Supervision Areas by Academic School

York St John University supports a range of research projects and research students within the scope of its professional subject areas.

Our full and part-time postgraduate research students are supervised by experienced academic staff with subject related research experience.

We have listed each of our academic schools below with their respective areas of supervision, contact details, and any other school specific links as appropriate.

If you would like more information on the research degrees that we offer, please visit our Research Degrees Offered page.

School of Art, Design & Computer Science

Supervision Areas:

  • Cultural Theory and Cultural History
  • Contemporary Continental Philosophy and Aesthetics
  • Psychoanalytical Theory
  • Hermeneutics, Phenomenology and Drawing
  • Feminist Theory
  • Political Communication
  • Media Ethics
  • Visual Culture
  • Comics Studies
  • Art History, Theory and Practice
  • Art and Society
  • Digital Art and Aesthetics
  • The ‘Internet of Things’
  • Smart Devices
  • Technology and Society/Social Cohesion
  • Data Science
  • Virtual and Augmented Reality
  • Materials, Materiality and New Materialism

Contact Details:

Dr Vanessa Corby, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876749

Research Webpage: School of Art, Design & Computer Science

York Business School

Supervision Areas:

  • Leadership
  • Leadership and management of change
  • Leadership and management development
  • New Public Management (NPM) and Managerialisation
  • Voluntary Sector
  • Trade Union Organising and Employment Relations
  • Longitudinal Qualitative Research
  • International Marketing
  • Strategic Marketing
  • Marketing of SME's
  • Intercultural Management
  • MENA region management (Middle East and North Africa)
  • Organisational Culture
  • Organisational Risk, Crisis, Failure and Disaster Management

Research Groups:

  • Futures, interdisciplinary research group promoting critical study in business management.
  • HAVRC, Heritage and Arts Visitor Research Collaborative

Contact Details:

Dr Peter Watt, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876178

Research Webpage: York Business School

School of Education

Supervision Areas:

  • Children's Perspectives and Children's Rights, Youth Justice
  • Social and Education Policy
  • Sustainability
  • Education and Politics (Democracy, Neoliberalism)
  • Ecological/Environmental Aspects of Education
  • The Use of Silence in Education
  • Ability Grouping in Education
  • Teacher Identity and Teacher Development
  • Cultures, Identities and Globalisation in Education
  • Comparative and Inter-professional Education
  • Vocational, Further, and Higher Education
  • Organisational Learning
  • Psychological Contracts
  • Leadership and Management in the Early Years
  • Education and Working Cultures
  • Literature and Education
  • Spirituality in Education
  • Critical Thinking, Creativity and Education
  • Academic Literacies
  • Practitioner, Narrative, Action, and Applied Pedagogical Research
  • Community Philosophy and Parents' Voices
  • Citizenship and the Management of Change
  • The Young Child as a Learner
  • Professional Identities
  • LEA Management and Administration
  • Early Years Education: European Perspectives
  • Faith and Cultural Diversity in Education
  • Assessment and Feedback

Contact Details:

Professor Matthew Clarke, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876528

Research Webpage: School of Education

School of Health Sciences

Supervision Areas:

  • Counselling
  • Physiotherapy
  • Occupational therapy with older people and people with mental health problems
  • Research with people with neuropsychological problems (e.g. dementia, stroke) and their Carers, particularly related to impact on their function, activities and occupational engagement
  • Development and standardisation of health and/or social care related outcome measures
  • Psychometric studies (reliability, validity, clinical utility, normative, etc.)
  • Dynamic assessment
  • Mental health and forensic mental health
  • Occupational science
  • Service evaluation
  • Continuing Professional Development for Allied Health Professionals
  • Activity and engagement in care homes
  • Health coaching
  • Evidence Based Practice (EBP)
  • Genotoxicology
  • Mutagenesis
  • Cytogenetics
  • Cell Biology and Pathology
  • Cancer Biology and Pharmacology
  • Stress biomarkers
  • Natural product research
  • Development of in vitro immunodiagnostics
  • Molecular biology
  • Biochemistry
  • Amyloid and protein folding, and in vitro amyloid protein analysis

Research Groups:

Contact Details:

Dr Alison Laver-Fawcett, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876419

Research Webpage: School of Health Sciences

School of Humanities, Religion & Philosophy

Supervision Areas:

