Staff profile

Dr Elaina Taylor

Researcher/Lecturer in MSc Health Psychology and MSc Psychology

Elaina sitting on a red and blue couch, smiling.




College of Health, Psychology and Social Care


University of Derby Online Learning

Research centre

Human Sciences Research Centre





I am a Chartered Psychologist and Health Psychologist. I am also a Lecturer and Researcher in Psychology at the University of Derby. I held the role of Deputy Chair of the Ethics Committee at the University of Derby Online (2020-2021). I was the Academic Lead of the MSc Health Psychology Programme between January 2021-January 2022.

I completed a PhD in Psychology from King's College London. My research examined the experiences of patients with atrial fibrillation undergoing procedural treatments, with a focus on understanding quality of life, anxiety, and depression, in the context of the Common Sense Model of Self-Regulation. During my PhD, I contributed to teaching statistics on the iBSc Psychology programme at King's College London.

Prior to the University of Derby, I held a role as Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Suffolk (BSE campus), where I taught for eight years. During this time, I held the position of Interim Course Leader. I was Module Leader for BSc Psychology modules, including Cognitive and Biological Psychology, Psychology and Society, Health Psychology, and Introduction to Applied Psychology. 

In my earlier academic career, I completed an MSc in Psychology from the University of Glasgow, where my thesis focused on stress and coping strategies. Prior to this, I completed a BA (Hons) in Psychology and English Literature from the University of Leicester.

Teaching responsibilities

I am currently teaching modules on the MSc Health Psychology, MSc Psychology and BSc Psychology.

Professional interests

  • Collaborative Research: I am interested in collaborating with internal and external colleagues across disciplines. I have collaborated with organisations including the Atrial Fibrillation Association and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR)
  • Research Examinations: Including chairing viva examinations within the University
  • Research Ethics: Vice-Chair of UDOL Research Ethics Committee 2001
  • PhD Supervision
  • Peer Reviewer: (Various journals e.g. Psychology and Health, Frontiers in Psychology)
  • Editorial work: Current Guest Editor for Healthcare. Special Issue Title: Mental Health Matters: From Cross-cultural Perspectives

Research interests

I have a wide range of research interests. Currently, my research interests relate to the experiences of individuals with cardiovascular illness. In particular, my current focus is on interventions aimed at improving well-being in patients with arrhythmias.

I am also interested in a range of health-related outcomes in individuals with other long-term conditions, including quality of life, depression, anxiety, clinical (medical) outcomes, and adherence to medication. Additionally, my interests relate to the role of positive psychology interventions in improving these outcomes.

My wider research interests relate to health behaviour change, including promoting healthier lifestyles, stress and coping, and digital interventions aimed at improving well-being. I have recently gained a greater interest in cross-cultural perspectives of health and illness.

My background is in mixed-methods research, and I am interested in using different research methods and analysis. Previously, this has included qualitative studies examining the experiences of cardiovascular patients (thematic analysis with elements of grounded theory), cross-sectional designs (modification and validation of questionnaires, using cluster analysis to group key characteristics in a sample) and longitudinal quantitative designs (predictions using multilevel modeling).

Membership of professional bodies

  • Chartered Psychologist, British Psychological Society
  • Full Divisional Membership, Division of Health Psychology
  • European Health Psychology Society
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy


  • BA (Hons) Psychology (major) and English Literature, University of Leicester
  • MSc Psychological Studies, University of Glasgow
  • PhD Psychology, King's College London

Recent conferences

  • Access to healthcare over the Covid-19 pandemic: Perspectives from patients with atrial fibrillation. Research Showcase, University of Derby (2021), November
  • Predicting quality of life, anxiety and depression in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation. European Health Psychology Society Conference (2019), Dubrovnik, Croatia, 2-7 September
  • Adherence to antiarrhythmics and anticoagulants in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation. European Health Psychology Society Conference (2018), Galway, Ireland, 25-29 August
  • Research methods to modify the illness perception questionnaire (IPQ-R) for specific patient groups. European Health Psychology Society Conference (2016), Aberdeen, Scotland, 24-27 August
  • Illness and treatment representations, coping and distress: Vicious cycles of everyday experiences in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation (2016). Heart Rhythm Congress. Birmingham, UK, 1 October
  • 'It's like a frog leaping about in your chest': Illness and treatment representations in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation (2015). Division of Health Psychology Conference, London, UK, 16-20 September

Recent publications

Journal articles

  • Kotera, Y. & Taylor, E. C. (in press). Defining the diagnostic criteria of Taijin Kyofusho. Asian Journal of Psychiatry.

  • Taylor, E. C., O’Neill, M., Hughes, L. D., & Moss-Morris, R. (2021). Atrial fibrillation, quality of life and distress: A cluster analysis of cognitive and behavioral responses. Quality of Life Research. doi: 10.1007/s11136-021-03006-w

  • Kotera, Y., Taylor, E. Fido, D., Williams, D., & Tsuda-McCaie, F. (2021). Motivation of UK graduate students in education: Self-compassion moderates pathway from extrinsic motivation to intrinsic motivation. Current Psychology, 22, 1-14. doi: 10.1007/s12144-021-02301-6.
  • Taylor, E. C., O’Neill, M., Hughes, L., Bennett, P., & Moss-Morris, R. (2020). Adherence to antiarrhythmics and anticoagulants, treatment beliefs and depression in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation. Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 35(4), 337-346. doi: 10.1097/JCN.000000000000065
  • Taylor, E. C., O’Neill, M., Hughes, L., & Moss-Morris, R. (2018). An illness-specific version of the Revised Illness Perception Questionnaire revised in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation (AF-IPQ-R): Unpacking beliefs about treatment control and symptom triggers’. Psychology and Health, 33(4), 499-517, doi: 10.1080/08870446.2017.1373113
  • Taylor, E. C., O’Neill, M., Hughes, L., Carroll, S., & Moss-Morris, R. (2017). “It’s like a frog leaping out of your chest”: Illness and treatment representations in patients with persistent atrial fibrillation. British Journal of Health Psychology, 23(1), 3-21, doi: 10.1111/bjhp.1226



A man in a polo shirt fixing a blood pressure monitor to his upper arm on a white background

Dr Elaina Taylor, Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Derby, outlines a few achievable suggestions to improve your heart health.