Clinical Psychology MPhil/PhD

Major code: PDMR/PDPR

About us

Department of Mental and Behavioural Health Sciences

Investigating the causes and treatments of mental ill-health, and the impact of health and social policies on psychological wellbeing, and investigating the determinants of positive doctor: patient (or healthcare professional: service-user) relationships and communication. 

Institute of Psychology, Health and Society

The Institute of Psychology, Health and Society conducts world-leading research into the effectiveness of health services, the social origins of health and social inequalities in healthcare, mental health and well-being, including the evaluation of a wide range of psychosocial interventions and therapies and conduct internationally acclaimed research into many aspects of psychology and human behaviour, including perception, language development, pain, addiction, appetite, and offending behaviour. We work collaboratively; the Institute employs academic GPs, public health professionals, psychologists from a range of professional backgrounds, psychiatrists, nurses, midwives, allied health professionals and social scientists. Our research groups work with colleagues from hugely diverse backgrounds; from academic colleagues from many Universities across the world, with industrial partners, with the NHS and other healthcare providers, politicians and political administrators, the police and partners across civil society.

We work across the world - from investigating respiratory disease in central America, through promoting the psychological well-being of young mothers in the middle east to studying attitudes towards epilepsy in Asia - and across widely different aspects of human behaviour - from innovative therapies for many different psychological problems, managing substance use and obesity, through helping people return to work after periods of ill-health and innovative food policies through to the policing of terrorist incidents. In all these areas, our work is characterised by a focus on research excellence and by attention to the real world impact of our scholarship. In addition to our large and active programme of postgraduate research, we contribute substantially to undergraduate teaching in the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences, and many of us provide clinical services through local NHS Trusts.

Staff research interests

Dr Steve Brown
Health psychology, including decision making and risk perception in health care.

Professor Christopher Dowrick
Improving understanding of depression and unexplained symptoms in primary care settings; increasing access to high quality mental health services through primary care.

Dr Peter Fisher
Evaluating and developing cognitive therapy for emotional disorders (anxiety, depression) and examining the cognitive and metacognitive processes that underpin these disorders.

Dr Ian Fletcher
Doctor-patient communication in medical interviews; psychological issues related to cancer diagnosis and cancer care; communication in palliative care and towards end-of-life; relationships between attachment, metacognition, and communication.

Professor Peter Kinderman
Psychological models of psychosis, especially paranoia and bipolar disorder; cognitive behavioural therapy for schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, and the application of psychological approaches to policy.

Dr Pierce O’Carroll
Clinical and ethical issues related to mental health problems in health care professionals: Positive psychology and well-being; cognitive and behavioural theories and therapies for emotional and behavioural problems.

Professor Atif Rahman
Global mental health; maternal depression and its impact on child development; mental health of children in disadvantaged conditions; cultural issues in mental health.

Professor Peter Salmon
Clinical communication and psychological processes in physical illness and treatment, particularly in cancer care and unexplained symptoms.

Dr Helen Sharp
Developmental processes and new treatments in childhood conduct problems; adult psychological functioning influencing parenting quality and child development; perinatal psychology.

Dr Bridget Young
Communication and interpersonal processes in illness, particularly childhood illness; health research methodologies. 

Professor Jason Halford

Our students benefit from being part of a thriving and enthusiastic research community, and many go on to work in health care settings, research, policy making and industry. The University of Liverpool has a long history of psychological research and was one the first Universities in the UK to establish a Department on the subject. We currently have over 100 staff, including Chairs, Lecturers and Researchers, with expertise in experimental, applied and clinical domains. Students also benefit from our extensive research facilities, includnig 'fixed and head-free' eye tracking, EEG, a bar lab, appetite research unit, facilities dedicated to collection and analysis of biological samples and supported access to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technologies at MARIARC. 


Our experts are brought together across several research groups that drive research of value to developments in psychology, psychiatry and behavioural medicine across three cross cutting themes which cover Expertise and Decision Making, Mother Infant Interaction (including Developmental Psychopathology) and Neuroscience. Read more


We provide the bulk of teaching provision for the School of Psychology, including the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology programme on the Liverpool and London campuses. Read more