Funded Bursary for a Trainee on the Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University

An exciting opportunity has arisen through collaborations between the Centre for Health Psychology at Staffordshire University and The Hollies Pupil Referral Unit for a bursary for two years for a full time trainee Health Psychologist. The trainee will be based within The Hollies Pupil Referral Unit in Stafford.

The Hollies PRU is a double district PRU serving the Stafford and South Staffordshire districts. We provide education for any young person without a school place. We currently serve 13 secondary schools, 7 middle schools and all primary schools. The Hollies is maintained by Staffordshire County Council and provides education for children who are excluded, risk of exclusion, or otherwise unable to attend a mainstream or special maintained school. The local authority has a duty under section 19 of the Education Act 1996 to provide suitable education for children of compulsory school age who cannot attend school. Very often such pupils are described as displaying EBD – Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties, exasperated by unsettled domestic situations, a propensity towards criminal behaviour, bullying, or (conversely) having been the victim of bullying. A PRU is treated the same as any other type of school, subject to the same inspections from Ofsted. Since September 2010, some PRUs are referred to as “Short Stay Schools”, although the government still broadly refers to them as PRUs or Alternative Provision (APs). We currently have 57 pupils aged 11-16 on roll and 10 primary pupils.

The work will involve developing face-to-face and group interventions to promote physical health with students, developing health psychology-related training for students and staff, and conducting research to explore factors influencing aspects of physical health of this group of students. The role will also involve supporting some lessons and supporting the class teacher, contributing to staff and multi-agency meetings and contributing to whole school CPD. The candidate would be expected to engage with the school, and take part in all aspects of the school day.

The role will be undertaken in conjunction with training as a full-time student on the Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University. The bursary is fixed at £12,000 per year, for two years, and presents a unique opportunity for a highly motivated and professional person to complete their health psychology training, directly supported by The Hollies. (The bursary comprises fees of £6,200 per year paid and a contribution of £5,800 per annum towards living and study costs).


Person Specification

In order to apply for this bursary, applicants must have the following skills, experience and qualifications (click here for the bursary advert):

Essential

• Hold an honours degree recognised by the British Psychological Society as offering Graduate Basis for Chartership;

• Have completed British Psychological Society accredited Stage 1 training in Health Psychology. That is either have been awarded a BPS accredited MSc in Health Psychology with a grade of Merit (or 60% average ) or above, or the BPS Stage 1 qualification in health psychology with a grade of 60% or more.

Desirable

• An interest in working with children who are disaffected and disadvantaged aged 4-16, often with mental health issues;
• An interest in collaborative working.

Please note: students whose first language is not English must have achieved a minimum of Level 7 across all categories on IELTS. Once successful, the applicant would be expected to pass all statutory clearances such as DBS, Occupational Health Checks, Self-Declaration of General Good Character and Good Health Form, and Contract of Professional Behaviour before they engage with the programme.


To Apply

To apply please send or e-mail a covering letter and CV with contact details of two referees to Dr Rachel Povey (r.povey@staffs.ac.uk) by noon on 18th July 2017.

Interviews will be held in Stoke-on-Trent on 20th July 2017.

For any further information, please contact Dr Rachel Povey (r.povey@staffs.ac.uk).


Staffordshire University – The Home of Health Psychology

Staffordshire University’s Centre for Health Psychology is a centre of excellence for teaching and research in Health Psychology, and is home to Staffordshire’s BPS Accredited Stage 1 MSc in Health Psychology and Stage 2 Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology. The Centre for Health Psychology is part of the Staffordshire Centre for Psychological Research.

Keep updated with the latest Health Psychology news from Staffordshire University via following us on @StaffsPsych and via the #HealthPsychStaffs hashtag.

For further information about Health Psychology courses and research at Staffordshire University please visit the following webpages:

Professor David Clark-Carter wins a BPS Lifetime Achievement Award!

Staffordshire University’s Professor David Clark-Carter will receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the British Psychological Society for his contributions to teaching and research methods nationally and internationally.

