I have worked as a full time psychology lecturer since 2003, and I started working with the Open University as an Associate Lecturer in 2004. In 2013 I obtained my PhD in Forensic Psychology at the University of Liverpool, and I obtained a position working full time for the Open University as a Staff Tutor in late 2014. My role involved working with psychology and counselling Associate Lecturers in the North West, as well as contributing to the Department of Psychology on a variety of modules. In January 2016 I was seconded to the central psychology department where I worked on the production of postgraduate psychology modules in the area of criminal and investigative psychology. In January 2018 I obtained a role as deputy director of learning in the Centre for Policing Research and Learning, where I work on matters associated with psychology that are relevant to policing.
I am currently working on the Citizen Forensics project grant which looks at how Citizens can collaborate with police and other services through online tools. I have recently worked on two research grants for the Police Knowledge Fund (2015 - 2017). One involved developing top up training for counter terrorism interviewers, and one involved the 'small story' analysis of police owned facebook sites in order to understand how the police identity is shaped on such sites.
I am interested in investigative interviewing and there are two main strands to this, which comprise both qualitative and quantitative methodologies. 1. I am interested in how suspects and police officers can achieve complicity and resistance in interview settings through the use of narrative strategies when talking (or refusing to talk!) about criminal incidents. 2. I am interested in witness interpretations of criminal incidents. Specifically how potential witnesses may be influenced by “interviewee bias” from a variety of potential sources, and the extent to which such bias might be mitigated by anticipatory thinking strategies.
My other main research interest is in stories or narratives, and there are two main strands to this research. First I am interested in the impacts that reading can have on individuals psychologically (for example I have carried out research in how reading initiatives can help with the development of empathy). Second I am interested in how story can be used to 'create' or inform individuals idendity.
My teaching interests are in both psychology and literature, and in the area of forensic and investigative psychology.
In 2019 I was the academic advisor to the BBC2 (Wall to Wall) production "Catching Britains Killers: the crimes that changed us." This three part documentary looked at key cases that have changed the face of the British Criminal Justics System
In 2017 I was academic advisor on the BBC2 (Minnow) production "The Detectives: Murder on the streets". This was a four part documentary following Detectives in the GMP murder investigation team.
I am regularly involved in consultancy work training police detectives and other officers. In this work I regularly collaborate with Professor Laurence Alison of Liverpool University.
I have produced a video for BBC ideas which can be viewed here.
I regularly collaborate in knowledge transfer activities (in the area of investigative interviewing) with colleagues from Liverpool University (Professor Laurence Alison). I have also collaborated in research publications with colleagues from Sheffield Hallam University.