Dr Mary Kennedy

School of Health and Social Care
Dr Mary Kennedy
  • Email

  • Telephone

    +44 (0) 1206 872933

  • Location

    2S2.3.11, Colchester Campus



I’m a Registered Nurse with a range of clinical, research and academic experience. In previous role within the NHS, was actively involved in service development and innovation in practice. I joined the School of Health & Social Care in 2011 with the remit to embed the National Dementia Strategy into education, clinical practice, and research. Since then, I’ve continued to develop local networks and to support service improvements to help enrich the care that people with dementia and their families receive. My other area of interest is end of life care. As well as teaching on end of life I’ve collaborated with colleagues across the University to support national campaigns; raise awareness and encourage people to talk more openly about death and dying. I have a particular interest in the role of creative arts in education and the use of storytelling to improve healthcare outcomes. In collaboration with people with lived experience and colleagues in the Technology Enhanced Learning Team I helped establish the digital storytelling project to develop learning resources to support teaching within the HSC. Having trained at the ‘Point of Care Foundation' to deliver and facilitate Schwartz Rounds in the NHS and HEI’s I’m a strong believer in the importance of providing compassionate care in healthcare and the working environment. Currently I’m the Lead for Service User Engagement in HSC and a member of the Service Users Reference Group


  • Professional Doctorate in Nursing University of Essex,

  • MSc (Mental Health Studies) University of London,

  • Registered Nurse - Adult University College Hospital,

  • Registered Nurse - Mental Health Gartnavel School of Nursing,

  • Registered Nurse – General (Level 2) West Lothian College of Nursing & Midwifery,


Other academic

  • Lead for Service User Engagement, University of Essex (2020 - 2023)

  • Programme Lead - Professional Doctorate, University of Essex (2021 - present)

Research and professional activities

Research interests

Schwartz Rounds in Health Professionals’ Education

Education and training through simulation: Evaluating the experience of staff after the Virtual Dementia Tour

The use of story work in an age inclusive dementia service: a participatory action research study

Joint research project between North Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (NEPT) and the University of Essex. Part funded from NEPT Legacy Trust Research Award. Researcher and PI Dr Steve Wood (UoE)

Improving Post Diagnostic Support & Quality in Dementia Services: Service Evaluation Report

Joint research project between North Essex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust (NEPT) and the University of Essex. Project was commissioned by East of England Strategic network.

Exploring the Education and Training Needs of Mental Health Nurses Caring for Clients with Urinary Incontinence: An Action Research Study

Key words: Continence Care

The Effect of Incontinence on Sexuality: A Nurse Patient Perspective

The Role of Clinical Supervision in Nursing

Dementia Care

Open to supervise

End of Life Care

Open to supervise

Use of creative arts in health & social care

Open to supervise

Use of narratives / storytelling in healthcare

Open to supervise

Simulation based education

Open to supervise

Health & well-being; emotional resilience

Open to supervise

Researching lived experience in healthcare

Open to supervise

Service Improvement & evaluation

Open to supervise

Conferences and presentations

Creative Arts & Storytelling

Invited presentation, Sharing Good Practice @ Essex, 2/2021

The Arts, Education & Dementia: Time to Get Creative

Invited presentation, Dementia, Diversity and the Arts, Essex Cultural Diversity Project & The Alzheimer’s Society, 27/1/2021

Pathways for Patients with Dementia

Invited presentation, Health and Social Care e-Research Conference, Colchester, United Kingdom, 6/2020

Using technology enhanced learning in HSC

Invited presentation, Senior Staff Conference, Colchester, United Kingdom, 4/2020

Learning opportunities: Service Users Involvement

Invited presentation, Senior Staff Conference, Colchester, United Kingdom, 10/2019

Teaching and supervision

Current teaching responsibilities

  • Issues in Biomolecular Science (BS304)

  • Issues in Biomedical Science (BS306)

  • Development of Individuals Throughout their Lifespan (HS135)

  • Professional and Interprofessional Skills for Practice (HS140)

  • Professional Portfolio 1 (HS995)

  • Understanding Self and Others (SE120)

  • Professional Portfolio 2 (HS994)

  • Engagement in Occupation (HS175)

  • Relationship Based Practice (HS244)

  • Relationship Based Practice (HS188)

  • Relationship Based Practice (HS225)

  • Person-Centred Care 1 (HS184)

  • Person-Centred Care 1 (HS221)

Previous supervision

Nicola Jane Armstrong
Nicola Jane Armstrong
Thesis title: The Impact on the Family of Young Onset Dementia
Degree subject: Nursing
Degree type: Professional Doctorate
Awarded date: 8/7/2021
Stephen Charles Edward Wood
Stephen Charles Edward Wood
Thesis title: The Use of Life Story Work in an Age Inclusive Dementia Service: A Participatory Action Research Study
Degree subject: Health Studies
Degree type: Doctor of Philosophy
Awarded date: 14/10/2019
Susan Margaret Mapes
Susan Margaret Mapes
Thesis title: Musculoskeletal Ultrasound Imaging - an Exploration of Physiotherapists' Interests and Use in Practice
Degree subject: Health Care Education
Degree type: Professional Doctorate
Awarded date: 25/5/2017


Journal articles (1)

Wood, S., Kennedy, M. and Martin, P., (2017). Life story work that brought wide benefits. Journal of Dementia Care. 25 (1), 26-28

Book chapters (3)

Kennedy, M., (2018). The stress of it all: Environment & People. In: Coping and Thriving in Nursing An Essential Guide to Practice. Editors: Martin, P., . SAGE. 1526461501. 9781526461506

Kennedy, M., (2018). Collaborative Working. In: Coping and Thriving in Nursing An Essential Guide to Practice. Editors: Martin, P., . SAGE. 1526461501. 9781526461506

Kennedy, M., (2007). Vulnerable Groups: Mental Health Needs. In: Promoting Continence A Clinical and Research Resource. Editors: Getliffe, K. and Dolman, M., . Elsevier Health Sciences. 044310347X. 9780443103476

Reports and Papers (1)

Kennedy, M. and Mitchell, D., (2013). The experience of undergraduate nursing students, preceptors and academic staff members in clinical practice: An exploration of the triadic relationship

Grants and funding


Evaluation of Communities 360 Dementia Friendly Projects



Patient Outcomes Project

Alzheimer's Research UK

+44 (0) 1206 872933


2S2.3.11, Colchester Campus