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Professor Jan Oyebode

PositionProfessor of Dementia Care
DepartmentCentre for Applied Dementia Studies
Telephone01274 236330

Research Interests (key words only)

Relationships in families where a member has dementia; impact on families, especially young people, where a parent has young onset dementia; fronto-temporal dementia; cultural aspects of dementia; end of life and bereavement; interventions e.g. including cognitive rehabilitation.

PhD Supervision

Akhlak Rauf (2015 - ongoing) part-time student
Research focus: Optimising the transition to coping with behavioural distress in people living with Dementia in South Asian families.

Lindsey Collins (2015 - ongoing) part-time student
Research focus: Understanding the experience of eating and drinking difficulties from the perspective of people living with dementia in residential care homes.

Kirsty Haunch (2014 - ongoing) full-time home student
Research focus: Improving the quality of life for residents with dementia at end of life in care homes.

Laura Middleton-Green (2014 - ongoing) part-time home student
Research focus: What is the function of role-modelling in the development of compassion in generalist palliative care?

Analisa Smythe (2013 - ongoing) part-time PhD student
Research focus: Development and impact of a brief psychosocial training intervention for staff working with people with dementia.

Rosemary Bradley (2013 - ongoing) full-time home student
Research focus: Developing objective measures of the self in dementia


Professor Jan Oyebode qualified in clinical psychology in 1977 and, since 1980, she has specialised in clinical psychology with older people pursuing a combination of clinical and academic work.

Jan's clinical psychology training in Liverpool in the 1970s was focused on radical behaviourism, with a strong emphasis on doctor-patient communication. In her first post-qualification position she worked in primary care, adult mental health, forensic, psychosexual and older adult work. She then moved to Newcastle-upon-Tyne in 1980 to one of the first clinical psychology posts in the country specialising in work with older people. Whilst in Newcastle, the Service was fortunate to benefit from workshops run by Mark Williams who was at the forefront of the developments in cognitive behaviour therapy.

Jan then took time out from clinical practice to complete my PhD (and have a family) between 1983 and 1987. She obtained an MRC grant to support my work, which was on cognitive functioning in Parkinson’s Disease.

Jan moved to Birmingham in 1987 and was Head of Older Adult Psychology in South Birmingham Psychology Service for over 10 years between 1987 and 1998. She built up the specialty from 1wte to approximately 8wte establishing an innovative multi-skilled team. She had personal experience of work in physical health, mental health, primary care and community settings. She also conducted individual, family and group based client work as well as consultation, training and project work (e.g. implementing training in person-centred care and negotiating and implementing a multi-disciplinary supervision policy). She pursued CPD in systemic therapy during this period, updated my neuropsychology skills and attended workshops including on solution-focused therapy. She also successfully studied for a postgraduate certificate in NHS management.

Jan moved to Birmingham University part-time in 1996 and initially also retained her role as Head of Older Adult Psychology on a half time basis. In 2000 she was appointed to the position of Deputy and, in 2001, Director of the multi-specialty Psychology Service, a role she continued until she took up the position of Director of the Clinical Psychology Doctorate at the University of Birmingham in November 2001. In this role, Jan was Head of a successful, NHS commissioned programme with an intake of 25 professional doctorate trainees every year, and a staff team of 14 part-time academics. She supervised over 50 ClinPsyD trainees to successful completion of their doctorate research on a range of topics connected with old age psychology, in particular on dementia and on continuing bonds following bereavement. Jan continued to spend 1 day per week in clinical practice in Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust and most recently contributed to the work of the Birmingham Memory Assessment and Advisory Service and led for the old age clinical psychologists on research.

Having built up a research track record, Jan was delighted to be given the opportunity to join the Centre for Applied Dementia Studies as Chair in Dementia Care from January 2013.

Study History

(1992) Certificate in NHS Management, Sheffield Polytechnic

(1989) PhD (Cognitive functioning in Parkinson's Disease), University of Newcastle upon Tyne

(1977) M Psychol (Clinical), Liverpool University

(1975) BA (Hons) Psychology, Liverpool University

Professional History

  • HCPC Registered Clinical Psychologist
  • Worked in the NHS in direct work with older people until the end of December 2012

Research Areas

  • Older People
  • Ageing
  • Bereavement
  • Dementia
  • Mortality
  • Care Giving

Current Projects

2016 – 2019. Co-investigator, with Janet Carter (PI) University College London. The Angela Project: Improving diagnosis and post diagnostic support for younger people living with dementia and their caregivers. Alzheimer’s Society. £270,584.

2016 – 2021. Co-investigator, with Mara Airoldi (PI), Blavatnik School of Government, Oxford and others at LSE. Co-designing dementia care for better value. Health Foundation. £476,254.

2015 – 2018. Co-investigator, with Penny Wright (PI) Uni of Leeds. Development of a measure of quality of life for carers. MRC. £571,127.

2015 – 2017 Co-investigator: with Claire Surr, Leeds Beckett and others at Bradford. What works in dementia education and training. DoH. £400k approx.

