Dr Susan Baxter PhD, MSc, MEd, BSc, FHEA


Section of Public Health 
School of Health and Related Research (ScHARR)
University of Sheffield
Regent Court
30 Regent Street
S1 4DA

Office: Room 2037, 2nd Floor, Regent Court

Tel: (+44) (0)114 222 0852
Fax: (+44) (0)114 222 0749

email : s.k.baxter@sheffield.ac.uk

ORCiD: 0000-0002-6034-5495


I joined the University of Sheffield in 1998 and worked firstly in the Department of Human Communication Sciences, then the Academic Unit of Child Health, before joining the School of Health and Related Research. I have a background as a NHS Speech and Language Therapist, practicing in Sussex and Kent with a wide range of client groups. I managed a paediatric SLT service prior to moving in to the University sector. I was involved in the education of SLT students, particularly the clinical practice components before becoming a full-time researcher. I am currently a Senior Research Fellow in the ScHARR Section of Public Health.

Research Interests

My research interests are predominantly within the field of applied policy research (investigating how healthcare policy is translated in practice) and in methods underpinning how evidence is synthesised and disseminated. Having a background as a health professional I also have a particular interest in professional practice within healthcare policy and communication systems underpinning health care service provision.

Evidence Synthesis

In the last few years I have carried out a large number of systematic reviews including reviews of public health interventions for NICE and NIHR.  I am interested in developing methodologies for reviewing complex inerventions including the use of qualitative evidence synthesis, theoretical perspectives and logic models.

Team working and healthcare professional communication systems

Previous PhD study investigated joint working in stroke service delivery, in response to the need for greater understanding of the process of care in evaluating care outcomes. This qualitative multiple case study research developed a framework of elements impacting on team working in stroke services relating to the organisation, team process, professional groupings, and individual team members. I am particularly interested in communication systems operating between staff, and the way in which information and knowledge is exchanged. Also, the potential benefits of team working relating to improved care outcomes and patient safety.

Public involvement

I have carried out work on Public Involvement in research funding bidsand led the development of guidance for involving by members in interview and other panels.

Evidence-based practice

My interest in the processes underpinning clinical reasoning developed from my practice as a qualified speech and language therapist and later manager in the NHS, and more recently from training healthcare students and their supervisors. This led to work developing new student teaching, implementing supervising practitioner training, restructuring assessment methods and underpinned the production of a video training resource. There is a need for a greater understanding of complex clinical decision-making systems and practitioner┬┤s use of theory or evidence in their work, as professional decision-making is a key element in care provision.

Teaching Interests

My interests are in inter-professional education and teaching team working practice. Also, in the clinical education of health professionals. In a previous post I was active in researching and introducing innovative methods of implementing policy drivers regarding inter-professional learning.

Current projects

I am currently working on systematic reviews for the National Institute for Health Research as part of one of the health services and delivery research evidence synthesis centres.  I am also heading a review of new models of care funded by NIHR.  I am involved in other studies funded by NHS England.

Key publications

Baxter S, Clowes M, Muir D, Baird W, Broadway-Parkinson A & Bennett C. (2016) Supporting the public involvement in interview and other panels: a systematic review.  Health Expectations.

Baxter S, Blank L, Johnson M, Everson-Hock E, Woods HB, Goyder E, Payne N & Mountain G. (2016) Interventions to promote or maintain physical activity during and after the transition to retirement: an evidence synthesis. Public Health Research, 4(4), 1-354.

Baxter S, Johnson M, Blank L, Cantrell A, Brumfitt S, Enderby P & Goyder E. (2016) Non-pharmacological treatments for stuttering in children and adults: a systematic review and evaluation of clinical effectiveness, and exploration of barriers to successful outcomes.  Health Technology Assessment, 20(2), 1-302.

Baxter SK, Muir D, Brereton ML, Allmark C, Barber R, Harris L, Hodges B, Khan S & Baird W. (2016) Evaluating public involvement in research design and grant development: Using a qualitative document analysis method to analyse an award scheme for researchers.  Research Involvement and Engagement, 13(26).

Baxter S, Johnson M, Blank L, Cantrell A, Brumfitt S, Enderby P & Goyder E. (2015) The state of the art in non-pharmacological interventions for development stuttering.  Part 1: a systematic review of effectiveness.  International Journal of Language & Communication Disorders, 50(5), 676-718.

Baxter SK, Blank L, Woods HB, Payne N,  Rimmer M & Goyder E. (2014) Using logic model methods in systematic review synthesis: describing complex pathways in referral management interventions. BMC Med Res Methodol, 14, 62.

Baxter S, Killoran A, Kelly MP & Goyder E. (2010) Synthesizing diverse evidence: the use of primary qualitative data analysis methods and logic models in public health reviews.  Public Health, 124(2), 99-106.

Baxter SK & Brumfitt SM. (2008) Professional differences in inter-professional working. J Interprof Care, 22(3), 239-251.

Additional Resources

Baxter SK, Khan S, Broadway-Parkinson A, Bestall J, Baird W. 2016. Guidance for involving members of the public in interview panels, committees, and other panel membership.  Research Design Service Yorkshire and the Humber: Sheffield. 


What helps people to increase or maintain levels of physical activity around the time of retirement?  Baxter S, Johnson M, Blank L, Buckley-Woods H, Payne N, Everson-Hock E, Mountain G, Goyder E.