Dr Michelle Beattie

Senior Lecturer/Assistant Head of Research
01463 279805


Michelle Beattie

Dr Michelle Beattie is a nurse academic with expertise in healthcare quality improvement (QI) for 12 years. She has a sustained record of achievement in collaborative research since completing her PhD in 2016.  With more than 27 published papers and an h-index of 9 (the median h-index is 4 for assistant professors in nursing) her publications have met the Research Excellence Framework (REF) criteria as internationally excellent in terms of originality, significance, and rigour in 2021.  While she supports and teaches undergraduate students (as a Personal Academic Tutor, Module Deputy Lead and, previously, Cohort Lead) she also has a track record of successful research funding over the past six years.  Michelle has an additional role of Assistant Head of Research which involves organising research postgraduate students in the Department of Nursing and Midwifery and supporting the Head of Research to maximise our research success.  


Research expertise and outputs can be viewed in PURE

My key achievements and experience (including those achieved during the Covid-19 pandemic) are:

  • Research and knowledge exchange funding awarded as a Principal Investigator (PI) or co-investigator totalling £465,090 with £55,807 as a PI.
  • Published over 27 papers in peer reviewed journals. The majority of my papers are published in journals in the top quartile (Q1) of my field.  Current citation count is 602, with an h-index of 9 (the median h-index is 4 for assistant professors in nursing/senior lecturers*) and a Research Gate score of 17.34 (top 35%).
  • Delivered impactful implementation science which resulted in measurable improvements in NHS services and peoples’ lives. For example, an implementation science project in the Drug and Alcohol service at NHS Highland demonstrated measurable improvements in people awaiting drug treatment from an average of 56 to 21 days.1 There is evidence of lower mortality for timely access to treatment.
  • Leading a programme of research around Care Homes during the Covid-19 Pandemic. Including a collaborative partnership, PI on the Staff Experiences of the Covid-19 Pandemic Project and two further proposals.
  • Assistant Head of Research responsible for overseeing processes for 17 PhD students, currently developing proposals for 6 PhDs, and delivering our research vision via our Research Strategy.


Schoultz M, Dickens G, Beattie M, Macaden L, Carolan C (2021) Evaluation and Measurement of Psychological first Aid in The care Home sector (EMPATH) Study, The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Foundation £30,000 (April 2021 – Jan 2022). This study aims to evaluate psychological first aid for nurses and carers across the four UK countries during the Covid-19 pandemic with partners at the University of Northumbria. The study will make UK Government policy recommendations via the RCN policy unit. The study fits with the programme of Care Home Research which I am currently leading.  

Beattie M, Macaden L, Schoultz M, Carolan C, MacIver A, MacGilleEathain R and Dingwall L (2020) Care Home Staff Experiences During Covid-19, Scottish Funding Council Covid Uplift Monies, £15,000 (Jan 2021-June 2021).  I am the Principal Investigator of this mixed methods study that aims to explore the experiences of stress and coping of carers and nurses working in a care home during the Covid-19 pandemic.  This work informed the successful Royal College of Nursing (RCN) funding bid above. The team are currently drafting a paper for publication in Age and Ageing (Impact Factor 4.9).  Our pathway to impact plan includes the dissemination of articles read by frontline nursing/care staff and the creation of a short video clip to enable international reach.   

Macaden L, Beattie M, and Mantle (2020) Covid-19 Dementia Education in Care Homes (CODECH), Churchill Covid-19 Action Fund, £10,000 (Nov 2020-July 2021). To create a resource for blended learning and training of Care Home Workers (CHWs) on caring for people with dementia during the COVID-19 pandemic.  My role is to design an online resource on caring for people with dementia during COVID-19 and to deliver a workshop on how to implement small scale change.  This is part of a wider memorandum of understanding working with Balhousie Group. 


