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PhD Studentship: Developing and Evaluating Digitally-Mediated Service Provision for Children with Social, Emotional and Mental Health Needs, Including Autism

University of Bath - Psychology

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Bath, Trowbridge
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: See below
Hours: Part Time
Placed On: 8th November 2018
Closes: 23rd November 2018

The Project

Lead Supervisor: Prof Mark Brosnan, Department of Psychology, University of Bath

Co-Supervisor: Dr Ailsa Russell, Department of Psychology, University of Bath

0.5 FTE PhD (University of Bath: PhD fees paid at the Home/EU rate and ~£7k stipend per annum) for four years. The registration period for the part time PhD is 4 to 6 years. It is anticipated the successful candidate will submit their PhD within 4 years (and would have to self-fund after 4 years if this was not the case).

0.5 FTE Employment (Wiltshire Council: Salary ~£15k per annum) – part time post contracted to Wiltshire Council.

The project: Children and young people who are identified as facing social, emotional and mental health issues and are potentially on the autistic spectrum may receive assessment and intervention from a number of teams, including Child and Adolescent Mental Health Practitioners; Educational Psychologists; Behaviour Support Teachers; Social Workers and/or Specialist SEND Lead Teachers. Where these professionals are able to join up their assessments, the support plan is more likely to consider the child’s needs holistically and address the complex interactions between special educational needs, autistic spectrum disorders and emotional wellbeing or mental health concerns. However, the pathways between these services can be difficult to navigate and it is not always clear which service is best placed to offer appropriate support.

This project seeks to pilot a new approach to supporting this cohort of children, by bringing together a virtual multi-disciplinary team to support a cluster of engaged and well-supported schools and formulate specialised action plans to prevent escalation to statutory services. The project represents a unique collaboration between Wiltshire Council and the University of Bath (Department of Psychology). The successful candidate will be employed half time by Wiltshire Council as a project co-ordinator to develop the project, and register as a part time PhD student (Psychology) at the University of Bath half time, to evaluate the project.

The Applicant

The successful candidate will therefore need to have the technical expertise to develop the digital tools that will enable virtual multi-disciplinary team interactions (Project Co-ordinator employed by Wiltshire Council) and the research expertise to evaluate the effectiveness on this digitally-mediated way of working for both the children and the professionals involved (Psychology PhD at the University of Bath).

The successful candidate should:

  1. Fulfil the entrance requirements for a Department of Psychology PhD:
  2. Have relevant experience of the service provision targeted at children with social, emotional and mental health needs, including autism
  3. Be competent in the implementation and application of Information Communication Technology (ICT – e.g. to ITQ2 or GCSE level or thereabouts)

How to apply

IMPORTANT: applicants must complete both an online application for the part time PhD in Psychology at the University of Bath AND an application to Wiltshire Council by the advertised deadline.

Please apply to the University of Bath using the following link:

Please apply to Wiltshire Council using the following link:!/search/5119100l0212411/keyword/cs01355/

Interviews are being scheduled for the week beginning December 3rd, 2018. The anticipated start date is January 2019 (subject to negotiation). One interview will assess the candidates’ suitability for both the Wiltshire Council Project Co-ordinator role and the University of Bath’s PhD in Psychology. The successful candidate will be able to address both of these aspects of the project.

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