“The biggest difference between those that attend Oxford and those that don’t ….”

26 September 2014
amy price

Amy Price at her graduation, with President Jonathan Michie and Kellogg’s Senior Tutor Carl Heneghan

Kellogg alumna Amy Price tells us about her experience studying for the MSc in Evidence Based Healthcare and also what it means to her to be a part of Kellogg College.

To graduate from Evidence Based Health Care with an MSc is a special honour and I count this as one of my life accomplishments. My friends dared me to apply to Oxford and so I did. I have never looked back. My progress and the award would not be possible without the wonderful people I encountered on this journey.  In Oxford and at Kellogg (my college) there is a vibrant and supportive community that develops from people who want to make a difference. I have made friends here that will last a lifetime.

My experience at Oxford has helped me bridge the gap between caregivers and care seekers with real information and tools to help. I am intimately familiar with this gap due to a personal event that could have been a tragedy but instead has turned into a vehicle for influence in the corner of the world in which I communicate.

In 2003 I was advised that I was incapable of working or learning due to extensive damage to my body and brain. Pre-crash I tested in the top 2% for IQ and post-crash the lowest 3-5%. My former travel into low-resource environments to provide assistance was no longer possible. I decided to rebuild my destiny. After two years of neuro-rehabilitation, I enrolled in Open University and later at Oxford. It was challenging but daily I worked towards my goal of building a bridge between the public, science and healthcare. My experiences in a varied spectrum of settings (from low-resource to developed nations) are infused in the way I approach projects and interact with people.

I was recently accepted into the DPHIL for EBHC and I am excited to be able to develop my project PLOT-IT with the guidance and expertise of my excellent supervisors Professor Amanda Burls and Dr Su-May Liew. The Public-Led Online Trials Infrastructure and Tools (PLOT-IT) is a ThinkWell project supervised by Professor Burls that is creating an infrastructure and the processes to enable people to set up and participate in their own online trials of interventions people can do for themselves.

PLOT-IT turns the current model of health research on its head by crowdsourcing research ideas and health data (with academic health researchers providing a support service to ensure that the research is ethical, methodologically sound, clinically safe and that personal data is protected). Research trials conducted over the internet are experiencing exponential growth with little methodological research to inform their conduct.

Oxford and Kellogg College have been very good to me. Here I have received the best teaching and training in the world and as a research student at Kellogg College I am profoundly grateful for being able take advantage of the College’s excellent facilities. This is a learning and mentoring climate where there is room to follow your dream. In the MSc for Evidence Based Health Care at Oxford you will be equipped with the tools and knowledge to do the job well and to expand your horizons. You can learn to analyse the literature and to put evidence into practice. Most importantly, I want others to know that when you do your best you can make it farther than others believe that you can go and as my wise daughter said to me before I applied to Oxford, “Mom, The biggest difference between those that attend Oxford and those that don’t is that those that do filled out the application!”

  • Lawrence Dawson

    Dear Amy, I am just about to start on the course and if I ever needed inspiration your blog post has done just that. May I wish you every success with the DPhil studies and the PLOT-IT project.

  • Thanks Lawrence, the course is great! I use what I learned every day…. I hope we get to meet on one of your trips to Oxford.