Dr Gail Nicholls
- Position: Associate Professor in Primary Care
- Areas of expertise: primary care education; admissions; widening participation; education outreach
- Email: G.C.Nicholls@leeds.ac.uk
- Phone: +44(0)113 343 7579
- Location: 7.09, Level 7, Worsley Building
I am an Associate Professor in Primary Care, with a background in general practice I have been working at the University of Leeds for 20 years. As Head of Admissions for the School of Medicine, my work includes strategic oversight of both undergraduate and postgraduate admissions and academic leadership for widening participation and outreach activities.
I have been working at the University of Leeds since April 2003, spanning both primary care and wider medical education I have designed, delivered and assessed on undergraduate, intercalation and postgraduatate programmes within the School of Medicine teaching on key areas including theory, practice and professionalism. I have also led workshops to train medical educators across our clinical partnerships in a number of different techniques including teaching methods, supervision and assessment.
As a specialist in values based recruitment into healthcare, I was initially appointed an Associate Sub-Dean for Admissions in 2007 and was Director of MBChB Admissions for 10 years from 2012. My current role involves the strategic management of all applications to the taught programmes within the School, building robust models of recruitment taking into account national and local stakeholder policies, utilising best practice from within and outwith the sector. Central to this is ensuring that the School attracts and recruits students from diverse backgrounds with the potential to succeed as our healthcare professionals of tomorrow.
I am commencing my third elected term as a board member for the Medical Schools Council Selection Alliance. This board is responsible for implementing the recommendations in the Selecting for Excellence final report and for setting the strategic direction of the Selection Alliance’s work across the UK. I have led on the development of national resources, am part of widening participation outreach national steering and delivery groups and participates regularly as an expert panel member on MSC webinars for applicants, teachers and career advisors. I have led widening participation initiatives and I’m currently leading on the delivery of a partnership project across the Yorkshire medical schools providing longitudinal activities for pupils from widening participation backgrounds interested in a career in medicine.
In 2019 I was awarded the NEON Contribution to Widening Access National Award for my work leading on GP work experience initiatives which were replicated across the UK.
- Head of Admissions for the School of Medicine
I have completed research projects looking at the design and impact of work related learning activities including work experience, contribting to understanding in this field. The impact of these projects is via the assimilation of findings within key papers and reports for the funding organisation, dissemination of the work via publical on the funder website and presentations at national meetings.
Examples of key contributions are leading a team commissioned to carry out research as part of the Medical Schools Council’s Selecting for Excellence project which set out recommendations that have subsequently been implemented by the Medical Schools Council Selection Alliance and other key stakeholders. The study explored prospective candidates’ opinions of work and caring experience and how these are used in their application to medical school utilising a large-scale survey and focus groups from applicants to the University of Leeds, School of Medicine. In 2018 I was a keynote speaker at the NEON Summit Widening Access to Healthcare HIgher Education and Medicine.
- BSc – University of St Andrews, 1994
- MB ChB – University of Manchester, 1997
- MRCGP (Distinction) – Royal College of General Practitioners, 2002
- MSc in Primary Care - University of Leeds, 2010
- Fellow Higher Education Academy
I have been working at the University of Leeds since April 2003, spanning both primary care and wider medical education I have designed, delivered and assessed on undergraduate, intercalation and postgraduatate programmes within the School of Medicine teaching on key areas including theory, practice and professionalism. I have also led workshops to train medical educators across our clinical partnerships in a number of different techniques including teaching methods, supervision and assessment. I regularly supervises student projects spanning widening participation and recruitment.<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>