Dr. Malinda A J Irvine

Lecturer (Teaching & Research)/Assistant Course Director


The Mackenzie Building
Kirsty Semple Way

Phone Number:

+(44) 01382 420110

Email Address:



I have worked in Public Health at the University of Dundee since 1997, initially as a Research Fellow, and as a lecturer since 2009.


My first degree is in nursing. My PhD, awarded in 2000, was based on a randomised controlled trial of a smoking cessation intervention for parents of children with asthma.  Research areas that I have worked on include: childhood asthma; physical activity among older people; the diet of disadvantaged young children; and prescribing during pregnancy.  I have also undertaken analysis of public health policy, including in depth reviews of policy on obesity, mental health, alcohol and inequalities in health.  In addition, I have conducted reviews of systematic reviews on public health nursing, workplace health promotion and the care of older people.   I am co-author of a WHO commissioned book on inequalities in health.


My current research interest is in the prevention of alcohol related harm.  The long term aim is to develop a series of studies to test novel interventions and novel methods of delivering the interventions to achieve healthier lifestyles, to improve health and reduce inequalities in health.  This involves designing new interventions to reach large numbers of the population at low cost.  Tackling alcohol related problems is currently one of the greatest public health challenges. Interventions to reduce harmful drinking  will not only address short term harms (such as acute intoxication, injuries and social disruption) but will also reduce the burden of alcohol related diseases such as liver cirrhosis and liver and oesophageal cancers.  


Current research funding

Irvine L, Crombie IK, Swanson V, Barbour R, McMahon S, Rice P.  Preventing alcohol related harm among young women: development and feasibility testing of a community-based group intervention.  MRC National Prevention Research Initiative (NPRI) £237,103.  Awarded November 2011 for the period July 2012 – December 2013.


Crombie IK, Irvine L.  Scottish School of Public Health Research.  Alcohol strategy component.  £90,000.  August 2011 – July 2013.


Crombie IK, Irvine L, Norrie J, Ricketts IW, Williams B, Humphris G, Slane PW.   Reducing alcohol-related harm in disadvantaged men: development and feasibility assessment of a brief intervention delivered by mobile phone.  NIHR Public Health Programme. £220,529. March 2009 – December 2011.


