Siobhan O'Connor

Lecturer

Background

I joined the University of Edinburgh as a Lecturer in Nursing Studies in 2019. Prior to this, I worked as a Lecturer at Edinburgh Napier University and the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom. I have a multidisciplinary background with a BSc. Business Information Systems. Having worked for a number of years in financial services, I retrained as a Registered Nurse, completing a BSc. Nursing (Adult) in 2013. I then undertook a PhD in health informatics at the University of Glasgow, UK.

Qualifications

BSc (Hons) Business Information Systems

CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting (CBA) 

BSc (Hons) Nursing

Registered Nurse (RN)

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)

Responsibilities & affiliations

Treasurer of the RSE Young Academy of Scotland (Facilitating Group), https://www.youngacademyofscotland.org.uk/

STEM Ambassador, https://www.stem.org.uk/stem-ambassadors

Member of the European Federation for Medical Informatics (Nursing Informatics), https://www.efmi.org/

International Judge on the Global Undergraduate Awards (Nursing, Midwifery & Allied Health Panel), https://undergraduateawards.com/

Alumna member of Young Forum Gastein, https://www.ehfg.org/young-forum-gastein/call-for-applications/

Undergraduate teaching

I teach undergraduate students on a BSc Nursing Studies programme.

Postgraduate teaching

I teach postgraduate students on a MSc Advanced Nursing programme.

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?

Yes

Areas of interest for supervision

I can supervise Masters and PhD students across a number of eHealth (digital health) research areas including telemedicine / telehealth, mobile health (mHealth), personal electronic health records, wearable devices, assisted living technologies, web-based or online health services (including social media interventions), virtual reality and avatars, gaming, and robotics.

I am particularly interested in how these technologies can be used to support patient self-management of chronic illnesses such as asthma, diabetes, cancer and dementia, along with using digital health interventions to promote public health and healthy lifestyles. The application of technology and informatics to learning and teaching is also of interest to improve how nurses and other healthcare professionals are educated which is an area of research where I can also provide postgraduate supervision. 

Current PhD students supervised

Masters students

  • Sarah O'Meara, University of Edinburgh, Dissertation title: "Key stakeholders’ perceptions of the organisational and structural barriers to implementing a multicentre randomised controlled trial: a qualitative study using Normalised Process Theory"

Doctoral (PhD) students

  • Dr Philip Fadahunsi, Imperial College London, Thesis title: "Designing an information quality framework for mobile clinical decision support systems"
  • Dr Benard Bene, Imperial College London, Thesis title: "Evaluating the effectiveness of a mobile app for the management of Type II Diabetes in Nigeria"
  • Fatimah Alobayli, University of Edinburgh, Thesis title: "Examining the impact of electronic health records (EHRs) on burnout in nurses in Saudi Arabia"

Past PhD students supervised

Undergraduate supervision: 

  • Claire Daly, 2nd year undergraduate nursing student who attained a Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland Vacation Scholarship in 2017 (£1,350). Research project: "The life and work of Derek Hoy: a Scottish Nursing Informatician"
  • Council of Deans of Health - Student Leadership Programme, Mentorship Scheme 2018. Supervised Jason Gray (Physiotherapy student) at Queen Margaret University, UK and Kayleigh Young (Nursing student) at the University of Dundee, UK
  • Council of Deans of Health - Student Leadership Programme, Mentorship Scheme 2017. Supervised Matthew Weir (Nursing student), the University of Dundee and Sophie Hibbard (Nursing student), Robert Gordon University, UK

Research summary

My research interests have a digital health (eHealth) focus and particularly centre on the design, implementation and use of a range of technologies that patients, carers and nurses can use to enable self-management of chronic illness at home. This could be a mobile health (mHealth) app to help someone with diabetes manage their diet, exercise and medication or a telehealth system that remotely monitors patients with heart failure or COPD. Web-based or online health services including social media interventions are also of interest in terms of promoting active and healthy lifestyles and delivering public health programmes.

I also examine how more novel technologies such as wearable and assisted living devices can be used to enable older adults live independently at home or in a residential care home and whether cutting edge digital tools such as virtual reality, avatars, gaming, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) can help people to improve health outcomes and have a better quality of life. 

Technology enhanced learning is another research area I explore as mobile devices, social media, chat bots and other electronic tools and software platforms can support nursing students and clinical staff to learn in a range of settings. 

 

Current funded research projects:

  • Review of mobile apps for people with dementia, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI), Andrew Brown, Funder: Burdett Trust for Nursing, £7,000, 2018-2019.
  • Talking Technology Enabled Care, Project Team: Dr Vikki McCall (PI), Dr Louise Hoyle, Siobhan O'Connor (Co-investigator), Talking Mats (SME), Funder: Innovate UK, £75,000, 2018 - 2019. https://www.talkingmats.com/
  • Increasing medication adherence among adults with atrial fibrillation: A Medical Research Council complex intervention framework development and feasibility study, Project team: Prof Lis Neubeck (PI), Dr Sahar Konsari, Dr Janet Hanley, Siobhan O'Connor (Co-investigator), Prof Ronan O'Carroll, Dr Terence Quinn, Prof Nick Mills, Prof Brian McKinstry, Dr Fiona Strachan, Prof Robyn Gallagher, Funder: Chief Scientist Office, £384,711, 2019 - 2021.

Past funded research projects:

  • Delivering Assisted Living Lifestyles at Scale (dallas), Project Team: Prof Frances Mair (PI), Prof Catherine O'Donnell, Dr Marilyn Lennon, Dr Matt-Mouley Bouamrane, Dr Alison Devlin, Dr Susan Browne, Siobhan O'Connor (Co-investigator), Ruth Agbakoba, Funder: Innovate UK, £250,000, 2012 - 2015. https://innovateuk.blog.gov.uk/2016/04/15/diving-deeper-into-delivering-assisted-living-lifestyles-at-scale-dallas/
  • Scotland 2030 Vision (Our Future Scotland), Project Team: James Blake (PI), Siobhan O'Connor (Co-PI), Funder: Royal Society of Edinburgh (£2,000), Scottish Government (£3,000), Edinburgh Napier University (£5,500), 2017-2018. https://ourfuturescotland.com/
  • Building informatics curricula for nursing and midwifery education, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI), Dr Elizabeth LaRue (Fulbright Specialist), Funder: UK-US Fulbright Commission, $5,000, 2016-2017.
  • The life and work of Derek Hoy: a Scottish nursing informatician, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI), Clare Daly, Funder: RCN Foundation (£900) & Carnegie Trust for the Universities of Scotland (£1,350), 2016 - 2017. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S138650561730148X?via%3Dihub
  • Social media in nursing and midwifery education: a systematic review of the literature, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI), Dr Laoise Renwick, Dr Emma Stanmore, Dr Richard Booth, Sarah Jolliffe, Funder: Sigma Theta Tau International and the National League for Nursing, $10,000, 2015 - 2016. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/jan.13799
  • Evaluating the impact of a co-designed mobile app for people with dementia, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI),  Funder: Burdett Trust for Nursing, £7,500, 2015 - 2016.
  • Co-designing mobile apps with nursing students to enhance learning, Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI), Dr Tom Andrews, Funder: Sigma Theta Tau International, $10,000, 2013-2014.
  • A Technology Enhanced Learning approach to teaching clinical skills to nursing students – are smartphone apps the answer learners want? Project Team: Siobhan O'Connor (PI) & Dr Tom Andrews, Funder: University College Cork, €2,000, 2013 - 2014.

Affiliated research centres