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Engaging students: The Research Apprenticeship Summer Scheme in the Psychology Research Centre

In the last round of applications to the Fusion Investment Fund Dr Ben Parris, Dr Sarah Bate and Professor Sine McDougall from the Psychology Research Centre applied for, and were awarded, funds to pay for five summer placement positions that enabled our most promising students to gain a greater insight into life as researchers on a full-time basis. For a period of 9 weeks the students became part of one of the research laboratories in Psychology.  The students were responsible for experiment preparation, data collection, and data preparation and joined in lab discussions. Three RA positions were open calls; two were allied to REF impact case studies. All 2nd year students were invited to apply for the positions. Linking in with the employability strand on the undergraduate course the students were asked to provide an up-to-date CV and a 500-word summary on how the summer placement scheme would benefit them in their future career. The five selected candidates were housed in P106, which was converted into dedicated office space where the RAs could base themselves over the summer period and interact with each other and with postgraduate students and members of staff.

The scheme had a large impact on research. The five students on the scheme contributed to literature reviews, data collection, experiment programming and lab discussions for several members of staff in the Psychology Research Centre. Whilst they were each allied to a particular member of staff, others in the Centre sought their help when there was a bit of down time on the main project on which they were working. Whilst it is too early to list research outputs that have benefitted from this scheme, clearly the data collected, the literature reviewed, and the experiments programmed have all contributed towards the research goals of members of the Psychology Research Centre. Overall, data from over 200 participants were collected at a time when it is particularly difficult to recruit and test participants. Moreover, given that the scheme represents effective training for those seeking a career in academia, the full-time positions gave students the opportunity to engage in professional practice. Furthermore, by allying two positions with impact case studies the scheme involved their engagement with bodies external to the university (e.g. Poole Hospital).

Feedback from the students themselves provides useful insight into the utility of the scheme to them. All students reported great satisfaction with the scheme, having learned how to conduct a piece of research properly. They report having learned useful technical skills that they can apply to their final year projects. Most importantly they report direct benefits for their final year of study. Not only have they used their time wisely in thinking about the project which forms a large part of their final year (and degree as a whole) but the students reported that one of the biggest benefits was improvements in article reading skills.  Two of the students commented how extra reading for lectures now seems a lot easier; they can now read and extract important information in half the time.  This has enabled them to explore a much broader range of papers, which has increased their understanding of Psychology.  One student wrote ‘My general understanding of Psychology has been greatly improved, igniting a much stronger passion for the subject than I have ever felt before and the impact that this has had on my University work is extremely valuable to me’. Another wrote ‘Since starting back in term one, I have found that reading journal articles has become an easier process for me. I am now able to look at any article from any topic area and understand more fully what I’m reading, and where to go to find the information that is relevant for the task at hand’. As a final example, one of this year’s RAs wrote ‘The opportunity to continue to study, conduct research and become more familiar with programs such as SPSS throughout the summer means that the return to the final year is considerably less daunting and I feel more confident about designing and conducting my own study’.

A final important consequence of this scheme neatly highlights one of the benefits of fusion.  Admittedly an unintended consequence of the scheme, engaging potential researchers of the future had the consequence of making researchers of the present feeling somewhat trapped in the past. One of the apprentices took it upon himself to introduce us to the potential of Twitter and Facebook for participant recruitment. This has now been incorporated into our participant recruitment strategy. The Facebook site attracted 80 ‘likes’ within a few days (I believe that number is now much higher) and has since been used to recruit participants.  This will increase the efficiency with which all members of the Psychology Research Centre complete research. In short, the masters became the apprentices.

The next 3 Leisure and Recreation Theme Seminars

The Leisure and Recreation Theme is continuing it seminar series with:

  • Our Christmas get together  on Wednesday 12 December, 1.00-2.30pm, TAG 20 when we will be focusing on the work of two Post Graduate Researchers working within the theme with  presentations looking at travel life history and the co-creation of festival experiences followed by discussion and seasonal refreshments!

