We are very happy to inform that PhD student – Charlotte Wesson – has just had an article published in this month’s issue of The Quarterly – the official publication of the Psychology Postgraduate Affairs Group (PsyPAG). This particular issue is a Special Issue coordinated by the ‘Psychology of Sexualities Section’ of PsyPAG; of which Charlotte is the section representative.
In the article, entitled “The Fairer Sex – Literally: A Brief Review of Sexual Fluidity“, Charlotte discusses what sexual fluidity is (i.e., “the amount an individual’s sex drive can be moulded by social, situational and cultural pressures (Baumeister, 2000); Wesson, 2016, p. 34); provides an overview of the existing theories that attempt to explain sexual fluidity; and examines research on sexual fluidity in both women and men. Charlotte ends the paper with some points on why this research is important and what areas should be researched further.
To read Charlotte’s article, it can be found on page 34 of the online version of this month’s issue of The Quarterly. Click here to be taken this online version.
For further updates on Charlotte’s work, follow her on Twitter @CharWesson
On 14-19th July, Dr. Dave Dawson, Dr. Nima Moghaddam, and Dr. Aidan Hart will be attending and presenting at the 13th Association for Contextual Behavioural Science (ACBS) World Conference in Berlin, Germany. The ACBS is dedicated to the advancement of functional contextual cognitive and behavioral science and practice so as to alleviate human suffering and advance human well being. A core interest of this conference relates to research and practice associated with ‘Acceptance and Commitment Therapy’; an evidenced based psychological therapy designed to increase ‘psychological flexibility’ through mindfulness and behavioural change strategies.
Dr. Dawson and Dr. Moghaddam will be presenting 4 research posters at the ACBS conference (all of which were led by trainees enrolled on the Clinical Psychology Doctorate at the University of Lincoln). These include:
1) “Developing a new repeatable measure of ACT processes”. This poster will report on the development of the ‘Complete measure of ACT Processes’ (CompACT); a new measure of the core processes underpinning psychological flexibility (a central tenet of Acceptance and Commitment Therapy). The core features (i.e., scoring, items, factor structure) and psychometric properties of the CompACT will be presented. It is hoped that this new measure will be a valuable contribution to the ACT (and clinical psychology) literature.
2) “Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Public Speaking Anxiety – a Case Series Study of Effects on Self-reported, Implicit, Imaginal, and In-vivo Performance Outcomes”. This poster will report a multiple case experimental design looking at the efficacy of self-help Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) in treating public speaking anxiety. Treatment-based change was evaluated using the above-mentioned ACT process measure and the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP). The findings have implications for the delivery of ACT in a self-help format for client’s wishing to address their public speaking difficulties independently (or for clients with wider social anxiety who do not seek treatment).
3) “Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A case series approach”. This poster will report a multiple single case series approach to the efficacy of using ACT to treat Chronic Fatigue Syndrome; a disabling and not uncommon disorder associated with a poor reported quality of life. Treatment-based change was assessed over-time using self-report, the IRAP, and behavioural activity measured via wearable technology. The results provide valuable insight into the use of ACT with this particular disorder.
4) “Regulating Eating through Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (RE-ACT)”. This poster will report a study using AB single case series design to evaluate the effectiveness of a guided ACT self-help intervention for weight management of emotional eaters. Six participants took part in a five week guided self-help ACT intervention involving the completion of a range of implicit, explicit, and behavioural assessments. Preliminary results indicate that the intervention resulted in increased values pursuance, with participants reporting positive experiences about treatment.
In addition, Dr. Hart will be presenting a poster entitled “Using Implicit Measures to Predict Known Groups: An IRAP v IAT Comparison“. In conjunction with his co-author (Dr. Ross Bartels), Dr. Hart used the Implicit Association Test (IAT) and Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure (IRAP) to measure women-sex and men-sex associations in a sample of self-identifying heterosexual women (n = 92) and men (n =91). The scores from each measure were subjected to binary logistic regression and discriminant function analysis to determine their ability to differentiate between groups (i.e., heterosexual women and men). The results contribute to the known-groups validation of each measure and provide further insight into the beliefs underlying sexual interest in non-offending heterosexual men and women.
We wish the speakers all the best at the ACBS conference!
Next week (1-3rd July) is the Division of Forensic Psychology Annual Conference in Manchester. We are pleased to announce that 2 of our PhD students (Craig Harper & Lauren Mumby) and 2 undergrad students (Gemma Stirland & Katie Boardman) will present at the conference, along with Prof. Todd Hogue & Dr. Ross Bartels.
Craig will be convening a symposium entitled ‘Attitudes Towards Sexual Offenders: Theory and Measurement‘ on the first day. In this symposium, Craig will be giving two talks based on his doctoral research; one entitled ‘The Perceptions of Sex Offenders Scale: Development and validation of a new measure‘ and ‘Sexual crime prototypes and their link to public and political discourse’.
