Working with Defendants

IfJ training: Small group trainings

Event details


11 May 2023
13 May 2023


10:00-15:00 both days


Zoom Online
United Kingdom

Event Fees

2-day course £ 220.00

Booking info

Max participants: 20

Course facilitator(s): Rachel Cohen and Joanna Campbell

Course facilitator(s) bio:

Rachel Cohen

Rachel Cohen qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist (SLT) in 2002 and trained with City Law School in 2014 as an RI. Rachel completed supplementary training in 2017 to work with defendants and began facilitating the training in 2019. Rachel was one of the founding members of The Intermediary Cooperative (TIC). She works across criminal and family jurisdictions and continues to run a small independent SLT practice.

In addition to case work, her interests are in coaching, supervision and mentoring. 

Joanna Campbell

Joanna Campbell has a background in Speech and Language Therapy. She has over 10 years' experience as an intermediary, having worked with defendants and in the family courts since 2011, and completed her RI traininig in 2015. Joanna also has an interest in training, mentoring and supervision. She has been involved in the development and delivery of several training courses for intermediaries, including the current RI training programme, commissioned by the Ministry of Justice and, more recently, specific training modules for intermediaries in TIC as Director of Recruitment and Training. 

Course requirements: IfJ full member. If applying as an RI, the course requires that you have worked for at least six months.

Who is this course for: Qualified intermediaries with at least six months' experience looking to work with defendants.

This course will start you on the path to working with defendants as an intermediary. Participants will learn about the defendant population and their communication needs in the criminal justice system.

Course Content

We will consider:

  • The key issues for defendants in criminal courts
  • A step-by-step review of the entire intermediary process from referral to the end of your intermediary work: assessment, report writing, 'special measures,' memory refresh practicalities, conferences, trial and addressing the practical and emotional challenges of this work

Participants will learn about the defendant population and their communication needs in the criminal justice system. 

The course will address each stage of the process to verdict, relating the communication needs to the role of the intermediary.

We will also spend some time on group work, sharing strategies for supporting communication in practice throughout a trial, both inside and away from the court. 

We will discuss the practicalities and practical considerations for the intermediary in the context of defendant work.

Course Aims/Objectives

  1. We will provide the background knowledge and practical skills required to work in this field. 
  2. We will also discuss what we do in the crown, magistrates and youth courts, how we work with vulnerable people and measures to ensure their effective participation.
  3. Our aim is that participants will have enough information to be able to work competently and confidently with defendants in the criminal justice system.

NB Participants will need to apply (after completing the course) to the MoJ to be an ASP or join an MASP provider to work with vulnerable defendants if they have not already done so.

Course Method

The workshop is run in the form of a small group training. The presenter will persent information and will invite high levels of participation and sharing of knowledge and ideas. Prepared slides/handouts guide the process rather than impart information. 

The following materials are provided: 

  • Timetable
  • Glossary of terms
  • Powerpoint presentations
  • Guidance for further reading - bibliography

- Participants to log on 15 minutes prior to start of each session.

- It is required that all participants keep their cameras on throughout the workshop.

- Participants to complete online feedback form post workshop.

Cancellation Policy

If you cancel your booking with 14 or more days notice, you will receive a full refund minus a £15 admin charge. If you cancel your booking with less than 48 hours' notice, we are unfortunately unable to offer a refund. However, you may substitute another delegate or transfer to another course by giving IfJ at least 24 hours’ notice.

In exceptional circumstances IfJ reserve the right to issue a full refund. Please inform us at the time of cancellation of your particular reason for cancelling. If you wish to cancel or change your booking, please do so by emailing:

We will endeavour to respond to all cancellation requests within two working days. Refunds will be made using the same method of payment as you used for the purchase and will be paid within seven days of refund confirmation.

Places are limited to a maximum of 20 participants. There is a minimum requirement of 12 participants. If the minimum number is not met, IfJ reserve the right to cancel the course with at least two weeks' notice and a full refund will be issued.