Jane Cockle-Hearne

Dr Jane Cockle-Hearne

Research Fellow

Academic and research departments

School of Health Sciences.



Jane graduated from London University, Bedford College (now Royal Holloway), with a first class honours degree in Psychology. Her research career began in consumer and health research in the marketing and advertising sectors where she worked as a senior strategic planner in a major global advertising agency, and as a director in a qualitative market research company. In 2003 Jane moved into academic health research at the University of Surrey. Jane has managed and developed a range of dementia, cancer care and nurse training studies and is now working towards a PhD by publication focusing on cancer self-management and patients' engagement with e-health. Jane is a member of the British Psychological Society.

Research interests

Jane's main research aims to support and improve cancer patients' survivorship and rehabilitation experience by empowering them cope with the difficult emotional and functional effects of disease and treatment. The emphasis of her research is the development of face-to-face and e-health self-management approaches utilising cognitive behavioural techniques and peer support. She is exploring and developing ways to provide motivating peer support within e-health, in particular through film. Her research has included assessing the unmet supportive care needs of men with prostate cancer across Europe and developing and testing complex interventions for symptom management. She has worked extensively with quantitative and qualitative methodologies and mixed methods designs. In collaboration with NHS Improving Access to Psychological Therapies Service (IAPT) she developed Getting  Down to Coping, a web-based, cognitive behavioural programme to reduce distress after diagnosis and treatment for cancer. As well as working on a broad range of cancer studies, Jane's wider research interests span men's health and emotional support in palliative care for young families when one parent is dying.

Departmental duties

  • Developing and writing grant proposals
  • Collaboration with partner and funding bodies
  • Literature reviews
  • Qualitative design, interviewing and analysis
  • Quantitative design, data collection and analysis
  • Clinical trial management and coordination
  • Writing for publication in peer review journals
  • Dissemination of research findings, report writing and conference presentations
  • Invited teaching on Advanced Research Methods module


Jane Cockle Hearne, Liz Reed, Jennifer Todd, Emma Ream (2020)The dying parent and dependent children: a nationwide survey of hospice and community palliative care support services, In: BMJ Supportive & Palliative Care BMJ Publishing Group

Background Annually, across the world a substantial number of dependent children experience the death of a parent through life-limiting illness. Without support, this has long-term implications for children’s emotional, social and physical well-being, impacting on health and social care services globally. Limited information exists on how service providers are meeting family needs when a parent with dependent children is dying. Aim To determine the bereavement support provided to families with dependent children by UK hospices before and after a parent’s death. Design A 23-item, cross-sectional, web-based survey of adult UK hospices. Closed and open-ended questions were asked about the features of support provided; open ended response was sought to a question about the challenges faced by hospices in delivering support. Descriptive and non-parametric statistics and framework analysis were used to analyse the data. Results 197 hospices were invited to participate. Response rate was 66% (130/197). More types of support were provided after, than before, parental death (mean 6.36/5.64, z = -5.767, p ˂0001). 22% of hospices reported no formal processes for asking or documenting the presence of dependent children. Volunteers were an under-used resource before parental death. Four themes characterised challenges in delivering support for families: emotional difficulties for families; practical and social difficulties for families; funding/resources; and staff training/numbers. Conclusions Family needs are not consistently being met when a parent is dying. Areas for development include: enhanced systems to record when patients have dependent children; flexible approaches to support vulnerable families; staff training to help communication with families and management of their own fears of making the situation worse. Effective educational interventions and service developments to better support staff, parents, and children are needed.

