UCLan academic reaches top of educational podium

15 December 2022

A University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) researcher has been awarded the highest academic award possible for his research within sport and clinical biomechanics.

Dr Jonathan Sinclair, who received his prestigious Higher Doctor of Science.

Dr Jonathan Sinclair took to the graduation stage yesterday, 15 December, to receive his prestigious Higher Doctor of Science (DSc) and by doing so becomes only the third UCLan academic to ever achieve this special award.

The rare achievement is given to academics who are a leading authority in their field and whose work is recognised as of high distinction, which makes an original and significant contribution to the advancement of knowledge or to the application of knowledge.

What makes this even more unique for Jonathan, a Reader in Sport, Exercise & Nutritional Sciences, is that he has completed all his higher education level studies while at UCLan’s Preston Campus.

The Course Leader for MSc Sport & Exercise Sciences & MSc Nutrition & Exercise Sciences said: “I’ve worked at UCLan for 12 years, but I’ve been here since starting as an undergraduate doing Sport and Exercise sciences. I have also undertaken three postgraduate courses and my PhD studies here too, before finally finishing with a DSc.

“It’s certainly humbling to be even mentioned in the same company as those who have previously been awarded the Doctor of Science degree, and obviously pleasing to be among such a small but very special group of UCLan staff who have received the DSc.”

His thesis, entitled ‘Biomechanical exploration of external devices in relation to indices of musculoskeletal injury prevention, rehabilitation and performance’, was externally reviewed by Professor Remco Polman, from Federation University Australia, and Professor Joanna Wakefield-Scurr, from University of Portsmouth.

It took the 34-year-old over a year to write the 1,000-page thesis, and he completed this while undertaking full-time research and teaching duties.

Jonathan, who serves as Associate Editor for scientific journals ‘The Knee’ and ‘Sport Sciences for Health’ and has more than 350 research publications to his name, added: “It was certainly challenging managing my research and teaching alongside and the demands of writing the thesis in the evenings and weekends, but it’s obviously worth the extra work in the end.

“I’d obviously like to thank my wife Dr Jan Mei Soon-Sinclair and also Professors Sarah Jane Hobbs and Nicola Lowe for their friendship and support with the thesis.”

Dr Robin Richardson, Executive Dean of UCLan’s Faculty of Allied Health and Wellbeing, added: “It is with immense pride that I am able to congratulate Dr Sinclair on the award of his Doctor of Science degree. This rare and prestigious academic award is testament to Jonnie’s commitment to research in the biomechanics field. Jonnie is a prolific researcher, producing many high quality and impactful outputs that, cumulatively, are making him a leading authority in this area. His dedication to his work, along with his excellent academic credentials, will stand him in good stead for a future professorship and we wish him well with future endeavours, that we hope will contribute to future UCLan REF submissions.”

Professor James Selfe and Professor Jaipaul Singh are the only two previous recipients of the DSc from UCLan.

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