Our Music and Arts Partner Fiona Pritchard has completed a Master of Science degree after three years of rigorous academic study.
Reflecting her work with us, Fiona’s MSc was in Applied Dementia Studies with a focus on arts and activities in dementia care.
She pursued the qualification through distance learning and graduated at the University of Bradford, the institution that authorises the programme nationwide.
For the final stage of her degree, Fiona did an evaluation of the one-to-one musical experiences that she brings to residents living with dementia at our homes.
She said: “My aim was to consider whether or not a live musical experience really can improve feelings of isolation for people living with dementia.
“I found that the level of interaction is heightened when using personal musical preferences. There are signs of increased trust, awareness, focus, concentration and relationship building. There are benefits to well being at all stages of dementia.”
A professional musician, Fiona joined us in 2014, having previously studied at the prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.
Her role is to promote and support music and arts activities in all our homes, engaging directly with residents both in participatory group sessions and through therapeutic individual interactions.
Fiona said: “Following my MSc, I’m now sharing some elements of what I’ve been doing in written guidance for care staff and hoping to roll the findings out more widely as an upskilling opportunity. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed studying to complete my Master’s degree and had really helpful and supportive engagement from residents, relatives and colleagues.”