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We welcome applications to undertake research towards MPhil and PhD degrees in Dementia Studies.

Research at Worcester has grown significantly in the last 10 years as the University has expanded. As a research student you will join a vibrant student community in our Research School and become part of our dynamic research environment.

Overview

Overview

The Association for Dementia Studies

The Association for Dementia Studies is a multi-professional university research centre with many years of experience in the field of person-centred dementia care and support. We make a cutting edge contribution to developing evidence-based practical ways of working with people living with dementia, their families, friends and carers that enable them to live well. We draw on and contribute to the international evidence base for person-centred dementia care. Using this evidence, we deliver education programmes that empower people to provide skilled, competent and compassionate care.

Our work influences policy change at a local, national and international level and changes practice on the front line. Our research informs practice and policy for people living with dementia, their families, and the professionals who support them. We work in partnership with organisations across the public, private and third sectors.

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Research Degree Open Day

Join us for this virtual event on Saturday 27 March 2021 from 10am-2pm. Starting with a series of live interactive talks, you'll then have the opportunity to chat online with our staff and current students.

Book your place
Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry qualifications

For MPhil

  • First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or an approved equivalent award

or

  • Research or professional experience which has resulted in appropriate evidence of achievement

For PhD

  • Postgraduate Masters Degree in a discipline which is appropriate to the proposed programme of study

or

  • First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent award in an appropriate discipline

or

  • Research or professional experience at postgraduate level which has resulted in published work, written reports or other appropriate evidence of achievement

International applicants

International applicants will be required to demonstrate that they have the appropriate level of written and spoken English.

For MPhil/PhD this is an IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum score of 6.0 in every component.

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We're in the top 20 for student experience in the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.

Course content

What will you study?

PhD year by year

After receiving your application, we try to establish if we have the necessary expertise to supervise your project and we begin to form a supervisory team for you. This will normally consist of a Director of Studies (DoS), who will be your lead supervisor, and at least one other supervisor, who will offer you additional support and guidance throughout your studies. If, following a successful interview, you are offered a place as a full-time student, your programme of study will look something like this:

First year

You will have submitted a draft research outline with your application. In your first year, you will be working towards submitting a more complete research proposal. You will be aided in your research by meeting with your supervisory team to discuss your progress. You will also be supported through your first year by engaging with a series of four modules:

  • RSDP4001: Developing as a Researcher
  • RSDP4002: Approaches to Research 1
  • RSDP4003: Approaches to Research 2
  • RSDP4004: Planning Your Research Project

At the end of each year, beginning with your first year, you will reflect on and formally review your progress with your supervisory team and MPhil/PhD Course Leader. We call this annual meeting an Annual Progress Review (APR).

Second year

In your second year, you will be collecting data and working on your research project under the supervision of your supervisors through regular meetings. You may at this point have research papers ready to publish and you may wish to attend conferences to present your research to other experts in your field. You will be able to apply to our Research Student Support Scheme for some funding for this purpose. Students normally undergo Transfer from MPhil to PhD towards the end of their second year. This will be part of your Annual Progress Review for this year.

Third and fourth year

In your third and fourth year, you will be writing up your thesis and preparing for your viva voce examination. This is an oral exam with two examiners and a chair. You can also request that your supervisor be present at the exam. The exam will take place after you have submitted your final thesis. After the exam, it is not unusual for the examiners to ask that some amendments be made to your thesis before the final award is confirmed and you will have additional time to do this. It is possible to complete the course in three years, but we have found that the majority of students do take four years to complete the course. At the end of each year of your registration, you will go through an Annual Progress Review.

Part time students follow the same structure as full-time students but normally complete the PhD over a period of five to six years. Part-time students take two modules in each of their first two years, and will normally Transfer to PhD in their fourth year.

Supervision areas

How will you be supervised?

Supervision areas

The School of Allied Health and Community has a strong mix of academics with a high degree of professional and personal experience, enabling you to get the most out of your programme. Areas of expertise and interest include: Living Well with Dementia, Supporting Choice and Control at Home and in Supported Housing, Excellence in Person-Centred Care in Care Homes, Dementia-Friendly Hospital Care, and Environments to Enhance Wellbeing for People Living with Dementia.

