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Monthly Archives: September 2013

If you’re looking for your Tuesday timetable in a hurry

Times and dates of all classes on the course are available in a previous post.

Detailed week by week schedules for each module will be available on moodle, but to save you time hunting around here are the MSc Health Psychology (and MSc Psychology of Health) classes for tomorrow (Tuesday)

Tuesdays 1.00 -2.50 pm M96PY Health promotion and behaviour change (led by Charlotte Hilton) JA142 (first floor Jaguar building)

Tuesdays 3.15- 6.00 pm M140PY Advanced quantitative research methods (led by John Williams) JS205 (second floor James Starley building)

Click here for a pdf campus map


Induction reminder

Quick reminder about induction for new students.

This is 09.30 until 13.00 Tuesday 24th September.

Charles Ward Building Second Floor CW215


You will be free from 13.00 to explore the campus, have lunch or do any university admin you need to sort out.

Looking forward to meeting you.

Save the day: The 6th of May!


After a bit of thinking about weather, day length and lots of significant events in the MSc health psych extended family … we’ve settled on Tuesday 6th May 2014 for our ‘Sweet Sixteen’ Course Reunion/Birthday celebration. This is the day before the BPS Annual Conference in Birmingham.

Please save this day in your diaries and keep in touch for further news of the event. 

Watch the eyes: Health psychology and machines that go ‘ping’


Think of psychological research and the image that comes to mind might be completing a questionnaire, looking at some inkblots or perhaps participating in a bizarre social experiment.  Psychological research methodologies encompass a much wider range of techniques and approaches. Some may seem deceptively low tech – such as focus groups and individual interviews, diaries and participant observations. However, health psychologists increasingly draw on information technology, social media and sophisticated electronic devices to conduct their research and put their theories into practice.

In the past year alone, students on the MSc health psychology did independent and collaborative research using interviews/focus groups to explore a range of topics including

  • The attitudes of healthcare staff to providing positive birth experiences
  • Academic midwifery perspectives on teaching about maternal obesity
  • The experience of early stage dementia sufferers and their partners
  • Barriers and facilitators to health promotion for South Asian people
  • Young women’s beliefs about long-acting reversible contraception
  • Service users and providers’ perspectives on stress management through vocational rehabilitation in schizophrenia
  • South Asian fathers’ perspectives on childhood obesity

Previous students have used online surveys and studies of internet discussion forums to explore the experiences of patients and their families, for example, what it is like to be an elderly person whose adult son or daughter becomes increasingly disabled by multiple sclerosis.

Some of our outgoing MSc health psych students also designed a smart phone app to improve self management for adolescent boys with type 1 diabetes. An important consideration was that the app should work on the latest and most desirable mobile handset.

We already have close links with staff in the University’s Applied Research Centre in Health & Lifestyle Interventions, where numerous projects have harnessed technology to address issues as diverse as breastfeeding and adolescent sexual health. For 2013/14 we are hoping to work more closely with the university’s Health Design & Technology Institute and Serious Games Institute, with a view to realising some of the products our MSc students have designed.

Meanwhile we’ve welcomed a new piece of kit to Psychology & Behavioural Sciences in the form of an advanced eye tracker. There is a lot of scope for staff and postgraduate research using this facility.  Being able to trace and record accurately where a person’s eyes are roaming is an excellent adjunct to more traditional research methods.  For example, we can ask research participants whether they attend to nutritional information that’s presented on food labels or restaurant menus. Now we’ll be able to check what they actually look at and for how long. We might also be able to find out how people really navigate through health information websites, interact with health behaviour change apps and so on. Just need to check if the machine that makes all of this possible really does go ‘ping’.

Small print: This isn’t our actual machine – it is too fresh out of the packaging to be cornered for a photograph. Pic courtesy of wiki commons at http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eyetracker1.jpg

Registration open – Careers in health psychology

Registration is now open for this Midlands Health Psychology Network CPD event.


The event will take place on October 22nd 2013, 10am – 12.30pm at Coventry University. ‘Careers in Health Psychology’ will focus on the different career options that health psychologists can take, and examples of how they can get there. It is aimed at early career researchers, MSc and PhD students and Stage 2 trainees. There will also be an opportunity to ask questions in a friendly environment relating to such things as stage 2, publishing, writing, consultancy, conferences, working abroad, lecturing, working in the NHS and work experience.

