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School of Health and Society

Dr Liz Smith

Research Fellow in Psychology


Liz is a Research Fellow in Psychology at the University of Salford. She has 10 years experience in research, leading seminars, lecturing and coaching, specialising in research methods.  At the moment her research investigates how alternative flexible perceptions of time combined with advances in mobile technology can change the way people plan their children’s commute to school by offering a new visibility of transport options, with the potential of reducing carbon emissions and congestion in the vicinity of primary schools.   The research carried out by the team at Salford is taking place in the context Primary schools in the North West of England.  Here the extent to which parents, children, WSB coordinators and Head teachers perceive a need for transformation from ‘traditional’ WSB to ‘next generation’ WSB – particularly in relation to ‘convenience’  (e.g. scheduling, punctuality) of  the morning routine is being investigated.  This project is funded by the EPSRC-led Digital Economy and Energy programmes and called ‘Sixth Sense Transport: Reducing/re-distributing transport options through a flexible interpretation of time’ and involves five UK institutions (University of Southampton (lead institution), Bournemouth University, University of Edinburgh, Lancaster University and University of Salford).

After going to school in Liverpool, Liz worked in the oil industry in Aberdeen for ten years.  Then she attended Aberdeen University as a mature student to study psychology.  Upon graduating she took up a Medical Research Council funded PhD in Public Health.  This examined the decision-making of general medical practitioners in the management of depression.   Subsequently Liz took up a post in the Health Services Research Unit, at the University of Aberdeen as a Research Fellow.  Here she worked on several projects as part of the Effective Professional Practice Group, which undertook research to investigate the most effective methods to deliver health care to the general public. 

Liz returned to the North West to take up a post as a Research Associate at Manchester Centre for Healthcare Management, at Manchester Business School, the University of Manchester.  Here she worked on many projects about health care and health care management and lectured on research methods and also gained some further qualifications in life and business coaching.  In February this year Liz moved to Salford to take up the role of Research Fellow looking at decision-making in transport choices.


Introduction to Developmental and Social Psychology - seminars

Developmental psychology – seminars

Research methods lectures in all previous jobs

Research Interests

Research methods, decision-making, the effects of ageing on cognition, health, health care and coaching.

Qualifications and Memberships

PhD Public Health,

P G Dip. (Life and Business Coaching),

P G Cert. (Life and Business Coaching),

MA (Hons.) Psychology (1st class)

Graduate member of the British Psychological Society


Francis, J., Eccles, MP., Johnston, M., Whitty, P., Grimshaw, JM., Kaner, EFS., Smith, L. & Walker, AE. (2008). 'Explaining the effects of an intervention designed to promote evidence-based diabetes care'. Implementation Science, 3 (50).

Smith, L.,  and  Gilhooly, K. (2006).  Regression Versus Fast And Frugal Models Of Decision-Making: The Case of Prescribing for Depression.  Applied Cognitive Psychology, 20: p 265-274

Smith, L., Gilhooly, K., and Walker, A. E. (2004). Clinical Guidelines on Depression: A Qualitative Study of GPs' Views.  The Journal of Family Practice.53 (7): p556-561

Smith, L., Gilhooly, K., and Walker, A. E. (2003).  Factors influencing prescribing decisions in the treatment of depression: a social judgement theory approach.  Applied Cognitive Psychology, 17: p51-63

Phillips, L. H., Smith, L., &. Gilhooly, K. J. (2002).  The effects of adult aging and induced positive and negative mood on planning. Emotion, 2: 3: p263-272