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Research Associate

The Research Associate will form part of a research team led by Professor Dawn Brooker (Director for the Association of Dementia Studies).

The Research Associate will form part of a research team led by Professor Dawn Brooker (Director for the Association of Dementia Studies) to support the delivery of an Alzheimer’s Society Grant “Delivering Excellent Care Every Day for People Living with Advanced Dementia: Namaste Care Intervention UK”.

The Research Associate will assist with literature reviewing, participant recruitment, in-depth interviewing and qualitative data analysis, baseline and follow-up assessment of research participants in all stages of the research, undertake data entry, write reports and contribute to publications. They may also be required to work on other research projects.

The project

The Association for Dementia Studies has been awarded an implementation grant from the Alzheimer’s Society to carry out a 3 year project from 1st October 2016. The overall aim is to help UK-based care homes to provide better care for people with advanced dementia by an evidence based intervention that provides a practical, systematic approach to meet the physical, sensory and emotional needs of people living with advanced dementia.

Namaste is a multi-component intervention developed in the USA shown to reduce distress behaviours, pain, use of antipsychotics, hypnotics and depressive symptoms and inappropriate hospitalisation in people living with advanced dementia.

In this project evidence from research and practice in the UK to date will be synthesised to establish the optimal intervention. The a series of six implementation studies utilising Kotter’s 8-step process for change management will be undertaken in care homes posing different challenges (e.g. size, training, skill-mix). This will establish effectiveness and acceptability, including feedback from care homes, staff and people living with dementia and their families in addition to preliminary costing model.

The outcome will be an in-depth description of the optimal intervention in the form of a guidance manual together with expert practitioners who can support the establishment of new programmes. The optimal intervention will then be ready to roll out across care homes with information about how to implement it successful, costs, staffing and resource use. This will include guidance on how to deal with common barriers e.g. competing priorities, lack of time, staff changes, engaging families and regulators.

An on-line “Community of Namaste Practice” will be developed to gather feedback from multiple sites throughout the research. This will also be a major vehicle for generating and maintaining interest in implementation for further rollout.

Closing date: Sunday 11 Jun 2017

Reference number: IHS1712 - 3274

Job details

Job details

Band 6: £25,298 - £31,076 pa
Full time, 37 hours a week
June 2017 or as soon as possible thereafter
Temporary to 30 September 2019
Responsible to
Director of Association for Dementia Studies
Responsible for
Interview date
To be confirmed

Institute of Health and Society

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“The University is a leading innovator in the fields of health and social care”
Dr Jan Quallington, Head of Institute



The University

The University of Worcester is one of the fastest growing HEIs in the UK. It is a progressive, friendly institution, which currently welcomes over 12,000 full time and part time students a year. It offers excellent courses with flexible study options, and as the only University in Herefordshire and Worcestershire, it enjoys strong vocational links with regional business, creative, education, health and social care communities.

Research at Worcester

Research at the University of Worcester has grown significantly over the last 10 years. This growth is most clearly shown in the outcomes of the Research Excellence Framework 2014 (REF 2014). Worcester was the most improved University in the UK based on Research Fortnight’s “Research Power” measure, reflecting a more than four-fold increase in the number of staff submitted compared to RAE 2008 and a commensurate increase in the quality of the research. As a consequence of its REF 2014 submission, Worcester’s QR income for 2015-16 went up by 341% from 2014-15.

Institute of Health & Society

The Institute is a multi-disciplinary academic unit bringing together four academic departments; Psychology; Nursing, Midwifery & Paramedic Science; Applied Professional Studies; and Health & Applied Social Sciences; and two internationally acclaimed research and education centres, the Association of Dementia Studies and the National Centre for the Study and Prevention of Violence and Abuse. Co-location of these disciplines within one Institute enables us to take a strong interdisciplinary approach to our work. 

The Institute is committed to playing a leading role in researching and developing innovative and creative solutions in health and wellbeing. Our research is highly applied to real world issues which provide significant opportunity to impact positively on peoples’ lives, to contribute to the development of practice and to lead and influence policy. Our research covers a wide breadth of disciplines and applications: in addition to our strengths in Dementia Studies and domestic violence and abuse, we have expertise in: adult mental health (in particular mood disorders); palliative care; and health communication.

Association for Dementia Studies

The Association for Dementia Studies (ADS) was established in 2009 at the University of Worcester under the leadership of Professor Dawn Brooker. We are a multi-professional group of educationalists, researchers and practitioners who are expert in the field of person-centred dementia care and support. People with dementia, their families and their carers inform the work of ADS at all stages. Our aim is to make a substantial contribution to building evidence-based practical ways of working with people living with dementia and their families that enables them to live well. We do this primarily through research, education and scholarship.

