised a framework for assessing the musical development of children and young people with learning difficulties. Our project with him involved working with a researcher, Angela Voyajolu, who has observed and recorded workshops, in order to analyse our practice and to explore the potential of developing the SoI framework to include the impact of multisensory work on people with learning disabilities.
This research strand is continuing to develop. As a consequence of the above project, we have also been invited to participate in an exciting, new development at The University of Kent. Having recently undertaken their own research project, ‘Imagining Autism’, the team, led by Professor Nicola Shaugnessy, has approached us to collaborate in the next stage of their research as the connections to InnerSense’s work were so apparent. This pioneering work aims to validate the positive effects of the arts in areas such as increased communication and socialisation and could have enormous impact on the way all people with learning difficulties are perceived to access the arts.