Home People Dr Karen Rodham

Dr Karen Rodham

Senior Lecturer in Health Psychology

Karen Rodham


I joined the University of Chichester in August 2021. Prior to this I held posts at Staffordshire University (2014-21), the University of Bath (2002-14), The University of Oxford (1999-02), the University of Surrey (1996-99) and the University of Central Lancashire (1995-96). I completed both my psychology degree (1989-1992) and PhD (1992-1995) at the University of Portsmouth.

I combined lecturing with working in practice in the NHS whilst I was at the University of Bath (2006-13). In practice I worked with people who live with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS). This patient group has taught me much about the challenges of living with persistent pain.


Additional current roles: I am a Visiting Professor at Staffordshire University, External examiner for the University of Leeds (MSc Psychological Approaches to Health) and the University of Stirling (Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology).

Professional Psychology Qualifications & roles: I am a Chartered Psychologist, a Health Psychologist and an elected Fellow of the British Psychological Society (BPS). I am an active member of the BPS and have served as Chair Elect, Chair (2015-17) and past Chair for the Division of Health Psychology. I have also volunteered with the Health Psychology Exchange (a collaborative that was set up during Covid-19 to translate health psychology in order to provide national guidance for policy makers, professionals and the public).

Teaching Qualifications: I have a Certificate in Teaching in Higher Education (1999) from Oxford Brookes University. I have been a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) since 2015.

Continuing Professional Development: I completed a Primary Certificate in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (2011) and in 2020/21 I completed the Oxford Cognitive Therapy Centre (OCTC) Introduction to CBT programme [covering: Assessment & Formulation, Basic Therapeutic Skills, Working with Depression, suicidal behaviours, panic disorder, health anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder and social anxiety].


I am responsible for the MSc in Health Psychology, and lead the following modules:

  • PSYM06 Health Psychology in the 21st Century
  • PSYM07 Understanding and managing long term conditions
  • PSYM08 Stress and health

Key Publications


Rodham, K. (2020). Self-Management for Persistent Pain: The Blame, Shame and Inflame Game? Palgrave Macmillan (ISBN 978-3-030-48969-4)

Rodham, K. (2019) Health Psychology (2nd edition). Palgrave Insights in Psychology. Red Globe Press. [part of a series of books edited by Holt, N. and Lewis, R. ] ISBN 978-1-352-00254-6

Rodham, K. (2014) Learning to cope with CRPS: Putting life first and pain second. Singing Dragon: London. (ISBN: 978-1-84819-240-9)

Hawton, K. and Rodham, K., with Evans, E. (2006) By Their Own Young Hand: Deliberate self-harm and suicidal ideas in adolescents. Jessica Kingsley Publishers: London. (ISBN 13 184310 2304)

Journal Articles

You can find full details of all my publications on my website: Karen Rodham (google.com)


My research has been funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases Donated Funds (Bath), The British Academy, and the South West Training Deanery.

I want to learn how to better support people who are coping with complex and long-term physical conditions. Since I am most interested in understanding lived experiences, the questions I seek answers to tend to require a qualitative approach to data collection and analysis.

My health psychology practice experience sparked a particular interest in doing what I can to understand how we can better help people, not just to manage and cope, but to live well with persistent pain.

I am also currently working with a cardiothoracic consultant in Stoke-on-Trent to learn more about how best to help people live well with pectus excavatum (also known as ‘sunken chest’).

PhD Supervision

Doctoral Supervision

I am interested in exploring how people cope with difficult health-related situations. I am especially interested in how we can help people live well with persistent pain conditions. I am an expert in qualitative methods. You can see my current and completed doctoral trainees here.

Research Output


Leech, K., Rodham, K., Burton, A. and Hughes, T. (2024) Understanding weight gain in female prisoners. International Journal of Prison Health. ISSN 1744-9200 (In Press)

Dawson, S., Rodham, K., Taylor, J., Dewar, J. and Wildman, M. (2023) “I think most people feel like healthcare professionals tell them to take their treatments and judge them for not taking them”: Reflexive thematic analysis of the views of adults with cystic fibrosis on how treatment adherence is discussed in healthcare. Psychology & Health. pp. 1-30. ISSN 0887-0446 10.1080/08870446.2023.2254318

Stenberg, N., Gillison, F. and Rodham, K. (2022) How do peer support interventions for the self-management of chronic pain, support basic psychological needs? A systematic review and framework synthesis using self-determination theory. Patient Education and Counseling, 105 (11). pp. 3225-3234. ISSN 0738-3991 10.1016/j.pec.2022.07.017

Smith, G. and Rodham, K. (2021) Supporting and sustaining care at home: experiences of adult daughters who support a parent with dementia to remain in their own home. Health & Social Care in the Community. ISSN 0966-0410 10.1111/hsc.13373

