ESRC studentship - Methods for accessing the voice of people with dementia (deadline: 20/06/11)

Opportunity for a funded ESRC PhD studentship at the Social Policy Research Unit, University of York. The supervision is shared with the Sheffield Institute for Studies on Aging.

Opportunity for a funded ESRC PhD studentship at the Social Policy Research Unit, University of York. The supervision is shared with the Sheffield Institute for Studies on Aging.

This project will explore the methodological contribution of alternative research methods for capturing and analysing the views of people with dementia. Professor Gillian Parker of the Social Policy Research Unit, University of York is the lead supervisor, she is an expert on applied health and social research and ageing. The second supervisor will be Professor Stuart Parker (Sheffield Institute for Studies on Aging) an expert on the clinical aspects of ageing and dementia. The studentship will be part of the White Rose ESRC Doctoral Training Centre (WR DTC), will be based at York and is due to commence in 2011.  

The project will look at the increasing numbers of people who live with impaired cognition or communication. These groups have traditionally been without ‘voice’ in research about their lives and needs, particularly in health services research. Yet policy formulation increasingly emphasises evidence and ‘what works’. Excluding groups from research about policy and intervention when they may be its main recipients is creating a new form of democratic deficit.

One main group of methods to elicit views from people with impaired cognition or communication is the non-verbal techniques generally referred to as augmented and alternative communication (AAC). However, while a growing research literature describes the use of AAC methods in research, there is little methodological research about how these alternatives have been tested and applied, what approaches to analysis have been used with the material they generate, the extent to which messages from them are considered valid or reliable, and whether they do, indeed, increase ‘voice’.

This studentship will systematically review the literatures on AAC methods in research and on that where the views of people with dementia have been directly sought in order to address these and related methodological questions.

Further details of the research and the application process are available here: http://www.york.ac.uk/inst/spru/news/wrs.html

Applicants should apply online by 20th June 2011.

Get our newsletter

I agree to the Terms and Conditions
Find out more about our newsletter