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The University of Southampton
PsychologyOur news, events & seminars

Behaviour change: Making a difference Seminar

12:30 - 13:30
25 February 2016
University of Southampton, Highfield Campus, Building 44 (Shackleton), Room 3031/3033

For more information regarding this seminar, please telephone Sue McNally on 02380 595150 or email .

Event details

Many of the issues facing society involve behaviour and how it might be changed. In the domain of health, people’s behaviours such as smoking or being sedentary can increase their risk of the diseases which are the most common causes of death while their behaviour in engaging with health services, including adherence to prescribed medication, may lead to better outcomes. Additionally, the behaviour of healthcare professionals may determine whether patients get optimal care. Behavioural science can make a difference using its theory and its methods. Theories from social, clinical, learning and cognitive psychology have been useful in explaining health-related behaviours and in proposing how the behaviours might be changed. Interventions based on these theories have been effective in changing a wide range of behaviours and the talk will illustrate with examples changing the behaviour of healthy populations, patients receiving treatment and healthcare professionals.

Speaker information

Professor Marie Johnston, University of Aberdeen. Marie Johnston is a Registered Health and Clinical Psychologist, and Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Aberdeen. She is a Fellow of the BPS, the Royal Society of Edinburgh and the Academy of Medical Sciences and Academician of the Academy of Learned Societies for the Social Sciences. She conducts research on disability (theory, measurement and intervention) and on behaviour change in health and healthcare contexts. In 1986, she became the first chair of the Health Psychology section of the BPS and in 1992, the second president of the European Health Psychology Society. She has served on numerous BPS committees and in 1994 gained the BPS President's Award. Her previous posts were at the University of St Andrews, London University (Royal Free Hospital School of Medicine) and Oxford University, having completed her BSc at the University of Aberdeen and PhD at the University of Hull.

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