I have been lucky to work with some brilliant young minds over the last decade, and I’ve feel privileged to have been part of their research supervision teams (see Alumni page). Many of them have  gone on to take up great positions in academic and clinical settings. I’m currently supervising a large group of students conducting some really fantastic research projects in the research unit.

Samantha Flynn: Cancer experiences in people with an intellectual disability

Sam is undertaking mixed methods research to gain a better understanding of the experiences of cancer diagnosis and treatment in people with an intellectual disability. She is currently on the final study in this programme of research in which she is pilot testing an online communication skills training course for cancer care staff. Target award: PhD.

Rhian McHugh: Preferences for mindfulness audio recordings

Mindfulness is has a growing evidence base as a psychological intervention, and is gaining in popularity within the general public. But we don’t actually know much about how we can best support people to undertake regular mindfulness exercises. Rhian is hoping to add to this literature by undertaking a series of experiments to determine participants’ preferences for audio recordings to support mindfulness practice. Target award: MPhil.

Tony Whalley: Acceptance and mindfulness based approaches for initiating and maintaining engagement in exercise and physical activity

Tony is interested in how we might more effectively motivate people to undertake physical activity. Working from a Contextual Behavioural Science perspective, he has systematically reviewed the current literature, and is now undertaking  a series of lab experiments to test the effectiveness of brief interventions aimed at increasing motivation in the general public. Target award: PhD.

Sam Ashcroft: Emergent properties of relational frames – an assessment of ambiguity and incoherence

Sam is interested in how thoughts and ideas come together to form a sense of coherence in our understanding of the world. Using Relational Frame Theory, he is testing the hypothesis that conceptual coherence (in other words, how much pieces of information fit together in our minds) is important to provide a perception of overall meaning. Target award: PhD.

Will Kent: Acceptance and commitment coaching for oncology healthcare professionals

Working in a healthcare setting can put people at high risk of stress, burnout and compassion fatigue. This is problematic not only for staff wellbeing, but may also affect the standard of care provided to patients. In this programme of work, Will is developing and testing an Acceptance and Commitment Training (ACT) based coaching psychology intervention to reduce stress in healthcare professionals working in cancer care settings. Target award: PhD.

Joanna Wood: Priming effects on values generation in psychological therapy

Values clarification often forms an integral part of psychological intervention and a number of standard exercises have been developed to help clients work out which values are truly important to them. Joanna is undertaking experimental work to compare whether the nature of these exercises might result in a bias in the types of values that emerge from these exercises. Target award: MRes.

Jayne Joy: Loss of self in the context of caring for a family member at the end of life

As a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist, Jayne is interested in how we can maximise the effectiveness of components of psychological therapies. Her research is specifically focussing on how we target therapeutic shift in sense of self in Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) in the context of intervening to reduce loss of self in those caring for a family member at the end of life. Target award: PhD.

If you’d like to join this great group of researchers, click here for more information about how to register for an MRes, MPhil or PhD at the University of Chester.