The research in the School is based around three broad themes.
The School of Psychology is home to over 50 research-active staff and since 2007 has hosted over 40 research grants (over £4 million) funded by ESRC, BBSRC, MRC, EPSRC, EU, government departments and others. Its research has been recognised for its high quality, often with outputs classified as being of an international standard. The School has recently restructured its research activity around three broad themes as follows:
Research on thinking processes has a long tradition in cognitive psychology but much of the impact of our thought processes is on our behaviour in domains that are the subject of other sub-disciplines of psychology. In recognition of this breadth of impact, at Surrey we have formed a research theme, which cuts across traditional psychology sub-discipline boundaries, that is focused on both understanding the fundamentals of thinking and on applying this knowledge to develop ways of enhancing thinking processes at multiple levels of activity (individual, group, organisation, society) and in multiple domains.
The Health Research Group has a strong focus on both theoretical and applied research particularly in the areas of health, environmental, occupational, clinical and counselling Psychology. It investigates a range of health-related behaviours such as exercise, smoking, diet and communication, focusing on risk perception and consultation. Current projects focus on food allergy, food labelling, rumination and recovery from work stress, recovery from office based surgery, rehabilitation following bariatric surgery and dietary control.
Our researchers working in this area investigate the neural bases of a variety of cognitive functions in healthy humans as well as in patients suffering from mental or neurological disorders. They draw upon a wide range of approaches including psychophysics, cognitive modelling, neuroimaging and neurostimulation. We are currently using novel approaches such as between subjects’ real time fMRl interaction, pattern recognition analyses, as well as using Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (MRS) to better understand the link between hormones, metabolites and cognitive function.
Multidisciplinary Research Centres
Researchers in the School are involved with several multi-disciplinary research groups set up to facilitate co-operative research drawing on the diverse perspectives and expertise of several different disciplines:
The Centre for Research on the European Matrix (CRonEM) is a new multidisciplinary research centre housed in the School of Politics at the University of Surrey.
At CRonEM, we research European integration as a matrix of overlapping layers of governance, institutions and processes that shape how people of this continent live their lives and are governed, as well as how Europe engages the rest of the world.
The Digital World Research Centre works to develop and apply a process of people-centred innovation in digita technology for the modern consumer market, based on the interplay of user, design, business and technology research.
Hardly a week goes by without some new food and health issue hitting the headlines. From BSE and GM foods to obesity and food labelling, these issues are shaped by both the public response to them and their underlying scientific basis. The FCBH integrates these diverse factors to provide a much-needed understanding of consumer behavior and the morass of facts, myths, perceptions, needs and desires that underlies it.