Posts tagged: university of salford

PhD Studentship in the area of Digital Health or Integrated Care in the School of Health and Society/School of Health Sciences, University of Salford. Start Date – End of September 2018.

 

About the Schools

The Schools of Health and Society and Health Sciences are forward-thinking, dynamic schools with a commitment to lifelong learning and real world impact by focusing on the health and wellbeing of people and helping them at all stages of their lives.  In September 2018 the Schools will be merging to create one School.  These studentships offer a chance to bring together interests across the Schools.

We are focused on developing our knowledge and understanding, so we can actively help people, our clients, to lead more productive, comfortable lives. We have a fantastic range of facilities which reflect those in practice and focus on new technologies and pioneering techniques.

https://www.salford.ac.uk/health-and-society

https://www.salford.ac.uk/health-sciences

 

About our research

Our research underpins our teaching and learning, ensuring our staff, students and partner organisations reach their full potential and remain at the forefront of innovation.

Research is organised into two Centres:

 

  • Centre for Applied Research in Health, Welfare and Policy (CaRe)

https://www.salford.ac.uk/research/care

 

  • Centre for Health Sciences Research

https://www.salford.ac.uk/research/health-sciences

 

More details regarding our research and our research staff (and their interests) can be found on the above websites.

 

About the studentships

Applications for PhD studentships are sought in the areas of Digital Health or Integrated Care.  It is expected that applicants will possess a minimum 2.1 degree in a relevant subject area. A higher degree qualification would be desirable.

Experienced supervisors will be provided from across the Schools.  Proposals that fall within these themes will be considered and prospective students are expected to provide a focus to the proposal and may consult with prospective supervisors prior to application.

The studentship will include 3 years full time fees and a tax free scholarship of £14,553 per annum (for 3 years).  Successful students will be expected to contribute to the success of the School in terms of timely progression and contribution to the production of research outputs or teaching during their candidature.

The University of Salford provides an extensive training programme for PhD candidates as part of the Doctoral School and at School Level within the Schools of Health and Society and Health Sciences.  Training includes compulsory induction and ethics and an introductory “Getting Started Week”.

 

About the application procedure

Application is online.  Applicants must provide evidence of their existing knowledge and experience in the chosen topic area in a formal Research Proposal and supplementary CV.

The proposal should contain:  1. A summary of relevant literature related to the proposed project 2. Aims of the proposed research 3. An outline the key research methods proposed to appropriately address the aims. This document should be 3-4 sides of typed A4.

Further details about the procedure are available at: http://www.salford.ac.uk/study/postgraduate/applying/applying-for-research

Applications will pass through an initial filter stage and then an interview prior to a final offer.

 

Timelines

Deadline for receipt of online application:  31st July 2018

Interviews:  Interviews will be held w/c 20th August

Offers:  Informal offer will be communicated by 27th August

Registration and start:  Registration w/c 24th September

Induction and Getting Started Week:  w/c 3rd October (TBC)

 

Integrated Care

Further details regarding the Integrated Care agenda across Greater Manchester can be found at: http://www.gmhsc.org.uk/

 

For further information please contact:

Louise Brown, PGR Support:  PGR-SupportSHAS@salford.ac.uk or PGR-SupportHS@salford.ac.uk

Tel: 0161 295 6345

Professor Alison Brettle, PGR Director, School of Health and Society:  a.brettle@salford.ac.uk

Tel: 0161 295 0447

Dr Yeliz Prior, PGR Director, School of Health Sciences: y.prior@salford.ac.uk

Tel: 0161 295 0211


Health Sciences Research Centre Programme

Festival of Research Logo

Health Sciences Research Centre Programme

How to find us: Please follow this link to find us at media city: http://www.salford.ac.uk/mediacityuk/location

Tuesday 3rd July

Virtual Reality: Virtual Reality and Mental Health (03/07/18, 09:30-10:30, Media City 2.03)