Then in the new year we will be looking at two diverse subjects

On  Wednesday 30th January at 2.00pm. TAG 01  Dr Andrew Adams will be talking about Sport and Human Rights

And then on Wednesday 27th February at 2.00pm. TAG01 Paola Palmer will be MAD about the wreck 

Please put the dates in your diaries. Further information from

UK Dementia Congress 7th Annual Conference

In late October 2012 the UK Dementia Congress hosted its 7th annual conference at the Hilton Hotel in Brighton, which was attended by two members of the BUDI team (Clare Cutler and Ben Hicks). A poster detailing a recent BUDI project around Dementia Friendly Tourism was accepted and displayed alongside other posters highlighting innovative and exciting research. The conference was attended by many professionals, academics, service providers and service users. This was a wonderful opportunity for BUDI to showcase current research and to be able to liaise with others currently working in the field of dementia.


BU visiting professor Chinnakurli Ramesh has been visiting Sustainable Design Research Centre within the School of Design, Engineering & Computing from 5th November ‘til 8th December 2012. His visit is funded by the BU FIF initiative awarded to Dr Zulfiqar Khan.  Prof Ramesh is a senior academic at PES IT Bangalore. His research interests are Surface Engineering, Tribology and Nanotechnology.

He has been actively involved in collaborative academic activities with the School. He is participating in level C & H Design Engineering education through Design Methods & Projects and Advanced Technology & Innovation units.

BU (Zulfiqar Khan, Mark Hadfield) and PES IT (Prof. Ramesh) and Visvesvaraya Technological University (Prof. Kori & Prof. Rangappa) have jointly submitted an EPSRC – DST  research funding application in collaboration with industrial partners such as Bharat Heavy Electrical Limited & Ingersoll Rand and  research partners Gas Turbine Research & Establishment  &  National Aerospace Laboratories  from India.

Prof. Ramesh and Dr. Zulfiqar Khan have jointly contributed seven papers to International Conferences in STLE 2012, the upcoming STLE 2013, recently concluded AMPT-2012, and Contact and Surface 2013 in the area of coatings, tribology and material processing. Prof. Ramesh & Dr. Khan are participating in joint journal publication as well.

Prof. Ramesh had useful meetings with the School Execs including Prof. Jim Roach, DDRE&I Prof. Mark Hadfield, DDE Dr. Xavier Velay and AD Dr. Tania Humphries-Smith in terms of furthering the existing collaboration in education, research and professional practice.

Latest BU REF Highlight Report now available

The latest BU REF Highlight Report (#13) is now available for BU staff to download. It covers the period from August to October 2012.

Features in this report include information about:

  • The Review Panel Meeting cycle for the Summer Mock 2012 and the feedback from it;
  • The dissemination of the BU REF Code of Practice, the BU REF FAQs and BU staff circumstances disclosure form, which is also closely linked to the staff circumstances disclosure exercise with an initial deadline of the 31 October 2012
  • The development of BRIAN in line with testing the REF Submission Pilot System;
  • Links to the latest official REF documents.                                                                                                                                                                                      

You can access your copy of the report from the following location on the I-drive (just copy and paste the following into Windows Explorer): I:\R&KEO\Public\RDU\REF\REF preparations\REF highlight reports

Hear it direct from the horse’s mouth! – Individual one-to-one advice from FIF committee members

For the December round of Fusion Investment Funding the committee members from all three strands (open to staff) are available to contact to arrange advice and guidance on completing your applications, from today until the 1st December deadline.

Please note the CCCP committee members will be available by phone or email only.

To contact members from one of the panels send an email to a member, names found clicking on the following pages and scrolling down to the ‘assessment’ box:

Co-Creation and Co-Production strand CCCP

Staff Mobility and Networking strand SMN

Study Leave strand SL


Don’t forget to apply by the 1st December deadline!


Wanted: members for RC governing councils

Six research councils are inviting applications to fill governing council vacancies expected to arise in 2013.

Suitably qualified academics and experienced individuals from industry, commerce, government, and the voluntary, creative and cultural sectors, can apply.

The vacancies are at the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council, the Economic and Social Research Council, the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, the Natural Environment Research Council, and the Science and Technology Facilities Council.

The vacancies include some positions with audit committee responsibilities for part-time membership.

Annual honoraria of £6,850 will be paid. The closing date for applications is 19 November.