Special 10 year anniversary bursary available! – The first 10 people to register will qualify for our early bird discount – £15 for members and £20 for non-members (usual rates £20 for members and £25 for non members).

To register your place please email Carey Harding (hardin20@uni.coventry.ac.uk) with your full name, occupation and affiliation, telephone number and preferred email address. Please pay via paypal (See “online payments“) and include your paypal reference number in your email. Please note that bookings are non-refundable.

Reminder: Coventry Health Psychology Network Meeting is this Thursday

Message from our friends in the Midlands Health Psychology Network (Local group):

Welcome back to the new term!

A reminder that the next Coventry Health Psychology Network Meeting is Thursday 19th September 1pm-2pm in Richard Crossman 319

We will be hearing about the health psychology- related research that is going on in three departments of the University: Psychology, HDTI and the ARC in Health and Lifestyle Interventions.

We will also discuss plans for future meetings and our links to the Midlands Health Psychology Network.

Please pass this message around to your colleagues who may be interested in attending.

I hope to see many of you there!

Best wishes, Naomi


Intervention Mapping Workshop – no Danish but seemed to go well!


Click on this graph for a clearer view

Thanks very much to everyone who made our Behaviour  Change Training Workshop on Intervention Mapping (11 September) such a success.  Despite the unfulfilled promise of Danish pastries (which never did turn up but will be posted out to participants if they do), the day seemed to go very well.

We ask participants to self-rate their confidence in each of the workshop’s key learning outcomes: before the workshop begins and again at the end of the day.  The numbers are small and I haven’t done any statistical testing, but a preliminary look at the data suggests that the training left participants feeling more confident in all areas of intervention design.

Looking forward to our next workshop which is likely to be in early 2014.  If you’d like us to run one sooner please let us know.

Best wishes

Carol P

We’ve gone official

CP chosen images

Some pics we’ve chosen to show our vision of health psychology

It has taken a wee while but the official Coventry University website now links to this blog. We are looking forward to welcoming visitors who’ve come to us via the CU course finder pages.

Let us know what you think of our blog. Which look do you prefer?

cu chosen images

Some images from the CU course finder pages

What can we do to make our blog more useful for you?

What some of our friends will be presenting at the DHP conference in Brighton next week

Just had a quick glance at the scientific programme for the BPS Division of Health Psychology conference. It’s in Brighton 11-13 September.

At first look, here are a few highlights from folk who’ve completed our course or contibuted as guest lecturers. Apologies if I’ve left anyone out…

Development of a sex education lesson to increase risk and coping appraisals for chlamydia
K Newby, P Joshi, Coventry University, D Lecky, K Brown* & M Hawking

Development of a theoretically grounded health promotion app for childhood weight management
K Curtis, K Brown* & J Wyatt

Predicting breastfeeding duration from Theory of Planned Behaviour and socio-demographic variables
N Bartle**, O Dunn*, S Law & L Wallace**

Dementia – the new ‘c’ word? Self-management programmes (SMPs) for people in the early stages of dementia (PESD) and their carers
C Bourne, A Turner**, N Bradbury, N Belsham & J Aird

Meet the parents: Can group based self-management improve psychological well-being and reduce psychological distress for parent caregivers of children with ASD and/or ADHD?
P Joshi, D McHattie, C Malin, W Dingley, R Edwards & A Turner**

South Asians are not any different? Core versus targeted approaches to self management programmes (SMP) for Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities C Grant-Pearce**, B Chandaria, & B Vakil, F Martin & A Turner**

New balls please!” Development and evaluation of a 4 hour self-management workshop for testicular cancer survivors
A Turner**, C Bourne, F Martin, B Lynn & A Lynall

People with hyperlinks are former students on the MSc health psych.

* Katherine and Orla are former course directors for the MSc health psych.

**Naomi, Louise, Andy and Carol are recent contributors to our teaching.

Talk 11 am at this Saturday’s PG Open Day

For those of you who have already booked your place at this Saturday’s PG Open Day at Coventry University:

I will be meeting all those enquiring about the Health Psychology courses at 11 am in the Student Hub.

I will give you a personal presentation on the course and chance for questions and answers.

Looking forward to meeting you then.

Carol P

Course Director