UCL Medical School


Our Students

Funding for our current and previous doctoral students has come from UCL Impact Studentships, NIHR, Arthritis Research Council, and Cancer Research UK.

Student testimonial: Dr Gianpaolo Manalastas

“Doing my PhD in the UCL Medical School allowed me to conduct research that could have real impact on how medical education is taught and assessed. I had a fantastic team of supervisors who supported all my goals, refined my ideas and encouraged me to take all the opportunities available to develop as a researcher.”

Current Students 

Former Students 

Current Students 

Magdalen Baker

Thesis title: Evaluating the outcomes and impact of less than full-time training on the medical workforce

Supervisors:  Ann Griffin, Jane Dacre and Shah-Jalal Sarker

Maggie’s research interests relate to doctors’ experiences of postgraduate training and the factors which influence their career choices and pathways.

Her PhD research uses a mixed methods approach to investigate how doctors training part-time impacts the medical workforce by examining their progression through, and completion of training compared to doctors training full-time. She has previously used qualitative methods to research topics such as how doctors learn from real and simulated clinical environments, and doctors’ perceptions and experiences of careers guidance. 

Maggie has extensive teaching experience and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

She teaches on the MBBS programme at UCL and has taught medical students at St Barts Medical school. She has also taught postgraduates on the MA in Clinical Education and on the Training to Teach course, both at UCL.  

Maggie is a qualified medical doctor, specialising in Gastroenterology and is also an honorary Clinical Teaching Fellow at UCL Medical School.

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Kate McCarthy

Thesis title: Stakeholder perceptions of the use of contextual information in selection processes by UK medical schools.

Supervisors: Professor Katherine Woolf; Dr Anouk Wouters; Dr Kirsty Alexander

Kate is undertaking her PhD into how contextualised medical school admissions are perceived by key stakeholders, including medical school staff and students, applicants and schoolteachers. She will be using a qualitative multiple case study design with three medical schools which vary in entry requirements and adoption of widening participation selection criteria. Three schools, sixth forms, or colleges from each of the medical schools’ regions will also be invited to participate. Data will be collected through focus groups with applicants and current medical school students; and interviews with medical school staff and school, sixth form, and college staff. 

Kate completed her undergraduate degree in Social Sciences and MSc in Research Methods at Nottingham Trent University. Since then, she has worked in several research roles and, for the last ten years, she has worked in Widening Participation. Kate currently works as a Research Officer in the Widening Participation team at the University of Warwick alongside undertaking her PhD part-time at UCL. Working in this area sparked Kate’s interest in contextual admissions as she is involved with this at both a strategic and operational level, and has seen the positive impact contextualised admissions can have.

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Tosin Ososami

Thesis title: tbc

Supervisors: Lorraine Noble and Rowena Viney

Tosin’s interests lie in the communication between doctors and their patients in the post-graduate PACES clinical exam; looking at the explanation and planning section of these consultations looking for differences between the UK and non-UK doctors.  He is experienced in many different forms of quantitative analysis such as multiple regression, ANOVAs and factor analysis.

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Eliot Rees

Thesis title: tbc

Supervisors:  Katherine Woolf and Karen Mattick

Eliot’s doctoral research is exploring how applicants from different social backgrounds chose which medical schools to apply to, addressed by undertaking a national qualitative interview study of applicants to medicine and first year medical students followed by a discrete choice experiment, drawing on the themes identified in the interview study.  He has also led a Best Evidence in Medical Education (BEME) systematic review of multiple mini interviews.

Eliot’s other previous research areas have included teaching and learning in general practice and developing students as educators, with experience in evidence synthesis, qualitative data collection and analysis and quantitative analysis of routinely collected data. 

Eliot teaches on the MA in Medical Education at Keele University and supervises several Masters dissertation students.  This is in addition to the delivery of the evidence-based medicine component of the new MBChB curriculum, and workplace based teaching and supervision to medical students placed within emergency admissions portals.

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Halima Shah

Thesis title: Do ethnic differences in performance and selection across medical education persist when controlling for prior educational attainment?

Supervisors: Katherine Woolf and Henry Potts

Halima’s main interests are equity, disadvantage and fairness within education.

Her current projects include analysing survey data on experiences of identity, and prejudice and discrimination at UCLMS. Additionally, she has successfully, with the support of her supervisors Dr Katherine Woolf and Dr Henry WW Potts, obtained access to UKMED data on her first application attempt (UKMED Project 87). This project entails examining the ethnic attainment gap, and ethnic differences in selection, at each stage of the medical education continuum. She plans on using a de-colonial lens within her PhD. 

Halima is a volunteer with Henna Asian Women’s group, based in Kilburn supporting vulnerable older women, and is currently positioned as a befriender.

She has also recently joined the UCLFMS Equality Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) committee, attended Diversity In Medicine And Health (DIMAH) meetings and has presented her proposed research to the General Medical Council’s equality and diversity advisory panel (November 30th 2018).

Prior to starting her PhD, she completed her M.Ed in Psychology of Education at the University of Manchester, and worked with special educational needs children at a school local to her, and within a nursery setting. She completed her undergraduate degree in Childhood Studies at Aberystwyth University.

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Jemima Thompson

Thesis working title: Doctors’ responses to patients’ concerns: How we decide whether they are patient-centred?

Supervisors: Lorraine Noble and Rowena Viney

I am currently undertaking my PhD in doctor-patient communication, exploring the ways that doctors respond when patients express concerns in consultations. My interest in the topic of doctor-patient communication developed through personal experience and grew whilst working with patients as an NHS researcher.

I completed my undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Chester in 2008 and went on to complete my MSc in Health Psychology at London Metropolitan University in 2014.

I began work as a Clinical Studies Officer for North East London NHS Foundation Trust in 2016, working primarily on mental health trials. Prior to starting my PhD studentship in 2018, I was a Research Assistant on a large scale NIHR funded RCT called Research into Antipsychotic Discontinuation And Reduction (RADAR).

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Judith Tweedie

Thesis title: tbc

Supervisors: Jane Dacre and Ann Griffin


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Former Students

Dr Gianpaolo Manalastas

Thesis title: Bridging the gap between patient agency and doctor authority: how structure interacts with power in the consultation 

Supervisors: Lorraine Noble, Ann Griffin and Rowena Viney

Student testimonial: “Doing my PhD in the UCL Medical School allowed me to conduct research that could have real impact on how medical education is taught and assessed. I had a fantastic team of supervisors who supported all my goals, refined my ideas and encouraged me to take all the opportunities available to develop as a researcher.”


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Ahmed Rashid

Thesis title: Global approaches to medical school regulation

Supervisors: Ann Griffin and Deborah Gill

Ahmed is a doctor and medical educator, with a research interest in the regulation of medical education. He is a Senior Clinical Teaching Fellow in the medical school, where he leads the Medical School Education Consultancy unit, and a practising general practitioner in the UK National Health Service.

His part-time PhD in medical education is supervised by Professors Ann Griffin and Deborah Gill. In it, he is seeking to explore the development of accreditation processes for undergraduate medical programmes around the world.

Prior to joining UCL in 2016, Ahmed was an NIHR-sponsored Academic Clinical Fellow at the University of Cambridge. He holds an MSc from Imperial College London, and is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

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Dr Emily Unwin

Thesis title: Gender differences in the professional performance of doctors practising in the UK

Supervisors: Jane Dacre, Katherine Woolf and Henry Potts

Student testimonial: “The UCL Doctoral School provides a large selection of high-quality courses to support the graduate student. My PhD supervisors have been particularly supportive in providing me with networking opportunities and I have met some very interesting people.”

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