Keele Psychology Seminar Series

Programme of Seminars 2021-2021

Semester 2

All seminars are scheduled to run 1:00-2:00pm.

Date Speaker Institution Title  Abstract 
27th January Dr Eleanor Huizeling Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Njjmegen, Netherlands Age-related changes in refocusing attention: oscillatory signatures and naturalistic relevance.

Natural scenes are visually complex and dynamic, frequently requiring us to switch from attending to events changing in time, to distributing attention to multiple locations in space. I will present our work investigating age-related changes in such attentional flexibility, specifically looking at changes to alpha and theta oscillatory signatures in magnetoencephalography (MEG) signal. Finally, I will demonstrate how the findings from our computer-based task in the MEG scanner relate to more naturalistic behaviour, during simulated driving.

Zoom meeting details:

Meeting ID: 834 3883 8222 Passcode: 929994One

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3rd February Professor Jacqueline Woolley The University of Texas at Austin Developmental origins of the fantasy-reality distinction

Zoom meeting details:

Meeting ID: 897 4907 5694 Passcode: 751194

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10th February Professor Ben Tatler University of Aberdeen Everyday vision: sampling and encoding information in natural settings

The human behavioural repertoire is intricately linked to the gaze control system: many behaviours require visual information at some point in their planning or execution. The information that we require for successful completion of behavioural goals is likely to be drawn from two sources: visual information available on the retina for the current fixation, and information stored from previous fixations. Thus in order to understand how information is gathered and used from the environment, we must understand both how gaze is allocated in order to sample information, and the fate of information once sampled but no longer fixated. When considering these questions, it is appropriate to consider vision not as an isolated system—as is often the case in laboratory-based paradigms—but as part of a broader network of vision, action, and planning during interactions with the environment. Thus visual behaviour is situated within the context of our task goals, our actions and the environment in which the behaviour is conducted. We will discuss effects of task goals, actions and environmental context on visual sampling and memory, drawing upon evidence from both laboratory-based research and studies of natural behaviour. A clear emerging theme is that if our goal is to understand how vision supports our day-to-day activities, then it is important to study vision in the context of natural, everyday behaviours. If we simply the context in which we conduct our experiments then we alter the manner in which the world is sampled and encoded to memory.

Zoom meeting details:

Meeting ID: 899 5779 6411 Passcode: 955067

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17th February Professor Helen Bedford University College London TBC  
3rd March TBC TBC TBC  
10th March

Professor Victoria Bourne

Royal Holloway University of London Attitudes and anxiety towards studying statistics: Who gets anxious, what are the consequences of anxiety and what are we really measuring

Psychology is a popular subject for undergraduate studies in the UK, and statistics is compulsory for degrees accredited by the British Psychological Society. However, up to 80% of psychology undergraduates experience statistics anxiety (Onwuegbuzie & Wilson, 2003), around 40% of new psychology students do not realise that statistics is part of the psychology curriculum (Ruggeri et al., 2008), and statistics is typically perceived as the hardest aspect of a psychology degree (Barry, 2012). This makes the teaching of statistics challenging, but to develop effective teaching strategies, it is necessary to first gain a full understanding of why some students are more vulnerable to high levels of anxiety. In this talk, I will discuss three elements of my research into this area of pedagogy. First, to explore the possible predictors of high levels of statistics anxiety and to identify people who may be “at risk” of anxiety. Second, to examine the academic consequences of having high levels of statistics anxiety. Third, to reflect on the way in which statistics anxiety is currently measured (the Statistics Anxiety Rating Scale, STARS), and to present newly acquired data on the validation of a new measure: the Attitudes Towards Learning About Statistics scale (ATLAS).

Zoom meeting details:

Meeting ID: 847 8150 1734 Passcode: 236232

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17th March Dr Humera Iqbal University College London TBC  
21st April Dr Tom Nadarzynski Westminster University  Vaccine acceptability, uptake and completion amongst men who have sex with men: A systematic review and a theoretical framework

Due to an increased risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men (MSM) have been targeted to receive vaccinations against human papillomavirus, meningitis C and hepatitis A/B. Our research aimed to compare the levels of acceptability, initiation and completion for vaccines targeted at MSM and to identify associated factors. Four databases were explored in January 2020 to identify vaccination behaviours and associated factors among MSM. A meta-analysis was performed, and factors were synthesised to inform a theoretical framework. Seventy-eight studies, mostly from the USA, were included. The average vaccine acceptability was 63% (median=72%, range: 30%-97%), vaccine uptake was 45% (median=42%, range: 5%-100%) and vaccine completion was 47% (median=45%, range: 12%-89%). Specific demographic, behavioural and healthcare-related factors were identified, such as access to sexual networks and specialist sexual health services. Knowledge and psychological variables (i.e. risk perceptions, attitudes, vaccine-related beliefs) were correlated with acceptability, uptake and completion. Despite overall high levels of acceptability, uptake and completion were below targets outlined by cost-effectiveness modelling across all recommended vaccines. Addressing multiple levels of determinants outlined in our theoretical framework can guide interventions to increase vaccine completion among MSM.

Zoom Meeting details:

Meeting ID: 820 2413 9641 Passcode: 694952

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28th April Dr Jenny Groarke Queen’s University Belfast

Music and wellbeing: a program of research

Zoom meeting details:

Meeting ID: 849 9976 3255 Passcode: 462612

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