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Keele Psychology News
Geraldine Leighton and Dr. Alexandra Lamont
To enable the results of our research to have impact where it might influence children’s experiences of learning a musical instrument, a report was published in January in ‘ARCO’, the journal of the European String Teachers’ Association (British Branch). The project explored the musical self-identity of children from two ‘musical’ English, multi-cultural, inner-city primary schools, with a questionnaire asking about the children’s musical activities, both in and out of school. We also asked them to draw a picture of ‘a musician’.
These gave us insights into their concept not only of ‘a musician’ but also more specifically of themselves as musicians.
Dr Sue Sherman and colleagues from the NHS have recently published an article in Cytopathology entitled "The invasive cervical cancer review: psychological issues surrounding disclosure."
This article was chosen as Editor's Choice and can be downloaded free during April and May from the Cytopathology website.
Please contact Dr Sue Sherman for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr Emee Vida Estacio has recently presented her action research project at the World Health Organisation’s Health Literacy Network in Liverpool. The project entitled, ‘Action on Health Literacy in Stoke-on-Trent’ is part of a wider health literacy campaign commissioned by Stoke-on-Trent City Council which aimed to explore the impact of health literacy on effective diabetes management among young men and South Asian men.
The WHO Health Literacy Network is part of the Healthy Cities Movement which is a global movement that engages local authorities and their partners in health development. Within Europe there are over 90 Healthy Cities and 30 National Healthy Cities Networks with designated status from WHO Europe.
Dr Jim Grange has been successful in obtaining £2,500 in research funding from the Experimental Psychology Society for a pilot study investigating age-related decline in attention. The project is due to start in May 2013, with the help of Keele MSc student Natalie Deakin.
The project will use innovative experimental methodology to definitively assess whether healthy ageing is coupled with difficulty in controlling attention in multi-task situations—the first stage in developing intervention strategies to alleviate such difficulties.
The findings of a ground-breaking study of 13 to 14-year-olds in 13 Staffordshire schools, which revealed worrying levels of domestic abuse among young people, were recently presented by Dr Claire Fox at the Annual Conference of the British Psychological Society in Harrogate.
As part of the research, the effectiveness of a schools-based programme called 'Relationships without Fear' was assessed. It was found that domestic abuse prevention education was effective in changing girls' and boys' attitudes towards domestic abuse and encouraging more of them to seek help. The research supports the call for domestic abuse prevention education to be compulsory in schools.
The research attracted a great deal of media attention including interviews on BBC Radio Stoke, Signal Radio, BBC Midlands Today and pieces in the Telegraph and Guardian.
The winners in 2012/13 are:
Brain and Cognition: Joseph Dance for his poster entitled “The effect of stress on false memories” (supervisor Dr Andrew Rutherford)
Social and Developmental Psychology: Emma-Louise Jones for her poster entitled “Young children’s perceptions and experiences of social networking sites” (supervisor Dr Claire Fox)
Health and Wellbeing: Clare Minshall for her poster entitled “Knowledge of cervical cancer and human papillomavirus in older and younger women” (supervisor Dr Sue Sherman)
The award for best improver from first year to second year 2011/12 goes to Arun Ghale. Current third year Arun improved by an average of 23% per psychology module last year. He receives a £20 book token.
The award for best psychology second year student 2011/12 goes to Robert Pain. Current thirs year Robert averaged 79% per psychology module last year. He receives a £20 book token.
The best psychology first year student award 2011/12 is awarded jointly to Rachel Emma Curtis and Emily Steer. Current second years Rachel and Emily each averaged 79% per psychology module last academic year. Each receives a £15 book token. Congratulations!
The School of Psychology is delighted to welcome Dr Lauren Owen from Swinburne University of Technology, Australia, to come and work at Keele for 2 years carrying out research assessing the cognitive consequences of the alcohol hangover.
This has been made possible thanks to a successful application for a European Union 7th Framework Marie Curie Research Fellowship, written by Keele's Dr Richard Stephens and Dr James Grange, as well as Lauren herself. The funding awarded totals £150,000.
