Professor Tonks Fawcett

Professor of Student Learning (Nurse Education)


Tonks is a graduate of the City University, London and St Bartholomew's Hospital nursing degree programme, and has had a long career in nurse education at the University of Edinburgh. She became Professor of Student Learning (Nurse Education) in 2012.Tonks holds key responsibilities in the undergraduate and post graduate nursing programmes, teaching extensively both theoretically and clinically She has been particularly closely involved in the undergraduate student nurses' clinical placement learning and practice and has enthusiastically maintained a strong clinically based teaching and learning focus throughout her academic career. From 2013-2017s he was Programme Director of an innovative new Masters of Nursing in Clinical Research, and from 2012 -2015 Senior Personal Tutor for the School of Health in Social Science and is currently Associate Dean for Academic Conduct for the College of Humanities and Social Science. In 2014 she was made a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

Main areas of professional/academic interest

Tonks’s research interests and activities include cancer care and survivorship, pain management, clinical decision making, clinical support of learner nurses and stress in nursing. She has also successfully supervised students towards their doctorate degrees. Her aim has always been to equip students of nursing with the critical and compassionate ability to understand, work and lead in 21st century systems of health and nursing care provision


Responsibilities & affiliations

Principal Fellow Higher Education Academy (PFHEA)

Undergraduate teaching

Tonks teaches on all four years of the BN with Honours programme and on the MSc Advancing Nursing Practice. Key areas of expertise relate to pathophysiology and patient care, cancer care, pain and, particularly, clinical decision making and professional judgement.

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Areas of interest for supervision

Currently Tonks is supervising students in areas relating to cancer care, fever management , diabetes mellitus and decision making

Current PhD students supervised

Anny Chen, Ashikin Atan, Linda Sherwood

Current project grants

PTAS award 2017: Exploring the attitudes and learning needs of student nurses in relation to care home nursing The PTAS project, examining student nurses’ attitudes towards care home nursing and developing the Nursing Studies curriculum in relation to care home nursing, contributes to a larger programme of work to establish a Lothian Teaching/Research Care Centre (TRCC). The TRCC project seeks to support excellence in the care of frail older people, through care provision, teaching the present and future multidisciplinary workforce, innovative research, and partnership working across health and social care.

View all 21 publications on Research Explorer