Associate Professor David Nicholls

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Associate Head of School, North.

Phone: +64 9 921 9999 ext 7064

Email: david.nicholls@aut.ac.nz

Postal Address:
School of Public Health and Psychosocial Studies
Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences
AUT University, Private Bag 92006,
Auckland 1142, New Zealand
Links to relevant web pages:

Qualifications:

PhD, MA, GradDip, SFHEA

Biography:

Before moving to New Zealand in 2000 to work at AUT, David lectured at the School of Physiotherapy at Sheffield Hallam University in England, and before that he was a practicing physiotherapist specialising in the rehabilitation of people with chronic lung disease. 

David's teaching and research interests focus on critical histories of physical therapy and rehabilitation, with a strong interest in postmodern philosophy; particularly the works of Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze. He completed a PhD thesis titled 'Body politics: A Foucauldian discourse analysis of physiotherapy practice in 2008, and since then taught extensively across the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes at AUT, and presented his research nationally and internationally.David holds leading researcher status at AUT University.

David is the founder and chair of the international Critical Physiotherapy Network, and works on the development of future healthcare practice with programmes around the world.  He is a regular blogger and has a vibrant social media profile.  He has held a variety of leadership roles within higher education and is currently Associate Head of School (North) in the School of Public Health and Psychosocial Studies at AUT University.

Teaching Areas:

  • Critical approaches to qualitative research
  • Postmodern and poststructural philosophies, theories and approaches
  • Critical history
  • Educational theory and philosophy
  • Professional and rehabilitation reform

Research Areas:

  • History of physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Postmodern theory
  • Critical pedagogy
  • Philosophy of embodiment and movement
  • Medical sociology and humanities
  • Rehabilitation reform
  • Social justice
  • Michel Foucault

Research outputs:

Featured research outputs

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2018). Aged care as a bellwether of future physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice. doi:10.1080/09593985.2018.1513105

  • Nicholls, D., Jachyra, P., Gibson, B. E., Fusco, C., & Setchell, J. (2018). Keep fit: marginal ideas in contemporary therapeutic exercise. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 10(4). doi:10.1080/2159676X.2017.1415220

  • Nicholls, D. (2017). The end of physiotherapy. London: Routledge. Retrieved from https://www.routledge.com/The-End-of-Physiotherapy/Nicholls/p/book/9781138673557

  • Setchell, J., Nicholls, D. A., & Gibson, B. E. (2017). Objecting: Multiplicity and the practice of physiotherapy. Health, 22(2). doi:10.1177/1363459316688519

  • Nicholls, D. A., Atkinson, K., Bjorbækmo, W. S., Gibson, B. E., Latchem, J., Olesen, J., . . . Setchell, J. (2016). Connectivity: An emerging concept for physiotherapy practice. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 32(3). doi:10.3109/09593985.2015.1137665

  • Fadyl, J. K., & Nicholls, D. A. (2013). Foucault, the subject, and the research interview: A critique of methods. Nursing Inquiry, 20(1).

  • Nicholls, D. A., & Holmes, D. (2012). Discipline, desire and transgression in physiotherapy practice. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 28(6). doi:10.3109/09593985.2012.676940

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2012). Foucault and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 28(6). doi:10.3109/09593985.2012.676937

  • Nicholls, D. A., & Gibson, B. E. (2010). The body and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, 26(8).

  • Nicholls, D. A., Walton, J. A., & Price, K. (2009). Making breathing your business: Enterprising practices at the margins of orthodoxy. Health, 13(3).

Books

Journal articles

  • Ahlsen, B., Engebretsen, E., Nicholls, D., & Mengshoel, A. M. (2019). The singular patient in patient-centred care: Physiotherapists' accounts of treatment of patients with chronic muscle pain. Medical Humanities. doi:10.1136/medhum-2018-011603

  • Setchell, J., Nicholls, D. A., Wilson, N., & Gibson, B. E. (2018). Imprégner la réadaptation de recherches et d’études fondamentales critiques: Un appel à l’action. Physiotherapy Canada, 70(4), 303-305. doi:10.3138/ptc.70.4.gef

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2018). Aged care as a bellwether of future physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice. doi:10.1080/09593985.2018.1513105

  • Nicholls, D., Jachyra, P., Gibson, B. E., Fusco, C., & Setchell, J. (2018). Keep fit: marginal ideas in contemporary therapeutic exercise. Qualitative Research in Sport, Exercise and Health, 10(4). doi:10.1080/2159676X.2017.1415220

  • Nicholls, D., & Harwood, G. (2017). Physical therapies in 19th century Aotearoa/New Zealand: Part 3 - Rotorua Spa and discussion. New Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy, 45(1). doi:10.15619/NZJP/45.1.02

