Maternal Health and Wellbeing

PhD opportunities in maternity research 

The School of Health Science offers a vibrant and stimulating environment for research students. In the latest Research Excellence Framework, we were commended for the quality of our lectures, mentoring and support.

The Maternity Health and Wellbeing Research Group welcomes PhD proposals in line with our specific research themes. We are particularly keen to see proposals related to the following topics:

Organisation of maternity care, including content and workforce:

  • Care during latent/early/first-stage labour – organisation and content
  • Preparing for labour and birth 
  • Couples' experiences of early labour at home, particularly using dyadic interview techniques
  • Early pushing
  • Birthplace

Perinatal mental health and wellbeing:

  • How do new immigrant women from Eastern and Southern Eastern Europe experience perinatal depression and anxiety and what are their experiences of support services?
  • Interventions to prevent postnatal depression – what do women want?
  • The identification of women at risk of perinatal mental health problems – what can be done?

Pregnancy, birth and motherhood in a contemporary and superdiverse society:

  • Women, childbearing and HIV (prevention, testing or care)
  • Female genital mutilation and healthcare, including women’s experiences of care encounters
  • Experiences of mental health in pregnancy
  • Representations of childbirth in popular culture
  • Women’s choices in pregnancy and childbirth
  • Decision-making processes to attend the emergency department by self-referred mothers of children aged 0-5 presenting with non-urgent illness
  • Gender-based violence
  • Migration and maternity care
  • Understanding and addressing disrespect/abuse in maternity care
  • Understanding and promoting respectful maternity care
  • Factors that influence uptake and utilisation of antenatal care in low income settings
  • Factors that influence uptake and utilisation of skilled birth attendance in low income settings
  • Representations of birth and women's choices
  • Sociological approaches to ultrasound in pregnancy

How to apply

To express an interest in any of the PhD topics, please email:


Maternal Health and Wellbeing Research Group

The University of Nottingham
School of Health Sciences
Queen's Medical Centre
Nottingham, NG7 2HA

telephone: +44 (0)115 823 0820