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Deborah works part-time in a teaching and research role and part-time as an NHS clinical psychologist in a community team, for people with intellectual disabilities.

Research interests

Deborah's key interests are in access to health information and health services, health and social care determinants and inequalities. In the past, she has carried out research using the concept of health literacy, including both theoretical work and empirical work on the development of a health literacy assessment tool – the All Aspects of Health Literacy Scale (AAHLS). This tool has been translated into more than 10 languages and is used all over the world.

Deborah's other research has looked at access to health information and health and social care for people with intellectual disabilities. She has used a variety of research designs including survey questionnaires, secondary analysis of data, qualitative interviews and video observations.

She also has wide experience in the use of qualitative methods, particularly discourse analysis, conversation analysis and participatory research methods. Her research has contributed to the design of new services, and to policy, guidance and training for practitioners.


Deborah is Module Lead for Policy and Politics for Clinical Leadership and Deputy Module Lead for PhD Funding Proposal Development in Healthcare Research.