Textbook translated into Greek

 Just received in the post a copy of one of the textbooks for medical students I have edited, and I can’t read it.  Elsevier wrote a cover letter with the book to inform us (co-editors and I) that the third edition of our successful textbook Psychology & Sociology Applied to Medicine: An Illustrated Text has been translated into Greek (see  A long time ago I did one year of Ancient Greek in High School in the Netherlands so I can recognise some of the Greek letters, but that’s all.  The original third edition (in English) was published in late 2010 (  The Greek edition was apparently published late 2011.  Interestingly, since the textbook’s contributors and editors have signed over the copyright of their work to Elsevier the negotiations have been without our knowledge between the publishers Elsevier and Parisianou (Athens).  As we did not know this was happening we received a nice unexpected surprise.

What fascinates me is why a translation into Greek?  The textbook sells well in the UK and Ireland and it appears to sell well in English-speaking countries like Australia and New Zealand and in North-West Continental Europe.  Greece is some economic, political and social upheaval and the process of translation costs money and the market for a textbook in Greek is considerably smaller than for one in English.  Perhaps Greek medical students find it more difficult to study in English than other Continental students? 


Professor Edwin van Teijlingen

School of Health & Social Care

School of Tourism’s Adele Ladkin on her FIF Staff Mobility Project: Visiting the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) Themis Foundation in Andorra

Professor Adele Ladkin has received £5,000 funding from the FIF staff mobility strand to undertake two week long visits to the UNWTO Themis Foundation Headquarters in Andorra.

As part of its Capacity Building Programme, the UNWTO.Themis Foundation provides educational courses and workshops for tourism industry experts.  These are in a range of subjects, for example tourism marketing, adventure tourism and sustainable tourism.  Because of the nature of these courses and the demand for different topics, subject experts from the tourism industry and public sectors are recruited as tutors to deliver the courses.

Adele and Ms Sònia Figueras, the UNWTO.Capacity Programme manager at the UNWTO Themis Foundation are engaged in collaborative work to produce a teaching guide and intensive training course for tutors responsible for delivering tourism capacity building courses and workshops as part of the UNWTO.Capacity Programme.  The Themis Foundation enables UNWTO Member States to devise and implement education, training and capacity building policies, plans and tools that fully harness the employment potential of their tourism sector and effectively enhance its competitiveness and sustainability.  Working with Ms Figueras, Adele will provide input into teaching methodologies commonly used in tourism programmes.

The collaboration has arisen as the School of Tourism is part of the Themis TedQual Network and aims to support activities undertaken in the areas of education, training and tourism capacity building. The impact of the collaboration will be practical through the dissemination and use of the teachers guide and the training course by highly experienced tourism subject experts. The collaboration and pedagogic approach will also be presented at an appropriate tourism educator’s conference. This knowledge exchange opportunity demonstrates the Schools commitment to supporting tourism education initiatives.

Adele will be spending time in Andorra at the headquarters of the Themis Foundation to work directly on the course materials as well as on-line collaborative working. The visits will enable Adele to spend a concentrated period of time working on the project, and will also give her further insight into the activities of the Themis Foundation.  She plans to undertake the first visit later this year – weather permitting as the mountain roads into Andorra are often covered in snow!

Value of conference attendance?

October is the month of the annual Alzheimer Europe ( meeting. This year three BUDI team members attended the rather nice setting in Vienna a draw for everyone, although we all had very different agendas and expectations. Alzheimer Europe is one of my personal favourite conferences as I’ve been going for years and it creates the opportunity to meet with new and catch up with a range of international colleagues, and is actually the main reason I go to these kind of events; yes it is good to present the work, and as a team we had two posters and three oral presentations this year, which is not bad for an Institute only in existence for 6 months, but it is the networking aspect that provides inspiration and creates new ideas and new collaborations that motivates me to go to these kind of events.

Patricia McParland is BUDI’s project manager, she has presented at a few dementia conferences in the last 3 years but for this conference her main concern was to ensure her cutting edge work doctoral work, that she is in the final throes of writing up, on public awareness of dementia is getting out there as this is an area of increasing policy concern both in the UK and internationally and many are starting to work in this particular area. As well as presenting a poster on her doctoral work that received positive attention, she presented a paper reporting on one of BUDI’s project about Dementia Friendly Tourism. The concept of Dementia Friendly Tourism has caught the imagination of many we speak to about our dementia work and this proved to be the case again in Vienna. Colleagues from France, Spain and Jersey were particularly interested in this project and keen to explore how these ideas could be applied to their regions; we will see what transpires over the coming months in the way of collaboration but this is a nice example of the added value of going to a conference.

