Dr Alison Rodriguez

Dr Alison Rodriguez

Lecturer Child and Family Health

0113 343 1444

Summary: Academic Unit: Adult, Child and Mental Health Nursing

Location: Baines Wing


Alison Rodriguez is a Lecturer in Child and Family Health, in the School of Healthcare and a member of the Maternal, Family and Child Health research group. Alison is a chartered Psychologist and Fellow of the Higher Education Academy with extensive teaching, research and research supervision experience in research methods, health and critical health psychology. Her first degree is in Psychology, she has a Masters in Health Psychology, a Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education and a PhD in Palliative Paediatric Care. Alison’s teaching and research focuses on the health and wellbeing experiences of individuals and their carers/family members. There are three main streams to her work; each have the common aim of improving communication, support and the quality of care for both service users (and carers/families) and providers:

1. Spirituality and quality of life in individuals with long term conditions

Spirituality is often associated with better mental health and well-being. Alison is interested in how spiritual beliefs influence decisions that affect health care. Through using a mixed method approach, Alison investigates how spiritual support can help patients cope better with stressors and enhance their health and wellbeing.

2. Meaning-making in palliative care

In times where we may be confronted with loss, we struggle to know what to say or do because we are focused on death being a challenge to life rather than being part of it. This stream of research focuses on how life-limiting illnesses across the lifespan influence life, culture, society and meaning. Much empirical work and practice has maintained an emotional distance from patients and carers and in doing so has struggled to reach understandings of individual’s realities. Alison investigates the issues encountered in the delivery and lived experience of palliative care across the lifespan, utilising methods and critiques from a critical health psychology perspective.

3. Wellbeing management

How do individuals with long term conditions maintain their wellbeing? What are their experiences and relationships with supportive services? What actions do they take themselves to promote their well-being, adjustment and transitions? Using an Asset-based approach to research, Alison investigates the resources and capabilities that exist across communities, groups or individuals.

Alison has used and supervised a range of research designs (uni method and mixed method), drawing on various data collection methods such as surveys, diaries, interviews (face to face and on line) and focus groups (including social media groups). Her methodological passion however, is phenomenology and she has drawn on both descriptive and interpretive approaches in her qualitative work.

Alison to date has supervised 8 postgraduate research students to completion, is a grant reviewer for the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and Parkinson’s UK. She has also acted as an Associate Editor for the Journal of sporting Cultures, Journal of Sport & Health and the International Journal of Sport & Society. She is a book reviewer for Pearson Education (discipline: Health Psychology) and Ad hoc reviewer for the Journal of sporting Cultures, Journal of Sport & Health, the International Journal of Sport & Society and the journal of Qualitative Research in Psychology.