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Research Radiographer, Wellcome Centre for Integrative Neuroimaging, University of Oxford

David Parker smilingI’m David and I’m a Research Radiographer. Radiographers are health care professionals who specialise in making images of the body. Some radiographers specialise in using X-ray to help treat patients, I prefer working with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners to study the human brain. My job is to get the best possible images of the human brain.

I also ensure safety and well-being by training colleagues in safe working practices and checking people’s medical histories to make sure that they are safe to be around the scanners. Sometimes people are a bit nervous about being scanned so I help reassure them, talk them though the study and answer any questions they may have. 

Research Radiography requires a mix of technical, medical and scientific knowledge combined with the people skills you would expect from a health care professional. I have worked with a huge range of people from newborn babies to people who experience phantom limb pain. This is why I love my job; it is so diverse and there is always something new to learn.

I hold degrees in Psychology with Neuropsychology (BSc) and Medical Imaging, Diagnostic Radiography BSc (Hons). I became fascinated with the neuroimaging data presented during lectures so I decided to pursue a career in MRI. I worked with the NHS and private patients before taking my current post with the University of Oxford, thus completing my journey back to neuroscience.

A former public engagement ambassador for my department, I enjoy being involved with public engagement and telling people about our work. In Oxford, I show people how the scanners work with live demonstrations and also enjoy visiting events like the Royal Society Summer Science Exhibition.