Mary McGahon


  • Room 01.014 - Whitla Medical Building

    United Kingdom

1997 …2024

Research activity per year

Personal profile

Research Interests

Since my appointment to Lecturer in Physiology (and previously as a Teaching associate) in the Centre for Biomedical Sciences Education (CBMSE) I have made significant contributions to Teaching and Learning in CBMSE and throughout the School of Medicine, Dentistry and Biomedical Sciences (SMDBS) at an undergraduate level. With my colleagues I  coordinate 4 modules on the Human biology and Biomedical Sciences degree programmes. Additionally, I provide significant administrative support for teaching in my role as Demonstrator Recruitment Liaison. My expertise in teaching has been recognised in awarding of a Queen’s Merit Award (SFHEA).

My teaching philosophy centres around the themes of active learning as reflected in my teaching methods and my pedagogical research (see table below). A further passion is to make entry to QUB, and in particular degrees offered by SMDBS, both equal and equitable. The MDBS Pathway Opportunity Programme (POP) which I have developed and currently coordinate ensures accessible entry to QUB for all student regardless of socioeconomic backgrounds. 

Title of study

Drama inspired medical education


This study utilises drama students to bring to life the experience of a patient with early menopause allowing 2nd year medical students to contextualize their understanding of reproductive physiology.


Oral presentation ‘Contextualising medical tutorials: a transdisciplinary collaboration with Drama Studies bringing a physiology tutorial from the page to real life’ M. McGahon, S.M. Roe, S. Parkinson, E.A. Tansey, P. Murphy, (CBMSE and Drama Dept, QUB) INHED healthcare education conference (30/3/23; Belfast).

Full paper “Trouble South of the Border”; Hard Science & Behavioural Skills in Early Medical Education” (S.M. Roe, M. McGahon, S. Parkinson, E.A. Tansey, P. Murphy,) submitted to ‘Medical Education’ anticipated submission Jan 2024

Title of study

Teaching scientific methods


Lead of joint project with the University of Bristol (Dr Dawn Davies and Prof Frankie McMillen) and CBMSE educators (Drs Sean Roe and Laura Montgomery) investigating active teaching methods in experimental design.


Data collection underway with aim of completing the study in May 2024 and publication in the ‘Journal of Research in Science Teaching’ by the end of 2024.

Title of study

Ultrasound as a tool for UG teaching


Working in conjunction with Drs Chris Johnson & Sean Roe (CBMSE) we are investigating how ultrasound can be used as an active teaching tool to demonstrate postural & exercise induced changes on heart rate & haemodynamics.


Aiming for Full paper (by the end of 2024) 

Title of study

Physiology and SDGs/EDI


Leading an investigation into how we can actively teach SDGs and protected characteristics (EDI) in the context of Physiological change.


Anticipate oral presentation at Physoc 2024 with full paper publication by the end of 2026.

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 1 - No Poverty
  • SDG 2 - Zero Hunger
  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 6 - Clean Water and Sanitation
  • SDG 8 - Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action
  • SDG 15 - Life on Land
  • SDG 17 - Partnerships for the Goals


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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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