Institute of Health & Society

Staff Profile

Dr Suzanne McDonald

Research Methodologist


I am a Chartered Health Psychologist and am registered with the Health & Care Professions Council (; registration number: PYL 34149)

I am a Research Methodologist and Specialist Advisor for the North East Research Design Service, National Institute for Health Research ( This involves providing advice and support to clinicians and academic staff wishing to apply for national peer-reviewed funding for health and social care research on aspects related to methodology and health psychology. 

I also conduct my own research (see research tab).

Twitter profile:


  • PhD Medical Sciences (health psychology), Newcastle University (Sept 2011-March 2016)
  • MSc Health Psychology; Northumbria University, England (Sept 2012 - June 2013)
  • MSc Public Health & Health Services Research; Newcastle University, England (Sept 2010 - Sept 2011)
  • MRes Psychology; University of Aberdeen, Scotland (Sept 2009 - Sept 2010)
  • MA Psychology(Hons); University of Aberdeen, Scotland (Sept 2005 - June 2009)

Previous Appointments

  • Honorary Assistant Psychologist, NHS Lothian. Research, audit and service evaluation for the Plastic-led Psychology Service and the Scottish Ear Reconstruction Service (January 2012- December 2014).


  • Chartered member of the British Psychological Society (


Research Interests

My main research interests are related to the use of n-of-1 methods in health psychology and behavioural medicine. Specifically, the use of n-of-1 methods to:

  • Understand intra-individual variation and predictors of health-related behaviour and symptoms
  • Identify individual response to health interventions
  • Optimise and personalise health interventions to individuals
  • Combine n-of-1 designs with advances in technology and novel just-in-time adaptive intervention designs
  • Incorporate participant-centred outcomes
  • Co-create knowledge in collaboration with n-of-1 stakeholders

I lead two n-of-1 special interest groups:

Other research interests include:

  • The development and use of patient reported outcome measures (PROMS); 
  • Multiple health behaviour change during prehabilitation (i.e. the optimisation of patient heath prior to surgery)
  • Psychological and behaviour aspects associated with surgical interventions (weight loss surgery, breast reconstruction, ear reconstruction and face transplantation surgery).


  • Invited guest lecturer for the MSc in Health Psychology, King's College London (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Invited guest lecturer for the MSc Health in Psychology, Northumbria University (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
  • Invited guest lecturer for the MSc in Health Psychology, Stirling University (2016, 2017)
  • Invited guest lecturer for the MSc in Health Psychology, Newcastle University (2016, 2017)