Supporting health care professionals in research
Through partial funding for Masters-level modules, we have supported a broad range of healthcare professionals to embark on research careers in healthcare with older people.
The Clinical Research with Older People Masters module scholarship is open to all roles in healthcare, especially for those who wish to learn more about working with older people.
Jemma James (pictured) is a Staff Nurse working at the Freeman Hospital, part of Newcastle Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Last year she received an NIHR Newcastle BRC partial scholarship to complete the Clinical Research with Older People module, and she tells us how this has kick-started her research career and opened up new opportunities to work with older people.
To what extent did the module help you in your professional role?
I found the module incredibly useful in my role as it deepened my understanding of research and enabled me to critically appraise my practice and reflect on areas of strength and identify skill gaps to develop.
Please list three new skills, or things you have learned from the module
Writing at a higher academic level, an introduction to practical research methodology and a deeper understanding of the context of older people’s research.
Do you have plans to pursue research opportunities in the next year?
I’m delighted to have been offered a fully funded PhD placement at Northumbria University starting in October this year. I’m currently refining my question, but my current working focus is: What are common interventions/processes triggered by a ‘positive’ community pre-frailty assessment in North East England, how do these relate to the needs and wants of those identified as pre-frail, and how can these commonalities/disparities be used to aid health and social care professionals in supporting pre-frail individuals? I have no doubt that the application and interview were assisted by completing this module due to the additional depth of knowledge and confidence it gave me. I’ve also been invited to be part of a Delphi study examining Frailty Assessment Tools as a paid Research Assistant alongside my studies which I’m excited to start.
Do you have plans to pursue research opportunities in the longer term?
Once I’ve successfully completed my PhD, I hope to develop my research portfolio further which will include developing funding applications and proposals. I would also love to teach but I’m also keen not to lose my clinical skills which I’ll continue to develop alongside my academic ones. I have a lot of potential options which is exciting and a little daunting!