Julie Abernethy

Senior Lecturer

Faculty:Faculty of Health, Social Care & Education

Department:School of Nursing & Midwifery

Location: Cambridge

Areas of Expertise: Nursing and midwifery

Julie Abernethy is a registered children’s nurse and nurse tutor. Her areas of expertise include child and adolescent development and mental health, research methodology, health promotion and health psychology.



Julie qualified as a children’s nurse in 1997, and graduated with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology with Health Psychology in 2000. Throughout her psychology degree she worked as a bank nurse on children’s medical and surgical wards and special care baby units. After graduating she worked for a year at an adolescent eating disorders unit and then on the school nursing team.

Julie became a Child Nurse Lecturer in 2004, and gained her MSc in Psychological Research Methods and PGC in Interprofessional Healthcare Education in 2005. During an eight year career break to raise her family, she worked as a bank nurse, trained to be a Parish Nurse, worked as a Parish Nurse, and taught on the Parish Nursing training course. She returned to higher education in 2014 as a Senior Lecturer.

Research interests

  • Parent education
  • Self-harm in adolescents
  • Discharge advice on preventing cot death

For her Master’s dissertation Julie researched the accuracy of attributions for self-harm in adolescents of different branches of students nurses. Her undergraduate research looked at parental confidence and if parent education increased parent’s confidence. Current research around cot death implies that cot death occurs mainly as a result of parent’s behaviour. Because of this she is particularly interested in researching the advice that is given to new parents on preventing cot death.


She primarily teaches undergraduate child nursing students, but also gives some lectures on research methodology and biosciences to first year students from all fields of nursing. She is a cohort tutor and personal tutor for an intake of child nursing students. She facilitates group work sessions on professional issues and research methods, and teach clinical skills in the clinical skills lab.


  • DipHE, Child Health Nursing, Thames Valley University
  • BSc (Hons), Psychology with Health Psychology, University of Wales, Bangor
  • MSc, Psychological Research Methods, Open University
  • PG Cert, Interprofessional Healthcare Education, University of East Anglia

Memberships, editorial boards

  • Royal College of Nursing