Dr Alison Blank

Alison Blank (2)

Course Leader, Senior Lecturer, Occupational Therapy

Department of Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Nutritional Therapy

Contact Details

email: a.blank@worc.ac.uk
tel: 01905 542686

I have been an Occupational Therapist for more than 35 years and worked in a range of clinical areas. My main area of clinical experience was in community mental health services for working age adults. My interest then and now, is in working collaboratively with people who use services. Prior to joining the team at UW, I taught on the BSC and MSc occupational therapy programmes at Brunel University, London. I really enjoy teaching and am immensely proud to be the leader of the occupational therapy course at UW. I am an active researcher, with an interest in the meaning and experience of belonging and active ageing. Outside of work I’m a keen gardener and have recently discovered the joys of cycling. I have two adult children (a chef and a journalist) and I live in rural Herefordshire and my Deerhound Lurcher.

Dip. COT 1983

MSc. OT 2001

PGCE 2008

PhD 2011

Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Teaching & Research

Teaching interests

I teach across all three years of the Occupational Therapy course. I am involved in practice placement education and the Coaching for Practice sessions that support it across first and second year. I also teach health promotion through occupation to first year students, and applied sciences and research methods in second year. I am Personal Academic Tutor to occupational therapy students. This is a very rewarding role which allows me to support individual students in their learning and development throughout the course.

Research interests

I am a qualitative researcher with a interest in hermeneutic phenomenology. I have completed a fully funded post-doctoral study on the meaning and experience of belonging and am currently collaborating with colleagues in the School of Sport and Exercise Science on the experiences of exercise and physical activity for people aged 65+. I have a list of publications, some of which were entered in REF2014 and I fully anticipate being entered in REF 2020/1.

Professional Bodies

Health Professions Council. Registration No. OT11998

COT membership BT0017790


Blank A, Harries P & Reynolds F (2011) Mental health service users perspectives of work: a review of the literature. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 74 (4), 191-199

Blank A, Harries P & Reynolds F (2013) Im at the blocks really, waiting to bat on. Occupation, work & recovery: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of one mans experiences Work: A Journal for Prevention, Assessment & Rehabilitation.45(3), 299-305

Notley J, Pell H, Bryant W, Grove M, Croucher A, Cordingley K, Blank A (2012) 'I know how to look after myself a lot better now': service user perspectives on mental health in-patient rehabilitation. International Journal of Therapy and Rehabilitation, Vol 19, No 5.

Reynolds, F., Farrow, A. & Blank, A. (2012). "'Otherwise it would be nothing but cruises': Exploring the subjective benefits of working beyond 65". International Journal of Ageing and Later Life, 7(1),79-106.

Makdisi, L., Blank, A., and Bryant, W. (2013) Facilitators and barriers to living with psychosis: an exploratory collaborative study of the perspectives of mental health service users. British Journal of Occupational Therapy, 79(9), 418-426.

Blank, A, Harries, P, and Reynolds, F (2014) Without occupation you dont exist. Occupational Engagement and Mental Illness. Journal of Occupational Science. DOI: 10.1080/14427591.2014.882250 To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14427591.2014.882250

Blank, A., Finlay, L., and Prior, S. (2016) The lived experience of people with mental health and substance misuse problems: Dimensions of belonging. British Journal of Occupational Therapy DOI: 10.1177/0308022615627175

Somer, M., Finlay, L., Ness, O., Borg, M. and Blank, Alison (2018) “Nourishing Communion”: A Less Recognized Dimension of Support For Young Persons Facing Mental Health Challenges? The Humanistic Psychologist. ISSN Print; 0887-3267 Online: 1547-3333 (In Press)

External Responsibilities

Member of College of Occupational Therapists Education and Development group

External Examiner for the BSc (Hons) Occupational Therapy at York St John University