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David has worked at Staffordshire University since 1989 and is currently the Professor of Psychological Research Methods. Throughout this time David has inspired generations of students and his seminal text Quantitative Psychological Research: the Complete Student’s Companion is popular across many institutions.

From the development of a half degree in psychology on a Modern Studies course, through to the first ever BPS accredited Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology and MSc in Health Psychology, David has been central to course and programme development at Staffordshire University’s Centre for Health Psychology.

Dr Amy Burton, Course Director for the MSc in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University, was part of the team who nominated David. She commented:

Having studied both my BSc and MSc at Staffordshire University I have experienced first-hand David’s approach to supporting and educating students. It is a pleasure to work alongside David on our MSc and Professional Doctorate Health Psychology courses and see our students benefit from the inspiration and support I valued in my own student journey.”

Judy David, Academic Group Leader for Undergraduate Psychology Programmes added:

“David’s influence with psychological research methods education runs to literally thousands of researchers, academics, students and professionals, in the field of Psychology. His influence on Psychology as a Science cannot be overstated; he has shaped the discipline as a whole. We are so proud to have him on our team here at Staffordshire.”

Outside of the University David has also provided quality assurance for the BPS Accredited Qualifications, contributing to syllabus design and acting as Chief Examiner for BPS Qualifying Examination Research Methods module.

On accepting the award, David said:

“My approach to education has always been to try to empower the next generation of psychologists so that they feel they can use their subject to solve problems involving humans, regardless of the domain.  This notion has guided my approach to public engagement in that I try to show how psychology can address everyday issues from its unique perspective.

“In addition to the joy of seeing those I’ve taught go on to do great things, I have benefitted, as the only way to know whether you truly understand something is to try to explain it to someone else.  I am extremely honoured to be given this award.”

Find out more about Staffordshire University’s range of Psychology courses here.

This is a reposting of a Press Release from Staffordshire University and the British Psychological Society.


Interested in Psychology? Come to an Open Day & find out more about Psychology courses at Staffordshire University.

Curious about how psychologists test and observe behaviour? Thinking about taking a Psychology degree or a related course?

Come to one of Staffordshire University’s Open Days and find out more! Book your place via: www.staffs.ac.uk/openyourmind/

“Like being in a foreign country”: Communication Issues for People who have had Strokes

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Dr Rachel Povey

Trainee Health Psychologist Louise Clancy together with her supervisor Dr Rachel Povey (Senior Lecturer in Health Psychology) are conducting research into the experiences of stroke patients with communication difficulties. Louise, whose placement is at Bradford Hospitals NHS Trust, has already conducted a systematic review and an interview study to examine patients’ communication difficulties, and is now recruiting for a quantitative study which looks at the differences in people with and without communication difficulties after having a stroke.

Communication difficulties after having a stroke are very common with about a third of stroke patients having problems with communicating including speaking, reading and understanding what other people are saying (known as aphasia). The interest for this research came from Louise’s experiences of working in a stroke rehabilitation setting both in the UK and Australia.

Louise explains: “via working in stroke care settings and conducting research in this area I have observed the physical, emotional, cognitive and social challenges faced as a consequence of stroke and have become passionate about facilitating the voices of this group in being heard”.

The findings from all three studies will be used to inform future training programmes for healthcare professionals who work with people with post-stroke aphasia.

May16 Povey Health Stroke 1

The systematic review was completed, together with Dr Greg Norris, a Consultant Clinical Neuropsychologist, and looked at communication interventions developed for healthcare professionals working with patients with post stroke communication difficulties. The findings showed that these interventions were beneficial to staff and patients, although time and financial constraints are common issues which can be a key barrier to attending training. The interview study aimed to explore in depth the experiences of staff-patient communication within inpatient stroke care settings. Louise interviewed patients and carers as well as healthcare professionals in order to get an overall view of the issues.  The interviews gave an excellent insight into the issues faced by all three groups, with communication issues for people with stroke being likened to “being in a foreign country”. The final piece of research is being conducted using an online questionnaire and is aiming to look at the differences between people with and without communication difficulties after having a stroke.