  • Swanson V, Power, K, Crombie IK, Irvine L, Kiezebrink K, Wrieden WL, Slane PW. Maternal feeding behaviour and young children’s dietary quality: A cross-sectional study of socially disadvantaged mothers of two-year old children using the Theory of Planned Behaviour. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity 2011, 8:65
  • Irvine L, Flynn R, Libby G, Crombie IK, Evans JMM. Drugs dispensed in primary care during pregnancy: a record-linkage analysis in Tayside, Scotland. Drug Saf 2010; 33: 593-604.
  • Kiezebrink K, Crombie IK, Irvine L, Swanson V, Power K, Wrieden WL, Slane PW. Strategies for achieving a high response rate in a home interview survey. BMC Med Res Methodol 2009 9:46.
  • Crombie IK, Kiezebrink K, Irvine L, Wrieden WL, Swanson V, Power K, Slane PW. What maternal factors influence the diet of 2-year-old children living in deprived areas? A cross-sectional survey. Public Health Nutrition 2009; 12: 1254-1260. Crombie IK, Irvine L, Elliott L, Wallace H. Targets to tackle the obesity epidemic: a review of twelve developed countries. Public Health Nutrition 2008; 12: 406-413.
  • Crombie IK, Irvine L, Elliott L, Wallace H. 'Carers' of people with mental health problems: proposals in current public mental health policy in nine countries. J Public Health Policy 2007; 28: 465-81
  • Crombie IK, Irvine L, Elliott L, Wallace H. How do public health policies tackle alcohol: a review of 12 developed countries. Alcohol Alcohol 2007; 42: 492-9
  • Williams B, Irvine L, McGinnis AR, McMurdo MET, Crombie IK. When no might not quite mean no; the importance of informed and meaningful non-consent: results from a survey of individuals refusing participation in a health-related research project. BMC Health Services Research 2007; 7: 59.
  • Irvine L, Crombie IK, Elliott L, Wallace H. A review of major influences on current public health policy in developed countries in the second half of the 20th century. J R Soc Health, 2006; 126: 73-78.
  • Crombie IK, Irvine L, Williams B, McGinnis AR, Slane PW, Alder EM, McMurdo MET. Why older people do not participate in leisure time physical activity: a survey of activity levels, beliefs and deterrents. Age and Ageing 2004; 33: 287-292
  • Walls M, Wright A, Irvine L, Dalzell J, Hume R, Fowlie P. Home phototherapy: A feasible, safe and acceptable practice. Journal of Neonatal Nursing 2004; 10: 92-94
  • Elliott L, Crombie IK, Irvine L, Cantrell J, Taylor J. The effectiveness of public health nursing: the problems and solutions in carrying out a review of systematic reviews. Journal of Advanced Nursing 2004; 45: 117-125
  • Alexander V, Ogston S, Booker C, Irvine L, Mukhopadhyay S. Using practical outcomes to measure clinical performance in the children's asthma clinic. Clinical Governance: An International Journal 2003; 8: 308-311
  • Irvine L, Crombie IK, Alder EM, Neville RG, Clark RA. What predicts poor collection of medication among children with asthma? A case-control study. European Respiratory Journal 2002; 20: 1464-1469
  • Crombie IK, Wright, A, Irvine L, Clark RA, Slane PW. Does passive smoking increase the frequency of health service contacts for asthma? Thorax 2001; 56: 9-12
  • Irvine L, Crombie IK, Clark RA, Slane PW, Feyerabend C, Goodman KE, Cater JI. Advising parents of asthmatic children on passive smoking: randomised controlled trial. BMJ 1999; 318: 1456-1459
  • Wilson AC, Forsyth JS, Greene SA, Irvine L, Hau C, Howie PW. Relationship of infant diet to childhood health: seven year follow up of cohort of children in Dundee infant feeding study. BMJ 1998; 316: 21-25
  • Irvine L, Crombie IK, Clark RA, Slane PW, Goodman KE, Feyerabend C, Cater JI. What determines levels of passive smoking in children with asthma? Thorax 1997; 52: 766-769


I am Assistant Director of the Master of Public Health (MPH) and

Co-Director (with Professor Peter Donnan) of the new MSc in Applied Health Statistics which was established in 2011.


Current post-graduate teaching commitments

Research Methods Module (MPH & MSc in Applied Health Statistics)        

I am course leader on the 15 SCQF research methods module.  Direct student contact time for the module is 60 hours.


Introduction to Systematic Reviews Module (MPH)

I lead a 5 credit module on systematic reviews which was introduced to the MPH programme in May 2011.  Direct student contact time for the course is 25 hours.


Research Governance Module (MSc in Applied Health Statistics)  

I have developed the learning outcomes and structure of the course for a 5 credit module on research governance.  I am currently working with members of TASC, who will assist in delivering some of the teaching.


Individual lectures (MPH)

I also contribute a one day session on International Public Health Policy to the Public Health Module and one session on searching for scientific papers in the Generic Skills Module.


Dissertations (MPH)

I have supervised seven students, two of whom graduated in 2011.  The time commitment is around 40 hours per student.  Titles of dissertation projects which I have supervised include:

  • Systematic review of peer delivered interventions to prevent the uptake or reduce the use of alcohol, tobacco or drugs
    • Systematic review of the use of bleach baths for the treatment of eczema in children and a review of organisations which recommend the treatment
  • Systematic review of interventions to prevent self harm among children and adolescents
  • Systematic review on the effectiveness of opioid replacement for prisoners who use IV drugs
  • Policy on HIV/AIDS: a review of seven countries
  • Effectiveness of psychosocial alcohol interventions in older people: a systematic review
  •  A systematic review on the risk factors for domestic violence in pregnant women

Undergraduate teaching commitments

I lead some small group teaching with medical students:

1st year (stigma, health and life circumstances) 2 hours

3rd year (stress)                                                   2 hours

5th year (health promotion SSC)                           1 hour

In addition I mark approximately 50 5th year Health Promotion case studies every year.