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The impact of different ways of communicating about resilience on suicidal experiences


   Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health


About the Project

Suicidal experiences such as thoughts, urges, plans and attempts are associated with immense psychological pain and distress. Such experiences are far more prevalent in people who have severe mental health problems, including depression, anxiety and psychosis. Suicidal thoughts and acts can be countered and are preventable. Indeed, many individuals with severe mental health problems develop forms of resilience to suicidal experiences. Ways in which resilience of this nature are advanced and maintained is poorly understood and sparsely researched. The overarching goal of this current PhD project is to redress this gap.

Although psychological therapies have been developed which focus specifically on suicidality, this work requires extensive expansion. In particular, there is a need to develop psychological therapies which can promote resilience to suicidal experiences. A parallel area which has received minimal attention is how to communicate in ways which amplify resilience to suicidality. This project has two research questions: 1. How can we understand which psychological therapies are optimally suited to developing and maintaining resilience to suicide; 2. How can we understand different ways of communicating and expressing thoughts and feelings so that they nurture the processes underpinning resilience to suicide.

It is imperative that both of these research questions are investigated with i. service-users experiencing mental health problems and suicidality; ii. friends and relatives of such service users; and ii. mental health professionals, in particular therapists representing a diverse array of approaches who work/have worked with individuals who are suicidal. It is anticipated that the PhD work will involve developing and using quantitative and advanced mixed (quantitative and qualitative) methods and analyses.

Patient and public involvement is crucial to this PhD programme. Experts-By-Experience (EBEs) will be involved in co-producing all stages of the research process including refining specific research questions, designing studies, acting as co-analysts, and developing dissemination strategies.

Entry Requirements

Candidates are expected to hold (or be about to obtain) a minimum upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) in a related area/subject. Candidates with previous laboratory experience, particularly in cell culture and molecular biology, are particularly encouraged to apply.

How To Apply

For information on how to apply for this project, please visit the Faculty of Biology, Medicine and Health Doctoral Academy website (https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/study/research/apply/). Informal enquiries may be made directly to the primary supervisor. On the online application form select PhD Genetics

For international students, we also offer a unique 4 year PhD programme that gives you the opportunity to undertake an accredited Teaching Certificate whilst carrying out an independent research project across a range of biological, medical and health sciences.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Equality, diversity and inclusion is fundamental to the success of The University of Manchester, and is at the heart of all of our activities. The full Equality, diversity and inclusion statement can be found on the website https://www.bmh.manchester.ac.uk/study/research/apply/equality-diversity-inclusion/”

For international students we also offer a unique 4 year PhD programme that gives you the opportunity to undertake an accredited Teaching Certificate whilst carrying out an independent research project across a range of biological, medical and health sciences. For more information please visit http://www.internationalphd.manchester.ac.uk


Funding Notes

Applications are invited from self-funded students. This project has a Band 1 fee. Details of our different fee bands can be found on our website View Website

References

Psychological Resilience to Suicidal Experiences in People with Non-Affective Psychosis: A Position Paper 2022
PA Gooding, K Harris, G Haddock
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 19 (7), 3813
‘It’s like having a core belief that’s able to speak back to you’: Therapist accounts of dialoguing with auditory hallucinations 2022
E Longden, A Branitsky, W Jones, S Peters
Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice 95 (1), 295-312
The long-term relationship between psychological resilience, psychosis, distress, and suicidal thoughts and behaviors 2021
K Harris, G Haddock, S Peters, P Gooding
Schizophrenia Bulletin Open 2 (1), sgaa071
The relationship between the therapeutic alliance and suicidal experiences in people with psychosis receiving therapy 2021
C Huggett, P Gooding, G Haddock, D Pratt
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18 (20), 10706
A psychological intervention for suicide applied to non-affective psychosis: the CARMS (Cognitive AppRoaches to coMbatting Suicidality) randomised controlled trial protocol 2020
PA Gooding, D Pratt, Y Awenat, R Drake, R Elliott, R Emsley, C Huggett, ...S. Peters, G. Haddock
BMC psychiatry 20 (1), 1-14

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