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PhD Studentship

School of Life Sciences and Education

Location:  Stoke campus
Tenure:   Three Year, Full Time, Fully Funded PhD
Release Date:  Friday 19 June 2020
Closing Date:   Friday 31 July 2020
Reference:  LSE20-PHD1

                                                      PhD Studentship

   “Examining the Effects of a Biopsychosocial Intervention on Psychological Wellbeing in Higher Education”


Background:


The importance of student wellbeing within higher education (HE) has long been discussed, but only recently has it been considered a high priority within academic institutes. The implications are to pro- and/or re-actively facilitate the psychological and physical wellbeing of students and optimise potential in what is a dynamic and challenging context. While previous efforts to facilitate wellbeing have targeted and worked with sub-groups in isolation, it appears whole community and cultural change is required for positive, long-term and meaningful change.

The Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Research Group at Staffordshire University conducts research and enterprise activities to enhance the psychological health and performance of individuals, teams, and organisations. The biopsychosocial focus of this PhD opportunity brings together our three areas of expertise: (1) challenge and threat responses to stress; (2) irrational beliefs and Rational Emotive Behaviour Therapy; and (3) the social identity approach to group behaviour.


Aims and Objectives:


The context of HE is dynamic and often filled uncertainty, which requires the ability to overcome a range of stressors that are an inherent in their journey and role, respectively. In partnership with the Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology Research Group and the Library and Student Service team, the PhD will aim to “Examine the Effects of a Biopsychosocial Intervention Programme on Psychological Wellbeing in Higher Education”.

  • Objective 1: A longitudinal assessment of psychological wellbeing with a HE student cohort. 

  • Objective 2: To gather information on the perceptions and pragmatics of developing psychological wellbeing from key-stake holders within HE (e.g., students and support staff within and external to Staffordshire University). Ultimately, to develop a biopsychosocial strategy to facilitate the psychological wellbeing of HE students.

  • Objective 3: To implement and monitor a University wide biopsychosocial intervention that facilitate students to develop psychological wellbeing and adaptability to stress.

  • Objective 4: To implement interventions that facilitate students to develop psychological wellbeing and adaptability to stress within Student Support Services.


Requirements:


This is a Full-Time fully funded PhD and will last for three years. The successful applicant will spend one-two days/week based with the Student Services team supporting with relevant projects, and the remaining time based with the Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology Research Group, including contribution to sport and exercise psychology teaching.


Funding: The PhD will be co-funded by the Student Service team and School of Life Sciences and Education, to include a PhD stipend in-line with UKRI = £15,285, and a PhD fee waiver.

Candidate/PhD Specification:

Essential:

  • Have a minimum of 2:1 undergraduate degree in a related subject area.

  • Have a minimum of a merit postgraduate degree in a related subject area.

  • Excellent interpersonal, presentation and organisation skills.

  • Experience and competent in conducting and disseminating scientific research. 

Desirable:

  • Experience of writing up research to publication standard.

  • In training or completed professional accreditation as an applied psychologist in a related discipline area (e.g., educational, sport/performance, occupational, organisational psychology).

Supervisory Team:


  • Dr Matthew Slater (M.Slater@staffs.ac.uk) – Associate Professor of Sport and Exercise Psychology (Staffordshire University).

  • Dr Andrew Wood – Senior Lecturer in Psychology (Manchester Metropolitan University).

  • Jamie Gillman – Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Psychology (Staffordshire University).

  • Gemma Kelly – Student Success Co-Ordinator (Staffordshire University).


For informal enquiries please contact: Dr Matt Slater (m.slater@staffs.ac.uk).


To apply:


Please send the following to Matt Slater (m.slater@staffs.ac.uk)

  • A CV (which must include two referees who would be contacted post-interview)

  • A cover letter that details:

    • A justification as to why you are applying for this PhD.

    • A supporting statement that details how your research skills and experience are suitable for this PhD studentship.

Application Deadline = Friday 31st July 2020.

Interviews = Tuesday 18th August 2020.

Expected start date = 14th September 2020.

                                                  This opportunity is open to UK and EU applicants. 

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