ESRC Outstanding Impact in Society Prize for Professor Theresa Gannon and Team

On 22nd June, Professor Theresa Gannon was awarded the ESRC impact prize for Outstanding Impact in Society in recognition of a pioneering treatment for criminal firesetters. The award was a result of a team application with other colleagues, Drs Emma Alleyne, Magali Barnoux, Caoilte Ó Ciardha, and Nichola Tyler.

To read about the case study and to watch the video about this groundbreaking work, please see the ESRC website. For more information about research and education in Forensic Psychology at the University of Kent, please go to the CORE-FP website.

You can also find out more from the University’s News Centre.

Treatment can offer hope for relief of Parkinson’s symptoms

A non-invasive, home-based procedure to stimulate the inner ear and brain functions that control balance and eye movement can offer hope for the relief of Parkinson’s Disease symptoms.

Research carried out by the University and East Kent Hospitals University NHS Trust involving a patient with Parkinson’s Disease (PD) provided evidence of behavioural improvement across some of the disease’s most common and debilitating symptoms.

Now the researchers, led by Dr David Wilkinson, of the School of Psychology, and Dr Mohamed Sakel, director of East Kent Neuro-Rehabilitation Service, are testing if the beneficial effects of the new treatment – which involves non-invasive, thermal stimulation of the balance organs – are evident in a larger group.

For more details, please go to the Kent News Centre.

Young people with older friends can help reduce ageism

Young people are less likely to be ageist when their friends have friendships with older adults, research led by psychologists at the University has shown.

Even when young adults have no social contact with older adults in their everyday life, if they are aware of a friend who is friends with an older adult this can increase their positive attitudes towards older adults as a whole, the researchers found.

Psychologists Lisbeth Drury and Professor Dominic Abrams of Kent’s School of Psychology, and Dr Paul Hutchison, London Metropolitan University, surveyed young adults to conduct the study, which is published online in the British Journal of Social Psychology.

For more details, please go to the University of Kent’s News Centre.

How ignoring people for smartphones became the norm

It’s common now to see people snubbing social companions to concentrate on their smartphone. But what causes this behaviour – known as ‘phubbing’ – and how did it come to be regarded as normal?

Research from psychologists at the University suggests people’s internet addiction is leading them increasingly to ‘phub’ – and experience being ‘phubbed’ – in social situations. This, in turn, leads them to view this phubbing behaviour as normal.

The research, by Varoth Chotpitayasunondh and Professor Karen Douglas from the University’s School of Psychology, identified a number of factors that were linked to smartphone addiction. These were internet addiction, a fear of missing out and a lack of self-control.

For more details, please go to the University of Kent’s News Centre.

Perceptions of workplace opportunities

Congratulations to Applied Psychology student Christie Marsh, who is to work on a funded British Psychological Society Undergraduate Research Assistantship on a project entitled “Perceptions of Workplace Opportunities”. Dr Georgina Randsley de Moura has been awarded £1,600 to support this project, which was developed with Christie and Dr Carola Leicht. As part of the award, Christie will present a poster at the Society’s Annual Conference in Brighton. The Research Board described the application as “exceptional”.

Theresa Gannon shortlisted for ESRC Celebrating Impact Prize 2016

The School of Psychology is delighted to announce that Professor Theresa Gannon has been shortlisted for the prestigious ESRC Celebrating Impact Prize 2016 under the category of Outstanding Impact in Society.

Also named on the award nomination were the other members of Theresa’s research team: Dr Nichola Tyler, Dr Caoilte Ó Ciardha, Dr Emma Alleyne, and Dr Magali Barnoux.

For more information, please go to the ESRC website.

Science meets technology

Many congratulations to Dr Mario Weick for winning a Faculty Small grant worth £4,946 in collaboration with Dr Jim Ang of the School of Engineering and Digital Arts. The title is “Science meets technology: Developing the next generation of stimuli to study human experiences” and the aim of the project is to create a repository of stimuli for researchers to elicit different affective experiences (feelings and emotions) in people.