While offering great potential in mental health, Virtual Reality (VR) is a powerful tool that could be counterproductive if used bluntly. This talk looks at the incentives and hurdles to take up and use of VR with vulnerable populations. It is given by someone who has developed and studied the use of VR for over two decades. VR can provide tailored, controllable and repeatable stimuli to which people react as if it were real, even when knowing it’s not. This capability has application across understanding, diagnosing, treating and living with a range of mental and psychological problems. For example, within therapy it has demonstrated efficacy in the treatment of both phobias and PTSD and is being used as an aid to reminisce in dementia. Yet using a technology that blurs boundary between what is real and what is not, should not be used carelessly with those whose condition also blurs this boundary. The talk describes our investigation of how VR exposure therapy works with the mind and fits within the way health professional work with the vulnerable. It concludes with a description of how this understanding has helped to develop a novel VR exposure therapy used within the NHS to treat some of the victims of the Manchester Arena attack.

Biomedical Engineering: Rehabilitation Technologies and Biomedical Engineering Research @ Salford (03/07/18, 10:30-11:30, Media City 2.03)

Rehabilitation Technologies and Biomedical Engineering is a thriving, cross-school research group, jointly led by Professors David Howard (Computing, Science and Engineering) and Laurence Kenney (Health Sciences). We focus on the design and development of new rehabilitation technologies aimed at assisting functional movement, together with novel methods for their evaluation.  Our current research is supported by ~£1.9 million in external grants from NIHR, EPSRC and charities. We will demonstrate some of our latest research, which includes:

  • Controlled energy storage and return in prosthetic limbs to improve amputee gait.
  • A novel and rigorous approach to assessing stability of people using walking aids.
  • A flexible and easy to setup controller for upper limb functional electrical stimulation (FES).
  • Novel approaches to understanding user-assistive device interaction (with psychologists Galpin, Gowen and Bowen)
  • Award winning research on monitoring assistive device use outside of the clinic.

Foot and Ankle: Foot health and industry – from our lab to your feet (03/07/18, 11:30-12:00, Media City 2.03)

Healthy feet are central to keeping mobile and poor foot health can lead to very significant loss of independence. Caring for poorly feet can be expensive too: 1% of the entire NHS budget goes on care of feet affected by diabetes. Without knowing it we make foot health choices each and every day, when we choose our socks and footwear, and then go about our daily activities. Common but often significant foot problems can be adequately managed with the need for a health professional, but equally the input of professionals and can life saving in some cases – literally. Our research has sought to connect what we know about foot health, foot biomechanics and foot disease to the design, development and use of footwear and insoles, and over the counter foot health treatments too. Working with leading global foot health brands, UK footwear manufacturers, and supporting the design of footwear for children and use in unique workplaces, we aim to help everyone make better foot health choices each day.

Occupational Therapy: Occupational Therapy at Salford – How we are contributing to the evidence base (03/07/18, 13:00-14:00, Media City 2.03)

Occupational therapy facilitates health and well-being through the therapeutic use of meaningful and purposeful activities. We believe that occupational balance and justice enables individuals of all ages to achieve their full potential in their everyday lives and communities. A high proportion of our research has an emphasis on improving health and well-being in later life, for example, managing widowhood and care-giving, safe moving, handling and positioning to increase independence and functional performance in activities of daily living. As an emerging group we are involved in a range of projects within the School of Health Sciences, across the University and with partners in the public, private and voluntary sectors.

This session will provide an overview of our research topics including innovations in moving and handling training (research informed teaching), development of the new Tissue Viability Seating Guidelines and the The Home Modification Process Protocol, Service user engagement in occupational therapy and exploring the roles of fathers who have an adult with a learning disability. Practical demonstrations of pressure mapping systems used in a number of studies exploring the impact of different seating and bed surfaces on pressure ulcer development risk and comfort are available.

Equity, Health and Well-being: Putting communities in charge of alcohol: a health champion model (03/07/18, 14:00-15:00, Media City 2.03)

The session will start with a brief overview of the research of the Equity, Health and Wellbeing research group. An interactive discussion will follow, which will look at issues around developing community capacity to influence health behavioural change. It will outline how an asset based community development (ABCD) approach to improving health outcomes is being implemented across Greater Manchester and how it is being evaluated. It will explore the barriers and facilitators to implementing an ABCD approach to improving health outcomes. Experienced researchers will discuss current work underway. They will show some short films that have been made of the experience of professionals and volunteers developing knowledge and skills as alcohol health champions and the benefits experienced to date. The researchers will canvas the views and opinions of those attending the event, about the role of stakeholders, laypeople and community organisations in championing healthy lifestyle changes.