2014 – 2017.  Co-investigator: With Analisa Smythe (PI), Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Trust and others. An evaluation of a novel research-based training intervention designed to support dignity in dementia care and sustain change in professional practice in nursing homes. £200,000.

2014 – 2016.  Co-investigator: With Prof Heather Gage, (PI) University of Surrey and Prof Sube Bannerjee. Support for carers of people with early onset dementia. (RHAPSODY) JPND, ESRC £201,000.

2012 – 2016. West Midlands PI: With Linda Clare, University of Bangor (CI) and others. Goal-oriented cognitive rehabilitation in early-stage dementia: multi-centre single-blind randomised controlled trial (GREAT). Funding from HTA. £1.8m approx.

2014 – 2017 Co-investigator. With Dr Carole Mockford (PI), University of Warwick. Carer and patient-led development of recommendations for people with dementia from hospital discharge to the community: understanding what is important. National Institute for Health Research: Research for Patient Benefit.

2014 – 2016 Co-investigator: With Analisa Smythe (PI), Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Trust and others. An evaluation of a novel research-based training intervention designed to support dignity in dementia care and sustain change in professional practice in nursing homes. (£200,000)

2014-2016: With Shubra Singh, Bradford District Care Foundation NHS Trust. Improving the care pathway for South Asian families. Yorkshire and Humber Research Capability Funding.

Research Collaborations

  • Professor Linda Clare, University of Exeter
  • Dr Gerry Riley, University of Birmingham
  • Professor Glynn Owens, University of Auckland
  • Dr Penny Wright, University of Leeds
  • Dr Mara Airoldi, University of Oxford


2008 onwards

Kurz, A., Bakker, C., Bohm, M., Diehl-Schmid, J., Dubois, B., Ferreira, C., ... & Jones, B. (In press). RHAPSODY-Internet-based support for caregivers of people with young onset dementia: program design and methods of a pilot study. International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry.

Oyebode, J.R. & Parveen S. (in press). Psychosocial interventions for people with dementia: An overview and commentary on recent developments. Dementia: DOI: 10.1177/1471301216656096

Mockford C., Seers, K., Oyebode, J., Clarke R., Staniszewska, S., Boex, S., Diment, Y., Grant, J., & Sharma, U. (in press) The Development of Service User led Recommendations for Health and Social Care Services on Leaving Hospital with Memory Loss or Dementia – the SHARED study" (HEX-2015-2129.R2). Health Expectations.

Mockford C., Murray, M., Seers, K., Oyebode, J., Grant, J., Boex, S., Staniszewska, S., Diment, Y., Leach, J., Sharma, U., Clarke R.,& Suleman., R.  (2016) A SHARED study-the benefits and costs of setting up a health research study involving lay co-researchers and how we overcame the challenges. Research Involvement and Engagement, 2, 8. DOI: 10.1186/s40900-016-0021-3

Parveen, S., Peltier, C. & Oyebode, J. R. (2016), Perceptions of dementia and use of services in minority ethnic communities: a scoping exercise. Health and Social Care in the Community. doi:10.1111/hsc.12363
Gerritsen, D., Oyebode JR, & Gove D. (2016) Ethical implications of the perception and portrayal of dementia. Dementia: DOI: 10.1177/1471301216654036

Al-Janabi, H., Nicholls, J., & Oyebode JR (2016) Should we be ‘carer-proofing’ healthcare decision-making? British Medical Journal. The need to “carer proof” healthcare decisions. BMJ 2016; 352:i1651 doi:

Jenkins, C., Smythe, A., Galant-Miecznikowska, M., Bentham, P., & Oyebode, J. (2016). Overcoming challenges of conducting research in nursing homes: Catharine Jenkins, Analisa Smythe and colleagues explore the processes, barriers and make recommendations for research in long-term care settings. Nursing older people, 28(5), 16-23.

Mockford, C., Murray, M.; Seers, K; Oyebode, J; Grant, R; Boex, S; Staniszewska, S.; Diment, Y; Leach, J; Sharma, U; Clarke, R; Suleman R (2016) A SHARED study - the Benefits and Costs of setting up a Health Research Study involving Lay Co-Researchers and how we overcame the Challenges Research Involvement and Engagement, 2:8
DOI: 10.1186/s40900-016-0021-3

Oyebode J (2016 ) Review of Resilience and aging: Research and practice by Helen Lavretsky. British Journal of Psychiatry 208 (4) 402; DOI: 10.1192/bjp.bp.115.170746

Oyebode J (2016) Commentary on Mukadam, N., Cooper, C., Basit, B. and Livingston G. (2011). Why do ethnic elders present later to UK dementia services? A qualitative study. Making the Case for the Social Sciences – Dementia. Academy of Social Sciences.

Sinclair J, Oyebode JR, Owens G (2014 - in press) Consensus Views on Advance Care Planning for Dementia: A Delphi Study. Health and Social Care in the Community.

Ellis-Gray S, Riley G, Oyebode J (2014) Development and Psychometric Evaluation of an Observational Coding System Measuring Person-Centred Care in Spouses of People with Dementia. International Psychogeriatrics. 26 (11): 1885-1895. 

