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Dr Alison Sydenham

Dr Alison Sydenham

Lecturer in Degree Apprenticeships


+44 (0) 1392 725590

Streatham Court, University of Exeter, Rennes Drive, Exeter, EX4 4PU, UK

I completed my Ph.D. at Plymouth University in 2020 which is focused on the application and efficacy of workplace coaching as a methodology for improving mental wellbeing.  My interest in coaching and wellbeing stemmed from a 15yr professional career as an HR Practitioner.  I am a Chartered member of the CIPD and have a Masters in Personnel and Development.  I have worked within specialist and generalist HR roles both locally and internationally and run my own HR consultancy (The HR Desk).  I am a passionate advocate of the Well-being Agenda and aim to inspire developments within this field across my Academic role, HR and Coaching work.

I am an IIC accredited Coach and NLP Practitioner with over 2000hrs coaching experience specialising in well-being and neurodiversity.   Alongside my work at the University I manage and provide specialist coaching services within a business I started in 2014 ( 

In 2019, I joined the Department of Management in the University of Exeter Business School and I am now pleased to be working within the Degree Apprenticeships as Programme Director for Professional Practice as well as lecturer/module lead for the following modules:

HR Skills and Behaviour (Level 7 Senior People Professional Apprenticeship)

Professional Practice (Level 4 Investment Operations Specialist Apprenticeship)

Professional Practice (Level 6 Financial Services Professional Apprenticeship)


Ph.D. (Business and Management) (October 2020)

MA Personnel and Development (2004)

BA hons Degree (2:1) (Performing Arts, Music and Entertainments Management) (2003)

PGCERT Academic Practice PCAP (Apprenticeship PT)

ILM Endorsed Accredited Practitioner Coach (IIC&M) (2011)

Research interests

Ph.D. title: “Human Flourishing: the application and efficacy of workplace coaching as a methodology for improving mental wellbeing”

Research interests include:

  • Workplace and personal coaching;
  • Workplace well-being;
  • Human Resource Management;
  • Personal Effectiveness and Work-Based Learning

I have an enthusiastic, creative and inclusive teaching style and use a range of techniques to engage, inspire and inform students in order to benefit their academic studies and future career.

I am currently the work-based learning specialist for the Finance Degree Apprenticeships and working on the Chartered Manager Degree Apprenticeships (Developing Managerial Behaviours Module). 

In addition to this, I am interested in supporting students through:

  • Human Resource Management;
  • General Management;
  • Personal and Professional Development;
  • Workplace Well-being;
  • Workplace Coaching