I am Head of Researcher Development, based in the University Graduate School. I am responsible for developing the University’s Researcher Development Training Programme to support academic staff and postgraduate students develop their portfolio of research skills. I work closely with the postgraduate students and research staff to help them develop their academic writing skills, particularly grant applications, journal articles and pathways to impact. I Chair the Graduate School Forum committee, manage the University Internal Peer Review Process, sit on the Research Knowledge and Exchange Committee, and am a member of the Universities Scotland Researcher Development and Training Committee.
I graduated from the University of Aberdeen in 1995 with a first class honours degree in Psychology and completed my PhD in 2000 with a thesis entitled ‘Chronic pain in the community: its prevalence, impact and natural history’. Prior to joining Abertay in 2017, I was a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Aberdeen and have over 20 years research experience working in the fields of Primary Care and Applied Health Sciences. My key research strengths are in the areas of epidemiology, research design, longitudinal research, outcome measures and multivariate modelling.
I have been PI/Co-I on grants worth around £2 million, published over 60 academic peer-reviewed journal articles and presented at over 40 academic conferences.
I am interested in understanding more about symptom experiences in the community, including the epidemiology of symptoms, the symptom iceberg, how the public appraises and manages their symptoms and the factors which influence people’s healthcare choices. Although I have explored a wide range of symptom experiences I am most interested in symptoms indicative of cancer.
I am interested in the prevalence, impact and natural history of chronic pain as well as how chronic pain is managed by both individuals and healthcare systems. I am particularly interested in the similarities and differences between different chronic pain conditions and whether chronic pain can be viewed as a distinct diagnosis.
I have secured around £2 million as a Principal Investigator/Co-Investigator, including:
Invited conference presentations
Invited conference workshops
Chair of conferences and panels
External examination responsibilities
Peer review responsibilities
I have presented at over 40 conferences, including: International Epidemiological Association; WONCA Europe; North American Primary Care Research Group; World Congress of the International Association for Study of Pain; Society for Social Medicine; Pain Society; Society for Academic Primary Care; Scottish School of Primary Care; Wellcome Trust; Scottish University Departments of General Practice; and the Medically Unexplained Symptoms Group.
Contributions to Government Policy
My research has contributed to the Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on Chronic Pain and has been referenced in several chronic pain policy recommendation reports.
Contributions to Professional bodies