A very warm welcome to Dr Donna Berry who joins us from the School of Life Sciences at Northumbria University. Her research focuses on the inhibition of inappropriate behaviour and on the ability to ignore distraction across a variety of tasks and settings. Donna has previously studied these abilities by tracking the eye movements of typical children and adults, and those with neuropsychological disorders. She is currently investigating other factors that may affect these abilities.
The British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy has awarded "endorsed" status to a new CPD course at Keele (writes Dr John Hegarty, Head of the School of Psychology).
"Nature as co-therapist" is a 3 day continuing and professional development course for counsellors and psychotherapists. The course builds on research at Keele into the value of connecting with nature as a spiritually-meaningful and de-stressing resource.
During the course, participants are encouraged to develop their own connectedness with nature, as well as to explore how best clients can build on their own awareness of the natural world.
Formerly at the Department of Social Sciences at Loughborough Uni, we warmly welcome DR ALEXANDRA KENT to Keele.
Dr Kent belonged to the "Discourse and Rhetoric Group" at Loughborough and will continue her interests in narrative methods whilst at Keele.
Alexandra's current research involves analysing videos of family mealtimes to explore adult-child talk - with an especial focus on the delivery and responses to directives within the mealtime conversation.
Dr Hall ("Skip") Beck will be at Keele University in the School of Psychology until Christmas. Skip teaches psychology at Appalachian State University (ASU) in North Carolina, at the town of Boone (named after the famous frontiersman, Daniel Boone).
Accompanying Skip is a large group of psychology exchange students from ASU who will be studying modules in psychology.
Skip's research interests lie in the area of student retention in higher education and he has co-developed the "College Persistence Inventory".
Dr Beck is also known for looking into the history of "Little Albert", the well-known subject of a conditioning experiment by Behaviourist John B Watson in the 1920s.
Did Little Albert really exist? Ask Skip for a coffee and find out!
Students will be able to choose an innovative module in "Psychology and Community Action" from next semester (writes Dr John Hegarty).
Following a successful pilot last year, the School of Psychology has teamed up with the Students Union Volunteering unit and local housing provider ASPIRE, to offer students the chance to volunteer as part of their degree.
Students will be given a training in relevant interpersonal skills and then introduced to older people (who will also be volunteers!) happy to share their life story.
Older people taking part will have a nicely-produced "life story" to share with family and friends, students will have gained interviewing and listening skills as well as a privileged insight into local Potteries history.
Professor John Wearden led a special feature on Time in the August issue of The Psychologist - the magazine of the British Psychological Society. The special feature includes an extensive interview with Professor Waerden plus four articles by experts on their current research on the nature of time.
Professor Wearden ends his interview with the words: 'Time is all you've got; if you want to see a place, you should go'. Read the article - it's on-line at www.bps.org.uk
Dr Sue Sherman from the School of Psychology recently spent 2 weeks at Umeå University in Sweden where she was a guest lecturer teaching Cognitive Science students on their Applied Cognitive Psychology module. The trip was funded by Umeå University who had invited applications from 19 EU-wide institutions "to increase the quality of teaching at our department and to increase collaboration with our partner departments". While Sue was there she also gave an invited talk entitled "False memories increase over time… sometimes".
Dr Alexandra Lamont (Psychology) has just started a five-year term as
Editor of the journal Psychology of Music. This journal, published by
Sage in association with the Society for Education, Music and Psychology
Research, has grown significantly in submissions, readership and citations
in recent years. It received its first Impact Factor of 1.182 in the 2010
Journal Citation Reports, and Dr Lamont hopes to take the journal from
strength to strength over the coming years.
The British Psychological Society has awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award to Professor Chris Cullen who is Professor of Clinical Psychology at Keele University and Director of Psychological Services for North Staffordshire NHS. Professor Cullen was appointed to Keele in 1995. Prior to that he was SSMH Chair in Learning Difficulties at the University of St. Andrews. Professor Cullen has been President of the Society as well as Chair of its Division of Clinical Psychology. He was also President of the British Association for Cognitive and Behavioural Psychotherapies. Throughout his career he has been very active on a wide range of committees but he also has an extensive publication record particularly in the field of complex learning disabilities. It was for his distinguished contribution both to the profession of psychology and to the British Psychological Society over many years that he received this very prestigious award.