Louise is conducting this research with the support of Dr Lyndsey Hall-Patch (Clinical Neuropsychologist) and her Academic Supervisor Dr Rachel Povey. If you have had a stroke, and would like to be a part of this interesting study, please go to: http://bit.ly/22gYrg0 to find out more details.


The Home of Health Psychology – Staffordshire University

Staffordshire University’s Centre for Health Psychology is a Psy1centre of excellence for teaching and research in Health Psychology, and is home to Staffordshire’s BPS Accredited Stage 1 MSc in Health Psychology and BPS Accredited Stage 2 Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology. The Centre for Health Psychology is part of the School of Psychology, Sport and Exercise, one of the leading research-active academic schools for Psychology and Sport degrees situated in the heart of England.

For further information about Health Psychology courses and research at Staffordshire University please visit the following webpages:

Health Psychology staff, students and graduates present their research at the 2016 MHPN Conference

Staffordshire University has once again illustrated why we are the #HomeOfHealthPsychology at the Midlands Health Psychology Network Conference. The event, held at Kings Hall in Stoke-on-Trent on the 25th February 2016, was attended by 3 members of staff and over 20 current students and graduates from Staffordshire University’s Centre for Health Psychology. Our Health Psychologists and trainees made a huge impact at the conference presenting in half of the talks and displaying several research posters.

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Our current MSc in Health Psychology students enjoying the MHPN Conference

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Aimee Cooke with her poster at the MHPN Conference

Contributors included: current MSc Students, such as Aimee Cooke who presented her poster on vestibular rehabilitation interventions; Professional Doctorate students, including Katrin Hulme who presented the experience of chronic cough; and graduates, including Rebecca Rushton who presented on her MSc research exploring the effectiveness of personality and the theory of planned behaviour for predicting intentions to attend for cervical screening. Rebecca found the conference a fantastic opportunity to put into practice the skills developed during her time studying for the MSc Health Psychology: “Having the opportunities to develop my presentation skills during the MSc prepared me to present at the conference. Although I was apprehensive it has provided me with invaluable experience”.

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Rebecca Rushton presenting her research in the Kings’ Hall, Stoke

A trip to the conference was built in to the MSc Health Psychology teaching programme to ensure all current students had the opportunity to attend. MSc student Suha Ahmed really enjoyed the experience: “I learnt a lot from the conference and particularly enjoyed learning about all the different areas where Health Psychologists work and conduct research. I also found it useful to watch the presentations and pick up tips to help me develop my own presentation skills and enjoyed having the opportunity to talk to other health psychologists in person and ask questions about their research. I absolutely loved it!”.

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Rebecca Lawrence-Higton presenting her research at the MHPN Conference

The MSc students also valued the opportunity to learn about research conducted by our own Professional Doctorate students. For example, Mike Oliver particularly enjoyed the presentation by current Professional Doctorate student Alison Killen: “I thought Alison’s presentation was really thought provoking.  The points about gratitude as a means to promote wellbeing was interesting, and the ‘gratitude diaries’ sounded like a practical way to take the theory into practice.  Set in the context of ageing and loneliness which are receiving more and more attention, I think the work provides an example of how health psychology could make a big difference in society”.

Some of our current and past Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology students

Some of our current and past Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology students

Our MSc Health Psychology Course Director, Dr Amy Burton, was impressed by the professionalism, confidence and health psychology knowledge shown by our current and past students: “three of my current and graduate project students presented at the conference this year and all were passionate about their research. They used skills developed throughout the MSc to network with, and answer questions from, other health psychologists and trainees from throughout the Midlands – I’m confident they all have an exciting career in Health Psychology ahead of them”

Current MSc Student presentations:

Cooke, A., & Burton, A. Vestibular Rehabilitation: Impact upon Quality of Life and Physical Daily Tasks. A Mixed Methods Approach. (Poster)

Current Professional Doctorate Student presentations:

Killen, A., & Macaskill, A. Using a gratitude intervention to enhance well-being in older adults.

