General Research Seminars

2020-2021 Seminars

The Department of Psychology hosts a research seminar series in which we invite colleagues to share their research. These seminars typically run on a Thursday morning from 11:00-12:00noon (UK time)

If you’re a student, member of staff or a visitor to Edge Hill, you are very welcome to attend. Seminars usually take place online via Microsoft Teams. To attend these, please ensure you register your attendance to any given seminar with our seminar coordinator Dr Gray Atherton at least 24 hours prior to the event. This will ensure the joining link and instructions can be sent to you. When joining the event, please ensure your online account name is the same as your registered name to help us with the joining process. Please note, we are not anticipating that seminars will be recorded.

26th November 2020 (11:00-12:00noon GMT) Dr Reshanne Reeder

Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Edge Hill University

The ganzflicker experience: A window into the mind’s eye

The mind’s eye is an elusive subjective experience; as such, most of us are unaware that there is more than one way to imagine the sensory world. People who have no mind’s eye (aphantasia) must rely on non-sensory imagination (symbols, words) to simulate the world, whereas people who have an extremely vivid mind’s eye (hyperphantasia) may get lost in visual fantasies on a daily basis. The mind’s eye is now thought to be a spectrum, with different abilities offering different advantages and disadvantages in daily life and across the lifespan. An elegant method I have adapted as a window to the rich individual differences of the mind’s eye is the “Ganzflicker” experience, a rhythmic alternation of colors that can elicit intense and vivid pseudo-hallucinations. Over the past year, I’ve collected over 200 individual experiences from people across the spectrum of imagery abilities. Results have consistently shown extremely strong evidence that people with aphantasia are less prone to pseudo-hallucinations compared to people with imagery. Among those who have visuals, people with imagery see more vivid and complex pseudo-hallucinations, and experience more altered states of consciousness, compared to people with aphantasia. This study has important implications for understanding pathological hallucinations, which are unpredictable and debilitating to normal life. Lastly, I will briefly discuss a proposal to create a wholly immersive Ganzflicker environment, which will address the limitations of current computer-based experiments, and also engage the public in new scientific discoveries.

10th December 2020 (11:00-12:00noon GMT) Dr Liz Bates 

Principal Lecturer in Psychology, University of Cumbria

Dr Liz Bates photo

Things got a whole lot worse after the breakup: Men’s experiences of post-separation abuse

There is now significant literature that details the prevalence of male victims of intimate partner violence (IPV), including their experiences of physical violence (e.g., Hines et al., 2007), psychological and emotional abuse (e.g., Bates, 2020) and the impact of this on physical and mental health (e.g., Hines & Douglas, 2011). The aim of this talk is to discuss the lesser known area of how men’s experiences of abuse can continue and change post separation. This will involve presenting some findings from two recent studies that have explored this including key findings such as experiences of alienation from their children, ongoing experiences of violence and coercive control, and the impact of these experiences on men and their children. Findings are discussed in the context of current legislation, policy and practice.

28th January 2021 (11:00-12:00noon GMT) Ivan Sebalo

PhD Researcher in Psychology, University of Central Lancashire

Ivan Sebalo

Conspiracies: theory and application

The COVID-19 crisis has demonstrated the consequences of people acting on conspiracy theories. While some have burned the 5G towers, others denied the existence of the virus. This demonstrates the importance of the beliefs people hold, as the actions derived from them can be harmful not only to the actor, but also to others. Fortunately, there is a growing body of research investigating the motivations behind endorsement of conspiracy theories as well as factors facilitating their entrenchment. The core of the latter is represented by the three needs: existential, epistemic, and social. Meanwhile, the latter includes: analytic thinking, societal changes, stressors, and feelings of control.

Nevertheless, there is less research that investigates prevention of actions based on conspiracy theories. Consequently, the presentation will first highlight the main factors related to adoption of conspiracy theories. Afterwards, potential approaches to interventions targeting behaviour based on conspiracy theories will be outlined. Lastly, the results of the preliminary study aimed at investigating these approaches will be presented with an additional discussion of methodological and ethical issues encountered.