Clinical Rehabilitation: Development of an online self-management platform for people with rheumatic and musculoskeletal conditions (mskhub.com) (03/07/18, 15:00-16:00, Media City 2.03)

Patient information and education have been shown to improve pain and self-efficacy and increase overall quality of life in people with chronic musculoskeletal conditions (MSCs). Informed patients are better able to distinguish and manage symptoms, use treatments effectively, access services needed, manage work and cope better with the psychological impact of their conditions. However, there is a need to improve the access to high quality specialist health information for people with rheumatic and MSCs. This presentation by Dr Yeliz Prior will provide an insight into the development and testing of an online self-management platform, the MSKHUB.com for people with rheumatic and MSCs. This platform aims to facilitate access to (i) valid and reliable health information (ii) evidence-based Patient Reported Outcome Measures (PROMs) (iii) advice on self-help, assistive technologies and rehabilitation and (iv) peer support, and will be freely accessible for people with rheumatic and MSCs.

Wednesday 4th July

Knee Biomechanics: Using clinical biomechanics in knee injury and disease (04/07/18, 09:30-10:30, Media City 2.03)

Objective data collection is important in determining where an individual’s functional impairments lie in musculoskeletal research. This can be either in terms of the risk of injury, rehabilitation from injury or in the treatment of degenerative disease. The talk will give an overview of the knee biomechanics and injury research programme at the University where we are investigating risk factors for injury, risk mitigation programs and also rehabilitation approaches (therapeutic and also assistive devices) in the management of musculoskeletal and degenerative disorders. Utilising clinical biomechanics where we collect movement and loading data on individuals helps us to determine which tasks, strategies and treatments are best suited to the individual.

Virtual Reality: Virtual Reality and Mental Health (04/07/18, 10:30-11:30, Media City 2.03)

While offering great potential in mental health, Virtual Reality (VR) is a powerful tool that could be counterproductive if used bluntly. This talk looks at the incentives and hurdles to take up and use of VR with vulnerable populations. It is given by someone who has developed and studied the use of VR for over two decades. VR can provide tailored, controllable and repeatable stimuli to which people react as if it were real, even when knowing it’s not. This capability has application across understanding, diagnosing, treating and living with a range of mental and psychological problems. For example, within therapy it has demonstrated efficacy in the treatment of both phobias and PTSD and is being used as an aid to reminisce in dementia. Yet using a technology that blurs boundary between what is real and what is not, should not be used carelessly with those whose condition also blurs this boundary. The talk describes our investigation of how VR exposure therapy works with the mind and fits within the way health professional work with the vulnerable. It concludes with a description of how this understanding has helped to develop a novel VR exposure therapy used within the NHS to treat some of the victims of the Manchester Arena attack.

PGR Director for Health Sciences: Director and student presentations (04/07/18, 11:30-12:30, Media City 2.03)

Occupational Therapy: Occupational Therapy at Salford – How we are contributing to the evidence base (04/07/18, 13:00-14:00, Media City 2.03)

Occupational therapy facilitates health and well-being through the therapeutic use of meaningful and purposeful activities. We believe that occupational balance and justice enables individuals of all ages to achieve their full potential in their everyday lives and communities. A high proportion of our research has an emphasis on improving health and well-being in later life, for example, managing widowhood and care-giving, safe moving, handling and positioning to increase independence and functional performance in activities of daily living. As an emerging group we are involved in a range of projects within the School of Health Sciences, across the University and with partners in the public, private and voluntary sectors.

This session will provide an overview of our research topics including innovations in moving and handling training (research informed teaching), development of the new Tissue Viability Seating Guidelines and the The Home Modification Process Protocol, Service user engagement in occupational therapy and exploring the roles of fathers who have an adult with a learning disability. Practical demonstrations of pressure mapping systems used in a number of studies exploring the impact of different seating and bed surfaces on pressure ulcer development risk and comfort are available.

