Investigating the relationship between diet and healthy brain ageing

students studying in the McClay library using laptops

Centre for Public Health

PhD Funded Studentship

Investigating the relationship between diet and healthy brain ageing

Project Description

Dementia is a major global public health priority. Accumulating data suggests a role for diet in cognitive decline and dementia, but evidence is limited. Given that the pathophysiological changes of dementia accumulate years before cognitive impairment becomes apparent, there is a critical need to understand the influence of diet on brain health across the life-course to inform the nature and timing of preventive strategies. There is also a need to understand how best to achieve behaviour change towards a brain healthy diet, particularly in those at greatest risk.

This research project integrates epidemiologic and pilot dietary behaviour change data to address identified gaps in existing knowledge. The aims of the project are to:
(i) utilise datasets from population studies to investigate relationships between dietary patterns and a range of cognitive outcomes from middle age to later life
(ii) apply evidence-based quantitative and qualitative process evaluative measures to determine feasibility and acceptability of a dietary intervention delivered to people with diabetes in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland

This project will generate important data to inform the design of a future large-scale trial to determine the therapeutic effect of a dietary intervention on cognitive function.  

Funding 

*FUNDING CONFIRMED – Department for the Economy (DfE)*

Eligibility for both fees (£4260 for 2018/19) and maintenance (£14,777 for 2018/19) depends on the applicants being either an ordinary UK resident or those EU residents who have lived permanently in the UK for the 3 years immediately preceding the start of the studentship.

Non UK residents who hold EU residency may also apply but if successful may receive fees only.

For further details re eligibility criteria (including academic, citizenship and residency criteria) please click on the following link: View Website

Entry Requirements 

Candidates should have or expect to obtain a 2:1 or higher Honours degree or equivalent in a relevant public health, psychology, economics or social sciences subject

English Language

Candidates applying from countries where the first language is not English should produce evidence of their competence through a qualification such as IELTS or TOEFL score.

The minimum recommended score for the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Science is:
• IELTS score of 6.0 with not less than 5.5 in each of the four component elements of listening, reading, speaking and writing taken within the last 2 years;
• TOEFL score of 80+ (internet basted test), taken within the last 2 years, with minimum component scores of; Listening 17, Reading 18, Speaking 20, Writing 17);
• A valid Certificate of Proficiency in English grade A or B;
• A valid Certificate of Advanced English grade A; or
• A first or upper second class honours degree from a university based in the UK, Republic of Ireland or other suitably quality assured location in a country deemed by the UK Border Agency to be majority English speaking.

For a list of English Language qualifications also accepted by the School and University please see the following link:
http://www.qub.ac.uk/International/International-students/Applying/English-language-requirements/#English

The English Language Unit (ELU) offers both pre-sessional and in-sessional courses in English for academic purposes and study skills. Courses vary in length and full information can be obtained from the ELU http://www.qub.ac.uk/tefl/

PLEASE NOTE: This project will involve Regulated Activity (working with children and/or vulnerable groups).

The successful applicant will be required to supply their details to the School Postgraduate Office in order for a criminal history check to be undertaken (Enhanced Disclosure Checks). The project will be conditional on the successful applicant being issued with a satisfactory Enhanced Disclosure Certificate. 

Supervisors

Dr C McEvoy

Professor J Woodside 

Closing Date

Closing date for application is: Sunday, January 20, 2019

How to Apply

Please refer to 'Entry Requirements' for specific admissions criteria.

Apply online via the Queen's on-line application portal .  Guidance is available on the University’s Prospective Student pages.

When applying for a project, please choose ‘MEDICINE’ as your subject area/School.

Please ensure you adhere to the closing dates.

If you have any further queries please contact:  pgoffice.smdb@qub.ac.uk  or +44 (0) 28 9097 2619/2042.

Please visit the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences, Centre for Public Health, website for further details about the Centre

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For more information please read our Equality and Diversity Policy.

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