Ruth Simms-Ellis


Ruth Simms-Ellis is an organisational psychologist with a special interest in health & wellbeing in schools. She is Research Officer on a large longitudinal study on Smoking Prevention in Young Adults

My current research falls within the applied health and wellbeing context, particularly in workplaces and schools. I am Research Officer on a five-year randomised controlled trial testing an intervention to \nreduce smoking initiation in adolescents.

This study is a collaboration \nbetween the University of Leeds and Staffordshire University. It involves 45 high schools (20 in Leeds; 25 in Staffordshire), 8,100 students and approximately 450 teachers delivering the intervention during which students form repeated implementation intentions to refuse \ncigarette offers. My main responsibilities include: liaising with key contacts in Leeds schools; designing teaching materials; training teachers to deliver the intervention; ensuring adherence to study protocol; leading a research team to collect smoking behaviour annually from participating students; analysing student data and writing reports. My PhD research is examining factors influencing (1) retention and engagement of key stakeholders in long-term research and (2) implementation fidelity.

This involves focus groups with key school contacts and participating students, interviews with teachers delivering the intervention and observation and analysis of teaching sessions. I am supervised by Mark Conner and Anna Madill. My background is in mental health: I am trained in counselling and \ncritical incident stress debriefing and am experienced in Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in occupational and clinical settings. For a number of years I worked as a consultant to organisations including Lloyds Banking Group, Wakefield Schools, Yorkshire Forward and various law practices, supporting staff experiencing stress, low confidence, helping staff \ntransform aggressive/inappropriate interpersonal styles, facilitating organisational change and Management Development Programmes. Most \nrecently, in 2013, I worked on evaluating the University of Leeds's "Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction" Programme, for staff, delivered by the University's Counselling Service. This involved interviews with former participants across the University and thematic analysis of the findings. I also supported a conference exploring the future of Mindfulness at Work which was initiated and facilitated by the Institute\n of Psychological Sciences.Smoking prevention, schools, young adults, adolescents, longitudinal RCTRuth Simms-Ellis's profile pageQualifications

Current PhD student (University of Leeds); MSc Occupational Psychology (University of Leicester); BSc (hons) Psychology (University of Leeds)