  • Macdonald, H., & Nicholls, D. A. (2017). Teaching physiotherapy students to “be content with a body that refuses to hold still”. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, 33(4). doi:10.1080/09593985.2017.1302027

  • Setchell, J., Nicholls, D. A., & Gibson, B. E. (2017). Objecting: Multiplicity and the practice of physiotherapy. Health, 22(2). doi:10.1177/1363459316688519

  • Nicholls, D., & Harwood, G. (2016). Physical therapies in 19th century Aotearoa/New Zealand: Part 2 - Settler physical therapies. New Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy, 44(3). doi:10.15619/NZJP/44.3.02

  • Nicholls, D., Harwood, G., & Bell, R. (2016). Physical therapies in 19th century Aotearoa/New Zealand: Part 1 – Mäori physical therapies. New Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy, 44(2). doi:10.15619/NZJP/44.2.02.

  • Nicholls, D. A., Atkinson, K., Bjorbækmo, W. S., Gibson, B. E., Latchem, J., Olesen, J., . . . Setchell, J. (2016). Connectivity: An emerging concept for physiotherapy practice. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 32(3). doi:10.3109/09593985.2015.1137665

  • Fadyl, J., McPherson, K., & Nicholls, D. (2015). Re/creating entrepreneurs of the self: Discourses of worker and employee 'value' and current vocational rehabilitation practices. Sociology of Health and Illness, 37(4). doi:10.1111/1467-9566.12212

  • Fadyl, J. K., & Nicholls, D. A. (2013). Foucault, the subject, and the research interview: A critique of methods. Nursing Inquiry, 20(1).

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2012). Postmodernism and physiotherapy research. Physical Therapy Reviews, 17(6). doi:10.1179/1743288X12Y.0000000045

  • Nicholls, D. A., & Holmes, D. (2012). Discipline, desire and transgression in physiotherapy practice. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 28(6). doi:10.3109/09593985.2012.676940

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2012). Foucault and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice: an international journal of physical therapy, 28(6). doi:10.3109/09593985.2012.676937

  • Payne, D., & Nicholls, D. A. (2010). Managing breastfeeding and work: A Foucauldian secondary analysis. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 66(8). Retrieved from http://ejournals.ebsco.com.ezproxy.aut.ac.nz/

  • Nicholls, D. A., & Gibson, B. E. (2010). The body and physiotherapy. Physiotherapy Theory and Practice, 26(8).

  • Nicholls, D. A., Walton, J. A., & Price, K. (2009). Making breathing your business: Enterprising practices at the margins of orthodoxy. Health, 13(3).

  • Keals Smith, C., Larmer, P. J., & Nicholls, D. (2008). Physiotherapy education keeps moving. [Abstract]. New Zealand Journal of Physiotherapy, 36(2).

  • Nicholls, D. A., & Cheek, J. (2006). Physiotherapy and the shadow of prostitution: The Society of Trained Masseuses and the massage scandals of 1894. Social Science and Medicine, 62(9).

Book chapters

  • Nicholls, D., & Gibson, B. E. (2017). Kommentar zu "The body and physiotherapy". In H. Hoppner, & R. Richter (Eds.), Theorie und Modelle der Physiotherapie (pp. 151-164). Bern: Hogrefe Verlag. Retrieved from https://www.hogrefe.de/

  • Nicholls, D. A., Gibson, B. E., & Fadyl, J. K. (2015). Rethinking movement: Postmodern reflections on a dominant rehabilitation discourse. In K. McPherson, B. E. Gibson, & A. LaPlege (Eds.), Rethinking rehabilitation: Theory and practice. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2014). Evidence-based practice and practice-based evidence. In V. Wright-St. Clair, D. A. Reid, S. Shaw, & J. Ramsbotham (Eds.), Evidence-based health practice (pp. 211-225). Victoria, Australia: Oxford University Press.

Conference contributions

Reports

Theses

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2008). Body politics: A Foucauldian discourse analysis of physiotherapy practice. (University of South Australia, Australia).

Other outputs

  • Setchell, J., Nicholls, D. A., Wilson, N., & Gibson, B. E. (2018). Infusing rehabilitation with critical research and scholarship: A call to action. In Physiotherapy Canada (Vol. 70, Iss. 4). doi:10.3138/ptc.70.4.gee

  • Nicholls, D. A. (2012). Commentary on: [Transformational practice development research in the healthcare professions: A critical creative dialogue, Trede, F. & Titchen, A.]. In International Practice Development Journal (Iss. 2). Retrieved from http://www.fons.org.ezproxy.aut.ac.nz/library/journal/volume2-issue2