Vanessa Waller

Principal Lecturer

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education

Department:School of Nursing & Midwifery

Location: Peterborough (Guild House)

Areas of Expertise: Nursing and midwifery

Vanessa is a Registered Nurse with extensive expertise and experience in learning, teaching and assessing. Her current area of research expertise relates to self-compassion and case study methodology.

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Vanessa qualified as a Registered Nurse in 1992, working in Emergency Nursing in Salford before moving into Higher Education in 1999. She has extensive experience of pre and post-registration teaching, learning, assessing, curriculum design and curriculum development, and was responsible for the development, approval, implementation and management of the all-graduate nursing curriculum across Essex and Cambridgeshire.  Vanessa works collaboratively with external stakeholders across Essex and Cambridgeshire to ensure high-quality, contemporary, fit-for-purpose nurse education. Based in the Peterborough campus, Vanessa is the Teaching and Learning Lead for the Department, supporting and developing innovative, high-quality education for students in nursing, social work, and education, and mentoring other members of academic staff. Vanessa is also the Practice Lead for the nursing course in the Peterborough region, with a role for monitoring and developing the clinical learning environment.

Research interests

Vanessa’s research interests focus on values, compassion and self-compassion, and effective learning tools to enhance these in pre-registration education.

  • Self-compassion, and the experiences of student nurses applying self-compassion.
  • Implementation of self-compassion workshops.
  • Enhancing student and mentor experience in the clinical learning environment.
  • Leadership and leading change.


  • Pre-registration nurse teaching across all elements of the three year course.  Leadership, management and quality monitoring, and values. Vanessa also supervises Undergraduate Major Projects.
  • Post-registration teaching responsibilities relate to Advanced Skills in Clinical Assessment.


  • Principal Fellowship, Higher Education Academy
  • Masters in Medical Education, University of Dundee
  • PGCE, Bolton Institute of Higher Education
  • BSc (Hons) Health Studies, University of Worcester
  • RGN, Salford School of Nursing

Memberships, editorial boards

  • RCN Education forum

Recent presentations and conferences

Waller, V. (2015). Compassion in pre-registration education: students’ experiences of applying self-compassion.  In: Partners in Practice.  RCN Education Forum National Conference, Nottingham, March 2015.

Waller, V. (2014). Self-compassion: nurturing a better future.  In: Everybody’s business – our aging population.  Chelmsford, UK, 9 July 2014.

Waller, V. (2013). Compassion in pre-registration education: the development of an effective learning tool. In: Putting people at the heart of nursing care. Phi Mu Chapter of Sigma Theta Tau International (STTI), Nursing Honour Society Inaugural Conference Bournemouth, June 2013.