The Psychology Research Institute offers supervision of research leading to a PhD degree on either a full-time (3 years) or part-time (6 years) basis. PhD research is based on independent, original, novel research carried out under the expert supervision and guidance of supervisors. All PhD Researchers are aligned to a recognised research group that addresses important theoretical and translational research questions to support and develop their learning.
There are opportunities to engage with fellow PhD Researchers, staff, and researchers in formal research seminars and informal discussions. We also support our PhD Researchers to develop their research skills and academic networks by collaborating with researchers in other UK and international universities, research centres, and relevant agencies. PhD Researchers on our programme are supported by a range of general and specific training programmes through the Researcher Development Programme to help develop research skills in theoretical rigour, in cutting edge methodologies, and to develop their employment prospects. PhD researchers can contribute to the teaching provision of the school, and can work towards a qualification which leads to Associate Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy. We have a Psychology PhD Researcher committee led by PhD Researchers for PhD Researchers to ensure a world class experience. We are committed to helping our PhD Researchers thrive in an inspiring, inclusive, diverse scientific environment. There are currently over 60 PhD Researchers being supervised by staff in the Psychology Research Institute.
Postgraduate research is located within the Psychology Research Institute. The Institute is a world-leading centre for applied psychological research drawing upon our cutting edge expertise in qualitative and quantitative methodologies and our theoretical rigour. Researchers are committed to multi-disciplinary approaches to help address complex psychological research questions and have developed extensive collaborative partnerships International centres of excellence to produce findings which translate to real societal benefit.
The School of Psychology and the Psychology Research Institute are well resourced to support PhD Researchers using a range of experimental and non-experimental research methods. The Institute also hosts the Research and Statistics Summer School, which runs annually and provides training in a range of contemporary research methods and statistics. The School of Psychology has an extensive research programme encompassing advanced statistical analysis of big data, experimental, and applied research including the Administrative Data Research Centre – NI, the Bamford Centre of Mental Health and Wellbeing, and staff working as part of the multidisciplinary team at the Institute for Mental Health Sciences.
Through considerable investment, the School houses state-of-the-art Psychological Sciences Laboratories (PsychLAB), consisting of a number of specific research environments. The Behavioural Insights Laboratory includes two eye-tracking suites (SMI and TOBII) with integrated biometric equipment. This technology can be used on or off Campus with recent research being conducted in schools and hospital environments. The Exercise and Human Performance Laboratory includes treadmill equipment, on-line metabolic and cardiovascular analysis capabilities, and biological measurement facilities. Our Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory houses transcranial magnetic and direct current stimulation equipment, muscle recording equipment (Tringo Wireless) direct stimulation equipment, and movement recording capabilities. The Child Development Laboratory is designed for young children and their parents to advance understanding in this area. In addition, the School has a number of social skills suites with audio and video recording equipment that can be used for observational social psychology research.
Researchers associated with this theme use large data sets to understand the nature of mental health conditions, the prevalence of mental health problems, and resilience and risk factors of mental health issues. In addition, there is a strong research program in health services provision, prevention, and intervention. Specific areas of interest include psychosis, trauma, and post-traumatic stress disorder, suicide and suicidal ideation, addictive behaviours, and the impact of childhood adversity on future mental health outcomes. This theme brings together researchers who have a wide range of theoretical perspectives, advanced statistical and qualitative methodological skills, and practical therapeutic experiences.