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Kathleen Vancleef


Dr Kathleen Vancleef

Assistant Professor in Psychology

What area does your research focus on?

Our team researched how to improve diagnosis and rehabilitation of visual perception difficulties after a brain injury. In our translational research, we work with allied health care professionals like occupational therapists and orthoptists to learn more about their current practice and needs. We than used insights from visual cognitive neuroscience and neuropsychology methods to develop new assessments that fit with clinical reality and reduce staff demands.

What are the other key aspects of your role?

I am was a first generation student and completed all my education at my home university in Belgium. I then moved to the UK on my own to take up a postdoc position at Newcastle University. I had to find my way in the UK funding and academic landscape. This also included trying to understand the ethics and regulations around translational research with patients.

Even though I came from another western culture, there were many hidden cultural value differences with big impact. Thanks to good mentoring, I secured postdoctoral fellowships with the Stroke Association and the NIHR. I recently set-up my own research group at Durham. In our research culture we try to put the following values at the centre of what we do: development, inclusivity, and sustainability

What do you like to do outside of work?

I enjoy going for a hike with my partner or friends. Being so close to 5 national parks makes living in Durham wonderful. My other passion is music: I sing in a local choir and play the recorder.

What do you think you could particularly offer mentoring support with?

I can share my experience with applying for fellowships, grants, and academic jobs. I enjoy helping young people find their passion and can help you narrow down options.