Dr Julie Smith

Acting Head of the Department

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education

Department:School of Nursing & Midwifery

Location: Peterborough (Guild House)

Areas of Expertise: Health, social care and medical innovation

Julie is a nurse and health visitor with a special interest in diabetes-related issues, particularly in the field of psychosocial issues and women’s health.



Julie's nursing career began at St Mary’s Paddington and, after completing training, she worked in acute medical areas and coronary care. This was followed by obstetric and health visitor training, consolidated by a period of geographical community practice in Paddington.

Following a number of different roles in hospital and community settings, Julie became a specialist nurse in diabetes care, where her passion for influencing the care of people with diabetes began and was the focus of her doctoral study.

For the past 20 years, Julie has been involved in the education of healthcare professionals, including the development and implementation of CPD courses in diabetes care at all levels. Between 2006-2014, she was a principal lecturer with responsibility for postgraduate education and research, research degrees and courses in the primary care arena.

Currently, Julie is acting head of department in the newly formed Department of Health, Social Care and Education at our Peterborough campus.

Research interests

  • Psychosocial aspects of living with diabetes
  • Women’s health
  • Interpretative phenomenological methodology

Julie's research interests in terms of subject specialism relate to the care of people with long-term conditions, specifically psychosocial aspects of living with diabetes.

Her doctoral study was concerned with the lived experience of women in midlife who were living with diabetes, and their experience and effects of stress. The theme of ‘diabetes as a nuisance’ emerged from this study and was expressed by poetic representation. She continues to be interested in this area and is a member of the European Psychosocial Aspects of Diabetes study group.

Methodologically, Julie is interested in the use of mixed methodology and its emergence as a potential third paradigm, particularly the sequential exploratory design. Creative methods of representing data area are also of interest as a means of reporting the results of research to both a lay and professional audience.

Areas of research supervision

Julie would be pleased to consider supervising doctoral students with the following research interests/topics:

  • Psychosocial aspects of living with Diabetes
  • Women's health
  • Community Nursing
  • Long term conditions
  • Interpretative Phenomenological Methodology
  • Mixed Methodology
Recent and current doctoral supervision as first supervisor:
  • An examination of staff and adult learning disability service user experiences and perceptions of aggression and its management – current
  • An exploratory study of the newly-qualified Registered Nurse in the UK. Are nurses adequately prepared for practice in the 21st Century – current
  • Critical analysis of the candidates own practice in relation to the research area: The Mentor’s choice to Mentor – current
  • An exploration of Nigerian and Caribbean women's experiences and management of menopause - current


  • RGN, St Mary’s Hospital, Paddington
  • HV Cert, West London Institute of Higher Education
  • PGCE, University of Nottingham
  • BSc Health Studies, University of Leicester
  • PhD, The Open University

Memberships, editorial boards

  • European Psychosocial Aspects of Diabetes Care Study Group
  • Reviewer for Diabetes Medicine and Journal of Vascular Disease

Research grants, consultancy, knowledge exchange

  • Previously consultant to Diabetes Care Technician project, The Open University

Selected recent publications

Smith, J., Adams, J. and Pearson, L. (2014). Incorporating a service improvement project into an undergraduate nursing programme: A pilot study. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 20, pp.623-628.

Priharjo, R., McVicar, A., Smith, J. and Nixon, G. (2011). An investigation into patients' and nurses' experiences of diabetes consultation. Diabetic Medicine, 28 (Supplement s1), p.256.

Recent presentations and conferences

Smith, J. (2014) Qualitative Research in Diabetes Care. Psychosocial Aspects of Diabetes Study Group 19th Spring Scientific Meeting, Seerpoort, Netherlands.

Smith, J. (2011) NHSi Service Improvement Project. RCN Education Conference, Harrogate UK.

Smith, J. (2010) Poetic Representation of the Experience of Women with Diabetes. Annual IPA Conference, Glasgow, Scotland.