In early 2015 the Alzheimer’s Society funded eight Doctoral Training Centres (DTC) in various aspects of dementia to help to increase research knowledge and capacity in this vital area. One of the successful centres is TAnDem, a partnership between the Association for Dementia Studies at the University of Worcester and the Centre for Dementia, University of Nottingham. TAnDem has been funded to focus on studying The Arts and Dementia.

Some of the topics being researched by our current MPhil/PhD students include:

  • How do arts activities engage the individual with dementia in a care home setting?
  • Evaluating arts-based activities for people living with dementia: Methodological challenges and possible solutions
  • The community leisure centre as a resource for people with dementia: explorations of individual and social identity
  • An exploration to enhance understanding of the long-term experiences of personal music playlists for people with dementia and their primary carers

 

Resources

Access to the University of Worcester’s virtual resources and its state-of-the-art library facilities.

 

 

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document for the MPhil or PhD.

Supervisors

Please click on the name of the supervisor to follow a link to their webpage. We recommend contacting a potential supervisor with your research outline before submitting a formal application, please read our guidelines for writing your research outline first.  Please only contact one supervisor. If another supervisor is better suited to your project, we will redirect your query.

Professor Eleanor Bradley 
Expertise: adult mental health; medicines conversations (information-exchange, concordance); family input and support (shared decision making, coproduction); non-medical prescribing; qualitative research; health psychology.

Self-funded project: Pain Levels and Pre-Operative Anxiety within Cardiac Care

Dr Shirley Evans
Expertise: dementia research; post-diagnostic support; technology and inclusion; lifelong learning. Research methodological experience with realist review and evaluation; phenomenological approaches; user involvement and action research.

Self-funded project: Experiences, needs, interventions and outcomes of family carers of persons with dementia

Dr Simon Evans
Expertise: dementia research; research ethics; retirement housing; user involvement in research.

Self-funded project: Evaluating an enriched care management approach to improving quality of life for people living with dementia in the community.

Self-funded project: Exploring models for supporting people with dementia in housing with care settings.

Careers

Where could it take you?

All students engage with our Researcher Development Programme (RDP). The RDP aims to develop and enhance the skills, both generic and specific, that you will need to complete your research degree but also to become an effective researcher. The RDP is organised around thematic clusters, consisting of modules, and workshops, delivered face-to-face by subject specialists from across the University and the dedicated Researcher Development Team, or online through our virtual learning environment.

As part of the RDP, you will complete a Postgraduate Certificate in Research Methods (PG Cert). All students must complete the PG Cert in order to progress on their MPhil/PhD Programme. The PG Cert is strongly focused on developing your programme of research, starting from establishing your development needs, and preparing you for the planning and subsequent delivery of your programme of research.

Full-time students will complete the PG Cert in 12 months and part-time students in 24 months.

Costs

How much will it cost?

Fees

The current fees can be found within the tuition fees document on our figure out finances page.

Accommodation

Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience. Our halls of residence are home to friendly student communities, making them great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our range of student halls. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £111 per week to 'En-suite Premium' at £189 per week (2022/23 prices).

For full details visit our accommodation page.

How to apply

How do you apply?

Additional information

As part of the application process, you will be asked to submit a research outline. We recommend preparing your research outline before beginning your online application. Some guidance on preparing your research outline is available here.

If your research involves working with vulnerable adults and/or children then you may be required to obtain a DBS check. There will be a small charge for this. For more information please contact research@worc.ac.uk.

We are committed to making reasonable adjustment. If you require an alternative format for making your application due to a disability, please contact us to discuss your needs on 01905 542182 or research@worc.ac.uk.

How to apply

Please make your application via our online application form. If you have any questions, please contact the Research School on 01905 542182 or research@worc.ac.uk

Before you submit a full application, please contact Dr Simon Evans (simon.evans@worc.ac.uk) to discuss your research project and the availability of appropriate supervision.

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