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Maria StubbeAssociate Professor & Research Leader
Director, Applied Research on Communication in Health (ARCH) Group
Department of Primary Health Care and General Practice

Background and Interests

Maria Stubbe is a social scientist with expertise in qualitative/mixed methods health research and evaluation, interactional sociolinguistics and the study of professional communication. She has worked in the Department as a health researcher and academic  since 2003. Maria is a founding member and director of the Applied Research on Communication in Health (ARCH) Group, is joint departmental research lead, and sat on the University of Otago Human Ethics Committee (Health) between 2012-2021.

She has a PhD in Linguistics from Victoria University of Wellington where she worked as a researcher and lecturer in sociolinguistics/applied linguistics from 1989 to 2003. She was in the team that constructed the New Zealand English section of the International Corpus of English, and was a senior researcher on the NZ Language in the Workplace Project (LWP) from 1996-2003, and remains an honorary Research Associate. Until 2022 she was the New Zealand national representative on the Advisory Committee of EACH, The International Association for Communication in Healthcare.

Teaching Activities

Higher degrees

  • Supervision of PhD and Masters projects

Postgraduate diploma courses

  • Co-convenor HASC 417/817 Health Sciences Research Methods (Diploma/Masters course)
  • Guest lectures/professional development workshops on health communication, qualitative research, discourse analysis.

Undergraduate medical education

  • Resource development and tutoring/lecturing in consultation skills, reflective practice, experiences of addiction and recovery, use of interpreters

Research Activities

Maria leads a programme of research into communication in clinical practice and patient experiences in the multidisciplinary Applied Research on Communication in Health (ARCH) Group. She is particularly interested in the detailed study of patient-provider interactions using conversation analysis, and narrative research into patient experiences of health and illness. Since 2003 she has led the development of the ARCH Corpus, a digitized permanent collection of video-recorded New Zealand health interactions and associated data such as interviews, for use in research and education. She is also involved in various other research and evaluation projects relating to health service delivery, research ethics and clinical education.  Top of page


Stubbe, M., Macdonald, L., Tester, R., Gray, L., Hilder, J., Dew, K., & Dowell, T. (2020). Talking about diabetes and healthy lifestyle in primary healthcare: Translating research findings into practice. In L. Mullany (Ed.), Professional communication: Consultancy, advocacy, activism. (pp. 129-150). Cham, Switzerland: Springer Nature. doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-41668-3_7 Chapter in Book - Research

Ross, I., & Stubbe, M. (2022). Self-repeats-as-unit-ends: A practice for promoting interactivity during surgeons' decision-related informings. Research on Language & Social Interaction, 55(3), 241-259. doi: 10.1080/08351813.2022.2075641 Journal - Research Article

Holmes, J., & Stubbe, M. (2015). Power and politeness in the workplace: A sociolinguistic analysis of talk at work (2nd ed.). Abingdon, UK: Routledge, 200p. Authored Book - Research

Sheridan, N., Love, T., Kenealy, T., and the Primary Care Models Study Group, including Atmore, C., Crampton, P., Dowell, A., Gauld, R., McBain, L., Stokes, T., & Stubbe, M. (2023). Is there equity of patient health outcomes across models of general practice in Aotearoa New Zealand? A national cross-sectional study. International Journal for Equity in Health, 22, 79. doi: 10.1186/s12939-023-01893-8 Journal - Research Article

White, S. J., & Stubbe, M. (2023). Patient responses to diagnosis in surgeon-patient consultations. Health Communication, 38(3), 608-617. doi: 10.1080/10410236.2021.1965278 Journal - Research Article

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