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Personal profile

Research interests

Cognition in psychosis

My main research interests involve thinking in people with schizophrenia/psychosis using cognitive theory of intentions, causal attribution, belief,  perception , memory, and reasoning. Currently my focus is on reasoning by patients with delusions and whether errors of reasoning match those found in stroke patients who manifest confabulation or anosognosia.   

Neuroimaging and the brain's value system

Using fMRI and computational models we are exploring whether there are separate fronto-striatal circuits governing goal based and intuitive decision making.

Psychosis in the National Child Development Study (1958) 

This is one of the UK's prospective birth cohorts. Building on some much cited work work of mine from the 1990's I am now examining early predictors of poor adult mental health focusing on early behaviour, childrens' drawings and  written language.

Effectiveness of Early Intervention in Psychosis Services (EIPS) 

This is being done in collaboartion with local mental health services and a health economist. 

Teaching specialisms

Clinical psychology

I currently teach on a clinical psychology option on the BSc(Hons) Psychology degree and supervise PhD /D.Clin Psy students whose research is in mental health. I have previously been the Research Tutor on the D.Clin Psy course. 

Cognitive Neuropsychology

I also teach on a cognitive neuropsychology option on the BSc(Hons) Psychology degree, as well as provide research apprenticeships to MSc students, supervise MSc projects as well as supervise PhD /D.Clin Psy students whose research is in mental health.

Overview

I am a research psychologist with particular interest in psychosis.  Appointed as the University’s Health Research Co-ordinator  in the 1990’s , I was also given the  brief of developing the university’s health research base . This included creating research excellence within the university as well as collaborations with  NHS clinicians. As such  I broadened my own research profile to include health services research and apply my epidemiological expertise , particularly with cohort based studies, to  chronic health care problems other than psychosis , particularly rheumatoid arthritis and renal disease. I set up 2 research centres at UH ,  the Centre for Research in Primary and Community Care ( CRIPACC ) and the Centre for Life Span and Chronic Illnesses (CLiCIR) and with the NHS Trusts in Hertfordshire we established one of the UKs first university based R&D advisory services with a contract to support  NHS R&D . Building on these early models NIHR have established  the nationwide  NIHR  Research Design Service .

  Such a long history has resulted in contributions to NICE/other national guidelines, research citations in National Audit Office /UK Gov Select Committee as well as academic publications . 

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