SLMS Academic Careers Office

Grand Challenges

35. The development and evaluation of positive psychology outcome measures for people with dementia

Supervisor Pair: Dr Aimee Spector and Professor Martin Orrell
Potential Student’s Home Department: Research Department of Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology

Whilst dementia leads to a loss of independence and negative social consequences such as stigma, social exclusion and disempowerment; many individuals show resilience upon diagnosis and employ positive coping mechanisms. To evaluate the effectiveness of interventions, understand the social impact of the diagnosis and improve care overall, robust outcome measures are required. This PhD will develop measures to assess positive factors within individuals including resilience and self-efficacy. It will increase our understanding of factors which may predict decline and disability; and the mechanisms and impact of interventions. The student will work alongside the ESRC funded programme, ‘PRIDE’ (Promoting Independence in Dementia). The key aims of the PRIDE study are (a) to investigate how social and lifestyle changes may reduce risk of dementia, and understand the social impact of dementia, in order to (b) develop and evaluate an effective social intervention to enhance independence and quality of life in dementia.

NB Text updated 12 March 2014