Direct Support Professional Job Description – Duties and Skills

Direct Support Professional Job Description

We need love, care, and support in our lives as we progress. In the same way, so do special needs individuals. We will discuss Direct Support Professional Job Description. They need someone to look after them and care for them.  They need help so that they can live near-normal lives and are accepted by society. This is the job for you if you like taking care of people and is kind and supportive in nature. Do you want to help special needs individuals? Become a Direct Support Professional and contribute.

Direct Support Professional Job Description

A Direct Support Professional or DSP is someone who does this job of taking care of challenged persons. They help such people to live their lives, carry out their daily activities and contribute to society. They help in personal care of the challenged individual, take care of their personal hygiene, grooming, feeding, and medical needs. Physically or mentally challenged individuals need assistance in many tasks like cleaning, cooking, etc. A DSP helps them take care of these activities.

What are the duties of a Direct Support Professional?

Following are some of the duties of a Direct Support Professional:

  • They must give counsel to the challenged individuals during activities.
  • They must execute separate treatment to individuals.
  • They should develop a good relationship with challenged individuals and create a safe and friendly environment.
  • They must be good at maintaining awareness of residents’ needs.
  • They must be efficient in taking care of challenged individual’s requirements, housekeeping activities, etc.
  • They have to give medicines to individuals regularly
  • They have to make sure that challenged individuals are neat and well-groomed.
  • They must keep the residence neat and clean.
  • They have the duty to teach challenged individuals skills like personal hygiene, brushing, washing dishes, etc.
  • They have to monitor issues related to individuals’ medicines etc.
  • They will have to communicate any occurrence of abuse or neglect
  • They must attend to any dietary needs of the challenged individuals.
  • They should also work well with other team members and individuals.
  • They have to make sure that the residents are safe and healthy.
  • They must become a role model to the challenged individuals.
  • They have to help in exercises of the challenged individuals for improvement in mobility, self-care, etc.
  • They must entertain residents by playing games, conducting activities, reading stories, etc.

What are the job requirements for becoming a Direct Support Professional?

Here are some of the job requirements needed by a Direct Support Professional:

  • They will require a degree, a diploma, or equivalent qualification for this work.
  • They should possess more than 2 years of experience taking direct care of physically or mentally challenged individuals.
  • They should have a driving license.
  • They must possess CPR  certification and first aid qualification
  • They must possess certain certifications such as Strategies for Crisis Intervention and Prevention (SCIP)
  • They must possess voluntary certification-it can be obtained through NADSP (National Alliance for Direct Support Professionals)
  • They must undergo intense training
  • They must have good English spoken and written skills. 
  • They must be able to read too.
  • They must be at least 18 years old.
  • They must be physically fit.

What are the skills required for becoming a Direct Support Professional?

Some of the skills that are needed to become a Direct Support Professional are as follows:

  • A DSP works well under pressure
  • A DSP should be responsible and punctual
  • They  should have good observational skills
  • They should have good organizational skills
  • They should have  good people skills
  • They should possess good  communication skills
  • They must be compassionate in nature
  • They must care for the well being of others
  • They must be a good team player

What is the job outlook for a Direct Support Professional?

26% is the rate by which employment is expected to rise in future years. There is plenty of available work for Direct Support Professionals. The career is expected to grow by 36 percent in ten years. It will produce around 1,185,800 job opportunities in the United States.

What is the salary of a Direct Support Professional?

In the United States, a Direct Support Professional makes around $29,470 per year or $14.17 hourly. In India, the monthly salary of a Direct Support Professional is around Rs.18 460. Earning potential depends on your experience in this field as well. Starters can expect a salary of around $17,155, while the more experienced can expect a salary of around $45,600.

What are the DSP working conditions?

A Direct Support Professional’s work can be physically demanding as they have to work with specially challenged individuals. They have to help the residents walk, shower, and groom and take care of the housekeeping, washing, etc. They will always be on their feet and ever busy. People in this job will possess job satisfaction and a sense of accomplishment. They get to interact with unique people and have enriching experiences. A Direct Support Professional may have to work in the individual’s home, residence, or community. People with special needs will surround yous, so you need to be ready to help them out at a moment’s notice. It is an arena where you should be patient and attentive to other people’s needs.

What is the career path for DSP?
  • Supervisors or Assistant Site Managers


This is the perfect job for you if you enjoy helping the less fortunate and are kind and nurturing in nature. Many people out there need help, and by becoming a Direct Support Professional, you can change their lives. You can make a difference in the world by becoming a DSP and helping out the needy. You need to have the drive and compassion for others in this particular job. This job is a gratifying one with huge job satisfaction as well. Become a Direct Support Professional and help physically and intellectually challenged people to live out their lives successfully. 

Also read Direct Support Professional Job Description – Duties and Skills

Direct Support Professional Job Description – Duties and Skills

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