Joanne O'Keeffe


  • Room 02.012 - Sociology and Social Work

    United Kingdom


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Research Interests

Dr Joanne O’Keeffe is a Researcher in the School of Social Sciences Education and Social Work at Queen’s University Belfast. Joanne’s work is driven by her interest in addressing discrepancies and gaps in education in relation to mental health, academic attainment and take-up of higher education opportunities. Specifically, students from disadvantaged backgrounds, lower income households and other under-represented groups who may face barriers in education.

Joanne has also worked on numerous randomized controlled trials in education (RCTs). She has worked for the University for over 16 years and has experience of working across many different projects including international research projects

She is interested in the research and evaluation of widening participation activities in Northern Ireland and currently supports Queen’s University Belfast, Widening Participation Unit (WPU) on suitable evaluation strategies of outreach delivery and creating and evidence-based practice within the Unit.

She is a member of the School of Social Sciences, Education and Social Work Ethics Committee. Internationally, she sits as the Program Chair for the American Education and Research Association Cooperative Learning Special Interest Group and is an Editorial Board Member for the International Journal of Educational Research.

Joanne is an accredited Office for National Statistics safe researcher.

Joanne is an accredited Partner Trainer for PAX Good Behaviour Game © and completed her PhD research on the PAX GBG, A Feasibility Study and a Pilot Cluster Randomised Controlled Trial of the PAX ‘Good Behaviour Game’ in Disadvantaged Schools’ in 2019.



Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities


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