Caroline Wright

Current position: Course Convenor/Senior Lecturer Master of Medical Radiations (Radiation Therapy)

Years qualified as an RT: 20

Research qualifications:

BSc (Hons) Major project – Accuracy and Reproducibility of shielding techniques (Quantitative) – 1996

MSc Major project – Role of specialist Head and Neck Radiation Therapist (Mixed methods) – 2001

PhD – Investigation into Fitness to Practise in Radiation Therapy (Mixed methods – mainly qualitative) – ongoing

Why did you decide to get involved in research?

I started to work in research 18 years ago co-ordinating local, national and international clinical research trials. Having studied my entry level qualification at Diploma level I decided to undertake a Bachelor degree which provided me with my first insight into research and evidence-based practice. This underpinning knowledge and the research project that I completed as part of this initiated my interest. Since then I have actively participated in a variety of clinical and educational research projects and I have also supervised student research projects.

Who encouraged you to get involved in research and who to you go to for advice when you need it?

Primarily it was my fellow researchers and colleagues that encouraged and supported me in undertaking research.

What sort of activities/studies have you been involved in?

In my first role as a researcher working primarily in clinical trials, I was involved in ethics submissions, patient recruitment and co-ordination of data collection and quality assurance. More recent research activity has been with mixed methods research, with a focus on qualitative methods as part of my PhD.

What do you enjoy most about being involved in research activities?

I enjoy being involved in research study design and data analysis aspects of research. Project completion and publication.

What has been your biggest challenge or barrier to being involved in research?

Having sufficient time to devote to research is always a challenge.

What one piece of advice would you give other researchers who have never been involved in research before?

Talk to as many people as possible and review previous studies related to your research plan before undertaking it.

What is your greatest research achievement?

Completing PhD to date; Getting published; Submitting a grant application and being successful in receiving $780,000 for a National Collaborative Research project.

How do you balance research/work/family life?

It’s a challenge to balance everything, allocate yourself enough time.

How did you find a mentor/supervisor?

Through the University.