Clare Cutler is a research assistant in BUDI and has just started her PhD exploring experiences of war and dementia, as an Early Career Researcher Clare was thrilled to be attending her first interational conference, and her excitement was contagious! but she was also rather anxious about giving her first presentation on one of BUDI’s projects, GRIID, Gateway to Rural International Innovations in Dementia, on behalf of an international team. She needn’t have worried as she went down a storm; mainly because she said at the beginning that she was nervous, this was her first presentation and then let out a big sigh as she finished. This created a huge amount of goodwill to her personally as well as her giving a presentation on an innovative interational partnership project. We had received the support of Alzheimer Disease International ( to conduct part of this study and the opportunity for further discussion about working together to target rural areas and developing countries is another of the added value benefits that being in Vienna brought for me this year.

I presented a paper on a recently completed evaluation of a telehealth project to diagnose and follow up people with dementia living on the Shetland Isles and Grampian, rural areas of Scotland. The added value of this work relates to the INTERDEM ( meeting that was held the day before the conference. (This is another example of added value by the way, going to other meetings around a conference.) Interdem is an application/invite only pan European network of highly active psychosocial researchers in the dementia field; as a member I was also able to take my BUDI colleagues in their student roles, a new doctoral and just about to complete doctoral student, to this full day meeting and they found this an amazing experience as many of the ‘names’ of long established dementia academics are part of this group which is always a buzz to meet people you’ve quoted for the first time, who offered real warmth, enthusiasm and support for their work. The Interdem meeting this time round was a mix of presentations (including one from the task force on technology and dementia that I co-lead)  and working groups developing bid ideas, collaborative papers and general brain storming about how to take forward new work in the field. The technology task force has been working on a bid around exergaming and dementia and we used the lunchtime slot to meet to work up our ideas further  (more added value) as well as updating Interdem members about our progress with this bid during the meeting itself. But we also discussed new bid ideas and telehealth, the focus of my Alzheimer Europe paper, was one of the favoured topics; one of our jobs now is to see the details of a long-awaited funding call  (JPND) due out December 2012 and get writing another EU bid.  We also agreed to write a collaborative paper on technology and dementia, but a successful meeting is one that generates new work from my point of view!

My other bit of dissemination work was a poster about ongoing research evaluating dementia care in Maltese hopsital wards. The added value about this relates to the conference venue being in Malta next year and I am sure this has partly influenced the invitation, of the Maltese Dementia Society member who is a long standing collaborator of mine as well as being the local organisor for the 2013 meeting, for me to give a plenary there next year!

So in all, the value of going to conferences for new researchers, is undoubtedly to present their work, to meet esteemed colleagues and the resultant ‘buzz’ this brings, to learn about other research in the field and to start their own networks (a good example of this is Patricia joining a writing team for a methods related paper, more added value!). For me it is a chance to catch up with people and to discuss potential new collaborations. In previous years it has also been about keeping a profile of the work of my team, this year it was about starting to create a profile for a new BU team to an international audience. I am pleased to report that all boxes were ticked this time round!

Book onto one of the British Library’s Doctoral Open Days

A chance for new PhD students to book onto one of the British Library’s Doctoral Open Days and to discover the British Library’s unique research materials. From newspapers to maps, datasets to manuscripts, ships’ logs to websites, our collections cover every format and language and span the last 3,000 years.  At these free events you will learn about our collections, find out how to access them, and meet the BL’s expert staff and other researchers in your field. The events are aimed at first year PhD students who are new to the Library.

To make the most of your day, you may wish to get a free Reader Pass before the event.

The main focus of these events is towards the arts, humanities and social sciences, however, science students can of course apply for a free Reader Pass – useful if you’re already planning a research trip to London.