A full list of publications can be accessed via PURE

Hunter B, Gorely T, Beattie M and Harris K (2022) How and Why should Realist Review be implemented within Sport and Exercise Psychology? Illustrating the method. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1080/1750984X.2021.1969674 

Morrison C, Beattie M, Wherton J, Stark C, Anderson J, Hunter Rowe C, Gray N (2021) Testing and implementing video consulting for outpatient appointments: using quality improvement system thinking and co-design. BMJ Open Quality. 10:e001259. https://bmjopenquality.bmj.com/content/bmjqir/10/1/e001259.full.pdf 

MacKay S, Smith A, Kyle R, Beattie M, (2020) What influences nurses' decisions to work in remote and rural settings? A systematic review and meta-synthesis of qualitative research. Rural and Remote Health Journal. Vol, 21, Issue 1, https://www.rrh.org.au/journal/article/6335 

Macleod A, Campbell F, MacRae D, Gray E, Miller L, Beattie M (2020) Reducing Wait Time from Administration of Systematic Anti-Cancer Treatment (SACT) in a Hospital Outpatient Facility. BMJ Open Quality. http://bmjopenquality.bmj.com/cgi/content/full/bmjoq-2019-000904 

Beattie M, Morrison C, MacGilleEathain R, Gray N, Anderson J (2020) Near Me at Home: Co-Designing the Use of Video Consultations for Outpatient Appointments in Patients’ Homes. BMJ Open Quality. August 2020.  https://bmjopenquality.bmj.com/content/9/3/e001035.full 

Schoultz M, Beattie M, Gorely T, Leung J (2020) Assessment of causal link between psychological factors and symptom exacerbation in inflammatory bowel disease: a systematic review utilizing application of Bradford Hill Criteria and meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. Systematic Reviews. Accepted for publication 10th July.  

Kyle R, Beattie M, Smith A. (2020) Transition into remote and rural nurse education and careers: a qualitative study of student nurses, Journal of Research in Nursing, 25;6.   https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/pdf/10.1177/1744987120908911   

Beecher C, Greene R, O'Dwyer L, Ryan E, White M, Beattie M, Devane D (2020) Measuring women’s experiences of maternity care: a systematic review of self-report survey instruments. Women and Birth. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1871519220302419?via%3Dihub 

Beecher C, Greene R, O'Dwyer L, Ryan E, White M, Beattie M, Devane D (2020) Measuring women's experiences of maternity care: protocol for a systematic review of self-report survey instruments.  Systematic Reviews, 9,4. doi:10.1186/s13643-019-1261-8 https://systematicreviewsjournal.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13643-019-1261-8


  • PhD Nursing, University of Stirling 2016
  • MSc Nursing Advanced Practice, University of Dundee 2009
  • BSc Hons Health and Social Care, Open University 2000
  • RN (A) Diploma Tayside School of Nursing and Midwifery 1996

Professional bodies

Registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council.


Dr Michelle Beattie is Deputy Head of Research in the Department of Nursing and Midwifery.

She is module lead for an undergraduate nursing module in Leadership, an MSc module in Quality Improvement (QI) and Improvement Dissertation in QI.

Michelle is a member of the University Ethics Committee. 


Expertise can be viewed in PURE

As a recognised expert in quality improvement, Dr Michelle Beattie has a high degree of collaborative involvement with other bodies. Of note:

  • She has an Honary contract with NHS Highland and is currently involved in training to become a LEAN leader. Previous work has included measurable improvement following service redesign in Drug and Alcohol Services. 
  • She is a member of Q at the Health Foundation.  Q aims to connect QI expertise across Scotland and the UK.  The aim is to create opportunities for people to come together as an improvement community – sharing ideas, enhancing skills and collaborating to make health and care better.
  • She has expertise and experience around ethics in relation to quality improvement and research and currently sits on the University of Highlands and Islands Research Committee.   She was invited and chaired the East of Scotland Research Ethics Service 8th Annual Conference, Crieff Hydro, May 20th 2016.  Invited Conference Chair. 
  • She is supervising 6 PhD students and been an external examiner for 4 PhDs.  She has supervised multiple QI and research Masters dissertations.