Dr Sheeba Rosewilliam PhD PT

School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences

Contact details

School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences
University of Birmingham
B15 2TT

Sheeba Rosewilliam is a physiotherapist and lecturer in the School of Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Birmingham. She graduated with a BSc in Physiotherapy from Christian Medical College, Vellore, India in 1993. She developed research interests in stroke rehabilitation while working on an RCT using FES for patients with acute stroke in 2004 at Keele University, UK. She then completed her PhD in Health services research exploring the concept of patient-centredness within goal setting in Stroke rehabilitation in 2016 at the University of Birmingham. This work resulted in developing a patient-centred process of goal setting which has been investigated for it’s feasibility locally. She has published articles including a highly cited review and a book chapter around patient-centred goal setting in Stroke rehabilitation. Since patient centredness is the ideology that underpins her work, she investigated shared decision making in frail elderly patients during goal setting.

As an educator, realising that education is the basis to inculcate patient-centred attributes in students in health professional courses, she is working on developing a patient centred curriculum based on student centred perspectives. She is also investigating ways to empower patients and public through volunteer led therapies and self-management for improving mobility of patients with stroke in the community (current projects). She contributes to teaching with a special focus on neurological rehabilitation and research at post graduate level within the school.


PhD in Health Services Research (2016), University of Birmingham.

PG Cert in LTHE (2013), Member of the HEA, UK.

MSc (Physiotherapy), 2002-The TN Dr. MGR Medcal University, Chennai, India.

BSc (Physiotherapy), 1993- Christian Medical College, Vellore, India.


Sheeba grew up in a small town called Thanjavur in South India, famously known for it’s cultural and architectural heritage. Following her undergraduate and postgraduate studies in India, she moved to the United Kingdom to pursue her dreams of completing a PhD in her area of interest i.e. Stroke Rehabilitation. She continues her research in stroke rehabilitation and has branched out into community research due to the identified need in this area.

In addition to teaching and leading on BSc and MSc modules for the Physiotherapy programme She has served on key administrative responsibilities such as being the admission tutor for Physiotherapy (2012-2016), MSc Module lead for dissertation module covering all programs in the School (2016 to current), serves on the ethics committee, is a first aider for the School and has recently taken up the deputy role for the Equality and Diversity committee


  • BSc Neurological Rehabilitation (lead)
  • MSc Neurological Rehabilitation
  • MSc Research methods
  • BSc Psychosocial basis of patient centred care

Supervises BSc and MSc dissertations.

Postgraduate supervision

Currently supervising postgraduate (MSc) students interested in qualitative investigation in the field of stroke rehabilitation.


Research interests

  • Stroke Rehabilitation.
  • Goalsetting in rehabilitation.
  • Patient centred care practice and curriculum development.
  • Mobility following Stroke in the community.
  • Improving balance in the community using volunteers.
  • Upper limb rehabilitation research (therapies including FES).

Current projects

  • Patient centred care practice and curriculum development.
  • Mobility following Stroke in the community.
  • Improving balance in the community using volunteers.

Other activities

  • Sheeba enjoys cooking, reading and music.


Rosewilliam, S, Indramohan, V, Breakwell, R, Liew, B & Skelton, J 2019, 'Patient-centred orientation of students from different healthcare disciplines, their understanding of the concept and factors influencing their development as patient-centred professionals: a mixed methods study', BMC Medical Education, vol. 19, 347. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-019-1787-4

Rose, A, Soundy, A & Rosewilliam, S 2018, 'Shared decision-making within goal-setting in rehabilitation: a mixed methods study', Clinical Rehabilitation. https://doi.org/10.1177/0269215518815251

Soundy, A, Dawes, H, Collett, J, Coe, S & Rosewilliam, S 2018, 'Understanding the importance of illness narratives in people with multiple sclerosis who participated in an exercise rehabilitation trial; a qualitative study', Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, vol. 1, no. 1.

Rose, A, Rosewilliam, S & Soundy, A 2016, 'Shared decision making within goal setting in rehabilitation settings: a systematic review', Patient Education and Counseling. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pec.2016.07.030

Rose, A, Soundy, A & Rosewilliam, S 2016, 'Shared decision-making within goal-setting in intermediate care' SRR Summer 2016 Meeting, Coventry, 5/07/16, .

Rosewilliam, S, Sintler, C, Pandyan, AD, Skelton, J & Roskell, CA 2016, 'Is the practice of goal-setting for patients in acute stroke care patient-centred and what factors influence this? A qualitative study', Clinical Rehabilitation, vol. 30, no. 5, pp. 508-519. https://doi.org/10.1177/0269215515584167

Rosewilliam, S, Pandyan, AD & Roskell, C 2014, Goal Setting in Stroke Rehabilitation: Theory, Practice and Future Directions. in R Seigert & WMM Levack (eds), Rehabilitation Goal Setting: Theory, Practice and Evidence. 1st edn, Rehabilitation Science in Practice Series, CRC Press, Florida.