Professor Michael Murray has just returned from Leipzig, Germany where he gave a Keynote Lecture at the International Conference on 'Health for all – a challenge for municipalities and regional authorities'.
The subject of Professor Murray’s lecture was ‘Developing opportunities for social interaction among older people’.
The conference was jointly organised by Leipzig University of Applied Science and the Saxonian Network for Health Promotion and was attended by participants from throughout Germany and neighbouring countries.
Professor Michael Murray recently gave a keynote lecture at the International Congress on Culture, Health and Wellbeing in Turku, Finland. This congress was part of Turku’s European Capital of Culture programme. The congress attracted over 200 people. Professor Murray’s lecture was on ‘Arts, health and social action’. He also gave another paper with his colleague Ari Vanaanen on the health impact of participation in arts activities.
Dr Richard Stephens appears in episode 3 of Fry's Planet Word series first shown on BBC2 on Sunday 9th October. Richard runs Stephen Fry and Brian Blessed through some of the Keele psychology swearing and pain experiments - creating a heady mix of ice water and profanity! This episode is available on BBC iplayer until 24 October (see http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01614w9)
Keele University has moved into the Top Ten of UK universities for student satisfaction.
90% of Keele students are satisfied with their courses, compared with 83% nationally.
Keele students were particularly pleased with the intellectual stimulation that their course offered and the quality of feedback they receive from academic staff. Students also indicated that they felt Keele's courses made them more confident personally and equipped them to deal with a breadth of challenges that modern day graduates are required to face.
‘Preventing Domestic Abuse: Working with Children and Young People’, 24th June 2011, Keele University
Keele University is hosting an event on 24th June 2011 which focuses on the prevention of domestic abuse. The event will bring together over forty delegates who represent both local and national organisations in the areas of domestic abuse research, policy and practice. The workshop’s presentations will focus on working with children and young people in reducing their risk of becoming involved in domestic abuse as adolescents and adults. The event will include a presentation on the first stage of the ‘From Boys to Men’ research study. This study, led by Prof. David Gadd (University of Manchester), Dr. Claire Fox (Keele University) and Prof. Ian Butler (University of Bath), explores why some boys grow up to be domestic abuse perpetrators when others do not and how we can change the attitudes and feelings that give rise to abusive tendencies among adolescents.
Dr Sue Sherman presented her research on false memory at the British Psychological Society conference in Glasgow on 5th May. The New Scientist picked up on it and published a brief report on it in their magazine this week. The research reported found that you can create false memories for non-presented brand names (e.g., Carling) in the laboratory by presenting related brand names (e.g., Budweiser, Grolsch, Foster’s). Over time (a week later) false memories went up, whilst correct memories went down.
You can read the full article at http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn20488-advertisers-beware-people-think-of-competitors-brands-when-they-see-yours.html
Drs Claire Fox and Sue Sherman from the School of Psychology have each been awarded a British Psychological Society (BPS) Undergraduate Research Assistantship bursary of £1600 enabling two 2nd year Psychology students to get ‘hands on’ experience of research during the summer vacation, to gain an insight into scientific research and to encourage them to consider an academic career. Claire will be working with student Lucy James on a project to examine the links between children’s humour styles and the problem of bullying in schools, whilst Sue will be working with student Katie Wright-Bevans examining the creation of false memories for television advertisements. The BPS scheme is a prestigious award (only 10 are awarded each year across the country) that marks the students out as future researchers and potential academics. In the award letters, the Chair of the BPS Research Board stated that both applications were ‘exceptional’.
Prof. Ken Rotenberg and Dr. Sally Sargeant have been awarded a Marie Curie Intra-European Fellowship for a project on Paediatric Medical Trust (PMT). The research represents the first comprehensive examination of the role that interpersonal trust plays in the treatment of children with serious illnesses. The PMT project also will help redress the scarcity of professionals in Paediatric Medical Psychology.
Prof Ken Rotenberg's new book is titled "Interpersonal Trust During Childhood and Adolescence".
Interpersonal trust during childhood and adolescence is crucial to human functioning.
This book presents current research in the growing field of interpersonal trust during childhood and adolescence, highlights its importance for researchers from a wide range of nationalities and cultures, and promotes further research by future generations.