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Health Sciences
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Dr Rachel Dadswell 

Principle Teaching Fellow

Dr Rachel Dadswell's photo

Dr Rachel Dadswell qualified as an occupational therapist from St Andrews, Northampton in 1991 and has held a range of clinical, managerial and leadership roles within the NHS. She is currently the Programme Manager for the BSc (Hons) and MSc Pre- Occupational Therapy Courses (MSc due to commence January 2021) at the University of Southampton. Prior to commencing this role Rachel was a Consultant Occupational Therapist, with a special interest in mental health rehabilitation and recovery. As part of her consultant role Rachel worked one day a week with the mental health nursing team at the UoS (2006-2014), primarily supporting and teaching on the Post Graduate Diploma in Mental Health Nursing.

From 2014 – 2015 Rachel undertook a brief career change and took some time to focus on her family and her PhD studies. Before returning to the University full time in May 2018 Rachel worked as an independent OT, for a well-known private OT practice undertaking functional assessments for insurance purposes, as a Specialist Advisor for the Care Quality Commission, undertaking inspections in Mental Health Trusts across the UK and as a locum Occupational Therapist within an enhanced recovery at home team. Rachel completed her PhD in March 2019.

In addition to all things related to mental health Rachel has a particular interest in leadership, professionalism and service quality and the effects of staff attitude on people’s ability to perform at their best in a clinical setting.


Research interests

Rachel used a mixed methods approach to investigate the benefits of inpatient mental health recovery; measuring functional ability, quality of life and investigating what it felt like to be in an inpatient rehabilitation unit. Post PhD, Rachel is developing a keen interest in facilitating small scale practice based research studies which facilitate collaboration between academics, OT students and clinical practice.

Conference presentations:

  • Hampshire Partnership NHS Trust: Occupational Therapy and Mental Health Practitioner Conference 2009: 1) Integrating the Occupational Therapy and Nursing Strategies 2) Evaluation of the pilot Recovery Training
  • COT 2011: Oral presentation of PhD methodology
  • AMPS international Symposium, Denmark– September 2012: Paper presentation. The use of AMPS in a rehabilitation setting
  • COT 2013, Brighton: Paper presentation. Of what benefit is mental health rehabilitation
    Brunel University, PhD student conference: 2017. Measuring the occupational performance level of clients with schizophrenia using the Assessment of Motor and Process Skills
  • DCP 2018, Cardiff: Recovery symposium: Is there still a role for rehabilitation in people’s recovery?

Our Theme: Active Living
Our Group: Active Living for Health

Management and leadership responsibilities for the BSc and MSc Pre-registration occupational therapy courses.

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Rachel teaches across the MSc and BSc programmes, predominately on the mental health and research modules. Rachel has been an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy since 2013.

Rachel’s clinical experience in mental health spans across the age spectrum, from the acute setting, including liaison psychiatry to rehabilitation. Rachel is an experienced NHS leader and manager and Specialist Advisor for the Care Quality Commission. She was part of the ‘set up team’ in the development of the original Southampton Recovery College, part of the national IMROC strategy.

Dr Rachel Dadswell
Health Sciences, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ

Room Number : 67/4015

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