In the same symposium, Gemma Stirland (finishing 2nd year undergrad) will be presenting the main results from a systematic review in a talk entitled ‘Attitudes toward sexual offenders: What do we know, and why are they important?‘ In addition, Prof. Hogue will present a talk entitled ‘Attitudes to Sex Offenders Scale: Development and validation of a 21 item short form’.
On the first day of the conference, Lauren Mumby (PhD student) will be presenting a poster entitled ‘Attributes Associated with Homelessness in Offenders’.
In addition, Katie Boardman (finishing 3rd year undergrad) will present the results of her dissertation research in a poster entitled ‘The Ads May Work: Public Perception of Sexually Deviant Males‘ (along with Dr. Bartels).
The DFP programme and keynote talks look to be really interesting this year. We wish all presenters the best of luck at the conference and look forward to hearing how the presentations went.
On the 28th May, Dr. Ross Bartels was awarded £3160 from the British Psychological Society (BPS) as part of their International Conference Symposium Scheme. This scheme is designed to aid BPS Member Networks in showcasing – to an international audience – the variety and calibre of psychological research undertaken in the UK.
Dr. Bartels will use the grant to fund a research symposium at the European Association of Psychology and Law conference in Nuremburg, Germany (4-7th August 2015). Representing the Division of Forensic Psychology BPS network, this symposium will involve Dr Bartels, Prof Todd Hogue, and Ms Charlotte Wesson showcasing their recent work using tracking-based technology to assess sexual interests (with Prof Derek Perkins as the discussant).
More specifically, the symposium will include three oral presentations each reporting novel research using: 1) eye-tracking to assess areas on interest when viewing moving images (videos) of sexual coercion; 2) mouse-tracking to assess real-time decision processes during the appraisal of sexual stimuli; and 3) tablet-based technology to investigate kinaesthetic indicators of sexual interest.
More on this will be posted following the EAPL conference.
Last weekend (6-7th June), Prof. Todd Hogue joined a line-up of eight top canine behaviour experts (some of whom were also from the University of Lincoln) to present at the The National Dog Bite Prevention and Behaviour Conference. The event was run by renowned dog trainer Victoria Stilwell and was held at the University of Lincoln and was a great success. More info can be found here
Prof. Hogue’s talk – entitled “A Forensic Psychology Approach to Managing Dog Bite Risk” – involved discussing the idea that the principles underpinning research on offenders’ risk of reoffending can also be applied to dog bite risk (see image). Also, during the talk, Prof. Hogue discussed some of the novel research being undertaken by his PhD student Rachel Orritt.
The work discussed within the talk marks a novel approach to how techniques and insights from forensic psychology can be applied to other areas (in this case dog bite risk and dog aggression). Moreover, it demonstrates a unique way in which the area of dog bite prevention can be academically tackled. The FCRG looks forward to hear more about this new and fascinating topic.
Following on from our last FCRG post, we are delighted to hear that PhD student Julie Pattinson has been accepted to present her research at this year’s Postgraduate Psychology Affairs Group‘s (PsyPAG) Annual Conference in Glasgow this July.
Julie’s research focuses on gaining a deeper understanding of problematic gambling in older adults and her talk (entitled “Predictive Risk Factors for Problem Gambling Behaviour in UK Older Adults“) will report some new findings from a recent study. Also, Julie has been awarded a small bursary from the University of Lincoln to attend the PsyPAG conference.
Well done Julie!
This will be a notable PsyPAG conference as it marks their 30th anniversary. In light of this, it’s great to see the postgraduate members of the FCRG making a strong appearance at this event!
FCRG PhD Students Charlotte Wesson and Craig Harper have both recently received good news in relation to this year’s PsyPAG Conference, to be held 22nd-24th July 2015 in Glasgow.
Charlotte has been awarded a bursary of £100 to attend the conference and to give a talk on her doctoral work, which examines the most effecive ways to measure sexuality and sexual interest. Further, Charlotte will discuss developments in her PhD that seek to validate a new measure of sexual interest using tablet technology. She will also present a poster on the fluidity of female sexuality, data for which was collected for her undergraduate dissertation in 2013-2014.
Craig is this year’s winner of the PsyPAG Rising Researcher Award, which recognises up-and-coming researchers from the national pool of graduate-level psychologists. As part of the award, Craig has won a prize of £100, and expenses to attend the conference in July. He has also been asked to give a presentation on some of his work, and will be discussing a recent project undertaken with the Lincolnite into the concept of ‘ontological insecurity’ and political ideologies.
PsyPAG is a national organisation set up and run by postgraduates, for postgraduates, within the area of psychology. For more details about the conference, please see the website.
Congratulations to both!
PhD Students from FCRG have just had a chapter published in a new ebook, which looks at human-animal interactions.
Rachel Orritt and Craig Harper, both principally supervised by Prof. Todd Hogue, wrote their chapter entitled “Similarities Between the Representation of “Aggressive Dogs” and “Sex Offenders” in the British News Media” after Rachel presented their work at a conference last year. This chapter explores the various similarites in media reports in relation to canine aggression (Rachel’s work) and sexual crime and its perpetrators (Craig’s work).