Jane Cockle Hearne, Deborah Cooke, Sara Faithfull (2015)Developing peer support in film for cancer self-management: what do men want other men to know?, In: Support Care Cancer Springer-Verlag

Purpose: This study reports an innovative theory-driven approach for developing filmed peer support for cancer self-management. Peer support conventionally includes empathetic interaction between people with shared experiences. This unique study considers how to authentically communicate peer empathy in a one-way film narrative. Methods: We co-created a film based on phenomenological interviews with seven men who had volunteered to support other men by sharing their experiences of coping with prostate cancer. The film contributed to successful engagement with self-management. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis of the interview data was conducted to explore the components of experiential empathy that the men had communicated. Results: Four themes were identified illustrating what men wanted other men to know about coping with prostate cancer: Going into the unknown, it was difficult but I got through highlighted trauma and the importance of having a determined attitude; Only you can do it illustrated the triumph of their journey and of regaining control; I haven’t changed massively reflected the importance of a constant self; and Stay involved represented the overriding need to remain part of pre-cancer social environments. Conclusions: We propose a construct framework of experiential empathy for men with prostate cancer: Resilience, Regaining Control, Continuity-of-Self and Social Connectedness. Filmed peer support that communicates these constructs will offer wide-ranging benefit to meet the needs of this group of men in both e-health and face-to-face self-management contexts. Further research could develop this theory-driven approach to filmed peer support for other cancer groups.

Jane Cockle Hearne, D Barnett, J Hicks, M Simpson, I White, Sara Faithfull (2018)A Web-Based Intervention to Reduce Distress After Prostate Cancer Treatment: Development and Feasibility of the Getting Down to Coping Program in Two Different Clinical Settings, In: JMIR Cancer4(1)e8 JMIR Publications

Background: Distress after prostate cancer treatment is a substantial burden for up to one-third of men diagnosed. Physical and emotional symptoms and health service use can intensify, yet men are reticent to accept support. To provide accessible support that can be cost effectively integrated into care pathways, we developed a unique, Web-based, self-guided, cognitive-behavior program incorporating filmed and interactive peer support. Objective: To assess feasibility of the intervention among men experiencing distress after prostate cancer treatment. Demand, acceptability, change in distress and self-efficacy, and challenges for implementation in clinical practice were measured. Methods: A pre-post, within-participant comparison, mixed-methods research design was followed. Phase I and II were conducted in primary care psychological service and secondary care cancer service, respectively. Men received clinician-generated postal invitations: phase I, 432 men diagnosed

JANE COCKLE HEARNE, SUSIE KATHRYN ALDISS, FAITH GIBSON, SJ Milne, J Todd, EMMA REAM (2021)Support interventions provided during palliative care to families with dependent children when a parent has terminal illness, In: JBI Evidence Synthesis19(11)pp. 3163-3173 Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins

Objective: The objective of this scoping review is to identify and map support interventions provided during palliative care to families with dependent children when a parent has a terminal illness. Introduction: For dependent children, losing a parent through terminal illness can be one of the most traumatic experiences they will face. Without age-appropriate information and support, parental death can lead to unresolved grief, post-traumatic stress, and longer-term negative social, emotional, educational, and behavioral consequences. Support from health care professionals is provided, but challenges within hospice and community palliative care mean the needs of dependent children may not be addressed. Greater emphasis is often placed on children's and families’ bereavement needs as opposed to their pre-bereavement needs. The status of pre-bereavement support in palliative care for these families has not been documented. Inclusion criteria: We will include studies of support interventions provided to families with dependent children when a parent has a terminal illness that are delivered during palliative care and in settings including, but not limited to, hospices, hospitals, and the community (including family and care homes). Empirical, peer-reviewed studies based on qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods data, and gray literature, reporting any stage of intervention development will be included. Methods: This review will follow the JBI approach for scoping reviews. Multiple database searches will be conducted. Two authors will independently review full-text articles and extract data. Interventions will be mapped in terms of characteristics, evaluation methods, and implementation challenges. Data will be presented in tables, diagrammatic form, and narrative summary.

J Cockle Hearne, F Charnay-Sonnek, L Denis, D Kelly, B Thoft, S Faithfull (2017)Supportive Care Needs of Men with Prostate Cancer