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Research Profile

    • Midwife and Lecturer registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council
    • Lead Midwife for Education at the University of Northampton
    • Senior Lecturer (Midwifery)
    • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA)
    • MSc Professional Healthcare Education
    • BSc (Hons) Midwifery: 1st class
    • ENB 997/998 Mentorship
    • Diploma in Higher Education Pre-registration Midwifery
  • Claire is the Professional Lead for the Midwifery team and the Lead Midwife for Education at the University of Northampton link to the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). Completing her Professional Doctorate with the University of Northampton in 2019 enables her to incorporate knowledge of research methodologies and methods as well as experience of conducting a research study into her teaching. Claire’s doctorate explored women’s narratives of labour and birth in water and her findings are used to inform her teaching on the BSc (Hons) Midwifery programme.

    Claire is a research supervisor for doctoral students undertaking Professional Doctorates or PhD’s at Level 8, she is also a dissertation supervisor for Master’s students undertaking Level 7 study at the University of Northampton.

    Claire teaches on the BSc (Hons) Midwifery programme throughout all years and modules and is currently module leader for the level 6 Project (dissertation) module. This module enables students to build on previously acquired research knowledge to demonstrate that they are evidence-based practitioners through undertaking clinical audit in the practice area.  

    Claire has previously been the Admissions tutor for the Midwifery programme at the University of Northampton leading to an interest in selection processes and student integration into Higher Education Institutions.

  • Doctoral Thesis: Labour and birth in water: women’s narratives.

    Waterbirth is currently a marginalised practice within midwifery in the United Kingdom (UK). This research explored women’s stories of labour and birth in water and how these were constructed to reflect transitions to motherhood and changes in identity. This study sought to answer the question: What do women’s stories of waterbirth reveal about a woman’s self and social identity around birth?

    A feminist framework guided the research design adopting a narrative inquiry methodology to explore the stories of ten women who birthed in water. A single in-depth interview facilitated elicitation of the women’s stories of waterbirth. Stories were analysed using the Voice Centred Relational Method (VCRM) with an emphasis given to the socio-cultural and relational contexts individual to the woman. Three key narratives that emerged from the women’s stories were identified. These were: the ‘visible self,’ the ‘agent self’ and the ‘connected self.’

    MSc Professional Healthcare Education Dissertation

    The Experiences of Black and Minority Ethnic Students on the Pre-registration Midwifery: 18 month programme.

    This study focused on the experiences of black and minority ethnic students, in particular, those who have undertaken a shortened pre-registration midwifery programme. It explored the experiences that this group of students had whilst on the programme from an educational as well as clinical perspective. A grounded theory approach was used within this small scale pilot study with the use of semi-structured interviews to gather data which was analysed according to the original premise of Glaser and Strauss’s work (1967).

    Rich descriptions of the participant’s experiences of the 18 month midwifery programme emerged, often with specific reference to their ethnicity. Five main themes were identified from the interviews conducted including education; identity; inequality; acceptance/judgement; English as a second language.

  • For publications, projects, datasets, research interests and activities, view Claire Clews’s research profile on Pure, the University of Northampton’s Research Explorer.

    • Poster Presentation Pendleton, J., and Clews, C., (2020). How to involve student midwives in research projects: the URB@N scheme. Royal College of Midwives Education Conference, Leeds, UK, 10th March 2020.
    • Clews, C., Church, S., and Ekberg, M., (2019) Women and waterbirth: A systematic meta-synthesis of qualitative studies. Women and Birth, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wombi.2019.11.007
    • Conference Presentation Clews, C., Church, S., and Ekberg, M., (2019) Discourses of Midwifery and Childbirth – Labour and Birth in Water: women’s I-Poems. Born Yesterday Conference, Nottingham, UK, 5th – 6th September 2019.
    • Conference Presentation Clews, C., Church, S., and Ekberg, M., (2019) Labour and Birth in water: women’s narratives. Presented at: Normal Labour and Birth: 14th Research Conference 16th-18th June 2019.  
    • Poster presentation Pendleton, J. and Clews, C. (2017) Transforming lives: student midwives selecting the next generation. Presented to: Royal College of Nursing Education Conference, Cardiff, UK, 21 – 22 March 2017.
    • Power A, Clews C (2015) Values-based recruitment and the NHS Constitution:  Making sure student midwives meet the brief. British Journal of Midwifery 23 (11) 818-820.
    • Poster presentation Church, S., Clews, C and Newton, R., (2014) Student Midwives experiences of Pre-entry Care Environments: Contributing to a Compassionate Workforce? Presented at: Royal College of Midwives Inaugural Education Conference 31st March 2014.
    • Clews, C. (2013) Normal birth and its meaning: a discussion paper. Evidence Based Midwifery, 11 (1): p16-20.