The ebook can be purchased here.
The FCRG is very pleased to announce that PhD candidate – Danielle Kettleborough – has received the inaugural Student Research Grant awarded by the National Organisation for the Treatment of Abusers. This is a great achievement and will be invaluable to Danielle’s doctoral research, which focuses on increasing the knowledge-base surrounding the users of child sexual exploitation material (CSEM). This research will have important implications for practitioners working with this offender group as it will provide a more specific understanding of their risks and needs.
The awarded research grant (totalling £723.34 ) will aid Danielle in accessing individuals from Prevention Project Dunkelfeld (Düsseldorf, Germany); a free, confidential service for individuals who have a partial or exclusive sexual preference for children that provides therapeutic help, stemming from a “health-based approach”. There are no mandatory reporting laws regarding CSEM in Germany, which allows for a comparison group of “undetected” individuals that would otherwise be inaccessible.
The majority of CSEM research has so far consisted of offender samples. As such, the theoretical developments to date could potentially be distorted due to biased empirical findings. Little is known about undetected CSEM users and the factors that distinguish this group from those who have been convicted of CSEM use. Investigating these individuals may raise important issues for prevention strategies, risk assessment, and treatment. The use of CSEM is of international concern, and this project could present the first comparison between the health-based and offending-based approach.
The research project is currently in the stage of planning and development and it is hoped that the collaboration will commence in September 2015.
This year’s second academic term has seen a number of key figures within the forensic field give some fascinating guest talks at the University of Lincoln (as part of the School of Psychology’s Research Seminar Series). Each speaker was invited by a member of the FCRG.
First, on 4th March, Dr. Miranda Horvath (Middlesex University), invited by Dr. Lynsey Gozna, gave an interesting talk entitled “Blurred lines: Exploring the impacts of lads mags and pornography on attitudes and behaviour”. In this talk, Dr. Horvath discussed findings from some of her most recent studies. In one interesting study, participants were presented with descriptions of women taken from: 1) lads’ mags; and 2) comments made by convicted rapists. However, participants were blind to the source of the description. The findings showed that participants could not distinguish the source of the quotes. Moreover, male participants identified more with the descriptions made by rapists than lad mags, possibly explained by the fact that lads mag quotes were rated as being more derogatory. Dr. Horvath suggested that these results support the hypothesis that lads mags reinforce and normalise hostile forms of sexism. In the second half of the presentation, Dr. Horvath outlined some of the core findings from an ongoing project looking into the effects that pornography can have on children and young people’s values, attitudes, beliefs, and behaviour.
A week later, on 11th March, Prof. Theresa Gannon (University of Kent), invited by Dr. Ross Bartels, gave a talk entitled “Adult Deliberate Firesetting: Developments in Theory, Research, and Practice”. In this presentation, Prof. Gannon gave an overview of the theoretical and empirical findings that have emanated from a major project on adult firesetters; a relatively neglected forensic population. Prof. Gannon described the recent Multi-Trajectory Theory of Adult Firesetting (M-TTAF) along with research findings on the psychological characteristics and mental health problems of fire-setters. Some of the key findings were that firesetters have higher levels of anger-related cognitions, interest in serious fires, identification with fire, and lower levels of fire safety awareness than non-firesetters. Also, Prof. Gannon and her team found Borderline Personality traits (e.g., poor impulse control, interpersonal issues) to be a strong discriminator between firesetters and controls. Finally, Prof. Gannon presented new and promising findings on the efficacy of the “The Firesetting Intervention Programme for Prisoners”.
Last but not least, on 22nd April, Dr. Tamara Turner-Moore (Leeds Beckett University) and Dr. Mitch Waterman (University of Leeds), invited by Prof. Todd Hogue, presented a talk entitled “They fear that they’re gonna be viewed as a massive deviant fantasy and penis”: Research on sexual offenders’ sexual thoughts and practitioners’ reflections on the implications for treatment. In this presentation, Dr. Turner-Moore and Dr. Waterman provided an overview of the ‘Sexual Thoughts Project’ (STP); an extensive international survey examining the sexual thoughts and fantasies of community men (n = 6000+) and men convicted of sexual offences (n = 93). The core findings from the STP were presented, particularly those comparing the content of sexual thoughts in non-offenders and sexual offenders. Also, the two researchers gave an overview of the work produced by a ‘think tank’ (comprised of the STP researchers, the Chair of the Practice Committee of NOTA, key UK policy-makers, and treatment providers from prison, probation, mental health, and community services) developed to explore the practical implications of the initial STP findings. The initial work of the think tank was thought-provoking and showcased ways in which this important research can be implemented in practice.
Each talk provided a fascinating insight into some of the core topics and issues within Forensic Psychology at the moment, and we are extremely grateful to each of the speakers for taking the time to visit and share their work with our department.
The FCRG team are now planning the guest speakers for next semester (Autumn 2015), with the aim to make them as interesting and varied as this semester (and year) has been.