Oyebode JR, Owens RG (2013 - in press) Bereavement and the role of cultural and religious factors. Bereavement Care.

LaFontaine J, Oyebode JR (2013) Family relationships and dementia: a synthesis of qualitative research including the person with dementia. Ageing & Society. E-publication ahead of print.

Smythe A, Jenkins C, Bentham P, Oyebode JR (2013 - in press). An exploration of the  experiences of staff working within a specialist mental health service in relation to development of the skills for the provision of person centred care for people with dementia. Dementia: The International Journal of Social Research and Practice.

Riley G, Fisher G, Hagger B, Elliott A, LeServe H, Oyebode JR (2013) The Birmingham Relationship Continuity Measure: The Development and Evaluation of a Measure of the Perceived Continuity of Spousal Relationships in Dementia. International Psychogeriatrics. 25: 263-274. DOI: 10.1017/S1041610212001743

Jenkins C, Smythe A, Bentham P, Oyebode JR (2013 - in press) Development of a Competency Framework for a Specialist Dementia Service". Journal of Mental Health Training, Education and Practice.

Kelly A, Papadopoulos A, Oyebode J, Backmark-Goodwill H, Halloran L (2012) Well-being and mental health in later life: The development and validation of the well-being evaluation scale. British Journal of Mental Health Nursing.  1; 162-170

Oyebode JR, Smith H, Morrison K (2012) The personal experience of partners of individuals with motor neurone disease. Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis and Fronto-Temporal Degeneration. E-publication ahead of print. doi:10.3109/ 17482968.2012.719236

Oyebode J, Bradley P, Allen J (2012) Relatives’ Experiences of Frontal-variant Frontotemporal Dementia. Qualitative Health Research. E-publication ahead of print, doi: 10.1177/1049732312466294

Butt TF, Cox AR, Oyebode JR, Ferner RE (2012) Internet Accounts of Serious Adverse Drug Reactions: A Study of Experiences of Stevens-Johnson Syndrome and Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis. Drug Safety. doi: 10.2165/11631950-000000000-00000

Ford S, Howard R, Oyebode J (2012) Psychosocial aspects of coeliac disease: A cross-sectional survey of a UK population. British Journal of Health Psychology. doi: 10.1111/j.2044-8287.2012.02069.x

Willott S, Hatton T, Oyebode JR (2012) Reflecting team processes in family therapy: A search for research. Journal of Family Therapy. 34: 180-203.

Tadros G, Ormerod S, Dobson-Smythe P, Gallon M, Doherty D, Carryer A, Oyebode JR, Kingston P (2011) The management of behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia in residential homes: Does Tai Chi have any role for people with dementia. Dementia. Epub. ahead of print: doi:10.1177/1471301211422769

Frazer S, Cleary A, Oyebode J (2011) How older women who live alone with dementia make sense of their experiences: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. Dementia. E-publication ahead of print: doi:10.1177/1471301211419018

Dilworth JA, Thomas K , Sawkins N, Oyebode JR (2011) Use of The Distress Thermometer for the Elderly (DTE) in the Identification of Distress and Need in Nursing and Care Homes. Aging and Mental Health. 15: 756-764

Suhail K, Jamil N, Oyebode JR, Ajmal MA (2011) Continuing bonds in bereaved Pakistani Muslims: Effects of Culture and Religion. Death Studies. 35(1) 22. doi:10.1080/07481181003765592

Rudman N, Oyebode JR, Jones C, Bentham P (2011) An investigation into the validity of effort tests in a working age dementia population. Aging & Mental Health. 15: 47-57.

Rose J, Madurai T, Thomas K, Duffy B, Oyebode J (2010) Reciprocity and Burnout in Direct care Staff. Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy. 17: 455-462.

Walters A, Oyebode JR, Riley G (2010) The dynamics of continuity and discontinuity in caring for a spouse with dementia. Dementia: The International Journal of Social Research and Practice. 9: 169-189.

Regan A, Howard RA, Oyebode JR (2009) Emotional exhaustion and defense mechanisms in intensive therapy unit nurses. The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease. 197: 330-6.

Hussein H, Oyebode JR (2009) Influences of religion and culture on continuing bonds in a sample of British Muslims of Pakistani origin. Death Studies. 33: 900-912.

Oyebode JR, Motala J, Hardy R, Oliver C (2009) Coping with challenges to memory in people with mild to moderate Alzheimer's disease: Observation of behaviour in response to analogues of everyday situations. Aging and Mental Health. 13: 46-53.

Allen J, Oyebode JR, Allen J (2009) Having a father with young onset dementia: The impact on well-being of young people. Dementia. 8: 455-480.

Duffy B, Oyebode JR, Allen J (2009) Burnout among care staff for older adults with dementia: The role of reciprocity, self-efficacy and organizational factors. Dementia. 8: 515-541.

Campbell P, Wright J, Oyebode J, Job D, Crome P, Bentham P, Jones L, Lendon C (2008) Determinants of burden in those who care for someone with dementia. Int J Geriatric Psychiatry. 23: 1078-1085.

Public/Academic/Stakeholder Engagement

Examples include:

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