25th March 2021 (11:00-12:00noon GMT) Prof Nick Hulbert-Williams

Professor of Behavioural Medicine, University of Chester

Improving the psychological wellbeing of people affected by cancer: developing acceptable, effective and tailored intervention content using single-case and cohort designs

The literature demonstrating the effectiveness of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) as an established psychological intervention framework continues to grow. ACT fits well with current data on the experience of psychological distress in people affected by cancer, and yet evidence for the use of ACT within these populations remains sparse (see Hulbert-Williams et al, 2018). A higher-quality evidence base, established through robust and theoretically-informed research, is needed, including the exploration not only of effectiveness but of processes and mechanisms of effect too. In striving for our interventions to be clinically implementable and impactful, research also need to address the reality that much of what we develop is too costly and specialist in nature, and that more pragmatic methods are needed.

In this talk I will give an overview of why I’ve moved (temporarily) away from trial methodology to build an evidence base, and intervention framework, for using ACT in cancer settings using more basic-science methodology. I will talk about data emerging from our ongoing theoretical modelling cohort study of cancer survivors and our single-case methodology research in palliative care settings (the BEACHeS Study). In doing so, I will advocate for a return to basic science methods to develop improved psychosocial oncology interventions. We must learn to walk before we can run, even though this sometimes feels at odds with broader pressures for immediate impact in real-world settings.


2019-2020 Seminars

2nd October 2019 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Dermot Lynott

Senior Lecturer in Psychology, Lancaster University

We have all heard of body language, the nonverbal cues we give to others. What about how our bodies and language affect our own cognition?

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

16th October 2019 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Joanne Meredith

Lecturer in Psychology, University of Wolverhampton

“Agree! Vote OUT!”: Discursive practices in Brexit discussions in online newspaper comment threads

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

6th November 2019 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Thomas Webb

Department of Psychology, University of Sheffield

Using psychology to understand why pet dogs become overweight

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

20th November 2019 (1:00-2:00pm) Prof Nick Donnelly

Professor of Psychology, Liverpool Hope University

Using visual perception research to enhance the detection of threats in public spaces

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)


29th January 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Angel Tan

Psychology PhD Researcher, Edge Hill University

Using precision teaching to improve nursery staff proficiency in signing

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

5th February 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Simon Hunter

Senior Lecturer in Psychology, University of Strathclyde

Adolescent Screen Media Use and Psycho-Social Adjustment

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

19th February 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Prof Simon Liversedge

Professor of Psychology, University of Central Lancashire

Does lexical processing occur serially or in parallel in reading?

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)


[CANCELLED] 4th March 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr John Michael

Assistant Professor in Department of Philosophy, Warwick University

Coordination and the Sense of Commitment

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

[CANCELLED] 4th March 2020 (2:00-3:00pm) Dr Thomas Wolf

Central European University

Joint Music-Making and Temporal Coordination in Joint Action

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

[CANCELLED] 11th March 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Prof Nick Hulbert-Williams

Professor of Behavioural Medicine, University of Chester

Title: TBC

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

[CANCELLED] 18th March 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Martin Graff

Reader in Psychology, University of South Wales

The Psychology of Romance in the Age of Smartphones

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

[CANCELLED] 1st April 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Dr Harry Farmer

University of Bath

Title: TBC

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

29th April 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Jess Pope

 Psychology PhD Researcher, Edge Hill University

Psychological impact of cancers in adolescence and young adulthood

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

6th May 2020 (1:00-2:00pm) Prof Pamela Heaton

Professor of Psychology, Goldsmiths University

Title: TBC

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

10th June 2020 (Time TBC) Ben Ford

Psychology PhD Researcher, Edge Hill University

Manipulating supra-individual factors in visual perspective taking

Room: LP 2.49 (Law and Psychology Building)

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