Georgina Louise Hughes – Bath Spa University

Personal statement

Georgina is a PhD student in Psychology whose research focuses on developing a quality of life and well-being instrument for care home residents without dementia.

She also has an interest in cognitive reserve and the promotion of healthy ageing, and works as a Clinical Trials Assistant within the NHS.

Academic qualifications

  • MSc (with distinction), Principles of Applied Neuropsychology, Bath Spa University
  • BSc (Hon) Psychology, Bath Spa University. 

Prizes and awards 

  • The BPS Annual Conference 2017 Poster Prize Winner (Runner up): Hughes, G.L., Lee, A., and Irwin, R. (2017). Quality of Life and Well-Being for Older Adults without Cognitive Impairment Living in Care Homes: A Systematic Literature Review, The British Psychological Society Annual Conference 2017, 5 May, Brighton, UK.

Thesis title

Development and initial validation of an instrument to measure quality of life and well-being of older adults without cognitive impairment living in care homes

Research supervisors

Alison Lee, and Robert Irwin

Research overview

Due to the increase in the ageing population, it seems particularly important to improve the QoL and well-being for care home residents, since research shows not only do these residents often have the most complex healthcare needs (British Geriatrics Society, 2011), but they also have a reduced QoL compared to older adults still living in their own homes (Kane et al., 2003; Scocco, Rapattoni and Fantoni, 2006). Finding cost-efficient ways of increasing residents’ QoL is important to not only improve the lives of residents, but also to reduce their costs to society.

However, there are currently no instruments designed to measure the QoL and well-being of care home residents without dementia. Instead, researchers are having to rely on instruments either designed for older adults still living in the community, or for those with cognitive impairment. Since research found the indicators of QoL and well-being differ when comparing older adults in care homes to those living in the community (Kane, 2001), the validity of currently available instruments is questionable. As a result, there is a need for a valid and reliable instrument to accurately measure residents’ QoL and well-being.

This thesis will focus on developing a new measure of well-being and QoL for care home residents without dementia, with an emphasis on including care home residents directly at all stages of development. Instrument development will involve systematically reviewing current QoL and well-being instruments designed for older adults, along with studies that have directly sought care home residents’ views on what constitutes QoL and well-being. This literature will aid in the development of an item pool that will be refined through direct testing with care home residents, their families and friends, and care home staff. The resulting instrument will then undergo further testing with care home residents to determine the instruments psychometric properties. The possibility of reducing the item into a short form version will also be considered.

It is intended that the developed instrument will be made available to those interested in measuring the QoL and well-being of care home residents without dementia, including researchers, care providers, and those regulating care homes. Such an instrument will ensure a more accurate measurement of these concepts than is currently possible.

Research interests

Quality of life, well-being, ageing, Alzheimer's disease, dementia, Neuropsychology

Research outputs

Invited talks 

Hughes, G. (2017). Well-being in Care Homes. Bath Royal Literary and Scientific Institution, Bath. 

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