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Caitriona Cunningham

Lecturer/Assistant Professor
School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science
01 716 6512
University College Dublin, School of Public Health Physiotherapy and Sports Science, Health Sciences Centre Belfield Dublin 4

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A graduate of UCD's B.Physio programme, Dr Cunningham gained extensive clinical physiotherapy experience in Ireland, the UK and USA, going on to specialise in musculoskeletal physiotherapy, She completed her MSc (Musculoskeletal Physiotherapy) at University College London(UK) in 1997 and also membership exams for the Musculoskeletal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (UK) at that time. Having moved from a senior clinical role to an academic role in 2002, she obtained a PhD from UCD in 2006, focusing on occupational musculoskeletal disorders. Her research continues to focus on musculoskeletal health , specifically on musculoskeletal health service evaluation , bone health and fracture prevention and promotion of physical activity and exercise in health and disease. She has disseminated her research findings widely in international, refereed journals and at research conferences, delivering invited lectures, chairing international education and research workshops and consulting on professional issues and national policy and practice relating to her research. She is the current Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning within her School , with responsibility for promoting excellence in teaching and learning and supporting the Implementation of the University's education strategy across a range of health and sports programmes.Previously, she served as Chairperson of the Chartered Physiotherapists in Education (ISCP), driving a number of innovative professional education initiatives in Ireland. She continues to coordinate undergraduate, graduate and specialist CPD Physiotherapy programmes, has a high level of student engagement and demonstrates an ongoing strong commitment to teaching, learning, widening participation in education and knowledge transfer to the broader community. Memberships of professional and research associations include ; International Fragility Fracture Network, Musculoskeletal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (UK), European Pain Federation, International Federation of Orthopaedic and Manipulative Therapists Teachers' Group. Chartered Physiotherapists in Occupational Health and Ergonomics, Chartered Physiotherapists in Sport and Exercise Medicine, UK Society for Back Pain Research. Key research interests: Musculoskeletal health service evaluation, bone health and fracture prevention, exercise promotion, occupational musculoskeletal disorders.


  • Assistant Professor
    University College Dublin, School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sport Science, Dublin, Ireland18 Feb 2002 - 30 May 2018


  • Senior Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist
    St Vincent's University Hospital, Physiotherapy, Dublin13 Jan 1998 - 16 Jan 2002
  • Private Musculoskeletal Practitioner
    Sandymount Physiotherapy, Ireland10 Oct 2001 - 10 Mar 2004
  • Private Musculoskeletal Practitioner
    Belgravia London Physiotherapy, London, United Kingdom1 Sep 1997 - 20 Dec 2017
  • Clinical Physiotherapist
    Mercy Hospital and Medical Center Chicago, Chicago, United States15 Jul 1992 - 19 Oct 1993
  • Clinical Physiotherapist
    St. Vincent's University Hospital, Physiotherapy, Dublin, Ireland3 Jan 1992 - 7 Jul 1992
  • Clinical physiotherapy
    St Joseph's Rheumatology Centre, Harold's Cross2 Jul 1991 - 31 Dec 1991


  • BPhysio
    University College Dublin1987 - 1991
  • MSc
    University College London1996 - 1997
  • PDip UTL
    University College Dublin
  • PhD
    University College Dublin2002 - 2006


  • Member of the ISCP
    Irish Society of Chartered Phsyiotherapists, Dublin, Ireland4 Sep 1991
    Professional Body for Physiotherapists in Ireland- Member Organisation of the World Confederation of Chartered Physiotherapists
  • Membership of the Musculoskeletal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists
    Musculoskeletal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists, London, United Kingdom1 Sep 1997
    Professional Organisation of Specialist Musculoskeletal Physiotherapists with membership based on successful completion of clinical membership examinations
  • Physical Therapy Licensing exams, USA
    Illinois State Board, United States18 Nov 1992


  • Musculoskeletal Association of Chartered Physiotherapists
    University College London, Physiotherapy, London, United Kingdom1 Sep 1996 - 1 Sep 1997
    Musculoskeletal PhysiotherapyResidency
  • Teaching and Learning
    University College Dublin, Centre for Teaching and Learning, Dublin, Ireland
    Multiple short CPD courses
  • Certificate in Education Technology
    UCD Media Services, Media services, Dublin, Ireland
    Education TechnologyOther
  • Health Service Manager Training Programme
    St Vincent's University Hospital-Health Services Executive, Health Services Executive Human Resources, Dublin, Ireland1 Jul 1998 - 15 Aug 1998


  • Irish
    Can speak