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Identifying factors in clinician, patient and carers’ choice and use of outcome measures in aphasia rehabilitation: working for change

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  • Full or part time
    Dr Simon Horton
    Prof Fiona Poland
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

There is growing stakeholder agreement that outcomes for communication in aphasia rehabilitation should address more than ‘level of impairment’’. For example, a recent international e-delphi consensus study has found high levels of agreement between clinician and manager groups working in aphasia rehabilitation for prioritising outcomes relating to communication between people with aphasia and their communication partners. As interest in and evidence for the effectiveness of communication partner training grows, it becomes increasingly important to establish what outcomes measures are routinely used in this field to provide a means of evaluating changes or effects of therapy. Yet these outcomes, are rarely measured in routine rehabilitation. Studies of barriers to using aphasia outcome measures in general have identified that clinicians perceive several factors as key to their use of such measures, including funding, time constraints and organisational logistics. However, no studies have investigated barriers to and facilitators for clinicians’ choice or use of particular measures. Neither is there evidence that any such measures or practices in choosing and using them have been developed in collaboration with groups whose experience may be the focus for outcomes: namely people with aphasia or family members. A well-contextualised understanding of factors affecting the interactive choice and use of outcome measures is therefore needed to enable more person-centred and inclusive approaches to rehabilitation.

Three year plan of investigation:

A systematic narrative review of the literature on aphasia rehabilitation outcomes

Action research cycles: observation of aphasia rehabilitation, outcome measurement and record keeping; patient, clinician and carer interviews; data analysis; work with clinicians, patients and family members to plan, implement and reflect on changes to outcome measurement practices

Produce a model for co-production and inclusive practice in aphasia outcome measurement

The student will be based the School of Health Sciences (HSC) under lead supervisor Dr Simon Horton, with expertise in stroke rehabilitation research (Acquired Brain Injury Rehabilitation Alliance http://www.abira.ac.uk/), and co-supervisor Professor Fiona Poland, with expertise in ethnography and action research (https://www.uea.ac.uk/health-sciences/people/profile/f-poland).

The studentship will provide training in key methods and skills required for a student contemplating a career in rehabilitation research. The student will be a member of the ABIRA group of international experts in stroke rehabilitation, as well as the school’s Inclusion research theme, which encourages conceptual and methodological innovation in working with groups often excluded from clinical and research practices. The student will also be actively involved in dissemination activity such as platform/poster presentations at international scientific conferences and publication.

To find out more about undertaking a PhD in the School of Health Sciences at UEA, visit https://www.uea.ac.uk/medicine-health-sciences/graduate-school .

Funding Notes

Applicants should hold a 2:1 degree or above or a master's degree in science, social science or health related subject or equivalent

Related Subjects



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