Nicola Jacobson-Wright


Dementia Practice Development Coach - Association for Dementia Studies

Association for Dementia Studies

Contact Details

tel: 01905 542347

Nicola Jacobson-Wright joined the Association for Dementia Studies in 2012 as a Dementia Practice Development Coach to work on the FITS into Practice study, reducing antipsychotics in care homes. She has continued to work across various teaching and research projects for the department. She is passionate about teaching to influence positive change for people with dementia. She has a particular interest in translating research into practice and in the use of creative arts.

Nicola has a professional training as a Dance Movement Psychotherapist. Her employment background has been in care, care management, delivering community dementia services and creative therapy. Alongside her work at the University she is the Director of Dance & Dementia C.I.C. a not for profit organisation providing Dance Movement Psychotherapy and therapeutic movement activities for people affected by dementia.

MA Dance Movement Psychotherapy (2007) Goldsmiths, University of London (Registered Dance Movement Psychotherapist)

BA Hons History/Philosophy (2000) Lancaster University

Teaching & Research

Nicola is an active member of the teaching team and has delivered diverse training on a number of commissioned courses and university programmes. As a Practice Development Coach she has taken a key role in developing materials and teaching on various research projects, including Namaste Care and MeetingDem. Nicola developed teaching programmes for the FITS into Practice study which now forms an advanced practice post-graduate module at ADS. She has also worked closely with the LINK group involving people with dementia and family across all ADS projects and teaching.

Nicola has worked on the following research projects in a Practice Coach capacity:

  • Namaste Care Intervention UK: Delivering Excellent Care Every Day for People Living with Advanced Dementia. Alzheimers Society Implementation Research grant. 2016-19 Namaste Care UK Implementation Research
  • MEETINGDEM: Adaptive Implementation and Validation of the positively evaluated Meeting Centres Support Programme for people with dementia and their carers in Europe. EU JPND (ESRC) 2014-2017 MEETINGDEM Meeting Centres UK
  • Implementation and field testing of Focused Intervention for Training of Staff (FITS) programme in 150 early adopter care homes

Professional bodies and experience

Nicola has worked for over 15 years in health and social care settings, including management, particularly working with people affected by dementia. She is an experienced Dance Movement Psychotherapist continuing to practice alongside working at ADS. She is registered with the Association for Dance Movement Psychotherapy UK and in 2014, founded the company Dance & Dementia C.I.C.

Publications and Dissemination


  • Brooker, D., Latham, I., Evans, S., Jacobson, N, Perry, W., Bray, J. Ballard, C., Fossey, J. & Pickett, J (2015) FITS into Practice: Translating research into practice in reducing the use of anti-psychotic medication for people living with dementia in care homes. Aging and Mental Health. Available online: DOI: 10.1080/13607863.2015.1063102 
  • Brooker, D., Latham, I., Jacobson, N., Perry, W. & Evans, S. (2014) “FITS into Practice” Developing Dementia Specialist Care Homes Summary Report. University of Worcester  
  • Coaten, R. & Jacobson, N. (July 2011) Dance Movement Psychotherapy as a ‘Golden Thread of Remembrance’ and a Key to Communication. Signpost Journal.

Conferences and Presentations

  • Brooker, D. Jacobson, N., Perry, W., Latham, I., Evans, S. (November, 2014) FITS into Practice: The role of the Dementia Practice Development Coach and the Dementia Care Coach, UK Dementia Congress, Brighton, UK
  • Brooker, D. Jacobson, N., Perry, W., Latham, I., Evans, S. (October, 2014) FITS into Practice: The role of the Dementia Practice Development Coach and the Dementia Care Coach, Alzheimer Europe Conference, Glasgow, UK 
  • Jacobson, N., Latham, I. (July 2014) Person-Centred Care as an Alternative to Antipsychotics. Alzheimer’s Society Research Conference, Nottingham. 
  • Jacobson, N., Latham, I. (May 2014) Implementing FITS into Practice. The Alzheimer’s Show, Olympia. 
  • Jacobson, N., Knights, C., Smith, S. (Nov 2013) Dance and Movement Therapy in a Specialist Hospital Setting. UK Dementia Congress, Brighton, UK
  • Jacobson, N. (Nov 2013) Dance and Movement with People Affected by Dementia. Swindon Dementia Conference (Swindon NHS CCG and Borough Council), Swindon, UK
  • Jacobson, N. (Nov 2012) Creating a Sense of Community through Circle Dance. UK Dementia Congress, Brighton, UK
  • Bone, L., Coaten, R., Hamill, M., Heymanson, C., Jacobson, N., Kershaw, K. (Nov 2010) Interactive session with presentations on dance and movement with people with dementia and carers. UK Dementia Congress, Bournemouth, UK.
  • Jacobson, N. (Sept 2010) Making Connections: Using Dance and Movement with People affected by Dementia. Practical Workshop, ‘Kindling the Spark - Creativity in Dementia’ Trent Dementia Services Development Centre Conference

External Responsibilities

Director, Dance & Dementia C.I.C