Upon completion of my BSc in Psychology at the University of Central Lancashire in 2004, I became a youth service co-ordinator, working with d/Deaf young people in the East Lancashire area. I then decided to return to university to study at Masters level, and took the opportunity to be a Research Assistant at the University of Manchester. My first project involved carrying out an evaluation of a pilot project on parenting deaf children. While completing my MRes, I worked on various research projects on a part time basis. These projects included research into resilience and Deaf role models, as well as forward-translating the Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire into British Sign Language (BSL).
Between 2006 and 2008, I occasionally gave lectures on the social construction of deafness to BSc Social Work students at Manchester Metropolitan University and trainee audiologists at the University of Manchester.
In 2009, I went to the Institute of Technology within the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, in New York on a six-month internship. During this time, I worked alongside Professor Peter Hauser and his team in the Deaf Studies Laboratory, on a project on the psychosocial and academic achievements of deaf young people, mainly focusing on cultural capital and community cultural wealth in relation to the education of deaf children.
In 2009, I commenced my doctoral research fellowship which was funded by the National Institute for Health Research. The title of my PhD thesis was ‘Deaf people and mental well-being: Exploring and measuring mental well-being in British Sign Language’. The aims of the PhD were; (i) to understand the association between childhood and adulthood mental well-being in d/Deaf populations; (ii) to find out how well standardised mental health assessments can be used with d/Deaf populations; and (iii) to explore Deaf people’s perspectives on mental well-being. This study involved the use of both qualitative and quantitative methods.
Between 2011 and 2012, I was also Study Manager of a project working on the validation of BSL versions of the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD-7), and the Work and Social Adjustment Scale (WSAS). This was funded by the British Society for Mental Health and Deafness.
Upon the completion of my doctoral research fellowship, I was trial manager on a project evaluating the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of British Sign Language (BSL) Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT).
Examples of previous Research Project(s):
External Evaluation of the NDCS Parenting Project.
Deaf Children and Families - Building Resilience. A Literature Review
Independent Evaluation of NDCS's Deaf Role Model Project.
Deaf people and mental well-being: Exploring and measuring mental well-being in British Sign Language.
Translating the Patient Health Questionnaire, Generalised Anxiety Disorder 7, and the Work and Social Adjustment Scale into British Sign Language. Followed by a Pilot Study.
Medicines for Neonates: Using Routinely Collected NHS Electronic Clinical Data for Applied Research to Improve Newborn Outcomes.
SAFE: Personal safety skills for deaf children programme.
- Evaluating the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of British Sign Language (BSL) Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT)
- Short Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale (SWEMWBS) in British Sign Language (BSL) (Principal Investigator)
I am currently a NIHR Post-Doctoral Research Fellow working on a project titled: “Telemedicine as a treatment for Deaf people with common mental health problems who use British Sign Language: a mixed methods feasibility study”. The overarching research aim is to test the acceptability, feasibility and preliminary efficacy of telemedicine intervention in the delivery of psychological therapy in BSL to Deaf people who are experiencing anxiety and/or depression.
Additionally, I am the co-investigator for a NDCS funded study called the READY (Recording Emerging Adulthood in Deaf Youth) study.
• PhD Nursing - 2013, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Social Work, University of Manchester
• MRes Psychology - 2008, School of Psychological Sciences, University of Manchester
• BSc (Hons) Psychology - 2004, University of Central Lancashire