Dr Jane Cahill


I graduated from the University of Cambridge with a degree in Psychology in 1995 and joined the University of Leeds as a research assistant in 1998 at the Psychological Therapies Research Centre formerly housed within the School of Psychology. I entered the School of Healthcare as a research fellow in 2008 and achieved my PhD by publication in January 2010.

I was promoted to senior research fellow in 2010 and took up post as Lecturer in Mental Health in 2015. I have continued to publish widely in the field of psychological therapy effectiveness research as well as continuing to work and publish within the wider field of mental health. My current programme of research supports the mental health research programme within the School having an especial focus on the therapeutic alliance, clinically representative approaches to psychotherapy research and mental health and workforce mental health issues. I currently have Masters and PhD supervisory responsibilities within the School of Healthcare.

Research interests

My research interests have their origin in psychotherapy research. My career as a researcher began with working on research programmes focussed on the effectiveness of psychotherapy in clinically representative settings. This area of work formed the foundation of my PhD by publication "Clinically Representative Research: An Emerging Paradigm". The publications in my PhD were derived from over a decade of research effort working with a range of clinical datasets and addressing clinical, research and practice questions. Key areas of interest and expertise were: processes and outcomes in clinically representative research, methodology of clinically representative research, measure development and the developments of the wider methodological paradigm of clinically representative research.

I continue to retain a focus on these roots to consider transferability to related fields. For example,  I am currently working with colleagues to explore how knowledge of the therapeutic alliance in psychotherapy can be used to improve therapeutic alliances in inpatient mental health settings. I am also exploring how psychotherapeutic knowledge can be applied to physical health areas. For example one of my current interests relates to the therapeutic alliance and how knowledge derived from psychotherapy research can be applied to enhancing the therapeutic alliance in applied health settings so as to to enable patients to manage chronic health conditions. Similarly, a funded research project based at Curtin University Western Australia, on which I am co-applicant, is concerned with enabling people with mental health conditions to more effectively access treatments for physical health issues.     


  • PhD by publication University of Leeds
  • MA Social and Political Sciences, University of Cambridge

Professional memberships

  • Graduate membership of the British Psychological Society

Student education

I currently support the BSc Mental Health Nursing programme teaching research methods to 2nd and 3rd year mental health nursing students and leading dissertation tutorial groups and supervision sessions.  I also support the Masters in Counselling and Psychotherapy programme with a focus on research methods and methodologies.

Research groups and institutes

  • Mental health (Healthcare)
  • Mental health
  • Maternal, child and family health

Current postgraduate researchers

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>