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Personal profile

Research interests

Paul's interests include living with disability, technology, equipment, adaptation of the environment, wellbeing and quality of life, and he is particularly drawn to phenomenological, hermeneutic and existential theory. Recent research, supported by the Royal College of Occupational Therapists, explored the transition from adolescence to adulthood for young people with cerebral palsy. Previous research has examined behaviour and children with autism, specialist seating, and living with back pain. Paul's interests have broadened his understanding of disability and human rights and the importance of public involvement in research.

Approach to teaching

I convey enthusiasm for a career in occupational therapy during personal tutorials, large-group sessions and smaller problem-based learning (PBL) tutorials. I believe PBL enables students to develop understanding to address real-life problems and I endeavour to be student-centered whilst mindful of front line practice. I use varied approaches including practical activities, videos and service-user involvement to stimulate discussion. I organise an annual study day for practitioners who work with children and families and include students in this. I encourage students to think deeply and critically to prepare them for practice, work independently and understand the importance of lifelong learning.

Scholarly biography

Paul is the MSc Occupational Therapy (pre-registration) course leader, one of the School's complaints officers, and safety and wellbeing team representative. For several years he was the admissions tutor, a manual handling trainer, placement tutor, and student engagement champion. He is also a visiting lecturer at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, an external examiner at Robert Gordon University and regulary peer reviews research for publication. Paul is a member of the Programme Committee for the European MSc Occupational Therapy involving collaboration with five European universities. He has an undergraduate degree in the social sciences and postgraduate qualifications in occupational therapy and teaching, his PhD is in the area of adolescence and living with disability. Paul qualified as an occupational therapist in 1999 and initially worked for the NHS in mental health services but has spent the majority of his career in social care working with children and adults with complex needs.

Supervisory Interests

Paul values public involvement in research and is interested to support rights-based research in: living with disability; user experiences of health, social care and education services; adolescent development and working with the family; disability, human rights and rehabilitation; understanding physical disability and mental health. He supervises Masters and doctoral students undertaking qualitative research and is particularly keen to support phenomenological research.

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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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