From February 2017, information about the work of the MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow is available and updated on the University of Glasgow website.

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Staff Member Biography

Marion Henderson

position: Senior Investigator Scientist

Contact Details

phone: 0141 353 7526


MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit,
University of Glasgow,
Top floor,
200, Renfield Street
G2 3QB

Biography and Interests

Marion co-leads two themes of research at MRC/CSO SPHSU:

  • Educational Settings with Dr Helen Sweeting, based within the Settings and Organisations Programme led by Prof Kate Hunt; and
  • Families with Prof Daniel Wight, based within the Social Relationships and Health Improvement Programme led by Dr Lisa McDaid.

Related to these themes, Marion is Chief Investigator on two National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) funded randomised controlled trials. They are called the SEED and THRIVE trials, both are funded for five years and involve multiple sites. The trials involve nine Universities and international collaborators. The SEED Trial is one of the first, large-scale and rigorous evaluations of primary school interventions aimed at promoting social and emotional wellbeing in the UK. The THRIVE Trial is a three-armed randomised controlled trial to compare the effectiveness, including cost-effectiveness, of two interventions aimed at improving both mother-child interaction and maternal mental health: Enhanced Triple P for Baby (ETPB) and Mellow Bumps (MB). Marion is also a co-investigator on the Best Services Trial: Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of the New Orleans Intervention Model for Infant Mental Health (BeST 2).

In 1996 Marion joined the MRC Social and Public Health Sciences Unit originally working on the SHARE randomised controlled trial to evaluate teacher-delivered sex education. She then became a grant holder on two linked grants funded by the Scottish Executive and Chief Scientist's Office. These grants involved the external evaluation of the second phase of a national sexual health demonstration project, Healthy Respect, in collaboration with colleagues from the Centre for Integrated Health Research, the Scottish Centre for Social Research and the Universities of Napier and Dundee. Healthy Respect was designed by Lothian Health Board and aims to improve the sexual health and well being of young people in Lothian in the long-term, with a particular focus on Midlothian and North West Edinburgh.

Prior to joining MRC Social and Public Health Sciences Unit, Marion was employed as a researcher in the Psychology Department at the University of Strathclyde (between 1985 and 1996). She worked on a range of projects which explored the effects of organisations (schools, workplaces and prisons) on the health behaviours of people in these organisations. During that time she held grants from World Health Organisation, the European Commission, the Scottish Office Education Department (now Scottish Executive), the Economic and Social Research Council and various Health Boards (Community Health Care NHS Trusts).

Marion's Ph.D. in Social and Public Health Sciences, University of Glasgow, was undertaken part-time while working as a researcher and used mixed methods to explore ‘school effects’ on a range of adolescents’ health behaviours (alcohol consumption, smoking, drug-use and physical activity). The thesis moved on to explore the association between the ‘school effects’ and within-school practices.


[in press]

White J, Thompson L, Puckering C, Waugh H, Henderson M, MacBeth A, Wilson P. Antenatal parenting support for vulnerable women: an exploratory randomised controlled trial of Mellow Bumps versus Chill-out in Pregnancy or care as usual. British Journal of Midwifery [in press]


Aventin Á, Lohan M, O’Halloran P, Henderson M. Design and development of a film-based intervention about teenage men and unintended pregnancy: applying the Medical Research Council framework in practice. Evaluation and Program Planning 2015;49:19-30

open access  

Robison O, Kearns A, Gray L, Bond L, Henderson M. Mixed tenure communities as a policy instrument for educational outcomes in a deprived urban context?. Urban Research & Practice 2015;9:131-157

open access  


Parkes A, Waylen A, Sayal K, Heron J, Henderson M, Wight D, Macleod J. Which behavioral, emotional and school problems in middle-childhood predict early sexual behavior?. Journal of Youth and Adolescence 2014;43:507-527

open access  


Elliott L, Henderson M, Nixon C, Wight D. Has untargeted sexual health promotion for young people reached its limit? A quasi-experimental study. Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health 2013;67:398-404

pubmed  open access  

Palmer ML, Henderson M, Sanders MR, Keown LJ, White J . Study protocol: evaluation of a parenting and stress management programme: a randomised controlled trial of Triple P Discussion Groups and Stress Control. BMC Public Health 2013;13:888

open access  

Parkes A, Sweeting H, Wight D, Henderson M. Do television and electronic games predict children’s psychosocial adjustment? Longitudinal research using the UK Millennium Cohort Study. Archives of Disease in Childhood 2013;98:341-348

open access  

Parkes A, Wight D, Hunt K, Henderson M, Sargent J. Are sexual media exposure, parental restrictions on media use and co-viewing TV and DVDs with parents and friends associated with teenagers' early sexual behaviour?. Journal of Adolescence 2013;36:1121–1133

open access  

Wilson C, Hogg R, Henderson M, Wilson P. Patterns of primary care service use by families with young children. Family Practice 2013;30:679-94