  • English British History - from Late Medieval Period to Present Day (particularly war history)
  • American History - 19th Century to Present Day (including African-American history)
  • 20th Century History: The Commonwealth, The United Nations, South Africa, the Soviet Union
  • French, British, Indian and Pacific History
  • Modern Historiography
  • British/American Literature and Poetry - 18th Century to present day
  • Utopian/Dystopian Literature, Science Fiction, Fantasy, Literature and Science
  • Literature and society: war, postcolonialism, politics, environment and eco-criticism, sexuality and gender
  • Performance writing, experimental writing and exploration of form
  • Visual poetics and ekphrasis
  • Radio/Audio Drama
  • Film Studies (Hollywood, contemporary British Film, Music Documentary/Music Film)
  • Popular culture and visual representation
  • Creative engagements with archival and historical materials
  • Creative/Critical PhD projects (including creative writing projects)
  • Social geography: place and identity, social identities;
  • Urban policy: cultural policy, housing policy, regeneration, community politics
  • Cultural geographies of nature, landscape, and outdoor activities
  • Environmental behaviours and attitudes
  • GIS and remote sensing for environmental applications
  • Biogeography/ecology
  • Philosophy of geography
  • Practical and/or Empirical Theology
  • Religion and Psychology
  • Philosophical Theology
  • Practical and Ordinary Theology
  • Public Theology
  • Religion and Society
  • Religion, Violence and Peace
  • Religion, Philosophy and Ethics
  • Spirituality, Literature and Art
  • Theology of Criminology, Justice and Punishment
  • Theology, Sexuality and Gender

For information about our staff and their research expertise please go to their Staff Profiles

For further information about our research degrees contact:

Professor Pauline Kollontai, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876573

School of Languages & Linguistics

Supervision Areas:

  • Language Variation and Change
  • Language Identity and Power
  • Language Meaning and Cognition
  • Language Learning and Teaching

Research Unit:

Contact Details:

Professor Helen Sauntson, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876880

Research Webpage: School of Languages & Linguistics

School of Performance & Media Production

Supervision Areas:

Dance, Drama and Theatre:

  • Applied and Community Practice
  • Theatre Audience
  • Digital Practices
  • Drama and Theatre Practice
  • Performance and Phenomenology
  • Performance and Politics
  • Performance Writing / Writing for Performance
  • Practice as Research
  • Theatre for Children and Young Audiences


  • Independent American Cinema
  • Japanese Film
  • Transnational Cinema


  • Applied Ethnomusicology
  • Collaboration and Authorship
  • Community Music
  • Ensemble History and Practice
  • Improvisation
  • Music Composition
  • Music Education
  • Music Pedagogy
  • Music Production
  • Practice as Research


  • Audience Research
  • Arts and Aesthetics
  • Arts and Social Impact
  • Arts and Mental Health
  • Community Practices
  • Walking and Creative Practice

Research Centre:

Contact Details:

Professor Matthew Reason, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876770

Research Webpage: School of Performance & Media Production

School of Psychological & Social Sciences

Supervision Areas:

  • Typical and atypical language, reading and/or mathematical development in children and adults
  • Contextual factors in cognitive-linguistic development
  • Children’s memory recall studies
  • Risky behaviour in young people
  • Psychological and neural mechanisms supporting language learning and use in adults and children, with a particular focus on grammar learning
  • Relational ethics
  • Practitioner supervision
  • Loss / bereavement
  • Coaching
  • Social psychology: (dis)obedience, citizenship, peace and conflict)
  • Sexuality and gender, violence against women, interpersonal violence
  • Ethnicity and migration
  • Radicalisation and extremism

Contact Details:

Dr Stephen Gibson, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876581

Research Webpage: School of Psychological & Social Sciences

School of Sport

Supervision Areas:

  • Advanced statistical modelling (e.g., structural equation modelling)
  • Doping in sport
  • Exercise dependence
  • Mental health and wellbeing in sport, exercise, and dance
  • Meta-analytical studies
  • Peer victimisation in sport
  • Perfectionism in sport, exercise, dance and health
  • Personality and performance in sport
  • Psychology of sports coaching
  • Psychology of chronic illness and disability
  • Psychometrics (i.e., questionnaire development and validation)
  • Youth development through sport

Contact Details:

Dr Andy Hill, School Research Lead

Email: | Tel: 01904 876365

Research Webpage: School of Sport

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