Dr. Deborah Davys

School of Health and Society

Photo of Dr. Deborah Davys

Contact Details

Allerton C412

Please email for an appointment.

Current positions

Lecturer in Occupational Therapy


As an Occupational Therapist registered with the Health and Care Professional Council, Deborah has practice and managerial experience in a range of clinical settings that include community learning disabilities, general rehabilitation and older people’s services. She has worked at the University of Salford for the past 19 years, teaching on the Occupational Therapy undergraduate and postgraduate programmes and co-supervises and assesses students at PhD level. Deborah gained a PhD in 2013 with the thesis title “Siblings of adults who have a learning disability: personal wishes, reality and parental expectations for future support”. After being award the Vice Chancellor's Early Career Research Scholarship in 2015 she researched the roles, needs and concerns of fathers of adults who have a learning disability and took part on the steering group for a National Institute for Health Research study related to occupational therapy with children who have a tumour of the central nervous system.

Deborah is a module leader on research related modules, personal tutor and admissions tutor for the Preregistration Master’s in Occupational Therapy programme. Her teaching has a research emphasis however she also provides input to modules related to occupational therapy across the lifespan and a post-qualification educator programme. Her research focus has been related to families of people who have an intellectual disability including older parents, adult siblings and fathers. She has also publications related to Occupational Therapy. Deborah has experience in conducting qualitative research from an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis perspective and is part of the research group within the Directorate of Occupational Therapy at Salford and the Health Sciences Research Centre. Her overall areas of research interest include learning disabilities, family and the care role, occupations in later life and the value of occupational therapy interventions in practice. She also acts as a reviewer for academic journals related to learning disabilities. Previous research projects have been related to loneliness, occupational therapy and male care giving, and foetal alcohol syndrome. She has co-supervised one student to successful completion of PhD studies and is in the later stages of supervision for a second PhD student.

Areas of research

Occupational Therapy, Learning Disability, Families, Depression


  • Occupational Therapy
  • Research
  • PhD Supervision

Research Interests

  • Occupational Therapy
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Family and disability 

Qualifications and Memberships


  • PhD 2013 - Siblings of adults who have a learning disability: personal wishes, reality and parental expectations for future support. (Faculty of Health, Psychology and Social Care Manchester Metropolitan University)
  • Post Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Practice and Research 2007 (The University of Salford)
  • MA Gerontology 2006 (The University of Salford)
  • BSc (Hons) Health Care and Welfare 1994 (The University of Salford)
  • Diploma in Occupational Therapy 1982 (Salford College of Technology)


  • Royal College of Occupational Therapists
  • Fellow of The Higher Education Academy
  • Health and Care Professions Council