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PhD at the Centre for Applied Dementia Studies

  • Supervised by Professor Jan Oyebode and Dr Sahdia Parveen
  • Project: Exploring cultural understandings of Dementia, using the self-regulatory model.
  • Start date: February 2018
Saba Shafiq, PhD student at the Centre for Applied Dementia Studies

My background

"Prior to starting my PhD journey at the Centre for Applied Dementia Studies in 2018 I had been voluntarily researching in the field of dementia. I hold an MSc in Health Psychology from Aston University and a BSc (Hons) in Psychology from the University of Bradford.

"I am a qualified further education lecturer and have been teaching both the subjects of Health & Social Care and Psychology. I aim to complete my doctorate by Spring 2022 with the aim to improve inclusion and diversity in dementia support."

What was your motivation for pursuing a PhD and for researching your particular topic?

"My motivation to study a PhD in the area of dementia and minority ethnic communities was to be able to strengthen and make heard the voices of people living with dementia and their families. By working with them to tailor an intervention that can help raise awareness and make a difference in help seeking behaviours and how care is provided."

Aims of the study

  • To understand perceptions of dementia, coping, attitudes to services and use of services, from the viewpoint of minority ethnic families, including the person with dementia and to undertake a parallel study with people from a white British background to enable comparison of themes from the majority and minority ethnic populations.
  • To then co-design a theoretically based culturally sensitive intervention to foster understanding of dementia and adaptive coping.

Methods for the study

  • A qualitative approach has been used to allow rich contextualised data through semi-structured interviews with people living with dementia and/or family members.
  • The interviews covered each aspect of the Self-Regulation Model: signs and symptoms, timeline, cause, cure/control, coherence and emotional impact and about ways of coping with challenges of living with dementia or supporting a person with dementia.
  • The analysis will be conducted using template analysis.

Publications and presentations

  • Shafiq, S. (2019) Book review: “Culture, Heritage, and Diversity in Older Adult Mental Health Care Edited by Maria D. Llorente American Psychiatric Association Publishing. 2018. £42.00 (pb). 320 pp. ISBN 9781615372058,” British Journal of Psychiatry. Cambridge University Press, 215(5), pp. 693–693. doi: 10.1192/bjp.2019.115
  • Shafiq, S. (2020) Book review: “Supporting People Living with Dementia in Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Communities: Key Issues and Strategies for Change. David Truswell (ed), Jessica Kingsley Publishers. 2019. £18.99 (pb). ISBN 9781784507480”. Journal of Dementia Care 28(3):37
  • Shafiq, S, Parveen, S, Oyebode, J.R.(2021). How people of African Caribbean or Irish ethnicity cope with long-term health conditions in UK community settings: A systematic review of qualitative, quantitative and mixed method studies. Health& Social Care in the Community 29: 319– 327.

What impact do you hope your study will have?

"An insight into cultural influences on dementia representations, and how best to tailor support to allow families from minority ethnic communities to live well with dementia."

Partners and funding

  • Academic partners/collaborators/non-academic partners: Advisory board members: Dr Mary Tilkie, David Truswell, Professor Emeritus Murna Downs, Mentors: Professor Val Morrison, University of Bangor; Dr Naheed Mukadam, University College London.
  • Funding source: Alzheimer’s Society