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Engaging Nursing and medicAl students in Mindfulness through the development of a mobile App: the NAMAste study. 

PhD project title

Engaging Nursing and medicAl students in Mindfulness through the development of a mobile App: the NAMAste study. 

Outline description, including interdisciplinary, intersectoral and international dimensions 


Background: Internationally, it is recognised that mindfulness training can positively impact the holistic wellbeing, including mental health of nursing and medical students, build resilience and impact positively on patient relationships1,2. However academic and clinical demands often prevent students availing of traditional face-to-face mindfulness approaches3. Mindfulness-based mobile apps have the potential to deliver effective mindfulness interventions. 

Aim: To develop and assess feasibility of a mindfulness-based mobile app in improving well-being and resilience amongst undergraduate and postgraduate nursing and medical students  

Method: The study will be guided by the Medical Research Council (MRC) framework4 for developing and evaluating complex interventions and draw on the Theory of Planned Behaviour5. Phase 1 will involve a systematic review; Phase 2 will include interviews and focus groups with nursing and medical students from a large University in Northern Ireland to inform development of the intervention; Phase 3 will involve feasibility testing, with input from key stakeholder groups including the "Geri-PARTy" lab at the McGill-affiliated Jewish General Hospital, Canada, which focuses on mindfulness research, and Farset Labs, Belfast to evaluate, design and plan for future implementation. Participants will complete the Brief Resilience Scale (BRS)6, Mindulness Attention Awareness Scale (MAAS)7 and Diener’s model of subjective well-being8 at baseline and post intervention.  

Outcomes: Findings will contribute to the development of a robustly, pragmatic mindfulness-based mobile app intervention for undergraduate and postgraduate nursing and medical students and an application to her the National Institute for Health Research for a definitive randomised control trial. The study embraces interprofessional education and lends itself well to alignment and horizontal integration within Nursing and Medicine. Colleagues from education and computer science will be invited to sit on an advisory group. The initial approach will be interdisciplinary, whilst maintaining focus, before expanding the purview to other arenas. 


  1. Song, Y. and Lindquist, R., Effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction on depression, anxiety, stress and mindfulness in Korean nursing students. Nurse education today 2015;, 35(1), pp.86-90.
  2. Halland, E., De Vibe, M., Solhaug, I., Friborg, O., Rosenvinge, J.H., Tyssen, R., Sørlie, T. and Bjørndal, A.,  Mindfulness training improves problem-focused coping in psychology and medical students: Results from a randomized controlled trial. College Student Journal2015; 49(3), pp.387-398. 
  1. Danilewitz, M., Bradwejn, J. and Koszycki, D.,  Apilot feasibility study of a peer-led mindfulness program for medical students. Canadian medical education journal 2016; 7(1), p.e31. 
  2. Craig P, Dieppe P, Macintyre S, et al. Developing and evaluating complex interventions: new guidance: MRC, 2008.
  1. Ajzen, I. "The theory of planned behavior". Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. 50 1991; (2): 179–211. 
  2. Smith, B.W., Dalen, J., Wiggins, K., Tooley, E., Christopher, P. and Bernard, J., The brief resilience scale: assessing the ability to bounce back. International journal of behavioralmedicine, 2008; 15(3), pp.194-200. 
  1. Brown, K.W. and Ryan, R.M., The benefits of being present: mindfulness and its role in psychological well-being. Journal of personality and social psychology, 2003; 84(4), p.822.
  2. Diener, E., Subjective well-being. Psychological bulletin, 1984; 95(3), p.542.

Key words/descriptors

Mindfulness, Nursing, Medicine, Technology, Students 

Fit to CITI-GENS theme(s)

  • Information Technology,
  • Life Sciences

Supervisor Information



First Supervisor:   Dr Helen Noble                                School: Nursing and Midwifery

Second Supervisor:    Dr Ian Walsh                               School: Medicine, Pharmacy and Biological Sciences

Third Supervisor:     Dr Andrew Bolster,                        Company: Farset Labs.

Name of non-HEI partner(s)

The Fellow will be supported and supervised by Dr Andrew Bolster, Director and Founder of Farset Labs.  

Contribution of non-HEI partner(s) to the project:



Farset Labs is a community driven and funded, charitable space for technologists, creative artists, educators, and professionals to come together, share, and experiment with their ideas, products, and programmes. Collaboration with the Farset Labs will provide the fellow with the opportunity to extend and develop links with the voluntary sector and, in particular, increase our engagement with technology organisations beyond the academic sector. Farset Labs will provide the project with mentorship and supervision in relation to coding and programming that will be key in developing a robust mindfulness App.


It is envisaged that Farset Labs will support with the Doctoral Programme in the following ways: 

In addition, we will work closely with Mindfulness UK and endeavour to secure finds so that the Fellow can visit and spend some time with Karen Atkinson, the lead Director of this company and a leading UK expert in Mindfulness and Compassion.


Subject area

Mindfulness and compassion