Research topic areas

Biological and forensic sciences research group

Conservation Biology, including:

  • Plant conservation biotechnology, biodiversity ecosystem functioning and wildlife disease dynamics, bat ecology, optimal foraging’
  • The influence of predators and food-competitors and the evolution of monogamy and male care.

Invertebrate Biology, including:

  • The function and evolution of nuptial feeding and aggression in insects.
  • Forensic and medical entomology.
  • Coral Reef biology.

Human Biology, including:

  • Prognostic markers of gynaecological cancers, complementary therapies and cancer treatment.
  • Human Papilloma Virus and cancer.
  • Stability of Biologic Cancer Drugs.
Psychology research group

Health and wellbeing, including:

  • Nature connectedness,
  • Painkiller use and dependence, addiction and addictive behaviours, long term conditions, and ergonomics and well-being.
  • Qualitative and quantitative studies including questionnaire surveys and interviews.
  • Evaluations of novel wellbeing interventions

Cyber-psychology, including:

  • Online gambling, online gaming, and online identities through quantitative and qualitative studies including surveys and online experiments.
  • Online synchronous and asynchronous interviewing and open-ended questionnaires

Pedagogic psychology, including:

  • Student academic writing and authorship, and virtual/online learning.
  • Quantitative and qualitative studies of student beliefs and attitudes, experiences and achievement.

Critical and applied psychology, including:

  • Gender roles, critical health, identity, relationships, and conversational interactions
  • Use of quantitative and qualitative studies including experimental and questionnaire studies, in-depth explorations of people’s experiences and self-concepts, in-depth explorations of constructions through text and talk.

Cognitive psychology, including:

Cognitive processing and emotion, decision making and reasoning, language and reading, developmental cognition, maths research, and message framing.

Evolutionary psychology, including

Mate selection, conflict, cooperation and cooperative strategies, and altruism (quantitative and qualitative research including experiments, questionnaires, semi-structured interviews, focus groups).

Geoscience research group

Climate change in the recent geological past as a model for the future – Dr Richard Pope and Dr Andrew Johnson.

Sediments and fossils contain a record of former climate change in their oxygen and carbon isotopes. Dating techniques allows us to place these samples in an exact time frame and so model former climate change as a means of which might happen in the future.

Basin analysis as a means of hydrocarbon exploration - Dr Dorothy Satterfield and Dr Martin Whitely.

Understanding the way in which sedimentary basins work and how hydrocarbon deposits form requires a knowledge of sedimentology, vital for the oil and gas industry. You will measure the stratigraphy in the field and model the development of the basin in the lab and determine its ability to form and preserve hydrocarbons.

A geochemical approach to the evolution of the Earth’s early continental crust - Prof Hugh Rollinson.

Fragments of the Earth’s continental crust are preserved in all continents and contain a record of the Earth as a very different planet from the present day. Particularly interesting are the changes that took place between 2.5 and 3.0 billion years ago in crust forming processes. Trace element and isotope geochemistry hold the key.

Interactions between toxic metals and biota – Prof Aradhana Mehra

An understanding of the interaction between plants and toxic metals is vital to controlling their uptake by animals and humans. This phd examines the mechanisms of bio-uptake and the potential danger toxic metals may present in a variety of biological environments.

Sport & exercise science research group

'Can inspiratory muscle training and breathing exercises relieve the symptoms of dyspnoea and improve the quality of life of advanced cancer patients?'

Dyspnoea is a debilitating disease of many advanced cancer patients and is often treated using opoids. Alternative relief has long been sort for example the use of oxygen therapy has had limited success and complementary therapies such as acupuncture have been demonstrated to be beneficial but controlled studies are lacking. Many cancer patients with dyspnoea have respiratory muscle weakness and their breathlessness causes increases in their anxiety and a decrease in their quality of life. We propose for the first time to demonstrate if resistance exercises to strengthen inspiratory muscles can help cancer patients either with or without associated breathing exercises.

Factors associated with sustained behaviour changes: journeys of families participating in a community-based intervention programme

This project will assess factors associated with sustained behaviour changes in families participating in MEND 7-13, designed with the aspiration of reducing childhood obesity - a key priority for public health. Since overweight is a chronic condition, it is important to understand the types of families that benefit most, characteristics of those requiring extra support and family attributes that are predictors of success. In addition, it is necessary to determine if these factors differ within and between ethnically and economically diverse groups.