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North East of England Annual Conference 2015

Monday 7th September 2015 at York St John University

Please note, bookings for this event closed at 16.30 on Friday 4th September 2015

North East of England Annual Conference 2015 will be held in the heart of the historical city of York. This year, the conference theme is “Psychology across the Lifespan” and our programme will include high profile keynote speakers, hot topic discussions, oral presentations and symposia, workshops, CPD sessions and poster presentations.

Keynote presentations will be provided by Professor Elizabeth Meins (York University), Dr. Deborah Riby (Durham University) and Dr. Dean McMillan (York University). It will close with a wine reception and Q&A with the current President of the British Psychological Society, Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes.

Conference Programme

The Conference Programme is now available and can be viewed here.

Keynote Abstracts

Collaborative primary care for older adults with subthreshold depression: The CASPER study - Dr Dean McMillan

Older adults with subthreshold depression experience significant impairments in quality of life and level of functioning. Subthreshold depression is also a substantial risk factor for subsequent major depression. Despite this, there is currently no evidence-based guidance for the treatment of subthreshold depression in this population. The aim of the study was to establish the clinical and cost-effectiveness of a brief collaborative care approach for subthreshold depression in older adults (aged 65+ years). We conducted a pragmatic, multi-centred, two-arm, parallel, individually randomised controlled trial with a qualitative study embedded within an internal pilot phase. Participants were recruited from 32 GP practices in the North of England. 705 older adults were randomised. Participants in the intervention arm received collaborative care including behavioural activation delivered by a case manager for an average of six sessions alongside usual GP care. Participants in the control arm received usual GP care. The main outcome was depression score, as measured by PHQ-9, at four months. Participants were followed for 12 months to establish the rate of subsequent major depression. The talk will present the main results of the trial.
Funding: the project was funded by the National Institute for Health Research, Health Technology Assessment Programme (project number 08/19/04).

Parental mind-mindedness and its role in predicting children’s development - Elizabeth Meins

In this talk, I will discuss how parents’ mind-mindedness (their tendency to treat their infants as individuals with minds) plays a role in determining children’s developmental in key areas. A number of longitudinal studies have shown that individual differences in mind-mindedness in the first year of life predict (a) infant–parent attachment security, (b) children’s language and symbolic play abilities at age 2, and (c) children’s understanding of emotions and other minds at ages 4 and 5. Early mind-mindedness also appears to protect children against behavioural difficulties in the preschool years specifically in the context of low socio-economic status. In the final part of the talk, I consider whether we can intervene to make parents more mind-minded, and how such interventions relate to children’s outcome.

As with our previous conferences, we aim to bring together individuals engaging in a diverse range of psychological practice, teaching and research from across the North East area. We particularly welcome student attendees and offer excellent discounted attendance rates and mentoring opportunities for student delegates.

Submissions are invited for the North East of England Annual Conference 2015

If you are interested in presenting at the conference then please make your submission via the submission webpage by 23:59 Thursday 16th July 2015. Submission guidelines can be found here.

If you have any queries please contact us via the event hotline on 01332 224506


Monday 7th September 2015

Please find the outline timings for the Conference, the full agenda can be found in the additional information below. Please note all speakers and timings are subject to change.

08:00Registration Opens
08:00Mentoring Breakfast
09:00Welcome Address
09:10Keynote Address: Professor Elizabeth Meins, University of York
09:55Parallel Stream 1
11:10Refreshment Break
11:30Parallel Stream 2
12:45Lunch and Poster Session
13:30Keynote Address: Dr Debbie Riby, Durham University
14:15Parallel Stream 3
15:30Refreshment Break
15:50Anne Treisman Lecture: Dr Dean McMillan
16:35Closing Address
16:45Wine Reception and Poster Session
17:30Meet The President of the British Psychological Society: Prof Jamie Hacker Hughes

Speakers and Facilitators


Professor Elizabeth Meins

Keynote Speaker
Professor of Developmental Psychology, University of York

Elizabeth Meins has been studying how parents interact with their infants for over 25 years. Her research has shown how “tuning in” to your infant (so-called mind-mindedness) has a positive impact on parenting and children’s development.
She did her undergraduate degree in Natural Sciences and PhD in Developmental Psychology at St. Catharine’s College, University of Cambridge. She was appointed as a lecturer at Staffordshire University in 1992, where she conducted the first observational research on mind-mindedness. She moved to Durham in 1997, and rose from lecturer to professor during her 16 years in the department. She joined the University of York in June 2013, and currently holds an Economic and Social Research Council Professorial Fellowship. The main empirical component of the Fellowship involves assessing the efficacy of new technology as a tool for facilitating parents’ mind-mindedness.
Elizabeth is also an expert advisor to the NSPCC and has developed their new parent support programme.


Dr Debbie Riby

Keynote Speaker
Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology, Durham University & co-ordinator of the Developmental Psychology Research Group, head of the North East Williams Syndrome Research Group & Course Director for the taught masters programmes in developmental psychology (specifically the MSc Developmental Psychopathology, MA Research Methods (Developmental Psychology) & MSc Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience).

She completed her PhD on face perception in Williams syndrome & Autism at Stirling University in 2007 & then a one year postdoctoral research post at the same institution. From 2008-2013 she held a Lectureship in the School of Psychology, Newcastle University. Her research focuses on syndrome-specific signatures of cognition & behaviour in the developmental disorders Williams syndrome & Autism. She has largely explored aspects of social attention & social cognition in these groups, as well as in individuals who are developing typically. As well as using eye tracking to explore social attention she has used a variety of experimental paradigms to probe social communication styles in these groups. Most recently she has taken a holistic view of the individual to consider the impact of anxiety & sensory processing on components of social functioning in these developmental disorders.

Debbie has secured research funding from the ESRC, British Academy, Nuffield Foundation & the EPS. She was awarded the Margaret Donaldson Prize 2014 for her early career contribution to the field.


Dr Dean McMillan

Keynote Speaker
Senior Lecturer in Mental Health Services Research, Department of Health Sciences and Hull York Medical School, University of York

Dean graduated from University of Cambridge before undertaking a PhD at University College London. He is a Clinical Psychologist with further specialist training in Cognitive Behaviour Therapy.

His research interests include the clinical and cost-effectiveness of low-intensity psychological interventions and evaluations of diagnostic test accuracy of case finding tools for common mental health problems.


Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes

Professor Jamie Hacker Hughes is a clinical psychologist, psychotherapist, clinical neuropsychologist, EMDR consultant and PTSD and trauma specialist with special expertise in military and veteran psychological health.

He is Visiting Professor of Military Psychology at Anglia Ruskin University in the Veterans and Families Institute and Visiting Professor of Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire and has an independent psychological health consultancy and a practice in Central London, specialising in the treatment of trauma and anxiety and other disorders.

Jamie is now the 81st President (2015-2016) of the British Psychological Society and is patron of a number of charities & organisations.


York St John University

Lord Mayor’s Walk , York , YO31 7EX

Additional Information

Click here to download further information.

PDFBPS Booking Terms and Conditions
PDFNorth East of England Annual Conference 2015 Agenda