Highton, F., C., O., & Clark-Carter, D. The experience of vision impairment diagnosis and its prognosis on health related quality of life.

Hulme, K., Dogan, S., Parker, S., & Deary, V. “Chronic cough, cause unknown”: A qualitative study of patient perspectives of idiopathic cough.

Sumodhee, D., & Payne, N. Healthy eating beliefs and intentions of mothers and their adult children: An intergenerational transmission perspective. (Poster)

Health Psychology MSc Graduates and Staff presentations:

Higgins, S. J., & Semper, H. The effects of nutrition label format on healthier dietary choices: A forced choice eye-tracking study. (Poster)

Hope, K., & Sherman, S. Perceptions of cervical cancer and screening among older women – A work in progress. (Poster)

Hughes, M., Burton, A., & Dempsey, R. Using photo elicitation to explore quality of life in people with paraplegia and chronic pain.

Rushton, R., & Dean, S. Predicting cervical screening intentions using personality and the Theory of Planned Behaviour

Lawrence-Highton, R., & Burton, A. Looking at things from a positive point of view: an IPA on the exercise experience of individuals with positive body image

The Midlands Health Psychology Network

The MHPN hold a one day conference in February every year which is attended by around 100 members from across the Midlands and is a forum for health psychologists to share clinical and research experiences, information, knowledge and training. Existing members include MSc students, doctorate students, chartered health psychologists based at local NHS sites and regional universities, third sector employees, senior and early career academics, health practitioners and pharmacists. To learn more about the MHPN please visit the website: www.mhpn.co.uk.


The Home of Health Psychology – Staffordshire University

Staffordshire University’s Centre for Health Psychology is a centre of excellence for teaching and research in Health Psychology, and is home to Staffordshire’s BPS Accredited Stage 1 MSc in Health Psychology. The Centre for Health Psychology is part of the School of Psychology, Sport and Exercise, one of the leading research-active academic schools for Psychology and Sport degrees situated in the heart of England.

For further information about Health Psychology courses and research at Staffordshire University please visit the following webpages:

Me-Therapy: A new online mindfulness-based resource for people dealing with cancer

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Dr Rachel Povey

Trainee Health Psychologist Szilvia Vas together with her supervisor Dr Rachel Povey, Senior Lecturer in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University and member of the Centre for Health Psychology, are recruiting participants to trial their new mindfulness-based online resource “Me-Therapy”.

Me-therapy was originally conceptualized by Miss Vas and developed together with Dr Povey as a resource for improving body image and managing physical changes associated with cancer. The trial is being conducted jointly with CancerCare US, and is free for anyone who would like to take part.

Participating in this online program is a unique opportunity for anyone facing cancer, as it gives men and women the chance to work through some of the body-image changes that they might be struggling with during or after treatment,” says CancerCare Social Work Internship Programme Director, Maria Chi. The program provides tools to help people become more mindful of the present moment and how their thinking patterns directly affect what they’re feeling.”

Dec15 MeTherapy RP Blog

www.me-therapy.org

Me-therapy was inspired through Miss Vas’ work at the Douglas MacMillan Hospice in Stoke-on-Trent. The programme includes video clips, audio resources and mindfulness exercises to teach participants how to challenge unhelpful thoughts and behaviours that characterize negative body image. Participants are also provided with direct email support as they are provided with trained “body image buddies” to better address users’ unique needs.

Participants must be 18 years of age or older. To register, visit www.Me-therapy.org

For more details of this trial, please visit the Cancer Research UK website.


Staffordshire University is home to the Centre for Health Psychology, a centre of excellence for teaching and research in health psychology. For further information about Health Psychology courses and research at Staffordshire University please visit the following webpages:

Gemma Hurst joins the Psychology Department at Staffordshire University

The Psychology Academic team are pleased to welcome Dr Gemma Hurst, who joined the University as a Lecturer in Psychology in September 2015. Gemma introduces herself below:

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Dr Gemma Hurst

I have made the (small) jump from the Brindley Building to the Science Centre and I am extremely pleased to have joined the Psychology team here at Staffordshire University as a Lecturer. After completing my undergraduate degree in Psychology at the University of Durham in 2005, my journey at Staffordshire University began. I completed my MSc in Health Psychology here in 2006 before starting my PhD in 2007, under the supervision of Dr Christopher Gidlow, Prof David Clark-Carter, Prof Sarah Grogan and Prof Rachel Davey. My PhD research focused on the use of a multi-component behaviour change intervention to promote physical activity in the area of Sandwell, West Midlands. My PhD was carried out in an applied setting working with Sandwell Primary Care Trust.

