Staff Profile


Dr Claire Thurgate

Head of Public Health, Midwifery and Social Work

School: School of Public Health, Midwifery and Social Work

Campus: Canterbury

Tel: 01227 923629

Profile summary

After ten years of working in acute paediatics I led the development of respite services for children with complex health needs before moving to Canterbury Christ Church University as a lecturer in Child Health Nursing in 2004.  In September 2005 I undertook the role of programme director of a new Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care at the University.   The aim of this programme was to allow workers within the Health and Social Care sector to receive academic recognition for learning in the workplace, 50% of the programme relates to work place learning and the remaining 50% is delivered through core lectures where all the participants learn together.  Through this role I have gained considerable experience in working with health and social employers to provide bespoke programmes of study that enables skills and knowledge to be enhanced both for the non-registered as well as registered workforce.

I am currently the Scheme Director for the Faculty of Health and Social Care's Foundation Degrees and the work-related learning co-ordinator for the Faculty of Health and Social Care.

My academic interests include work-based learning, developing the non-registered workforce, workforce development and designing and validating bespoke learning programs to meet employers needs.

Publications have included articles related to caring for disabled children, delivering Foundation Degrees and student’s perceptions of Work-based Tasks within a Foundation degree.  Recent conference presentations have related to the student's perception of undertaking a Foundation Degree, the challenges for nurse educators to prepare child health nurses and working with employers to deliver a Foundation degree. 

Research and knowledge exchange

Developing work-based learning and e-learning resources for Kent, Surrey and Sussex Deanery.  January 2011-October 2012, Project lead

Growing our own workforce: an employer engagement project - LLN bid awarded to support the development and validation of a conjoint award between CCCU, University of Greenwich and University of Kent with NHS Medway. January 2009-June 2009. Project lead

The development of a CD-Rom and handboodk to support work-place facilitators within a Foundation Degree – LLN bid awarded. November 2007 – August 2008, Project lead

Credit Qualification Framework - bid awarded from Department of Health. December 2007 – March 2008.  Project team

Teaching and subject expertise

Subject expertise is focused to work-based learning and design programs of learning for employers within the health and social care sector.  Programs which have been designed and validated in partnership with employers (statutory, voluntary and charitable) have included a Foundation Degree in Health and Social Care where 50% of the learning occurs in the workplace; a BSc in Applied Health and Social Care Studies which allows the learner and their employer develop a programme to meet the learner and organisations development needs and a Postgraduate Certificate in Collaborative Clinical Commissioning to support the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Deanery prepare GP's for the change to the commissioning process.

Due to the work-based nature of my subject expertise my teaching expertise includes supporting learners to undertake work-based learning, to identify learning outcomes and learning opportunities and how their learning and development may be assessed.

I am a fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a member of the Council of Deans associate practitioner network.

External activities

Conference presentations

Enhancing Practice Development 2012 – Sustaining workforce development from within: the role of the Assistant practitioner.  Sydney: Australia.

ESREA 2012 – Expanding connections: Learning, the body and the environment; Perspectives from life history and auto/biographical narrative research. Denmark. Presented with Dr. Lioba Howatson-Jones

Nurse Education Today Conference – 2011 – Designing and validating the Band 4 role. Presented with Chloe Griggs.

SACWG (Student Assessment Classification Working Group) - 2009 - Formative assessment and work-based learning  – (Invited speaker)

Nurse Education Today Conference – 2008- An HE work based learning project – diagnosing, supporting and validating learning in the workplace – adult health care.  Presented with Helen O’Keefe.

ICS/HE Academy – 2007 – The Higher Education Role in Integrated Children’s Service: Preparing Tomorrow’s Professionals.

University Vocational Awards Council Conference – 2007 – An HE work based learning project – diagnosing, supporting and validating learning in the workplace – adult health care

Foundation Degree Forward National Conference – 2007 – Engaging employers in Foundation Degrees.

Royal College of Nursing

Developing the Assistant Practitioner role in Children and Young people's nursing - working group member

RCN (2012) Developing the Assistant Practitioner role in Children and Younge people's nursing - main contributor


Journal of Further and Higher Education

Editorial advisory board

Publications and research outputs


Thurgate, C., MacGregor, J. and O’Keefe, H. (2012) Managers experience of training the assistant practitioner role. Journal Nursing Management (Available online)

Jackson, C. and Thurgate, C. (2011) Workplace learning in health and social care: a student’s guide. Open University Press.

Thurgate, C., MacGregor, J. and O’Keefe, H. (2010) Meeting changing service needs through role development: a case study for Band 4 Assistant Practitioners. Journal Nursing Management 18, 654-661

MacGregor, J. And Thurgate, C. (2009) National boundaries that limit women’s work in the UK health and social care sector in Druker, J. Working lives, working choices. Canterbury Christ Church University ISBN 978-1-899253-68-5

Thurgate, C. (2009) The use of a reflection tool in personal development plans in a health and social care foundation degree. In Strivens, J. Personal Development Planning, Foundation Degree Forward.

Thurgate, C. And MacGregor, J. (2009). Students’ perceptions of undertaking workplace tasks within a Foundation Degree – health and social care. Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education. Vol 34, no 2, 150-157.

Thurgate, C. (2008) Diagnosing, supporting and validating learning in the work-place: the associate practitioner in adult health care. Work-based learning – excellence in practice. The abridged proceedings of the University Vocational Awards Council Annual Conference. University of Bolton

MacGregor, J. and Thurgate, C. (2008) Collaboration in Foundation Degree provision: a case study in Kent Journal of Further and Higher Education, Volume 32 Issue 1, 27- 35

Thurgate, C., MacGregor, J. and Brett, H. (2007) The Challenges of delivering a Foundation Degree. Journal of Further and Higher Education, Volume 31, Issue 3, 215 – 225 (JA)


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Last edited: 05/12/2017 04:45:00