Phd Students and Projects

On this page, you can view both current and former PhD students and their projects:

 

Current PhD students and project

  • Reem Alharbi – trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder in self-injury
  • Betul Yilmaz – trauma and psychotic-like experiences in Arabic speaking refugees, asylum seekers and migrants
  • Alison Branitsky – online peer support interventions for individuals with auditory hallucinations
  • Aidan Flinn – the impact of traumatic experiences in individuals experiencing an ‘At-Risk Mental State’ for psychosis
  • Aqsa Choudary – how ethnicity and discrimination influence trauma-related mental health difficulties in people who experience psychosis

Reem Alharbi

My PhD aims to understand how experiences of trauma and subsequent development of complex post-traumatic stress disorder contributed to the difficulties with self-injury.

This will help to develop our understanding of the factors associated with self-injury for those who experience complex trauma and improve mental health interventions aimed at this population.

Email: reem.alharbi@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

View Reem Alharbi’s research profile

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Betul Yilmaz

My PhD is investigating the association between migration experiences/trauma and psychotic-like experiences in Arabic speaking refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in the UK.

Part of my PhD involves translating questionnaires into Arabic to accurately collect information about mental health and migration/trauma experiences in this population and to culturally adapt them.

The hope is to support research in humanitarian settings and understand the impact of adverse life experiences on Arabic-speaking people’s wellbeing.

Email: betul.yilmaz@manchester.ac.uk

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Alison Branitsky

My PhD focuses on the development of online peer support interventions for individuals who hear distressing voices (auditory hallucinations).

The project will evaluate the acceptability and feasibility of implementing online peer support groups inspired by the ethos of the international Hearing Voices Movement. It will also look at if and how supportive relationships are developed and maintained in the online medium.

Email: alison.branitsky@manchester.ac.uk

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Aidan Flinn

My PhD aims to understand how traumatic experiences impact individuals who are experiencing an ‘At-Risk Mental State’ (ARMS) for psychosis how we should adapt existing psychological therapies for trauma to fit better their needs.

The project will include qualitive interviews with individuals at with an At-Risk Mental State and those who treat them alongside a clinical trial to investigate if trauma therapies at this stage is safe, feasible and effective.

Email: aidan.flinn@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

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Aqsa Choudary

My PhD will explore how race/ethnicity and discrimination influence trauma-related mental health difficulties in people who experience psychosis.

Individuals that fall within a minority ethnic group, and have psychosis, can face discrimination. The relationship between discrimination and trauma-related mental health difficulties, for people with psychosis, requires further exploration.

Email: aqsa.choudary@gmmh.nhs.uk

View Aqsa Choudary’s research profile

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Former PhD students and projects

  • Carolina Campodonico – trauma in people who experience psychosis
  • Safa Kemal Kaptan – online group parenting intervention for refugees and asylum seekers
  • Rebecca White – influence of romantic relationships on mental wellbeing for people who experience psychosis
  • Felipa Schmidt – understanding the psychological impact of online child sexual abuse
  • Peter Panayi – impact of complex PTSD in people with schizophrenia spectrum disorders

Carolina Campodonico

Carolina is now a Lecturer at UCLan. Carolina’s PhD aimed to understand how trauma can affect mental health in people who experience psychosis. Her project investigated which protective factors are associated with less post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and complex PTSD, and more post-traumatic growth.

Eighty-five participants completed a series of questionnaires, and a sub-group took part in interviews. Both studies investigated participants’ understanding of the relationship between past traumatic experiences and their current mental health.

Protective Factors Associated With Post-traumatic Outcomes in Individuals With Experiences of Psychosis

Trauma and psychosis: a qualitative study exploring the perspectives of people with psychosis on the influence of traumatic experiences on psychotic symptoms and quality of life

Email: ccampodonico@uclan.ac.uk 

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Safa Kemal Kaptan

Safa is now a Lecturer in his home country, Turkey. Safa’s PhD focused on developing an online group parenting intervention with an integrated mental health component for parent refugees and asylum seekers with young children.

The project evaluated the feasibility and acceptability of delivering the intervention to forcibly displaced families that are resident in the UK.

What works? Lessons from a pretrial qualitative study to inform a multi-component intervention for refugees and asylum seekers: Learning Through Play and EMDR Group Traumatic Episode Protocol

Email: safa.kaptan@manchester.ac.uk

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Rebecca White

Rebecca is now a Lecturer at the University of Manchester. Rebecca’s PhD aimed to explore how romantic relationships influence the mental wellbeing of those who experience psychosis and if or how mental health services should provide support in this area of people’s lives.

“Sex isn’t everything”: views of people with experience of psychosis on intimate relationships and implications for mental health services

Email: rebecca.white@manchester.ac.uk

View Rebecca White’s research profile

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Felipa Schmidt

My PhD focused on understanding the psychological impact of online child sexual abuse, with a specific focus on online grooming and online sexually abusive material. Felipa’s PhD aimed to understand the impact from both a victim and practitioner perspective, with the hope that it can inform potential therapeutic interventions.

Email: felipa.schmidt@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk

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Peter Panayi

Peter’s My PhD aimed to explore how difficult life experiences and post-traumatic stress affect people who see or hear things that others don’t and/or may feel persecuted in some way by others. Peter used data collected from clinical trials, and multiple research methods (for example, MRI scans and smartphone apps) to investigate this.

Email: peter.panayi@manchester.ac.uk

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