Wilson P, Bradshaw P, Tipping S, Henderson M, Der G, Minnis H. What predicts persistent early conduct problems? Evidence from the Growing Up in Scotland cohort. Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health 2013;67:76-80

pubmed  open access  


Jackson CA, Henderson M, Frank J, Haw S. An overview of prevention of multiple risk behaviour in adolescence and young adulthood. Journal of Public Health 2012;34:i31-i40

pubmed  open access  


Abraham C, Sheeran P, Henderson M. Extending social cognition models of health behaviour. Health Education Research 2011;26:624-37


Henderson M, Smith D, Elliott L, Nixon C, Wight D. Vulnerable young people in alternative education settings: their sexual health needs, experience and use of sex education and sexual health services. MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit Occasional Paper no. 21, Glasgow, 2011

open access  

Hunt K, Henderson M, Wight D, Sargent J D. Exposure to smoking in films and own smoking among Scottish adolescents: a cross-sectional study. Thorax 2011;66:866-74

pubmed  open access  

Packard C, Bezylak V, McLean JS, Batty GD, Ford I, Burns H, Cavanagh J, Deans KA, Henderson M, McGinty A, Millar K, Sattar N, Shiels PG, Velupillai YN, Tannahill C. Early life socioeconomic adversity is associated in adult life with chronic inflammation, carotid atherosclerosis, poorer lung function and decreased cognitive performance: a cross-sectional, population-based study. BMC Public Health 2011;11:42

pubmed  open access  

Parkes A, Henderson M, Wight D, Nixon C. Is parenting associated with teenagers’ early sexual risk-taking, autonomy and relationship with sexual partners?. Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health 2011;43:30-40

pubmed  open access  

Parkes A, Strange V, Wight D, Bonell C, Copas A, Henderson M, Buston K, Stephenson J, Johnson A, Allen E, Hart G. Comparison of teenagers' early same-sex and heterosexual behavior: UK data from the SHARE and RIPPLE studies. Journal of Adolescent Health 2011;48:27-35

pubmed  open access  


External Evaluation Team . Evaluation of Healthy Respect phase 2: Final Report. Edinburgh, 2010

open access  

Henderson M, Wight D, Nixon C, Hart G. Retaining young people in a longitudinal sexual health survey: a trial of strategies to maintain participation. BMC Medical Research Methodology 2010;10

pubmed  open access  

Parkes A, Wight D, Henderson M, West P. Does early sexual debut reduce teenagers' participation in tertiary education? Evidence from the SHARE longitudinal study. Journal of Adolescence 2010;33:741-54

pubmed  open access  

Phase Two Programme Evaluation Team , External Evaluation Team (Including Henderson M & Wight D & Nixon C) . The final report of Healthy Respect phase 2. Edinburgh, 2010

open access  

Raab G, Henderson M. Teenage mothers and fathers in Scotland 1991 to 2001. LSCS Research Working Paper 9.0, St Andrews, 2010

open access  


Parkes A, Wight D, Henderson M, Stephenson J, Strange V. Contraceptive method at first sexual intercourse and subsequent pregnancy risk: findings from a secondary analysis of sixteen year-old girls from the RIPPLE and SHARE studies. Journal of Adolescent Health 2009;44:55-63

pubmed  open access  


Henderson M, Butcher I, Wight D, Williamson LM, Raab G. What explains between-school differences in rates of sexual experience?. BMC Public Health 2008;8:53

pubmed  open access  

Henderson M, Ecob R, Wight D, Abraham C. What explains between-school differences in rates of smoking?. BMC Public Health 2008;8

pubmed  open access  

Henderson M. How do secondary schools influence teenagers' health behaviours? Schools that enhance versus schools that diminish students' health behaviours: taking account of different student characteristics at each school. Saarbrücken, Germany: VDM Verlag Dr. Muller Aktiengesellschaft & Co. KG, 2008.

Phase Two Programme Evaluation Team, External Evaluation Team, (Including , Henderson M, Wight D, Nixon C, ). Evaluation of Healthy Respect phase 2: Interim Report - Executive Summary. Edinburgh, 2008

open access  

Phase Two Programme Evaluation Team, External Evaluation Team, (Including , Henderson M, Wight D, Nixon C, ). Evaluation of Healthy Respect phase 2: Interim Report. Edinburgh, 2008

open access  

Raab G, Burston A, Henderson M, Storkey H, Elliot LS, Davies J. Final Report on the randomised control trial of Zero Tolerance Respect (pre-sex education/citizenship education) in Midlothian Primary Schools. Report to CSO (CZG/2/313). Edinburgh, 2008

Raab G, Burston A, Henderson M, Storkey H, Elliot LS, Davies J. Short-term evaluation of the Zero Tolerance Respect package in Midlothian primary schools, a randomized controlled trial. 2008

Wight D, Parkes A, Strange V, Allen E, Bonell C, Henderson M. The quality of young people’s heterosexual relationships: a longitudinal analysis of factors shaping subjective experience. Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health 2008;40:226-237

pubmed  open access  


Henderson M, Wight D, Raab G, Abraham C, Parkes A, Scott S, Hart G. Impact of a theoretically based sex education programme (SHARE) delivered by teachers on NHS registered conceptions and terminations: final results of cluster randomised trial. BMJ 2007;334:133-5

pubmed  open access  

Parkes A, Wight D, Henderson M, Hart G. Explaining associations between adolescent substance use and condom use. Journal of Adolescent Health 2007;40:180e1-18

pubmed  open access  

Raab G M, Storkey H, Henderson M, Davis J, Elliot L. Development of instruments and procedures for a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the Zero Tolerance Respect package in Midlothian Primary Schools. Edinburgh, 2007

open access  


Henderson M. School effects on adolescent pupils' health behaviours and school processes associated with these effects [PhD], MRC Social and Public Health Sciences Unit 2006.

Wight D, Williamson LM, Henderson M. Parental influences on young people's sexual behaviour: a longitudinal analysis. Journal of Adolescence 2006;29:473-94



Henderson M, West P, Raab G.. School effects on health behaviours. Education and Health 2005;23:57-60

Parkes A, Henderson M, Wight D. Do sexual health services encourage teenagers to use condoms? A longitudinal study. Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care 2005;31:271-280

pubmed  open access  


Abraham C, Henderson M, Der G. Cognitive impact of a research-based school sex education programme. Psychology & Health 2004;19:689-703

Parkes A, Wight D, Henderson M. Teenagers' use of sexual health services: perceived need, knowledge and ability to access. Journal of Family Planning and Reproductive Health Care 2004;30:217-24

pubmed  open access  

Wight D, Henderson M. The diversity of young people's heterosexual behaviour. In: Duffy M, Burtney E, editors Young people and sexual health: social, political and individual contexts. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004:15-33.


Henderson M, Wight D, Raab G. Methodology for balanced randomisation: the SHARE trial. MRC/CSO Social and Public Health Sciences Unit Working Paper no. 11, Glasgow, 2003


Abraham C, Buston K, Hart G, Henderson M, Wight D, Raab G, Scott S. Overview from SHARE sex education project. Young people and sexual health: report of a deliberative seminar, 2002

Henderson M, Wight D, Raab G, Abraham C, Buston K, Hart G, Scott S. Heterosexual risk behaviour among young teenagers in Scotland. Journal of Adolescence 2002;25:483-494


Wight D, Raab G, Henderson M, Abraham C, Buston K, Hart G, Scott S. The limits of teacher-delivered sex education: interim behavioural outcomes from a randomised trial. BMJ 2002;324:1430-33

pubmed  open access  


Church S, Henderson M, Barnard M, Hart G. Violence by clients towards female prostitutes in different work settings: questionnaire survey. BMJ 2001;322:524-525



Wight D, Henderson M, Raab G, Abraham C, Buston K, Scott S, Hart G. Regretted sexual intercourse among young teenagers in Scotland: a cross-sectional survey. BMJ 2000;320:1243-4



Wight D, Buston K, Henderson M. The SHARE Project: a rigorous evaluation of teacher-led sex education. Sex Education Matters16 1998;10-11


Henderson M, Hutcheson G, Davies J. Alcohol and the workplace. European series 67, Copenhagen, 1996


Coggans N, Henderson M , Shewan D, McPherson A , McKellar S. Alcohol, aggression, personality and social context. London, 1994

Hutcheson G, Henderson M. Review of 'Drug Testing in the Workplace' by S Macdonald and P Roman. Alcohol and Alcoholism 1994


Shewan D, Henderson M, Davies J. Drug use and HIV/AIDS in prisons in Scotland, France, Italy and Spain: a comparative study. 1992


Coggans N, Shewan D, Henderson M, Davies JB. National evaluation of drug education in Scotland. ISDD Research Monograph Four. Institute for the Study of Drug Dependence., 1991.

Coggans N, Shewan D, Henderson M, Davies JB. Could do better: an evaluation of drug education. Druglink (ISDD) 1991:14-16

Coggans N, Shewan D, Henderson M, Davies JB. The impact of drug education in Scotland. British Journal of Addiction 1991;86:1099-1109

Ditton J, Farrow K, Forsyth AJM, Hammersley RH, Hunter G, Lavelle T, Mullen K, Smith I, Davies J, Henderson M, Morrison V, Bain D, Elliot L, Fox A, Geddes B, Green R, Taylor J, Dalgarno P, Ferguson I, Phillips S, Watt S. Scottish cocaine users: wealthy snorters or delinquent smokers?. Drug and Alcohol Dependence 1991;28:269-276