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CASSCS New Professors’ Inaugural Lecture Series: Professor AnnMarie Groarke

June 11, 2020 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm


June 11, 2020
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm




Dr. Sean Crosson

‘What Enhances or Hinders Psychological Adjustment to Chronic Illness for women and men? 

A programme of research’

Prof. AnnMarie Groarke

Personal Professor, School of Psychology

Professor AnnMarie Groarke will present key results from her programme of research on psychological adjustment in patients with cancer and arthritis. Given individual variability in response to diagnosis and treatment of illness the focus of this research has been to identify factors that enhance or disrupt adaptation.  Specifically, it highlights the importance of stress appraisal and stress management on quality of life. Coping strategies, illness beliefs and psychological protective attributes that are useful and adaptive are also identified.

While diagnosis of serious illness is associated with emotional distress, positive psychological change can also occur in the aftermath of highly stressful events. Some findings on when and why this post-traumatic growth might occur for women with breast cancer will be discussed. The potential impact of prostate cancer and its treatment on men’s sense of manhood and identity is also a focus of interest. Implications for patient care and self-management will be considered.


AnnMarie Groarke was appointed Personal Professor in School of Psychology in 2019. Her main research interests and publications are in health psychology and focus on psychological adjustment to illness particularly understanding factors that predict variability in adaptation.  Over the last number of years she has conducted a programme of collaborative research with colleagues in Psychology and cancer specialists at Galway University Hospital to examine the psychological impact of breast cancer and prostate cancer. Her funded research in cancer has examined patient experiences during biopsy, diagnosis, treatment and post treatment phases. In addition a clinical trial demonstrated the efficacy of a cognitive-behavioural stress management programme for women with breast cancer, was the largest RCT in this area to date in Ireland and one of the first in Europe.  She was also involved in setting up postgraduate programmes in health psychology here and NUI Galway is now an internationally renowned centre of excellence in this area. She spent time as a Visiting Scholar (2014 and 2018) at the leading Centre for Psycho-Oncology Research at University of Miami, USA. She served as Head of School of Psychology for eight years (2009- 2017), three yeas as Vice Dean (2003-2006) and is currently Deputy Dean in CASSCS.  She is a member of the Board of Directors of Cancer Care West since 2012.


The lecture will be broadcast live on Zoom. You can register to attend at: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_808oOsxkRp-PX2PqL8NBcw. The event will also be broadcast live on the Moore Institute’s Facebook page at: https://facebook.com/mooreinstitute/live.