Psychology graduates will present work at major international conference

Dominic Aldridge and Katie Emmison with tutor Adam Qureshi

Dominic Aldridge and Katie Emmison with tutor Adam Qureshi

Katie Emmison and Dominic Aldridge, who graduated with upper second class honours in BSc (Hons) Psychology, will make presentations based upon their dissertations at a major national BPS (British Psychological Society) conference.

Katie, who has already secured graduate employment at MAC Clinical Research as a Psychology Assistant, said: “My lecturer Adam Qureshi encouraged me to submit my work for the conference and I was surprised but delighted when it was accepted. I’m both nervous and excited for September! It’s great to be graduating today and starting a career in psychology.”

Dominic Aldridge, who intends to go on to further study, said: “This opportunity made me think more about continuing my psychology studies and research. My tutors at Edge Hill have been really encouraging and I’m excited to be graduating with a 2:1 today.”

The work Katie and Dominic will present involves Theory of Mind – the ability to understand that other people have different mental states, knowledge and beliefs to ourselves – and Executive Function – memory, attention, planning and inhibition, said to be responsible for goal-directed behaviour – and the relationship between the two.

Katie looked at the relationship between theory of mind, executive function (specifically inhibition) and schizotypy. The latter comprises personality traits that are analogous to symptoms/factors that are found in schizophrenia, but are present in the ‘typical’ population (i.e. students).

Dominic looked at the relationship between theory of mind, executive function (specifically memory) and age (he compared young v old adults). Research suggests that executive function ability declines with age, as does theory of mind.

The 31st BPS Cognitive Psychology Section Annual Conference takes place at Nottingham Trent University this September.

Departmental research on social identity and digital gaming features in a new book.

The Health and Social Issues Research Group includes a research theme on social identity, and the applications to a range of behaviours, including reducing prejudice and discrimination in different populations and in understanding drinking cultures of sports teams. Additionally, Dr Linda Kaye‘s research has been considering how social identity underpins the social experiences associated with digital gaming, and how these are related to positive psychosocial outcomes for self-esteem and psychological well-being. Her research has recently been documented in a new book published by IGI Global entitled: “Cases on the Societal Effects of Persuasive Games“. Her research provides an account of the way in which specific digital games promote the development of friendships and their function in fostering social identity formation.




Prof. Beattie’s insights into body language considered at a recent conference

Prof. Geoff Beattie gave a talk entitled “Visible Thought: Rethinking the Nature of Body Language” at the recent Leadership Conference at Edge Hill University earlier this month. He challenged much of the popular thinking about body language in the light of scientific evidence and presented a new perspective on this very important topic. He had begun to explore this issue in his book “Visible Thought“, published by Routledge in 2003, but a new updated version of this book will be published in 2015. It will be called “Rethinking Body Language: How Hand Movements Reveal Hidden Thoughts”.

“Get the Edge: How simple changes transform your life”

Professor Geoff Beattie’s book “Get the Edge: How simple changes transform your life” has just been published in Brazil. The title translates as “All Change Starts With You”. It’s an International best-seller with Chinese and Taiwanese translations already in existence, and with a Korean translation out later this year. Get the edge

Final year students celebrate record success

We are delighted to announce that our final year students have this year obtained a record number of excellent degrees. Across our three undergraduate programmes, 73% of our students have gained a 1st or 2:1 honours. We would like to extend our congratulations to all our students on their successes and we wish them all the best in their future endeavours.

Final year Psychology student is accepted at a BPS conference

We are delighted that another of our final year students has been accepted to present his dissertation research at the BPS Cognitive Section Conference in September. Dominic Aldridge will be giving his talk on “Differences in theory of mind performance and executive function in older adults”. His supervisor, Dr Adam Qureshi will also be at the conference presenting his work to delegates.

Department receives funding for research on factors associated with coping in health professionals

The Department has recently received funding which aims to assess factors associated with coping in health professionals within the NHS. Patricia Hornby-Atkinson and Dr Helen Wall will be leading the project entitled; “The Moderating Role of Personality in Relation to Breach & Violation of the Psychological Contract and its Impact on Coping in a Health Setting”. Within this, they hope to reveal influential factors which may aid coping strategies for NHS practitioners.

There’s an App for that!

The Department of Psychology has received funding to conduct research examining real-time gaming experiences using specifically-designed App technology. The research, being run by Dr Linda Kaye, Dr Rebecca Monk and Dr Helen Wall, will be asking gamers to complete real-time assessments of their emotions and cognitions across a range of different gaming contexts. It is expected this will help to further understand how social contexts impact on experiences of mood, flow and outcome expectancies within gameplay.

Department receives funding for state-of-the-art electromagnetic brain equipment

Dr Stergios Makris has recently received funding for some new state-of-the-art equipment which can modulate neural activity. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) applies weak electrical currents to generate an electromagnetic field, which stimulates neural activity within the brain. This technique is currently being investigated as a treatment for a variety of conditions, such as strokes and migraines.

Dr Makris will be using this technique within his own research, particularly in investigating the neural processes associated with visual and motor expertise in elite athletes and the neural make-up associated with body image and eating disorders.

Psychology staff present research on the psychology of environmental sustainability

Prof. Geoff Beattie and Laura McGuire both presented papers at the ‘20th International Interdisciplinary Conference on the Environment‘ in Denver Colorado in last week. The title of Geoff’s paper was ‘Mobilising the unconscious mind in the fight against climate change’. The title of Laura’s paper was ‘Climate change initiatives. Is education ever enough?’ Both papers were extremely well received by the very international multidisciplinary audience. There were speakers from the U.S., Nigeria, China, Japan, Korea, Puerto Rico, New Mexico, Greece, Thailand, Cameroon, Lebanon, India, Nepal and, of course, the U.K.