ICZ Director Talks: Caitriona O’shea, ICZ Sport Director (04/07/18, 14:00-15:00, Media City 2.03)

Diagnostic Imaging: How can medical imaging research benefit patients? (04/07/18, 15:00-16:00, Media City 2.03)

Medical imaging examinations, X-rays and CT scans, involve the use of radiation.  The use of radiation carries with it well known risks but these are necessary in order to diagnose illness and disease.  The amount of radiation used during a medical imaging examination must be balanced against the need to produce images of sufficient diagnostic quality.  Balancing radiation dose and image quality can be a difficult task and is affected by the type of imaging technology, disease under investigation and the size or characteristics of the patient.  Within the Directorate of Radiography at the University of Salford, we have a well-established portfolio of research which seeks to improve the diagnosis of disease whilst minimising any associated risks.  Our research portfolio focuses specifically into the areas of conventional radiography, CT scanning and digital mammography.  Our research group has published in leading international journals and we have a number of Masters and Doctoral students undertaking projects within these areas.

Thursday 5th July

Psychology: Applications of psychology to real world, contemporary issues (05/07/18, 09:30-10:30, Media City 2.03)

The Psychology team at the University of Salford has a diverse range of interests and expertise. Our focus is applying psychology to real-world problems in order to maximise performance and wellbeing. The research we conduct is often multi-disciplinary and many members of the team have experience of working with non-academic partners. This session will provide an overview of our research topics and strengths within the areas of Applied Social Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience, Developmental Psychology, and Health. We will also provide a demonstration of how we are using research techniques such as eye tracking to explore issues within health, education, and the media.

Equity, Health and Well-being: Putting communities in charge of alcohol: a health champion model (05/07/18, 10:30-11:30, Media City 2.03)

The session will start with a brief overview of the research of the Equity, Health and Wellbeing research group. An interactive discussion will follow, which will look at issues around developing community capacity to influence health behavioural change. It will outline how an asset based community development (ABCD) approach to improving health outcomes is being implemented across Greater Manchester and how it is being evaluated. It will explore the barriers and facilitators to implementing an ABCD approach to improving health outcomes. Experienced researchers will discuss current work underway. They will show some short films that have been made of the experience of professionals and volunteers developing knowledge and skills as alcohol health champions and the benefits experienced to date. The researchers will canvas the views and opinions of those attending the event, about the role of stakeholders, laypeople and community organisations in championing healthy lifestyle changes.

Diagnostic Imaging: How can medical imaging research benefit patients? (05/07/18, 13:00-14:00, Media City 2.03)

Medical imaging examinations, X-rays and CT scans, involve the use of radiation.  The use of radiation carries with it well known risks but these are necessary in order to diagnose illness and disease.  The amount of radiation used during a medical imaging examination must be balanced against the need to produce images of sufficient diagnostic quality.  Balancing radiation dose and image quality can be a difficult task and is affected by the type of imaging technology, disease under investigation and the size or characteristics of the patient.  Within the Directorate of Radiography at the University of Salford, we have a well-established portfolio of research which seeks to improve the diagnosis of disease whilst minimising any associated risks.  Our research portfolio focuses specifically into the areas of conventional radiography, CT scanning and digital mammography.  Our research group has published in leading international journals and we have a number of Masters and Doctoral students undertaking projects within these areas.

ICZ Director Talks: Andrew Spencer, ICZ Health, Wellbeing & Society Director (05/07/18, 14:00-15:00, Media City 2.03)

SPARC Parallel Session Talks 3.4 (05/07/18, 14:30-15:30, Media City 2.03)

Psychology: Applications of psychology to real world, contemporary issues (05/07/18, 15:00-16:00, Media City 2.03)

The Psychology team at the University of Salford has a diverse range of interests and expertise. Our focus is applying psychology to real-world problems in order to maximise performance and wellbeing. The research we conduct is often multi-disciplinary and many members of the team have experience of working with non-academic partners. This session will provide an overview of our research topics and strengths within the areas of Applied Social Psychology, Cognitive Neuroscience, Developmental Psychology, and Health. We will also provide a demonstration of how we are using research techniques such as eye tracking to explore issues within health, education, and the media.


