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Senior Research Associate

Requisition ID:  960

Newcastle, GB

Contract Type:  Fixed Term
Posted Date:  21-Oct-2019

We are a world class research-intensive university. We deliver teaching and learning of the highest quality. We play a leading role in economic, social and cultural development of the North East of England. Attracting and retaining high-calibre people is fundamental to our continued success.

Salary: £41,526.00 - £55,750.00 

Closing Date: 18 November 2019

The role


This post is to support on-going research in the Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research at Newcastle University under the supervision of Dr Grainne Gorman. We are looking for a highly motivated, Senior Research Physiotherapist with extensive clinical expertise in both paediatric and adult physiotherapy practice and  substantial experience of research in areas of neuromuscular disorders, or mitochondrial diseases. Working collaboratively within a multi-disciplinary team, you will have a key role in the delivery of neuromuscular/mitochondrial clinical studies. You will be confident and enthusiastic with excellent communication skills. You will have excellent organisational skills and extensive project management experience. You must posses a diploma/Degree in Physiotherapy, a PhD in a relevant subject and have HCPC registration.


The post is available on a full time, fixed term basis for 2 years.


For informal enquiries regarding the role, please contact Dr Grainne Gorman at


More information is available here:

Faculty of Medical Sciences

Institute of Neuroscience

Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research


As part of our commitment to career development for research staff, the University has developed 3 levels of research role profiles.  These profiles set out firstly the generic competences and responsibilities expected of role holders at each level and secondly the general qualifications and experiences needed for entry at a particular level.


Key Accountabilities


  • Substantial experience of clinical research in an appropriate setting.
  • To be involved in project management including the preparation of proposals for research funding, managing other researchers and monitoring research budgets. 
  • To be expected to be undertaking research individually and/or collectively and to be advancing the stage of knowledge and understanding within their particular area of expertise. 
  • Regularly publish high quality research outputs.
  • Initiate and take responsibility for research projects and may be Principal Investigator or, where a funding body does not permit this, act as though they were Principal Investigator.
  • Independently identify research objectives and potential funding sources and prepare and write proposals for funding.
  • Play a leading role in research and clinical teams to which they belong, including progressively larger and/or more complex projects, or as an individual researcher in their specific research area.
  • Play a major part in the dissemination of their (or the team’s) research findings, presenting at conferences of international quality or exhibit potential for international quality (in part through strong national quality publications) at the frequency appropriate to the discipline.
  • Ensure that knowledge and methodological/technical skills in their own, and related, areas of scholarship are extended and inform research activities.
  • Play an active part in research networks, develop contacts with external bodies including funding bodies, and actively seek out and develop opportunities for interdisciplinary research.
  • Referee papers and grant proposals for external bodies.
  • A key element of this role will be oversight and delivery of both PREFER and AIMM studies.
  • Lead on the establishment of outcome measures to support (neuromuscular/mitochondrial) clinical trial readiness internationally.
  • Continuously update specialist knowledge relating to research governance, GCP/ICH guidance, UK/EU directives, and physiotherapy code of professional conduct.


The Person (Essential)


Knowledge, Skills and Experience

  • Substantial experience of research in areas of neuromuscular disorders, or mitochondrial diseases
  • Extensive clinical experience in both paediatric and adult physiotherapy practice
  • Experience of both paediatric and adult patients with mitochondrial disease
  • Evidence of ongoing professional development in clinical research
  • Knowledge and extensive experience/participation in clinical trials and Good Clinical Practice at UK standards
  • Extensive experience of development of outcome measures for clinical evaluation
  • Experience working collaboratively within national and international multi-disciplinary teams
  • Knowledge and experience in the development/design/budgeting of clinical trial protocols/clinical research, and governance preferably at international level
  • Advanced organisational skills and ability to manage multiple projects at various stages of development & organisation
  • Demonstrate an ability to integrate clinical knowledge and skills with the research aspects of the job
  • Ability to work autonomously
  • Extensive project Management Skills
  • Experience with patient and public engagement tasks
  • Previous experience in writing successful research grant applications
  • Excellent teaching acumen

Attributes and Behaviour


  • Excellent cross disciplinary/interagency communication and interpersonal skills with the ability to facilitate collaborative working relationships
  • Confident, outgoing and enthusiastic individual
  • A highly motivated senior physiotherapist who is confident to operate at a level of/ or to the standard of a Principal Investigator
  • Be aware of their own professional needs and take the initiative in fulfilling them
  • Facilitates the management of research related aspects of care of a group of study participants over the period of a study
  • To evaluate physiotherapy treatment programmes based on knowledge of evidence based practice and available treatment options using highly advanced clinical assessment and analytical skills. Treatments include complex interventions delivered in community and research settings. Demonstrate an ability to integrate clinical knowledge and skills with the research aspects of the job
  • To evaluate and monitor patient progress ensuring patients receive the highest possible standards of care
  • To motivate and encourage patient’s active participation in all aspects of the clinical research trials
  • To play an active role in the development of new assessments and treatment strategies both clinically and in the research fields
  • Provide a significant contribution to the development of the Wellcome Centre for Mitochondrial Research portfolio
  • Communicates effectively with patients (children and adults) and their carers if necessary, to provide information about clinical trials using well developed skills of patient education to provide information in an understandable, comprehensive and unbiased manner prior to obtaining informed written consent for trials
  • Communicates effectively with patients and their carers to maximise their active involvement in research trials using developed skills of reasoning and patient education to gain their co-operation in the process
  • Applies motivational skills and empathy to persuade patients to continue their participation in long-term trials where barriers may include decreased understanding, dementia, recent bereavement and language difficulties
  • Communicates effectively and works collaboratively with the wider multi-disciplinary team, including medical, nursing, radiology and other therapy colleagues to provide feedback on clinical research that may facilitate delivery of a co-ordinated multi-disciplinary service to patients
  • Communicates effectively with clinical trial sponsors, grant funders and patient organisations supporting the ongoing research projects




  • PhD degree or equivelant
  • Diploma/Degree or equivalent in Physiotherapy
  • State registered with Health Professions Council (HCPC) and full license to practice in the UK

Newcastle University is committed to being a fully inclusive Global University which actively recruits, supports and retains staff from all sectors of society.  We value diversity as well as celebrate, support and thrive on the contributions of all our employees and the communities they represent.  We are proud to be an equal opportunities employer and encourage applications from everybody, regardless of race, sex, ethnicity, religion, nationality, sexual orientation, age, disability, gender identity, marital status/civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, as well as being open to flexible working practices.


The University holds a silver Athena SWAN award in recognition of our good employment practices for the advancement of gender equality.  The University also holds the HR Excellence in Research award for our work to support the career development of our researchers, and is a member of the Euraxess initiative supporting researchers in Europe.


Requisition ID: 960