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  The implementation and evaluation of a cohesive primary and secondary school emotional literacy curriculum to improve children’s emotional wellbeing


   Faculty of Humanities Doctoral Academy, School of Environment, Education and Development

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  Dr Charlotte Bagnall, Prof Neil Humphrey, Dr Nick Garnett  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

This fully funded ESRC CASE PhD studentship is at the centre of a collaboration between the #P-S WELLS programme and Whitefield Primary School, to enhance understanding of how to best support children’s emotional wellbeing over the transition from primary school to secondary school. The PhD will generate important new insights into the role of emotional literacy over primary-secondary school transitions (e.g., what specific theoretical components of emotional literacy programmes are important over primary-secondary school transition, and how do they drive outcomes); applied evidence generation (e.g., inequalities in emotional wellbeing trajectories across primary-secondary school transition; whether an emotional literacy intervention ultimately improves emotional wellbeing for all); and, policy and practice (e.g., implications for schools and professionals). Envisaged is an interdisciplinary, mixed-methods project, it will blend secondary analysis of a large quantitative dataset (#P-S WELLS) and new qualitative and quantitative data generation, comprising 3 empirical papers: (1) quantitative outcome evaluation of the efficacy of the emotional literacy curriculum; (2) qualitative process evaluation of factors which might affect successful implementation of the emotional literacy curriculum; and (3) mixed-methods investigation of the causal structures and antecedents of positive transition outcomes and maintenance of emotional wellbeing during and between primary and secondary school.

In addition to expert academic supervision at the University of Manchester (Dr Charlotte Bagnall and Professor Neil Humphrey; Manchester Institute of Education) and Nottingham Trent University (Dr Nick Garnett; Department of Psychology), the PhD student will also sit within the nationally renowned programme design and implementation team at Whitefield primary school, under the supervision of Mrs Marie Beale.

Eligibility Criteria

Academic and additional criteria:

  • Bachelor's (Honours) degree at 2:1 or above (or overseas equivalent).
  • ESRC-recognised research methods Masters degree (in a relevant discipline) with an overall average of 60% or above, and a minimum mark of 60% in your dissertation (or overseas equivalent). NB: priority will be given to candidates able to demonstrate expertise in both quantitative and qualitative methods.
  • Demonstrable experience conducting qualitative and/or quantitative applied research.
  • Demonstrable experience working with schools.

In addition to the above, international applicants must provide one of the following:

  • IELTS test minimum score - 7.0 overall, 7.0 in writing, 6.0 in other sections.
  • TOEFL (internet based) test minimum score - 100 overall, 25 in all sections.
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) UKVI/SELT or PTE Academic minimum score - 76 overall, 76 in writing, 70 in other sections.
  • You have taken an undergraduate or postgraduate degree in a majority English speaking nation within the last 5 years.
  • Other tests may be considered.

The application deadline will be Midnight (BST) on 28/06/2024. All supporting documents must be received by the deadline and sent as a zip file to [Email Address Removed], using ‘ESRC NWSSDTP CASE Charlotte Bagnall' as the email subject.

 Application procedure

The application must include:

  • An up to date academic CV, detailing your education and qualifications; employment history; publications; and any other relevant information.
  • A copy of your Bachelor’s and Master’s academic transcript and degree certificate. If your Master’s degree is pending, please provide an interim transcript.
  • Supporting statement of a maximum of 400 words indicating why you would like to undertake this studentship and explaining how your focus, experience, and skills link to the research outlined above.
  • Example of a piece of academic writing produced by you of up to 3,000 words (you may consider submitting two shorter pieces if these deal separately with conceptual and empirical analyses). This may be an academic essay or chapter(s) from a dissertation, in which case, an abstract or introduction outlining the context/aims/research questions of the study must also be included.
  • Names and contact details of two academic referees who can comment on your suitability for PhD study and to undertake the advertised project.
  • You must also submit the ESRC NWSSDTP Equal Opportunities Forms with your documentation.

Further information

If you have any questions about the project or would like to discuss this further, please contact Dr Charlotte Bagnall ([Email Address Removed]).

Formal Interview: Interviews are expected to take place on 9 July 2024.

Equality, diversity and inclusion is fundamental to the success of The University of Manchester and is at the heart of all of our activities. 

We know that diversity strengthens our research community, leading to enhanced research creativity, productivity and quality, and societal and economic impact. 

We actively encourage applicants from diverse career paths and backgrounds and from all sections of the community, regardless of age, disability, ethnicity, gender, gender expression, sexual orientation and transgender status. 

All appointments are made on merit. 

The University of Manchester and our external partners are fully committed to equality, diversity and inclusion.

Education (11) Psychology (31)

Funding Notes

ESRC NWSSDTP CASE Award with Whitefield Primary School. A fully funded Studentship to commence in September 2024 covering tuition fees and an annual stipend (£19,237 for 24/25). 


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