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The University of Southampton
Health Sciences
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Mr Robert John Shannon BSc, MSc, CPsychol


Mr Robert John Shannon's photo

Rob Shannon is a Chartered Psychologist who has a background in exercise and health behaviour. He is a Lecturer within Health Sciences, University of Southampton where is research and teaching interests focus on motivating patients to engage with treatment and make lifestyle changes that will benefit their health. Rob has been delivering training in motivational interviewing for over 20 years and is a member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers.

We know a fair amount about how to support patients to change health behaviour. Many of these things are at odds with our natural helping inclinations.

The focus of Rob's teaching and research is motivating patients to initiate and maintain helpful health behaviour change.

Alongside his lecturing responsibilities, Rob is studying for a PhD, exploring the feasibility of motivational interviewing as an adjunct to pulmonary rehabilitation.

He was part of a team who was commissioned by the Department of Health to develop the ‘Let’s Get Moving’ Physical Activity Care Pathway and to create associated training packages for health professionals working in primary care. Let’s Get Moving forms part of the Department of Health’s attempt to embed physical activity promotion within the NHS.

Research interests

Motivating patients to engage in meaningful health behaviour change (physical activity, smoking etc). Exploring the effects of motivational interviewing on patient behaviour; understanding issues relating to the development of proficiency in motivational interviewing.

Research projects:

Current PhD research: Using motivational interviewing to promote adherence to physical activity recommendations for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease referred for pulmonary rehabilitation.

Research group

Active Living and Rehabilitation

Affiliate research group

Breathing Project Cluster

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Book Chapters


Module Lead:

Pre-Registration: Rob leads the Healthy discussions modules for physiotherapy students (PSIO2033: BSc & MSc) and podiatry students (PODY2031) 
and the Systematic Complex Clinical Practice module for MSc students (PSIO6028).

Post Registration: He leads the Post Graduate Health promotion, motivational interviewing and health behaviour change module (HLTH6080) and UG-level Motivational interviewing in the service of health promotion (NQCG3134).

Contributor: Applied Health Sciences (UG & MSc, Foundations of Physiotherapy Practice (UG & MSc), MSc Health & Rehabilitation: Psychosocial Relationships in Health & Social Care; MSc Health & Rehabilitation: Extended Scope Practitioner Modules. Regularly contribute sessions on client/patient motivation to various programmes within the Nursing and Midwifery portfolio.

Other: Regularly delivers CPD training for Physiotherapists and other professionals in practice on building patient motivation for health behaviour change, patient engagement.

Mr Robert John Shannon
Health Sciences Building University of Southampton Highfield Southampton SO17 1BJ

Room Number: 67/4003/M54

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