Terms commonly used in the alcohol and other drug field are listed below.

All A B C D E F G H I K

Abstinence | Access and Equity | Accreditation | Accredited Course | Accrediting Authority | Action Learning | Action Research | Active Learning | Addict | Addiction | Adult Learning | Alcohol and Other Drugs


Refraining from the use of a drug or drugs.

Access and Equity

A policy or set of strategies to make something available to all members of the community, to increase participation and to improve outcomes, particularly focusing on those groups that have been traditionally under-represented, especially women, Indigenous Australians, people with a disability, people from a non-English speaking background and people from rural and remote areas (Knight and Nestor, 2000).


The formal recognition of a course by an official accrediting body in accordance with the Standards for State and Territory Registering / Course Accrediting Bodies (ANTA, 2001).

Accredited Course

A structured sequence of vocational education and training that leads to an Australian Qualifications Framework qualification or Statement of Attainment (ANTA, nd).

Accrediting Authority

An organisation with the authority and responsibility for accrediting courses and training programs (ANTA, nd).

Action Learning

Learning by working on real problems, implementing solutions and reviewing and reflecting on the learning process (Knight and Nestor, 2000).

Action Research

Action research is a family of research methodologies which pursue action (or change) and research (or understanding) at the same time. In most of its forms it does this by:

  • using a cyclic or spiral process which alternates between action and critical reflection
  • in the later cycles, continuously refining methods, data and interpretation in the light of the understanding developed in the earlier cycles.

In most of its forms it is also participative and qualitative.

(Action Research Resources, 2002)

Active Learning

Learning driven primary by the learner, with the instructor acting as a facilitator (Knight and Nestor, 2000).


A term that stereotypes or labels a person, and is therefore judgemental, to refer to someone with a drug dependence.


Physical and psychological craving for a drug or drugs and related behaviours. The process of addiction is progressive and chronic. The state of addiction is more commonly referred to as a varying state of dependency (NCETA, 2002).

Adult Learning

The inclusion of content that is largely determined by the participants and that is relevant and applicable to their own beliefs and experience. Problem and outcome focused learning where the participants can draw on their own knowledge and experience and control their own learning is also important (McDonald et al, 2000). [McDonald et al, 2000]

Alcohol and Other Drugs

Drugs incorporated in work in the alcohol and other drugs field are generally those which produce a psychoactive effect, that is, drugs that alter mood, thoughts and cognition. This includes licit drugs (alcohol, tobacco, prescription medications and over-the-counter medications), as well as illicit drugs (such as heroin, amphetamines, cocaine etc). Licit substances or drugs that produce a psychoactive effect when used in ways other than intended, such as inhalants, are also included in this work.


McDonald, J., Ashenden, R., Grove, J., Bodein, H., Cormack, S., Allsop, S. (2000) Youth for Youth: A Project To Develop Skills and Resources for Peer Education. Final Report to the Commonwealth Department of Health and Aged Care. Adelaide: National Centre for Education and Training on Addiction (NCETA).