Alternative Gardeners Question Time

ALTGQT Logo

There is a growing recognition that Green Care can positively influence health and well-being at an individual and community level. However, this knowledge has had limited reach to those who it may impact most in the community. The promotion of health and well-being through alternative approaches such as Green Care presents realistic, alternative methods. Our ‘Alternative Gardeners Question Time’, part of the 2017 ESRC Festival of Social Science, was designed to facilitate debate with local communities, charities, public health and environmental organisations about what constitutes significant health and well-being outcomes for the community and individual. This debate helped identify pertinent well-being outcomes that Green Care could provide for residents within Salford & Manchester.

Nature Based Activity in Salford

A diverse range of nature based activities and green care are located within Salford and surrounding geographical areas. The extent of this activity is currently unknown, the University of Salford is working with local organisations, and the RHS to map existing provision to enable a comprehensive picture of nature based work. Mapping existing provision will help to determine a more coordinated approach and enable CCGs, local authorities and public health to understand the extent of support and asset-based community nature-based approaches. This will help to develop a community referral process and support decision-making processes for those health and social care professionals who work in the NHS and community sector.

 

Event Structure

The Alternative Gardeners Question Time was structured in three parts:  sharing the science base about Green Care, discussing Green Care and key questions and, finally, developing questions for an expert panel for wider discussion.

ALTGQT Workshop

 

Further Information

The full report can be found here:  ALTGQT Report

 


Becoming a Higher Education Academy National Teaching Fellow

Photo - Dr Jacqueline Leigh

 

Dr Jacqueline Leigh moved into academia from being a Senior Nurse Manager in the NHS. Since qualifying as a registered nurse in 1986 Jacqueline has maintained her professional registration and gained a BSc (Hons) in Nursing and Masters in Health Professional Education. She also completed her PhD in 2012 and in 2017 was awarded Principal Fellow Higher Education Academy.

Her continual professional development has resulted in changes that have been made within the areas of healthcare leadership and management, pedagogical research and health professional practice. This has culminated into being appointed the first Reader Teaching and Learning, Health Professional Education at the University of Salford.

 

Impact of work

Over the years she has developed strong strategic partnerships that inspire a commitment to learning by both academics and students within the field of health professional education. Impact is the bringing together of the right stakeholders from NHS and private, voluntary and independent health and social care organisations across Greater Manchester to develop and implement strategies to address quality assurance in relation to: the UK Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) professional requirements for undergraduate pre-registration nursing practice placements; and Health Education England North West and Department of Health directives.

An advocate for evidence based education, teaching and assessment Jacqueline innovates curriculum and assessment and supports workforce development through teaching and learning excellence. She is committed to supporting others in engaging in academic scholarship and professional development through which she is able to ensure that every academic has the potential to disseminate good practice.

 

Plans for the future

Jacqueline is a strategic champion at the University of Salford and Non-Executive Director at Healthwatch Salford which enables her to influence the healthcare services being developed to improve patient experience in Salford.

In the future she will continue to work with others to help them face the challenges of an evolving higher education system and the changes which are taking place within the field of health professional education.

 

What it Means to be a National Teaching Fellow


European Congress of Radiology (ECR) 2018

ECR was held in Vienna, Austria from 28th February until 4th March inclusive; each day it runs from 8.00am until 7pm. It attracted around 25,000 participants, making it the second largest radiology conference in the world. It is of interest to physicists, radiographers, radiologists and a wide range of other health care professionals, including industry. As always the Directorate of Radiography at the University of Salford had a large presence, with contributions from BSc, MSc and PhD students as well as staff. The Directorate of Radiography first or co-authored 28 scientific posters and oral papers with friends and colleagues from U.K., Norway, Ireland, Switzerland, Australia, Portugal, South Africa, Brazil, Netherlands, Libya, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Greece. They also launched their OPTIMAX 2017 book (http://usir.salford.ac.uk/46104/7/OPTIMAX%202017%20ed.pdf, Figure 1). All lectures can be seen online free of charge (http://ecronline.myesr.org/ecr2018/).

