Staff Profile

Headshot of a smiling Des McDermott stood in front of a book case wearing a shirt, smiling directly into the camera

Dr Des McDermott


I have been involved in social work practice and education for over thirty years, specialising in the area of mental health. Before joining Buckinghamshire New University, I was employed for twenty years in statutory social work departments in and around London in a variety of roles including senior practitioner, senior approved social worker, and consultant social worker. Since 2005, I have been employed full time as a social work educator writing and teaching on a wide variety of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. I have also written and delivered modules and programmes in further education. These have included programmes that led to professional qualifications.

I have a very keen interest in mental health practice, theory and research and am particularly interested in the ideas that shape professional practice. I am also interested in involving people with lived experience and practitioners in the research process and making connections to the wider social and historical context.

I am a qualified social worker, teacher, and researcher and have specialised in working with non-traditional students. I am passionate about widening participation in higher education and offering opportunities to people from socially disadvantaged backgrounds.