Rodham, K. (2021) The pain self-management paradox: Why do we focus on the individual when life-context plays such a major role? Pain Management, 11 (3). ISSN 1758-1869 10.2217/pmt-2020-0022

Oliver, M., Rodham, K., Taylor, J. and McIver, C. (2020) Understanding the psychological and social influences on office workers taking breaks: A thematic analysis. Psychology & Health, 36 (3). pp. 351-366. ISSN 1476-8321 10.1080/08870446.2020.1764954

Kirtley, O., Rodham, K. and Crane, C. (2020) Understanding suicidal ideation and behaviour in individuals with chronic pain: A review of the role of novel transdiagnostic psychological factors. The Lancet Psychiatry, 7 (3). pp. 282-290. ISSN 2215-0366 10.1016/S2215-0366(19)30288-3

Ryan-Vig, S., Gavin, J. and Rodham, K. (2019) The presentation of self-harm recovery: A thematic analysis of YouTube videos. Deviant Behavior, 40 (12). pp. 1596-1608. ISSN 0163-9625 10.1080/01639625.2019.1599141

Rodham, K., Gavin, J., Coulso, N. and Watts, L. (2018) Every cloud has a silver lining: How to cope when your research does not go to plan. SAGE Research Methods Cases. 10.4135/9781526439604

Clancy, L., Povey, R. and Rodham, K. (2018) Living in a foreign country: Experiences of staff-patient communication in in-patient stroke settings for people with post stroke aphasia and those supporting them. Disability and Rehabilitation, 42 (3). pp. 324-334. ISSN 0963-8288 10.1080/09638288.2018.1497716

Navarro, K., Wainwright, E., Rodham, K. and Jordan, A. (2018) Parenting Young People with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: An Analysis of the Process of Parental Online Communication. Pain Reports, 3. ISSN 2471-2531 10.1097/PR9.0000000000000681

Jordan, A., Smith, P. and Rodham, K. (2018) Bittersweet: A qualitative exploration of mothers' experiences of raising a single surviving twin. Psychology, Health and Medicine, 23 (8). pp. 891-898. ISSN 1354-8506 10.1080/13548506.2018.1434215

Flurey, C. A., White, A., Rodham, K., Kirwan, J., Noddings, R. and Hewlett, S. (2017) Everyone assumes a man to be quite strong: Men, masculinity and rheumatoid arthritis. Sociology of Health and Illness, 40 (1). pp. 115-129. ISSN 0141-9889 10.1111/1467-9566.12628

Coulson, N., Bullock, E. and Rodham, K. (2017) What therapeutic affordances are conferred on users of self-harm online support groups? Journal of Medical Internet Research, 4 (4). ISSN 1438-8871 10.2196/mental.8084

Gavin, J. and Rodham, K. (2017) Ethical research in the digital age. Psychology Review, 23 (1). pp. 2-5. 17503469*23.1*1

Flurey, C. A., Hewlett, S., Rodham, K., White, A., Noddings, R. and Kirwant, J. (2017) Coping strategies, psychological impact and support preferences of men with rheumatoid arthritis. Arthritis Care and Research, 70 (6). pp. 851-860. ISSN 0893-7524 10.1002/acr.23422

Flurey, C. A., Hewlett, S., Rodham, K., White, A., Noddings, R. and Kirwan, J. (2016) Identifying different typologies of experiences and coping strategies in men with Rheumatoid Arthritis: A Q methodology study. BMJ Open. ISSN 2044-6055 10.1136/bmjopen-2016-012051

Smedley, R., Coulson, N., Gavin, J., Rodham, K. and Watts, L. (2016) Engagement in a newly launched online support community for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: Membership growth, header analysis and introductory messages. International Journal of Web-based Communities, 12 (2). pp. 147-164. ISSN 1477-8394 10.1504/IJWBC.2016.077259

Flurey, C. A., Hewlett, S., Rodham, K., White, A., Noddings, R. and Kirwan, J. (2016) "You obviously just have to put on a brave face": A qualitative study of the experiences and coping styles of men with rheumatoid arthritis. Arthritis Care and Research, 69 (3). pp. 330-337. ISSN 0893-7524 10.1002/acr.22951

Rodham, K., Gavin, J., Lewis, S., Bandalli, P. and St Denis, J. (2016) The NSSI Paradox: Discussing and displaying NSSI in an online environment. Deviant Behavior, 37 (10). pp. 1110-1117. ISSN 0163-9625 10.1080/01639625.2016.1169747

Grey, E., Harris, M., Rodham, K. and Weiss, M. (2016) Characteristics of good quality pharmaceutical services common to community pharmacies and dispensing general practices. International Journal of Pharmacy Practice, 24 (5). pp. 311-318. ISSN 0961-7671 10.1111/ijpp.12253

Doran, N., Fox, F., Rodham, K., Taylor, G. and Harris, M. (2016) "Lost to the NHS" Why GPs leave practice early: A mixed methods study. British Journal of General Practice, 66 (643). pp. 128-135. ISSN 0960-1643 10.3399/bjgp16X683425