This year two 2nd year BSc Diagnostic Radiography students (Lucinda Gray and Shaun Dorey, Figure 2) presented extracurricular research into smart glasses as a poster and also as an oral presentation. The work was developed with Consultant Radiologist Dr Shofiq Al-Islam (Royal Blackburn Hospital), Helen Baxter (Tameside Hospital) and staff from the Directorate of Radiography at Salford. Figures 3 and 4 show Andrew England and Leslie Robinson, from the Directorate of Radiography, presenting their papers at ECR.

Figure 1: OPTIMAX book launch

(Editors left to right: Annemieke Heij-Meijer; Carst Buissink (Netherlands) and Peter Hogg (Radiography/Salford)

 

Figure 2: Lucinda and Shaun presenting their work at ECR

Figure 3 Andrew England, Radiography/Salford, presenting a paper at ECR

Figure 4 Leslie Robinson, Radiography/Salford, presenting a paper at ECR


Radiation dose, image quality optimisation, the use of new technology in medical imaging (ISBN: 978-1-912337-09-5)

OPTIMAX, a multinational summer school for BSc, MSc and PhD radiography and physics students, had its 5th rendition in Oslo throughout August in 2017. It represents the only multinational and multiprofessional summer school of its kind in the world and it seeks to give participants a research informed teaching experience related to radiation dose optimisation in medical imaging. Outputs from each summer school include journal and conference papers and also a book.

Following on from the Oslo summer school a new open source (free) book has been published (http://usir.salford.ac.uk/46104/7/OPTIMAX%202017%20ed.pdf). The editors include Dr Annemiek Meije and Carst Buissink from the Netherlands and Professor Peter Hogg from the University of Salford. The book comprises ten chapters, four of which are empirical research papers conducted during the summer school. The remaining six chapters provide background information related to the optimisation of radiation dose and medical image quality. Chapter authors include all the students and tutors who participated in OPTIMAX 2017 and this year participants emanated from 8 countries.

Book Title and Photo of a Radiographer


Researchers win £1.4m bid to improve prosthetics in Uganda and Jordan

UNIVERSITY of Salford researchers have won a £1.4m grant to look into ways of providing better upper limb prostheses for people in lower and middle income countries.

The project will enable researchers at the University – one of only two in the UK that teach prosthetics and orthotics – to develop better, low cost prostheses.

The funding has come from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) who are committing £16m to a range of projects through the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF), a £1.5b government fund to support cutting-edge technology that addresses challenges faced by low and middle income countries.

The team will be partnering with Makere University in Uganda and the University of Jordan, as well as University College London (UCL), and the Universities of Southampton and Greenwich.

New ways of making prosthetic limbs 

Engineering and clinical researchers across the three countries will collaborate to develop new designs, as well as novel ways of creating, fitting and evaluating how well the prosthetic limbs work, enabling more people to benefit from them.

Earlier this year, a team of prosthetics students from the University were able to create prosthetic upper limbs for a Ugandan woman who had suffered a horrific machete attack. The students built the prosthetic limbs in the University’s own Brian Blatchford lab before they were sent to Uganda to be fitted.

In many poorer countries, there is a huge demand for prosthetic limbs, because of problems with conflict or road traffic accidents, but there are very few hospitals and medical centres able to provide this specialist work, and few clinicians able to help patients maintain the limbs once fitted.

Researchers at the University believe simple ‘body powered prostheses’, which work by using cables to link the movement of the body with the artificial limb, could be the answer as they are easy to manufacture and maintain.

Researchers hope to address problems

Amputees in Africa and the Middle East often have very poor access to prosthetic services and the devices they are offered are often not fit for purpose, being expensive, providing limited function and being uncomfortable to use.  Researchers working on the project now hope to address these problems.

The two countries were chosen because of the unique challenges they face. While Uganda is one of the least developed countries in the world, with poorly resourced and fragmented rehabilitation services, Jordan is classed as an ‘upper middle income country’ with well-trained clinicians, but facing huge pressure on its prosthetic services partly because of regional conflicts.

The University of Salford is also now collaborating in two other projects in the area of prosthetics, also funded through the Global Challenges Fund of EPSRC – one led by the University of Southampton and another led by Imperial College London.

Life changing experience

Losing an arm is always a horrific and life changing experience, but in many lower or middle income countries it can have a truly devastating effect. It can deprive people already existing at a subsistence level of any ability to support themselves or their families.

