Dr Lauren Matheson

PhD, MSc, BSc

Research Fellow

Oxford School of Nursing and Midwifery

Lauren Matheson


Dr Lauren Matheson is a Research Fellow in the Supportive Cancer Care and Long-term conditions (SCCLTC) research group at Oxford Brookes University. Lauren is a qualitative researcher with an academic background in Health Psychology.

In the last 10 years, Lauren’s research has focused on cancer survivorship, particularly exploring the psychosocial impact of cancer on patients and caregivers. Her main current project involves developing a complex intervention to support patients with head and neck cancer on a patient-initiated follow-up trial.

Lauren has previously worked on several cancer care projects including prostate cancer patients’ experiences and supportive care needs following diagnosis and breast cancer survivors’ experiences of a patient-initiated follow-up pathway. Lauren completed her qualitative PhD at Oxford Brookes in 2016, which explored psychosocial adjustment to cancer in young adulthood, focusing on the experiences and needs of patients with testicular cancer or Hodgkin Lymphoma.

Before joining Brookes, Lauren worked on various Health Psychology-related projects, mainly using qualitative methodologies, including the experiences of adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease and partners’ experiences of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Lauren has an MSc in Health Psychology from the University of the West of England (UWE), and a BSc in Psychology from the University of Southampton.

Areas of expertise/interest

  • Psychosocial oncology – the psychosocial impact of cancer on patients and caregivers 
  • Qualitative methodologies – including Grounded Theory, Framework and Thematic analysis.
  • Co-design of interventions to support patients with cancer during survivorship, particularly patient-initiated follow-up pathways 
  • Self-management –psychosocial adjustment to illness, particularly cancer 

Teaching and supervision

Modules taught

Lauren has taught on the Doctoral Training Program on topics including:

  • Thematic Analysis
  • Qualitative Interviewing
  • Framework analysis
  • Grounded Theory


  • Optimising Head and Neck cancer follow-up care – enhancing patients’ self-efficacy for symptom monitoring and self-examination: a mixed-methods study’ (Kaetki Suri- MPhil/PhD)

Research Students

Name Thesis title Completed
Claire Coughlan Optimising follow up for patients treated for bowel cancer from seldom heard groups Active


Lauren is currently working on an NIHR funded study (PETNECK 2- University of Birmingham) developing a complex intervention for head and neck cancer patients on patient-initiated follow-up and their caregivers. Lauren has been conducting co-design workshops to develop the intervention, supporting the development of training resources for nurses and will be conducting patient, caregiver and clinician interviews for the feasibility study. This project is a collaboration between Oxford Brookes University and University of Birmingham, University of Stirling, Imperial College London and the University of Bristol.  

Lauren is also involved in the ‘Alcohol and Breast Cancer study’ (ABC), a mixed methods project exploring views and behaviours regarding alcohol consumption in breast cancer survivors, in order to inform development of an intervention to support cancer survivors.  

Previous projects include a mixed methods study evaluating open access follow-up for women with breast cancer (Optimising Supported Early Discharge Follow-up Care for Women with Breast Cancer in the UK); the Life After Prostate Cancer Diagnosis Study (LAPCD) involving interviews with patients and caregivers; a systematic review of lifestyle interventions for patients with gynaecological cancers.

Centres and institutes


Projects as Principal Investigator, or Lead Academic if project is led by another Institution

  • Testicular cancer prosthesis: understanding current practices of healthcare professionals and patients' experience and views (22/02/2021 - 21/02/2022), funded by: UCARE (Urology Cancer Research and Education), funding amount received by Brookes: £8,948


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Professional information

Memberships of professional bodies

Member of the British Psycho Oncology society and the International Psycho Oncology Society (research committee member 2019-current).


Lauren regularly attends and presents research findings at conferences including:

  • British Psycho-Oncology society (BPOS)
  • International Psycho-Oncology society (IPOS)
  • National Cancer Research Institute (NCRI)