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Spirituality and Health

Students interested in this PhD opportunity would want to explore any aspects of spirituality and how it is addressed or not addressed in healthcare. Often medical professionals are not comfortable assessing whether spirituality is a factor in wholistic consideration of an individual's situation. Some seriously ill patients find spirituality and/or religion an important form of coping. Another aspect of spirituality includes how it is addressed or whether it is absent from health education curricula. If it is present, what kinds of considerations are addressed concerning this dimension.

A student with interest in this topic would likely have health interests as well as a professional practice background.

Professor Holly Nelson-Becker co-created US standards of spiritual care in palliative care in the US along with representatives from other health professions. The standards we developed were vetted with a larger group of national experts. Spirituality remains an important and neglected area of practice. She also has related interests in loss, grief, and dying well.

Please contact Professor Holly Nelson-Becker to discuss this project.

How to apply

If you are interested in applying for the above PhD topic please follow the steps below:

  1. Contact the supervisor by email or phone to discuss your interest and find out if you woold be suitable. Supervisor details can be found on this topic page. The supervisor will guide you in developing the topic-specific research proposal, which will form part of your application.
  2. Click on the 'Apply here' button on this page and you will be taken to the relevant PhD course page, where you can apply using an online application.
  3. Complete the online application indicating your selected supervisor and include the research proposal for the topic you have selected.

Good luck!

This is a self funded topic

Brunel offers a number of funding options to research students that help cover the cost of their tuition fees, contribute to living expenses or both. See more information here: https://www.brunel.ac.uk/research/Research-degrees/Research-degree-funding. The UK Government is also offering Doctoral Student Loans for eligible students, and there is some funding available through the Research Councils. Many of our international students benefit from funding provided by their governments or employers. Brunel alumni enjoy tuition fee discounts of 15%.