Professor Laurence Kenney, research co-lead for Rehabilitation Technologies and Biomedical Engineering at the University of Salford, said: “Losing an arm is always a horrific and life changing experience, but in many lower or middle income countries it can have a truly devastating effect. It can deprive people already existing at a subsistence level of any ability to support themselves or their families.

“Sadly, it is these countries where there is a greater need for prostheses, but for a whole host of reasons it is incredibly difficult for anyone who needs an artificial limb to be able to get one.

“This much-needed research project will enable us to bring together an experienced team in the UK, Uganda and Jordan who can create better prostheses, designed for use in lower and middle income countries across the world, which I hope will have a long term impact on millions of people.”

President of the International Society for the Measurement of Physical Behaviour

Figure caption: Rick Troiano (Program Director at the National Institute of Health, Bethesda) and Malcolm Granat co-chairs of the International Conference on Ambulatory Monitoring and Physical Activity Measurement (Bethesda, June 2017). At this meeting Malcolm was elected President of International Society for the Measurement of Physical Behaviour.

President of the International Society for the Measurement of Physical Behaviour

Professor Malcolm Granat has recently been elected as President of the International Society for the Measurement of Physical Behaviour (www.ismpb.org).   The ISMPB is a non-profit scientific society that aims to promote and facilitate the study and applications of objective measurement and quantification of free-living physical behaviour(s) and its related constructs (e.g. energy expenditure, context) using wearable devices.  Alongside organising  the biennial International Conference on Ambulatory Monitoring and Physical Activity Measurement (ICAMPAM), the Society aims to bring together people from a wide variety of backgrounds and expertise, including researchers, clinicians, therapists, signal analysts, computational scientists and commercial companies.

Seeing a rapid growth of research activity in this field, Malcolm Granat together with Professors David Bassett (University of Tenessee, USA), Hans Bussmann (Erasmus MC, Rotterdam, The Netherlands) and Patty Freedson (University of Massachusetts Amherst, USA), formed the Society in 2016.  Malcolm was also co-chair of the most recent and highly successful ICAMPAM in the USA (Bethesda, June 2017).  The latest initiative of the Society has been the launch of the Journal for the Measurement of Physical Behaviour, which publishes high quality research papers that employ and/or apply sensor-based measures of physical activity, movement disorders, sedentary behaviour and sleep (https://journals.humankinetics.com/page/about/jmpb).

Malcolm believes that his position within the ISMPB will lead to opportunities for University of Salford staff to collaborate with leading international research groups in this fast-expanding field.   An example of this is the joint project of the Universities of Salford and Leicester funded by the National Institute of Health Research – a three arm cluster randomised controlled trial to test the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of the SMArT Work & Life intervention for reducing daily sitting time in office workers. 

At the University, Malcolm leads the Physical Behaviour Monitoring research theme within the Health Sciences Research Centre and the Technology theme within the Institute for Dementia.


Research Impact and Funding

There is a growing body of opinion that holds that researchers have a responsibility to articulate the impact of their research to non-academic audiences. Indeed, the way in which research funding is allocated now increasingly reflects researchers’ ability to generate and demonstrate impact.

A renewed emphasis on the importance of both planning and evidencing research impact requires researchers to develop increasingly robust and integrated ‘pathways to impact’ (as illustrated by Research Councils UK) within research funding bids in order to identify and reward the contribution that high-quality research will make to the economy or to society.

 

Newton's cradle impact imageIn the current research funding climate there is also an urgent need for HEIs to generate income streams from sources other than the Higher Education Funding Councils. Now more than ever HEIs are seeking to raise their profiles and develop relationships with industry, policymakers and other stakeholders in a bid to identify new sources of revenue and facilitate knowledge exchange.

Generating impact, and consequently ensuring that a full range of stakeholders will benefit from the research, is therefore integral to Salford’s research strategy and feeds into its single strategic priority around the Industry Collaboration Zones (ICZs).

The recent announcement by HEFCE that Impact will have a 25% weighting in the forthcoming REF2021 exercise (compared with its 20% weighting in REF2014) serves to further reinforce the importance and relevance of the research impact agenda to HEIs today and in the future.