Following this, I was involved in the evaluation of a community development project through a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with Staffordshire University and NHS Stoke-on-Trent. The My Health Matters project focused on addressing the underlying social and environmental determinants of health using a bottom-up, asset-based approach. My role involved investigating the use of community-led interventions to reduce health inequalities relating to physical activity and healthy eating in Stoke-on-Trent using community-based participatory research and a socio-ecological approach. During this time I also began my Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University.

More recently, I was employed as a postdoctoral Research Officer in the Centre for Sport, Health and Exercise Research investigating the links between exposure to natural outdoor environments and human health and well-being across Europe – PHENOTYPE.

Gemma before her Stoke Psychology in the Pub talk on the Phenotype project (April 2015)

Gemma before her Stoke Psychology in the Pub talk on the Phenotype project (April 2015)

Therefore, I have a wide range of research interests in the field of health psychology and beyond, including: the evaluation of health promotion programs using both quantitative and qualitative research methods; reducing health inequalities through community-led interventions and partnership working; the social and environmental determinants of health; and understanding the positive health effects of different environments.

Throughout my time at Staffordshire University, both as a student and a member of staff, I have always found it to be an incredibly supportive and welcoming place to be and the Psychology team has continued this pattern. I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the students over the past few weeks, they are a great bunch and I am very much looking forward to getting stuck into teaching. If you’d like to know a little more about me and my research, please follow me on twitter @gemma_hurst.


The School of Psychology, Sport and Exercise at Staffordshire University is a leading School in the UK for Psychology degrees and is situated in the heart of England.  We produce internationally recognized research which is driving knowledge in the area of Psychology forward and we work with a variety of healthcare providers, charities, international sports teams and private sector organisations.

Midlands Health Psychology Conference: Staffordshire Staff & Students well represented!

Several members of staff plus past and present students from our Health Psychology MSc and Professional Doctorate in Health Psychology attended the Midlands Health Psychology Network (MHPN) Conference at the University of Derby in February 2015.March 15 MHPN ConferenceDr Amy Burton, Senior Lecturer in Health Psychology at Staffordshire University, reports on a successful conference for our Health Psychology students and staff.

Dr Amy Burton

The MHPN hold a one day conference in February every year which is attended by around 100 members from across the Midlands and is a forum for health psychologists to share clinical and research experiences, information, knowledge and training. Existing members include MSc students, doctorate students, chartered health psychologists based at local NHS sites and regional universities, third sector employees, senior and early career academics, health practitioners and pharmacists.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Healthy Mind and Healthy Body – Understanding, Supporting, and Improving” and gave delegates the opportunity to learn about recent developments in E-Health research from key note Dr Neil Coulson and body image scanning research from key note Professor Sarah Grogan.

In addition, several past and present Staffordshire University students delivered poster and oral presentations on their research:

  • Professional Doctorate students Louise Clancy and Lisa Cowap presented findings from a research project led by Dr Amy Burton investigating facilitators and barriers to physical activity in older people with sight loss;
  • Current MSc student Becky Rushton presented a poster on her project supervised by Dr Sarah Dean investigating adding personality to the Theory of Planned Behaviour to explain cervical screening behaviours;
  • And past MSc student Catherine Burgess gave an oral presentation on her project supervised by Dr Sarah Dean exploring quality of life in people with Lupus.

All of the conference sessions were well attended and the day was a fantastic opportunity to showcase the quality of the Health Psychology research currently being conducted at Staffordshire University.

For more information about Health Psychology at Staffordshire please visit the following webpages: