We currently offer the opportunity to gain a postgraduate degree by research at the level of MSc, MPhil or DPhil (PhD). Study can be on either a full-time or a part-time basis. The minimum periods of study for achieving these research degrees are as follows:
• MSc – 1 year full-time or 2 years part-time • MPhil – 2 years full-time or 4 years part-time • DPhil – 3 years full-time or 6 years part-time (this is our equivalent term for a PhD)
The Psychology Department fosters a culture of collaborative, multidisciplinary research, and you will join a vibrant community that includes regular work-in-progress seminars to foster an active research environment. You will join one of our four research hubs described below, all of which are engaged in inter-institutional collaborations, including some with non-academic partners such as health-care providers and music conservatoires.
We are happy to consider research proposals on a wide range of topics relevant to our hubs, but may also be looking to fill specific research roles in some areas. Contact us below for more details.
Our Research Hubs
‘CREATE’ (Centre for Research into Expertise Acquisition, Training and Excellence)
The main focus of the centre is the exploration of the drivers of excellence in performance (whether cognitive, creative or practice-based). We welcome applications from potential MSc and DPhil candidates across a wide range of related topic areas, including:
• Insight and creativity • The drivers of performance excellence and expertise development (e.g. in music, theatre, puzzle-solving, board-games and medicine) • Hobbies, motivations and characteristics of niche populations • Music psychology • Time perception and those with ‘natural’ time-keeping abilities
We have a number of external collaborative projects in the areas of creativity and performance, and also work with internal colleagues in Applied Computing and the University of Buckingham Medical School.
Centre for Health and Relationship Research
The main aim of the hub is to study the impact of the interpersonal world and support structures on health and well-being in clinical and non-clinical settings. This overarching focus has led to the study of topic areas such as:
• Prevalence, impact of and psychosocial challenges facing people following spinal cord injury • Biopsychosocial understanding of pain and developing interventions for successful pain management • Social norms as a predictor of health behaviours in young people • Social factors affecting uptake of health behaviours • The role of social support in living well with chronic conditions
Together, these projects represent a body of work which seeks to fight patient isolation and to understand health experiences in the context of a social world. The hub aims to identify methods for supporting patients as they live with long-term conditions, including through developing interventions, assessment techniques and knowledge dissemination. With connections and active research work taking part at four local NHS hospitals, we can offer excellent opportunities for research studies with tangible impact.
Emotion and Life-Span Relationships
The Emotion and Life-Span Relationships hub offers diverse research opportunities including:
• Cyberpsychology and Cyberbullying, including online gaming • Cyber versus real world behaviour • Social inference and emotion regulation • Interpersonal relationships, including dating, rejection, relationship maintenance and break down • Mental resilience and its relationship to social support
Psychology of Educational Development
In this hub, we study the cognitive processes, behavioural issues and developmental factors that affect learning, and how learning environments and individual differences influence educational outcomes. With a focus on the resilience, creativity and happiness of learners, as well as on Specific Learning Difficulties which might impact upon academic performance, we welcome applicants to study a wide range of topics with us, including:
• Children with Specific Learning Difficulties • Bullying and Cyberbullying in schools • Educating for Creativity • Children's understanding of Science • Excellence in Performance and Academic achievement • Resilience, Wellbeing and Positive education