Welcome to URKEIS

Welcome to the blog for the Faculty of Health, Psychology and Social Care Undergraduate Research and Knowledge Exchange Internship Scheme – or URKEIS for short!

The Faculty takes pride in both its research and its students. With the inaugural URKEIS cohort, we will help five undergraduate students develop their research skills. These interns will work on real-world projects alongside experienced researchers from the Faculty.

Over the coming weeks, you’ll have a chance to meet the interns, hear from the project teams, and learn about the exciting research they’re undertaking.

The five URKEIS projects this year are:

Qualitative study examining the attitudes, awareness and understanding of nutrition in post-MI patients attending cardiac rehabilitation

Following a myocardial infarction (MI), patients often receive advice to adopt a Mediterranean Diet. This project looks to determine the nutritional knowledge of such patients, determine the level of adherence to the Mediterranean Diet, and identify the attitudes, understanding and patient-focussed ways to improve provision of dietary information during cardiac rehabilitation.

Predicting cognitive decline in prodromal Parkinson’s disease

Parkinson’s disease (PD) is often though of as a disorder of the motor system, but people with PD also frequently experience cognitive decline. This project aims to apply a new method for the analysis of brain scans to a database that holds brain scans and logitudinal cognitive data for hundreds of people with PD, to establish the method’s efficacy in predicting cognitive decline in patients who have not yet developed any PD symptoms.

Mind music and dementia, improving care home outcomes – a pilot study

This project explores the role of live music as a therapy for people living with dementia. The research team and intern will examine the impact of live music on the residents in a care home, before, during, and after live performances by musicians from the Northern Chamber Orchestra. The intern will have the opportunity to be involved in interviews and participatory observations with care workers, family carers, friends, and where possible residents.

A mixed methods study to investigate the experiences of and impact on those with osteoarthritis of the ankle on pain, physical functioning, mental wellbeing, and quality of life.

This project will undertake a mixed methods study to ascertain the effectiveness of non-surgical interventions for ankle OA and how these are regarded by patients. It will also explore the experiences of people with ankle OA and the impact it has on pain, physical functioning, mental wellbeing and quality of life. The intern will be involved in undertaking a systematic review and qualitative research including data transformation and analysis.

Young people transitioning to Further Education: a pilot review and scoping exercise of mental wellbeing supports

For young people, the transition to Further Education (college) can bring new and unexpected mental or emotional challenges. Moreover, once studying in Further Education, such difficulties may impede or disrupt a young person’s educational or vocational success. In addition, young people who attend Further Education are more likely than those who attend university to be disadvantaged with regard to their social capital and access to other forms of personal and social support.

Our project aims to gather secondary evidence about the social and educational context(s) in which young people transition into Further Education. This review will focus upon how mental wellbeing is experienced and supported by young people who are making (or have made) the transition into Further Education. Your role, as an Intern, will be to independently (but with appropriate supervision and support) scope and review contemporary literature, evidence, policy and other documents relating to this important topic area.