School of Nursing and Midwifery

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  Dr K Galway  No more applications being accepted  Competition Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Suicide bereavement support, known as postvention, is a critical aspect of suicide prevention. This project will explore intervention development strategies for the design and delivery of suicide bereavement support.


Suicide bereavement support is critical to suicide prevention. This project will explore intervention development strategies for the design and delivery of suicide bereavement support.

Up to 800,000 people are estimated to be affected by a suicide death in any one year across the UK. After being bereaved by suicide, loved ones are at an increased risk of facing mental health challenges including increased risk of non-fatal and fatal suicidal behaviours. However, there is a lack of evidence indicating how best to support people after a suicide loss in order to minimise these risks. Identifying those most in need is also a complex challenge. Accessing support can be difficult due to a stigma and online support has shown some initial promise as a way of overcoming that barrier.

Aims and objectives

The aim of this project is to (1) explore the existing evidence-base for digital (including online) self-referral interventions for families and friends who have lost a loved one to suicide (2) co-develop an intervention to address unmet needs in existing current support provision. It is expected that co-production methods will be employed and initial feasibility testing may be possible.

Research impact

Potential for reducing the impact of complex bereavement for those bereaved by suicide and importantly preventing future suicidal behaviours.

How to Apply

Complete the online application via the Direct Access Portal. Applicants must supply a cover letter (2 pages max) detailing your interest and experience applicable to this PhD and you should attach this when prompted to upload a proposal.

Closing date: 2 February 2024

Anticipated interview date: 6 March 2024

Start date: 16 September 2024

For further information please contact Dr Karen Galway at [Email Address Removed]


Funding Information

The School of Nursing and Midwifery at Queen’s University Belfast is offering one Department for the Economy (DfE) studentship which is open to INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS ONLY for September 2024 entry. The studentship will cover tuition fees and stipend. The current studentship for 23/24 academic year is £18,622 but the amount for the academic year 24/25 is to be confirmed. More information on DfE studentships can be found here.

Please note that this is a competitive award – there are 8 advertised projects for 1 International DfE Award

Applications are also considered throughout the year from applicants who have secured external funding or are willing to self-fund the project.

Essential criteria

IELTS (or equivalent) of 7.0, and a 2.1 class honours degree (or equivalent).

Experience of empirical data collection and analysis.

Desirable criteria

A 1st class honours degree (or equivalent) in a relevant subject.

Medicine (26) Nursing & Health (27) Psychology (31) Sociology (32)
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 About the Project