University of Central Lancashire
The University of Central Lancashire is the international, multi-campus University tracing its roots back to 1828 and leading the way in modern learning today
We’ve spent £200 million on transforming our Preston Campus to give it a world-class makeover. This includes a stunning brand-new Student Centre and University Square at the heart of campus, social spaces and a whole lot more.
Our new £60m Student Centre brings all the advice and support teams under one roof, providing second-to-none support. It’s a stunning space designed to support every step of the student journey. The University Square will become an exciting hub of activity, a focal point for community events and an iconic gateway linking together the city and the University.
Whoever you are, wherever you are in life, there’s always a way.
Where opportunity creates success.
School of Community Health & Midwifery
The School of Community Health & Midwifery sits within the wider Faculty of Health & Care. It is home to a range of undergraduate and postgraduate courses including Midwifery, Sexual Health, Public Health, Health & Social Care and Counselling & Psychotherapy.
As a School, it is our goal to work in partnership with our students so that they are able to achieve their full potential and in doing so facilitate them to make a difference within the communities in which they serve. We are committed to widening participation and our courses offer students the opportunity to study via apprenticeships or from foundation degree level through to postgraduate entry where working as part of the wider team is key to responding to the diverse nature of contemporary health and social care agenda. We offer a rich, stimulating and supportive learning environment that is underpinned through dynamic, high-quality education, research and knowledge transfer.
Both the Midwifery and Health Visiting Courses are Unicef Baby Friendly Initiative (BFI) approved and the School led the University to achieve the Unicef UK Baby Friendly Initiative Gold which was reaccredited in March 2022.
THRIVE Research Centre
The UCLan THRIVE Research Centre researches and evaluates the interaction between factors and mechanisms that influence human survival, flourishing, and transformation in the early years (first 1000 days) of life.
Our unique contribution is our focus on positive outcomes across the life course, to discover what events in the early years are associated with human flourishing in later life.
We focus on maximising wellbeing and human flourishing; follow up over time and across generations; observation and analysis methods; multi-discipline approaches and the integration of data.
The centre comprises six interrelated groups, two of which sit within the School of Community Health & Midwifery. These specifically relate to Maternal and Child Health.
Research in Childbirth and Health Unit (REACH)
The Research in Childbirth and Health group has a specific interest in understanding ‘what works well’, in the complex, real world of clinical practice and service organisation, especially where unexpectedly positive outcomes are achieved.
Maternal and Child Health
Our research in this area benefits from knowledge across many fields, with specific expertise in Maternal and Child Nutrition, Infant and Young Child Feeding (IYCF), Breastfeeding, Perinatal Mental Health, Childbirth and Global Midwifery Practices Evaluation and Research. We work with a range of organisations on projects for the World Health Organisation, UNICEF, the NHS, the Wellcome Trust and many more. Our aim is to support the lives of children, parents, families and systems that can facilitate and improve health and wellbeing.
Maternal and Infant Nutrition and Nurture Unit (MAINN)
The MAINN Unit is an interdisciplinary group that focuses upon complex political, cultural, psychosocial and economic influences upon maternal and infant nutrition and nurture.
Programmes | Learning Opportunities | Courses
We offer a range of undergraduate, postgraduate and CPD courses.
Find further information here
School of Community Health and Midwifery – UCLan
Please see below for information on courses specific to Midwifery
It is equipped with an adult interactive high fidelity simulated manikin, SimMom. This manikin is an advanced full body interactive birthing simulator that can respond automatically through dedicated software to clinical interventions, creating realistic learning experiences. There is also a newborn baby, Laerdal SimNewB, which is used to deliver high specification simulated training for neonatal care.
The laboratory has two birthing hospital beds with two life-size birthing manikins along with a neonatal resuscitaire.
Dr Deborah Kenny
Head of School
Professor Soo Downe
Professor of Midwifery Studies
Soo is a midwife with a particular research focus on the nature of, and cultures around, normal birth.
Soo has undertaken research using a wide range of qualitative and quantitative methods, from phenomenology and ethnography to surveys, RCTs, and epidemiological analysis of large data sets.
As well as undertaking research, she teaches on both undergraduate and postgraduate research programmes, and she regularly works with the World Health Organisation and with other research, practice, and public health leaders in maternity care around the world.
Professor Gill Thomson
Professor in Perinatal Health
Gill Thomson is a Professor in Perinatal Health within the Maternal and Infant Nutrition and Nurture Unit (MAINN) in the University of Central Lancashire.
Gill has a psychology academic background and a PhD in midwifery. Gill has been led/been involved in a number of research/evaluation based projects funded by the Department of Health, National Institute of Health Research, Health Technology Assessment and third-sector organisations. Gill’s research interests relate to psychosocial influences and implications of perinatal care, with particular interests in birth trauma, factors that impact upon maternal wellbeing, and peer support models of care.
She also has a particular specialism in a range of qualitative methodologies, in particular Hermeneutic Phenomenology, and qualitative/narrative based systematic reviews.
Principal Lecturer/ Lead Midwife For Education
Carol is a registered nurse and midwife who has worked in academia since 2004. Carol joined UCLan in 2017 as a Senior lecturer and course leader for pre-registration midwifery.
In September 2017 she was appointed to the role of Principal lecturer/ Lead midwife for education (LME), a strategic role involving quality assurance of midwifery educational provision. Carol’s interest in education stems from her role as an Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics (ALSO) instructor.
Carol teaches across pre-registration and CPD programmes providing pastoral, educational and research support, and has a keen interest in inter-professional learning.
Senior Lecturer In Midwifery
Megan joined the University of Central Lancashire in 2016 and has a varied background in midwifery care with a previous role in clinical education and support for newly qualified midwives.
Megan is also a postgraduate research student undertaking a PhD studentship within the Maternal and Infant Nutrition and Nurture Unit (MAINN) research unit
Senior Lecturer In Midwifery
Kerry has worked as a Lecturer in Midwifery since April 2015. She has BSc (Hons) degree in Adult Nursing with a clinical background working in the Emergency department and Urgent care centres.
Kerry also has a BSc (Hons) degree in Midwifery and her previous clinical role was as the Preceptorship support Midwife.
Her areas of expertise are the promotion of normality within the complex labour and birth environment and also the training and support of newly qualified Midwives.
Senior Lecturer in Midwifery
Leah is a Senior Midwifery Lecturer within the School of Community Health and Midwifery. Leah joined the University of Central Lancashire in June 2016 and is course leader for BSc (Hons) midwifery, 3-year programme,
March and September 2020 intake. She is also a year tutor, academic assessor, site link lecturer and module leader
Rebekah joined UCLan as a Midwifery Lecturer is 2018. Rebekah leads on modules across both the long and short undergraduate programmes. She is academic advisor and clinical link lecturer to students placed at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals
Senior Lecturer Neonates
Kath teaches across a range of courses. Kath’s particular area expertise is in intensive care of the neonate.
Sarah has a BSc (Hons) degree in Midwifery and her previous clinical role was as an Infant Feeding Specialist. Sarah is also a nurse with a clinical background working in the Cardiothoracic Intensive Care.
Louise joined UCLAN in early 2020 and works across the Midwifery programmes providing pastoral, educational and research support. Louise has a keen interest in organisational culture and leadership with a great passion to empower future midwives. Qualifying as a midwife in 2006 and completing her Midwifery MSc in 2012,
Louise is currently working towards completing the Academic Professional Apprenticeship at UCLAN. Before joining UCLAN’s dynamic and innovative midwifery lecturing team, she undertook midwifery roles across the childbirth continuum, with a focus on clinical education, service improvement and preceptorship.