Professor Elaine McColl
Professor of Health Service Research

  • Email:
  • Telephone: +44 (0) 191 208 7260
  • Fax: +44 (0) 191 208 8901
  • Address: Institute of Health & Society
    Newcastle CTU
    1-4 Claremont Terrace
    Newcastle upon Tyne
    NE2 4AE


I am a social scientist by background (my first degree was in geography and economics, followed by an MSc in applied statistics), but I have worked in applied health services research for over 25 years, first in my native Ireland and since 1987 in Newcastle upon Tyne. My research interests include chronic disease management, the design and conduct of applied health and social surveys, the design and conduct of randomised controlled trials, and the assessment of patient reported outcomes. My PhD was awarded on the basis of my publications in this latter field.

In October 2003, I became the first Director of the Newcastle Clinical Trials Unit, which achieved full UK CRC CTU registraton status in 2007 and was successfully re-registered in 2012.  The NCTU supports investigators in the design, conduct and analysis of clinical trials of pharmaceutical, surgica, rehabilitation and complex interventions. 

I led a consortium of researchers from Newcastle and Durham universities in a successful application to host the NIHR Research Design Service North East, whch opened for business in October 2008, wth a remit of providing methodological and practical advice to researchers seeking national peer-reviewed funding for applied health and social care research studies.  I held the post of Director of the RDS from its inauguration to May 2012. 

I am a sub-panel member (core methodologist) for NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research and Programme Development Grants, and the monograph editor for NIHR Programme Grants for Applied Research  

Roles and Responsibilities

Director, Newcastle Clinical Trials Unit

Professor of Health Services Research 


BA Hons (Geography and Economics, National University of Ireland)

MSc (Applied Statistics, Dublin University)

PhD (Health Services Research (by publication), Newcastle University)

Certificate in Health Economics (University of Aberdeen)

Professional Certificate in Management (Open University)


Research Interests

Clinical trial design and conduct
Assessment of patient reported outcomes
Survey methods in health research
Chronic disease management
Primary care research


Module leader (Clinical Trials): Master of Clinical Research

Module contributor: MSc in Public Health and Health Services Research