If you’re visiting one of the London university or museum libraries you can use the Inform25 Catalogue to search their Library Catalogues in advance.  Make sure you join the Sconul Access Scheme at Bournemouth University Library first to ensure you can gain access to those libraries and potentially borrow books.

Fusion Investment Fund Launch Week – Focus on Study Leave strand

 The Study Leave (SL) grants are designed to buy individuals out of one semester/term of teaching and provide support for overseas travel and subsistence or for expenditure associated with distance working within the UK.  Opportunities for paid study leave include undertaking or participating in:

  1. A period(s) of business or industrial secondment.
  2. International staff exchange or periods of overseas research, professional practice or educational activity.
  3. In staff exchange or periods of research, professional practice or educational activity at other Universities or Government research establishments in the UK.
  4. Secondments within different parts of BU, for example within different Schools. 

Study Leave was the most undersubscribed strand of the Fund in round one with 5 applicants taking the £45,661.50 allocated in July.  To give some clarity on what will be funded by the committee please see the FIF Study Leave policy Sept V1

Matthew Bennett writes in his blog piece ‘Jumping Trains’ how Study Leave can help in building networks. Periods of study leave need not be contiguous but can consist of a series of short visits or secondments at one or more institutions. An application for Study Leave may be combined or linked to a bid to the Staff Networking and Mobility Strand where additional travel and subsistence costs are required. Periods of Study Leave are normally between 2 or 6 months, but some flexibility for both shorter and longer periods will be exercised by the committee where there are good reasons for doing so. 

The normal cycle of applications is two per year – June and December – however the Committee recognises that opportunities arise at other times and is prepared to take out of cycle applications at any point during an academic year.

I hope you will see the diversity of possibilities available from this strand – by reading the Dr Lai Xu post on securing the maximum £15,000 funding.  The project  ‘Strengthening Service Computing Research in BU’ is enabling inward mobility into the School of Design, Engineering and Computing.

As part of the intervention programmes in October and November the committee members are all contactable for help, please details on intervention activity here.

Good Luck!!

Fusion Investment Fund – 2012/13 December Round opens today!

The Fusion Investment Fund (FIF) is again opening the three strands currently available to staff!

At c. £3m per annum for the first three years the FIF represents the significant investment that BU is making in the development of staff and students, and the embedding of the Fusion philosophy. 

New Fusion Investment Fund online application form and general FAQ’s can be viewed on the FIF website   

Also launching today is the Erasmus Staff Mobility scheme which has been merged into the Existing Staff Mobility and Networking strand, please see Erasmus Application and Guidance (Word 2010) 

 Follow the links below to be directed to the new strand policy documents as well as the new Application Form:

 Details of the intervention sessions can be seen here. Apply before the deadline on 1st December!

 If you have any questions about the fund do not hesitate to contact Sam Furr FIF Administrator.

Fusion Investment Fund – Intervention Programmes in October / November 2012

Fusion Investment Fund Intervention Sessions

Applications to the December round of Fusion Investment Funding is now open.  To support academics in making applications two series of interventions are now available!

Grant Writing Development here at Talbot! – Book now onto the “Strengthening your FIF Proposal” workshop led by Martin Pickard

Two half day sessions are running on Tuesday 6th November with Martin Pickard from Grantcraft visiting Talbot. To book click here and fill out the booking form, numbers are limited to 12 in each session so do hurry!

Tuesday 6th November 2012, 09:00-12:00 – The Octagon, Talbot Campus

Tuesday 6th November 2012, 13:00-16:00 – The Octagon, Talbot Campus

This session will be led by Martin Pickard from Grantcraft and will provide academics who have drafted their FIF proposals with the opportunity to have their proposals reviewed by Martin and to identify areas that could be strengthened. Max of 12 attendees per session.

The session includes a one hour introductory presentation Martin calls ‘Grantmanship’, followed by a group workshop. Lunch included for both morning and afternoon attendees from 12:00 – 13:00.

Max of 12 attendees per session.


Hear it direct from the horse’s mouth! – Individual one-to-one advice from FIF committee members

For the December round of Fusion Investment Funding the committee members from all three strands (open to staff) are available to contact to arrange advice and guidance on completing your applications, from today right up to the 1st December deadline.

Please note the CCCP committee members will be available by phone or email only.

