Psychology: Fully Funded Swansea University and Headwise PhD Scholarship: Mock Juror Perceptions of Defendants with Acquired Brain Injury

  • Phd
  • Full cost of UK/EU tuition fees, plus a stipend
  • 9 August 2018

This scholarship is funded by Swansea University's College of Human and Health Sciences and Headwise.
Subject areas: Psychology (Neuropsychology, Forensic) or related disciplines
Start date: October 2018
There is scant research into how jurors perceive defendants with a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI), although such individuals tend to be overrepresented in prison populations. Surveys of the public also indicate significant misconceptions about brain injuries are commonly held. Furthermore, jurors find it difficult to discount irrelevant or prejudicial information, even when they are instructed to do so.
This fully-funded PhD project will build on preliminary work from our lab, where we have begun to explore how jurors evaluate defendants with a history of TBI, and what factors influence verdicts and perceptions of the defendant. The project will involve a series of experiments, in which participant-jurors read information about fictitious cases, in which some key piece of information (e.g., the presence of neuroimaging evidence, or the presence of physical sequelae of the brain injury) is manipulated, and the impact of those pieces of information on juror decisions will be assessed.
Through this project, the successful applicant will have a unique opportunity to be involved in inter-disciplinary research with a strong applied focus, which has the potential to inform policy and practice in the UK and abroad.
The fully-funded PhD project will be co-supervised by Dr Claire Williams and Dr Ruth Horry (Swansea University) in collaboration with Professor Andrew Worthington (Headwise), external partner for the project.  
The Department of Psychology has access to state-of-the-art research facilities, including EEG, NIRS, eye-tracking facilities, a social observation laboratory, and over 20 all-purpose research rooms, any of which may be used in pursuit of the PhD.
The successful candidate will also be expected to contribute up to six hours of teaching a week in various roles around the Department of Psychology.
Deadline for applications is 5:00pm 9 August 2018. It is anticipated that interviews for shortlisted candidates will take place on 23 August 2018.


Candidates should have a 2.1 or above honours degree in Psychology and/or MSc (Merit or above) in Psychology (Neuropsychology, Forensic) or a related discipline.
Strong statistical and good experimental design ability is highly desirable.Candidates should have experience of designing and running experiments, analysing the resulting data, and producing high quality written reports.Strong and flexible communication skills are essential – applicants will be required to convey research results within academic, clinical and industry contexts.Clinical and other related experience of working with individuals with acquired brain injury is desirable.  
We would normally expect the academic and English Language requirements to be met by point of application. For details on the University’s English Language entry requirements, please visit –
Due to funding restrictions, this scholarship is open to UK/EU candidates only.


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The scholarship covers the full cost of UK/EU tuition fees and an annual stipend of ÂŁ14,777. There will be additionalÂŁ1,000 for other research expenses.


Please visit our website for more information.

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