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Dr. Suzanne Denieffe


Head of School of Humanities

School/ Department:

School of Humanities


+353 0 51302473

Room Name/ Num:

C103 Convent Building


College Street

OrcID Number:



My Biography

I am Head of the School of Humanities since April 2018.  Prior to that, I was Head of Department of Nursing and Health Care since 2014.   I hold a BSc (Hons) in Nursing and an MSc in Nursing (Education and Research) from University College Dublin and a PhD from the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. 
I have worked at WIT since 2002 and have served / am serving on a number of Insitute Commitees and  Academic Council and sub-committees.  


I am involved in cross disciplinary  research in areas including education,  quality of life and well-being research. Many of the studies had a health/  social care focus, for example developing education programmes for those with an intellectual disability, mental health difficulties or in cancer survivorship. . I have been involved in the Bio-medical Research Group this group since its inception in 2007. 

I supervise postgraduate research students at  masters and PhD level.  Six  PhD students successful completed as well as  two MSc by research students. Projects include: Physical Activity Promotion in Service Users Attending Rehabilitation/Recovery Services (PhD student- Funder NMPDU- HSE); Compassion Fatigue in Oncology Health Professionals- relationships to empathy and emotional intelligence (PhD student - Funder NMPDU- HSE)

A sample of  my completed/ ongoing research projects include Service Evaluation Studies:

Traveller Culture Awareness Training Evaluation:Funder- Social Inclusion- HSE. Completed in 2017

Supportive Housing for Older Adults: Funder- Older Adult Services- HSE:  Completed in 2017

“Do we have the “right” story?” The Narrative Story Telling Project Mental Health Community Residence Services . An Exploration of a Rights and Recovery Based Approach to Community Living in Mental Health Services. Funder HSE Service Reform Fund. Completed in 2020.

Evaluation of ‘The Exercise Effect’: A pilot project integrating an exercise practitioner into outpatient mental health services in Ireland: Funder-Slaintecare. In collaboration with Wexford County Council Sports Partnership and HSE Wexford Mental Health Services. Completed in 2021. 

An Evaluation of the Wexford TeleheEvaluation of ‘The Exercise Effect’: A pilot project integrating an exercise practitioner into outpatient mental health services in Irelandalth Pilot Project ;Funder Tunstall Emergency Response in collaboration with HSE (Integrated Care for Older Persons, Digital Transformation/ Health and Wellbeing), Wexford County Council and Age Friendly Ireland. Completed in 2021.

Support for Tenancy and Recovery Targets Project (START) Evaluation Report. Funder HSE Service Reform Fund. For Completion February 2022. 


I taught at undergraduate and post-graduate level  for over 15 years.

Module leadership included:

Clinical Governance and Decision Making

Management and Leadership for Nurses

Research modules

Health and Psychosocial Studies


I received the WIT Quality Enhancement and Innovation Excellence Award 2008 (together with Dr Margaret Denny and Dr Olga Redmond  Stokes): for our work on using Multiple Intelligence Teaching Approach in third level education


I have developed and taught on educational programmes from levels 6-9, including traditional delivery, blended and online programmes and modules.

I have sat on Validation Panels for Universities/ Institutes of Technology  since 2006 for level 8 and level 9 programmes, inlcuding acting as Chair/ Deputy Chair for some of these panels. 

I am a trained interviewer and have sat on interview panels for a range of positions within WIT and elsewhere.

Peer Reviewed Publications

Papers in refereed academic journals

Matthews E, Cowman M Denieffe S



The process of experience-based co-design for developing a physical activity programme in recovery focused outpatient mental health services.  International Journal of Therapy and Rehabilitation. Accepted- Awaiting Publication Details

Varley LP, Gooney M, Denieffe S, Murphy A.



Sialorrhoea Management Practices in Residential Older Adults Care Settings: A Qualitative Study. J Nurs Manag. 2021 Jul;29(5):989-997. doi: 10.1111/jonm.13236 PMID: 33316108.

Denieffe S Castineira C Denny M



The Impact of Dragon Boating for Fatigue in Cancer Survivors. Journal of Nursing Practitioners. In Press.

Denieffe S



Commentary: Purposive sampling:  Complex or simple? Research case examples. Journal of Research in Nursing.  https://doi.org/10.1177/1744987120928156

Matthews E, Cowman M Denieffe S


Exploring the experiences of physical activity among key stakeholders in rehabilitation and recovery mental health services. Issues in Mental Health Nursing.  https://doi.org/10.1080/01612840.2020.1789782

Finn F O’Gorman C, McCarthy M Denieffe S


Informing best practice for supportive housing with care for older adults: a qualitative investigation of service user views. Journal of Ageing and Environment.  https://doi.org/10.1080/26892618.2020.1772442


Sheehan , P Denieffe S, Murphy NM, Harrison M


Exercise is more effective than health education in reducing fatigue in fatigued cancer survivors Support Care Cancer 28(10):4953-4962


Wells, J. Bergin, M. Connolly, J. & Denieffe, S. 



  • First Responders' Narratives of Drowning: Perceptions of Family and Community Impacts and Policy Implications, International Journal of Aquatic Research and Education,  https://doi.org/10.25035/ijare.11.04.03


Sinclair D, , …  Denieffe S, …



Developing a national undergraduate standardized curriculum for future healthcare professionals on "Making Every Contact Count" for chronic disease prevention in the Republic of Ireland. J Interprof Care. Nov 23:1-5. https://doi.org/10.1080/13561820.2019.1684884



Kelly F, Reidy M, Denieffe S, Madden C.



Older adults' views on their person-centred care needs in a long-term care setting in Ireland. Br J Nurs. May 9;28(9):552-557. doi: 10.12968/bjon.2019.28.9.552.PMID:31070960


Hunt P, Denieffe S, Gooney M.



Running on empathy: Relationship of empathy to compassion satisfaction and compassion fatigue in cancer healthcare professionals.  Eur J Cancer Care (Engl). 2019 Sep;28(5):e13124. doi: 10.1111/ecc.13124.



Varley LP, Denieffe S, O'Gorman C, Murphy A, Gooney M.


A systematic review of noninvasive and invasive sialorrhoea management. J Clin Nurs. 2019 Jul 18. doi: 10.1111/jocn.15009. .PMID: 31318993


McCarthy B,....Denieffe S Fitzgerald, M O’Shea, C Condon, G Hartnett‐Collins, ...



Electronic nursing documentation interventions to promote or improve patient safety and quality care: A systematic review Journal of nursing management. 27(3):491-501.



Matthews, E  Cowman, M Brannigan,  M Sloan, D Ward,  PB Denieffe S



Examining the barriers to physical activity between active and inactive people with severe mental illness in Ireland . Mental Health and Physical Activity 15, 139-144



Matthews E, Denieffe S and Cowman M


Calling for a change in Irish mental health care strategy for cohesive physical activity and sedentary behaviour inclusion. Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine.  8-1-3


Reidy M, Foran S, Denieffe S


Exploring breast cancer and screening awareness among Irish women with intellectual disabilities. British Journal of Learning Disabilities.  46 (3)  193-201

Hartrey L, Denieffe S, Wells JS


A systematic review of barriers and supports to the participation of students with mental health difficulties in higher education. Mental Health and Prevention.  6, 26-43.

Matthews E, Denieffe S, Cowman M


Using Experience-based Co-design for the development of physical activity provision in non-acute rehabilitation and recovery mental health care. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing.  ;24(7):545-552

Denny M Denieffe S Panjhkar M


Using a Non-Equivalent Control Group Design in Educational Research. Sage Research Methods Cases. : http://dx.doi.org/10.4135/9781526419156

Hunt P Denieffe S Gooney M


Burnout and its relationship to empathy in nursing: a review of the literature. Journal of  Research in Nursing. 22:1-2.

Vrbnjak D, Denieffe S, O'Gorman C, Pajnkihar M.


Barriers to reporting medication errors and near misses among nurses: A systematic review. Int J Nurs Stud.  63:162-178.


Barrett E, Denieffe S, Bergin M, Gooney M


An exploration of paediatric nurses' views of caring for infants who have suffered non-accidental injury. J Clin Nurs.  doi: 10.1111/jocn.13439


Reidy M. Denieffe S.  Foran S


Cancer awareness and screening in women with intellectual disabilities: An Irish perspective. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities 28(1): 57.

Reidy M, Denieffe S. 



Breast cancer in younger women from diverse cultural backgrounds Br J Nurs. 23(4):19-26.

Reidy M, Denieffe S, Foran S


Cancer screening in women with intellectual disabilities: an Irish perspective J Intellect Disabil.  18(1):51-60.

O Gorman C,  Denieffe S, Gooney M, Sasiadek W.


Predicting radiotherapy related clinical toxicities in cancer: What does the evidence say? Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing.  18(3): 1-8.

O'Gorman C, Denieffe S and Gooney, M.


Literature review: preoperative radiotherapy and rectal cancer - impact on acute symptom presentation and quality of life, Journal of Clinical Nursing, 23(3-4): 333-351.

Denieffe S, Gooney M, Cowman S.


Symptoms, Clusters and Quality of Life Prior to Surgery for Breast Cancer. Journal of Clinical Nursing.  23(17-18):2491-502.

O Gorman C, Denieffe S,  Gooney M.


Preoperative Radiotherapy and Rectal Cancer - Impact on Acute Symptom Presentation and Quality of Life. Journal of Clinical Nursing. doi: 10.1111/jocn.12138.


Denieffe S, Gooney M.


A meta-synthesis of women’s symptoms experience and breast cancer European Journal of Cancer Care 20(4): 424-435.

Denieffe S, Cowman S, Gooney M.


Symptoms and Quality of  Life in Women Awaiting Breast Cancer Surgery   European Journal of Cancer 47(1): 390.


Denieffe S,  Gooney M.


Cancer Related Fatigue: A review of patients and health professionals’ views.  Psycho-oncology 15( S1): 221-222.


Reid T, Denieffe S, Denny M, McKenna J. 




Psychosocial Interventions for Panic Disorder following Coronary Artery Bypass Graft: A Case Study Dimensions of Critical Care.  24(4):165-70





Book  Chapters

Trifkovič,KC , Lorber L, Denny M, Denieffe S, Gönc V


Attitudes of Nursing Students' Towards Learning Communication Skills. In Teaching and Learning in Nursing. InTech. ISBN 978-953-51-3154-0, Print ISBN 978-953-51-3153-3, Published: May 17, 2017

Denny M Denieffe S Pnajkhar M


Exploring Community Attitudes to People with Learning Disabilities - Using a Micro-Neighbourhood Design. . InTech.  In Psychology » "Learning Disabilities - An International Perspective", book edited by Carolyn S. Ryan, ISBN 978-953-51-3652-1, Print ISBN 978-953-51-3651-4, Published: November 29, 2017

Denieffe S, Denny M, Wells J.




Professional and Ethical Challenges and Mental Health Psychiatric Mental Health Nursing: An Irish Perspective Eds, Morrissey J, Keogh, B & Doyle L Gill and McMillan. 47-60

Other Publications

National Undergraduate Curriculum Working Group  (2017) National Undergraduate Curriculum Working Group. 2017. National Undergraduate Curriculum for Chronic Disease Prevention and Management Part 1: Making Every Contact Count for Health Behaviour Change. Health Service Executive, Dublin, Ireland

Denieffe S, Byrne D and Mc Carthy M et al. (2017) Traveller Cultural Awareness Training Programme Evaluation. Waterford Health Service Executive/Waterford Institute of Technology


 Peer reviewed conference papers (Selection Last 5 years)


Denieffe S, Mulhare B,

Denny M, O Gorman C, Finn

F, O Riordan C


Evaluating a Pilot  Telehealth Intervention for Older Adults with Chronic Conditions  (Phase 1)- A Collaborative Initiative. Health Promotion through E-Health: Challenges and Opportunities.25th annual Health Promotion Conference. June 2021


Dalipi Shabani Arta, Denieffe S S, Denny M


Assessing the psychosocial factors that affect the mental well-being of older adults in Prishtina, Kosovo.  University of Maribor International Nursing Conference (Virtual), September


Denny M Denieffe S et al


 Older Adult Care: Informing a Supportive Housing with Care Model.  University of Maribor International Nursing Conference


Matthews, E. Cowman, M. & Denieffe, S.


  An Experience-based Co-design approach to physical activity provision in mental health services. The Society for Mental Health Research, 2017 Annual Conference. Canberra.


Denny M Denieffe S


Using E-portfolios in Nursing Education Practice: A Narrative Review.  University of Maribor International Nursing Conference (

Matthews, E., Cowman, M., Brannigan, M., Sloan, D., & Denieffe, S.


 The physical activity behaviours of people with severe and enduring mental illness in Ireland. All Ireland Postgraduate Conference in Physical Activity and Sports Science, IT Carlow.


McKnight M Denieffe S Gooney M


Exploring  the  journey  of colorectal  cancer  survivors:
 an  investigation  of  symptom  frequency, occurrence  and influencing  factors. RCSI 36th International Nursing Conference Dublin

Matthews E Denieffe S Cowman M


A Service User Centric Approach to Physical Activity Promotion for People with Serious Mental Illness. RCSI 35th International Nursing Conference Dublin




Reidy M  Denieffe, S.

Foran, S.




Title: PhD journey- focus on methodological challenges of collecting data from women with mild and moderate intellectual disabilities.

Catherine McAuley School of Nursing and Midwifery:

Research Away Day Cork.


Reidy M. Denieffe, S.

Foran, S.




Promoting cancer screening awareness in women with intellectual disabilities: A mixed method approach.

16th School of Nursing and Midwifery Research Conference, UCC  Cork.

Hunt P, Denieffe S, Gooney M


Compassion satisfaction and compassion fatigue in cancer nurses: relationships to empathy.  European Oncology Nurses Conference

Matthews E Cowman M Denieffe S


 Physical activity behaviours of rehabilitation and recovery mental health service users in Ireland. HSE Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds. Improving Physical Health and

Wellbeing of Mental Health Service Users, Dublin,

Matthews E Cowman M Denieffe S


Physical activity behaviours of rehabilitation and recovery mental health service users. University Hospital Waterford Research Meeting.

Matthews E Cowman M Denieffe S


Promoting physical activity for service users with serious mental illness in rehabilitation and recovery. All Ireland Postgraduate Conference in Physical activity and Sport Science.

Reidy M. Denieffe S.

Foran S



 EMBRACES-ID (Early Monitoring of Breast And Cervical Cancer Signs & Screening in Intellectual Disabilities): Did it work?  UHW Research Meeting.