To contact members from one of the panels send an email to a member, names found clicking on the following pages:

Co-Creation and Co-Production strand CCCP

Staff Mobility and Networking strand SMN

Study Leave strand SL


Don’t forget to apply by the 1st December deadline!

LIBRARY TRIAL: 3 month trial to e-journal Science

We have a 3 month trial to the e-journal Science with a view to subscribing in 2013.  The trial gives access to 1997 to date.

Notes on access:

  • on-campus access is IP-authenticated (therefore automatic);
  • off-campus via A-Z of e-journals link – access is via proxy server (user will be prompted for their BU login);

For help using e-journals, e-books, bibliographic databases (such as Scopus and Web of Science), bibliometrics and reference management contact the Library Subject Team for your School

Smart Technology Research Center Seminar in online pattern classification under “concept drift”

This interesting talk will take place next Monday, the 1st of October, 14:00 at PG22 (ground floor, Poole House).  Our special guest is Dr Georg Krempl from the Knowledge Management and Discovery group at the University of Magdeburg. Dr Krempl has published a number of interesting papers in online pattern classification when the underlying concept drifts,

I very much encourage all the students and researchers interested on this exciting topic not to miss the opportunity of attending to this talk!

Best wishes, Emili Balaguer-Ballester

Fusion Investment Fund to award £11,736 to Business School / ApSci project

Mapping the socioeconomic drivers of human disease emergence: Implications for AIDS and tuberculosis.

The tropical air was charged with hope and despair as the world’s leaders descended on Rio de Janeiro in 1992[1]. Twenty years later, the situation has not changed significantly and key targets for the reduction of biodiversity loss have not been met[1]. With the world’s population expected to grow from 6.8 billion today to 9.1 billion by 2050, how will all these extra mouths be fed at an acceptable cost to the planet? The world’s population more than doubled from 3 billion between 1961 and 2007, yet agricultural output kept pace — and current projections suggest it will continue to do so. However, Colin Chartres, director of the International Water Management Institute, has stated that “agriculture is the biggest user of fresh water, making up 70–90% of the annual water demand for many countries”[2]. The worldwide pattern of river threats offers the most comprehensive explanation so far of why freshwater biodiversity is considered to be in a state of crisis. Estimates suggest that at least 10,000–20,000 freshwater species are extinct or at risk, with loss rates rivalling those of previous transitions between geological epochs like the Pleistocene-to-Holocene.  

Along with the change of freshwater biodiversity expected as a result of environmental change and increased demand on ecosystem services, change in disease risk is also expected. It is forecasted that complex interactions between host type diversity and community of pathogens will be modified along with change of community structures. However, our current understanding of how change in biodiversity affects transmission and emergence of disease has been overlooked.

A group of researchers from different BU departments aim to characterise the socio-economic drivers underpinning change in freshwater host biodiversity that lead to the emergence of immuno-suppressant related human disease.  Specifically they are going to

1-to establish the worldwide distribution of microsporidian parasites and their fish hosts

2-to establish levels of host extinction risk

3-to model the links between freshwater biodiversity threats and a range of socio-economic parameters

4-to develop a set of risk maps of freshwater immuno-suppressant human disease emergence.

5-to relate our risk maps to current global distribution of AIDS and tuberculosis cases.

6- To establish a dynamical stochastic forecasting system based on a learning technique as a predictive epidemiology technique. The technique represents the state-of-the-art in epidemiology, linking socio-economic drivers and emerging infectious diseases.

The project would be conducting mostly based at the Business school but with regular meeting between the three supervisor, including skype meeting for the day to day supervision.

The outcomes of the on-going research will be of great interest to the World Health Organisation, the United Nations Development Programme  and public health NGOs (e.g. Project Hope, Oxfam).

 The FIF has been used to recruit a research assistant for a period of six months to help us with the meta-data collection, modelling and data analysis. This was key in initiating the first phase of the cross school collaboration.

Researchers: Dr Hossein Hassani (Business School), Dr Demetra Andreou (Applied Sciences) and Prof. Rudy Gozlan (Applied Science).







[1] Editorial. Return toRio: Second chance for the planet Nature 486, 19 (07 June 2012) doi:10.1038/486019a