We are committed to a person-centred approach in all our work. This is our ethical code that values all people as unique individuals, is respectful of the perspective of different standpoints, and recognises the interdependence of all of us. We are committed to raising awareness, challenging stigma and improving quality of life and wellbeing. We work from an evidence-based international perspective. We work in partnership with health and social care providers, commissioners, charities, educational bodies and government agencies. ADS is a signatory to the National Dementia Declaration and upholds its values and commitment of the Dementia Action Alliance.

ADS was built on a strong foundation partnership between the University, NHS Worcestershire, Worcestershire County Council, and the national charity Dementia UK. ADS has a national and international reach as a centre of excellence in training, education and research in person centred dementia care.

Main duties

Main duties

1. To undertake and manage research activity for the Namaste project both independently and in collaboration with others

2. To work effectively with the other members of the research team and to contribute to decisions as appropriate to ensure the project runs to timetable and its study protocol

3. To produce reports as requested by the project leader

4. To contribute to the writing of journal articles and other publications as required

5. To participate in research networks, both internal and external, and present research output where appropriate.

6. To help support the work of other research team members if necessary

7. To demonstrate initiative and be proactive within his/her domain of responsibility

8. To collaborate with academic colleagues on areas of shared research interest and to develop products and teaching materials where appropriate.

9. To undertake professional development activities identified in discussion with line managers to ensure the ongoing effective delivery of the project

10. To carry out other duties appropriate to the grade and role, as directed

*Maintain personal and professional development to meet the changing demands of the job; participate in appropriate training activities and encourage and support staff in their development and training.

*Take steps to ensure and enhance personal health, safety and well being and that of other staff and students.

*Carry out these duties in a manner that promotes equality of opportunity and supports diversity and inclusion, and takes into account the University's commitment to environmentally sustainable ways of working.

Person specification

Person specification

Please provide evidence of how you meet each of the essential criteria.

Essential Criteria

1. Degree in psychology, health services research, sociology or related discipline.

2. Significant research experience using qualitative and quantitative research approaches.

3. Understanding of ethical issues of research with people living with dementia and their families

4. Ability to prepare research papers, reports and conference presentations to a high standard

5. Ability to work independently as well as in a team

6. Excellent communication skills both written and oral (including the ability to communicate with a range of different stakeholders, such as research participants healthcare staff and managers)

7. Effective project management skills, including the ability to organise work to meet deadlines

8. Ability to manage conflicting priorities and time effectively.

9. Computer literate with advanced Word, Excel

Desirable Criteria

1. Postgraduate qualification (PhD, Masters) in a relevant area e.g. psychology, health services research, sociology or related disciple

2. A record of published work in this or a related field.

3. Experience of working directly and achieving results with a wide range of stakeholders4. Experience with qualitative data software such as NVivo

Disclosure: This employment is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Candidates will be required to declare any criminal convictions, cautions or bind-overs, including any that would be regarded as spent under the Act in other circumstances. If you are selected for appointment you will be required to apply to the Disclosure and Barring Service for a Criminal Records Check/Barred List Check

Applications from Non EEA Workers:

Prospective applicants are advised to ensure that they are eligible to work in the UK without restriction.

Prospective applicants in points-based system immigration routes should assess their circumstances against the published criteria, which are set out on the GOV.UK website at

Visit for more information on how you can use a qualification from outside the UK to meet the requirements of the immigration rules.

Unspent convictions, cautions and bind-overs

The University is strongly committed to the fair treatment of its staff and potential staff, regardless of race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, responsibility for dependants, age, physical/mental disability or offending background.

In line with the University's policy on the Recruitment of People with a Criminal Record, shortlisted candidates are required to provide information of any unspent convictions, cautions and bind-overs. Applicants are advised to seek independent advice if there is any doubt about the status of a previous conviction, caution or bind-over. Disclosures will only be considered at the point when an offer of employment is made. The existence of a criminal record will not in itself prevent you from gaining employment.

This is a description of the job as it is presently constituted. This job description is intended to enable a flexible approach to be offered working across the University as required. It is subject to review and amendment in the light of changing needs of the University and to provide appropriate development opportunities. Members of staff are expected to participate fully in discussions about changing requirements and it is the University's aim to reach agreement to reasonable change. If agreement is not possible, it reserves the right to require changes to the job description after consultation with the individual concerned.

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