Gauntlett-Gilbert, J., Rodham, K., Jordan, A. and Brooks, P. (2015) Emergency Department staff attitudes towards people presenting in chronic pain: A qualitative study. Pain Medicine, 16 (11). pp. 2065-2074. ISSN 1526-2375 10.1111/pme.12844

Lloyd-Richardson, E., Lewis, S., Whitlock, J., Rodham, K. and Schatten, H.T. (2015) Research with adolescents who engage in non-suicidal self-injury: Ethical considerations and challenges. Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health, 9 (37). ISSN 1753-2000 10.1186/s13034-015-0071-6

Smedley, R., Coulson, N. M., Gavin, J., Rodham, K. and Watts, L. (2015) Online social support for Complex Regional Pain Syndrome: A content analysis of support exchanges within a newly launched discussion forum. Computers in Human Behavior, 51 (A). pp. 53-63. ISSN 0747-5632 10.1016/j.chb.2015.04.040

Weiss, M.C., Grey, E., Harris, M. and Rodham, K. (2015) Dispensing doctor practices and community pharmacies: exploring the quality of pharmaceutical services. Primary Health Care Research and Development, 17 (1). pp. 42-55. ISSN 1463-4236 10.1017/S1463423615000092

Flurey, C. A., Hewlett, S., Rodham, K., White, A., Noddings, R. and Kirwan, J. (2015) Men, rheumatoid arthritis, psychosocial impact and self-management. Journal of Health Psychology, 21 (10). pp. 2168-2182. ISSN 1461-7277 10.1177/1359105315572452

Rodham, K., Gavin, J., Coulson, N. and Watts, L. (2015) Co-creation of information leaflets to meet the support needs of people living with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) through innovative use of wiki technology. Informatics for Health and Social Care, 41 (3). pp. 325-339. ISSN 1753-8157 10.3109/17538157.2015.1008491

Rodham, K., Fox, F. and Doran, N. (2013) Exploring analytical trustworthiness and the process of reaching consensus in Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis: Lost in transcription. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 18 (1). pp. 59-71. ISSN 1364-5579 10.1080/13645579.2013.852368

Book Sections

Rodham, K., Lewis, L., Masterson, D., Povey, R., Scott, J. and Family, H. (2023) Chapter 3: Health psychology’s role within the biopsychosocial sciences. In: Routledge Handbook of Health Psychology. Routledge. (Submitted)

Gavin, J. and Rodham, K. (2020) Ethics of online research with human participants. In: Handbook in ethnographic research in health and well-being. Routledge, London, UK. ISBN 9780429320927

Gavin, J. and Rodham, K. (2020) Self-Report data. In: Research Methods in Psychology. Sage, London. ISBN 9781526488916

Gavin, J. and Rodham, K. (2015) Navigating psychological ethics in shared, multi-user online environments. In: The Handbook of Psychology, Technology and Society. Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. ISBN 9781118772027

Rodham, K. (2012) Combining academia and practice as a Health Psychologist. In: Health Psychology in Action. Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. ISBN 9780470667330

Abraham, C., O'Connor, D., Jones, F. A., Conner, M. T. and Rodham, K. (2011) Training and working as a health psychologist. In: Introduction to Applied Psychology. BPS Wiley-Blackwell, USA. ISBN 9781444331219

Rodham, K. and Gavin, J. (2011) The ethics of online research: The new challenges of new media. In: Peer-to-peer networks and Internet policies. Nova Publishers, NY, USA, pp. 205-214. ISBN 9781608762873

Rodham, K. and Hawton, K. (2009) Epidemiology and phenomenology of non-suicidal self-injury. In: Understanding non-suicidal self-injury: Origins, assessment and treatment. APA Books, Washington, DC. ISBN 9781433804366

Rodham, K. (2001) Ageism, young academics and the buffalo stance. In: Ageism in Work and Employment. Ashgate, Aldershot, UK. ISBN 9781840141498


Rodham, K. (2020) Self-Management for persistent pain: The blame, shame and inflame game? Palgrave Pivot, London. ISBN 9783030489687

Rodham, K. (2018) Health Psychology. Palgrave insights in psychology . Red Globe Press, London. ISBN 9781352002546

Hawton, K., Rodham, K. and Evans, E. (2006) By their own young hand: Deliberate Self-Harm and Suicidal Ideas in Adolescents. Jessica Kingsley Publishers, London. ISBN 9781843102304

Other department members

Alex Rawlinson
Psychology Laboratory Technician
Alison Hounsome
Programme Administrator
Benjamin Sharpe
Dr Benjamin T. Sharpe
Lecturer in Cognitive Psychology, Programme Coordinator for the BSc Criminology and Forensic Psychology, and Academic Board Member

Our address

For visits

I’m looking for