 

Research Impact Fund

To support researchers at Salford in becoming more ‘impactful’, the University operates an internal Research Impact Fund.

This offers small grants of up to £1000 (match-funded by School/Research Centre) to individuals and groups in support of activities that:

  • reflect the University’s desire to increase the impact and reach of its research
  • highlight strategic engagement that builds upon the University’s vision to pioneer ‘exceptional industry partnerships’

The Fund is currently open for new applications, with a deadline of Friday, 19th January 2018 for the latest round. Further details and the application form can be found here:  https://teamsite.salford.ac.uk/sites/sc02/REF2021/SitePages/Impact%20Funding.aspx

 

If you would like to find out more about the Research Impact Fund, or impact in general, please contact Emma Sutton, Interim Impact, Engagement and Environment Coordinator on research-impact@salford.ac.uk

Alternatively, please visit the Impact pages on our REF intranet site for further details on impact resources, funding opportunities and upcoming training events: https://teamsite.salford.ac.uk/sites/sc02/REF2021/SitePages/Impact.aspx

 


Dementia Services: fit for purpose?

Finding out you have dementia is one thing, but then finding services are tailored for people who are much older than you can be an added blow. As researchers, we have found people with young onset dementia (before the age of 65) want to know things that they cannot readily find from existing services. For example, dementia is not just about memory loss and participants in our interviews said they wanted to know the ‘early warning signs’ of dementia so they knew what to look out for and seek help earlier. Others wanted greater psychological support at the point of diagnosis, ideally with someone to be there throughout their dementia journey such as a counsellor.

Some people with dementia felt that information about exercise and healthy activities was lacking and wanted more readily available information so they could make healthy lifestyle changes. This they believed would help them keep active and therefore independent for longer whilst preventing loneliness.

Family carers on the other hand felt peer support mechanisms were under-developed. They want help to identify practical and psychological coping strategies and they believe that carers have their own coping mechanisms but just need help to share them. A particular need was for greater information in a format that is digestible and timely.

This week sees the start of the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) Festival 2017. The ESRC Festival of Social Science takes place from 4-11 November with over 300 free events across the UK. The festival, now in its fifteenth year, is designed to promote awareness of social science research by enabling scientists to engage with the public through debates, talks, workshops, seminars, film screenings, theatre, exhibitions and much more. The festival is a unique opportunity for people to meet with some of the country’s leading social scientists and to discover more about the role research plays in their everyday life.

A full programme is available at www.esrc.ac.uk/festival. Join the discussion on Twitter using #esrcfestival. Logos for the festival can be downloaded from the ESRC website.

Our own ESRC event is a dementia services event on November 7th at Salford Museum & Art Gallery, being delivered jointly with Manchester Metropolitan University. As well as hearing about recent dementia services research at both universities, including that outlined above, we will be seeking audience views about services and their tips for others living with dementia.

For example, family carers have told us they can better support each other by sharing positive statements such as these:

“You cannot control the illness – it is OK to step back”

“Take calculated risks”

“Accept when you need help”

“Put yourself first sometimes”

“It’s OK to get it wrong”

 

Possible ‘early warning signs’ which carers and people living with young onset dementia said to look out for and seek help about include:

“When you can’t find the words”

“Needing reminding”

“Covering up through joking”

“Writing down instructions wrongly”

“Getting lost on a familiar route”

“When the above become regular or a problem”

 

We need other examples of positive statements to include in a booklet and video we are producing as an output from our Young Onset Dementia study funded by the Booth Charities Salford. We are also consulting on other ‘early warning signs’. If you have experiences of young onset dementia and/or want to hear more about involvement in our study you can contact Dr Tracey Williamson on T.Williamson@salford.ac.uk or tel 0161 295 6424. We especially need to interview people from less heard populations living with young onset dementia.

 

Blog author: Dr Tracey Williamson, Salford Institute for Dementia, School of Health & Society, University of Salford

Acknowledgements: Young Onset Dementia study Advisory Group and research team – Luisa Rabanal, Dr John Chatwin, Chris Sewards, Andy Walker, Maria O’Sullivan. MMU research team led by Prof Josie Tetley