Michelle has a decade of local and international experience within the field of occupational therapy. Following Michelle’s completion of her pre reg MSc in OT, Michelle initially carried out international research as an Honorary Research Fellow, with the University of Cumbria to collect data in four countries. Michelle also worked as an acute occupational therapist supporting older persons rehabilitation. During her clinical practice Michelle carried out her Ph.D with the University of Cumbria which led her to a Visiting Scholar role at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, USA. Michelle carried out research and teaching in occupational science and theory, research, and professional practice seminars for four years, before moving to Scotland with her family to assume her role as a lecturer, with the Occupational Therapy and Art Therapies Division in 2021 at Queen Margaret University.
Within the division, Michelle is a member of the Research and Development Committee. Michelle teaches across all the programs within the division from undergraduate to postgraduate. Michelle is a module coordinator and teaches on four other modules. She is a personal tutor in the occupational therapy program, a research mentor and PhD panel member.
Affiliations (including memberships) to other organisations:
- Visiting Scholar University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee
- Royal College of Occupational Therapists
- British Association of Occupational Therapists
- Health Care Professionals Council
Michelle has a wide range of experiences in qualitative research methodologies with a particular interest in constructivist grounded theory. Her research interests are evident from her peer review publications and presentations to national and international audiences. In 2021, Michelle completed her PhD on " A theory of Occupational Agency an International Investigation of Occupational Therapist Negotiations”, with the University of Cumbria and the University of Wisconsin- Milwaukee (International Placement). Michelle is working towards post doctorate publication of her research to permit translation of the “Occupational Agency” concept into Occupational Therapy practice, education, and research.
Michelle supervises both undergraduate and postgraduate students on a range of topics using a wide range of methodologies.
Active research interests:
- Occupational science and its application to occupational therapy theory and practice.
- Negotiations of engagement in meaningful occupation.
- Identifying the meaning of Occupational Therapists’, “occupation”, and the implications upon health and wellbeing of practitioners to enable the client’s voice within the therapeutic relationship.
- The concept of occupational agency as a component of daily occupation and its contribution to engagement in occupation.
- Constructivist Grounded Theory
- focus groups and interviews
- Thematic and content analysis
- Narrative and Lived experience
Michelle teaches across all of the levels of undergraduate and pre and post registration MSc in Occupational Therapy courses.
Michelle’s primary areas of teaching include research methods, critical thinking, reflection and reflexive processes, therapeutic communication, clinical decision making, assessment, occupational science, occupational theory and practice, and philosophy for enquiry.