Older People as Peer Researchers: Lessons Learnt from the Project Team

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

The peer researcher methodology is an involvement approach that was used in the TESA-DRI project. TESA-DRI stands for Technology Enriched Supported Housing- Dementia Research Initiative. The project explored the experiences of people living with dementia and their caregivers in a supported living setting where technology is used to compliment care. Peer researchers were older people recruited to the project to interview people living with dementia. A total of seven people (2 male) were recruited, completed mandatory evidence-based training and undertook twenty-two interviews. The strength of using this approach was the strong connections developed during the interviews. Although the older peer researchers and participants living with dementia had very different characteristics and lived experiences, they connected through shared memories of times passed. The challenges included the different level of skills the peer researchers developed, the infrequent opportunity to participate and the participants varying ability to communicate verbally.
This workshop will be designed to explore the peer researcher approach from the perspective of the research team including the peer researchers. It will be a co-produced workshop focusing on the four main areas of the process: training; data collection; data validation; and the evaluation of the peer researcher experience. The findings will be described within the context of the National Standards for Public Involvement within the United Kingdom.

The learning objectives are:
To understand the peer researcher approach from the perspective of a peer researcher
To examine the different stages a peer researcher can engage in a research project
To explore the opportunities and challenges of using this approach as a researcher
To consider the opportunities and challenges of being a peer researcher

The workshop will interactive so that it can adapt to the needs of the audience. Limited PowerPoint presentation will be used, instead the workshop objectives will be demonstrated through story telling by the peer researcher and researcher. Through the envisaged mixed skill set and professional/ lay experience in the workshop, small groups will work through the content together to explore the opportunities and challenges of using this approach.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInvolvement Conference 2019 - Influence, Impact and Innovate
Publication statusPublished - 21 Nov 2019
EventInvolvement Conference 2019 - Influence, Impact and Innovate - Crumlin Road Goal, Belfast, Northern Ireland
Duration: 21 Nov 201921 Nov 2019

Conference

ConferenceInvolvement Conference 2019 - Influence, Impact and Innovate
CountryNorthern Ireland
CityBelfast
Period21/11/1921/11/19

Keywords

  • Peer Researcher
  • Involvement
  • Co-production

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