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Ethics Committee

We promote the ethical practice of psychology and are responsible for the Code of Ethics and Conduct and other ethical guidance.

About

We promote the ethical practice of psychology and are responsible for the Code of Ethics and Conduct and other ethical guidance.

The main responsibilities of the Ethics Committee are:

  • Promoting the ethical practice of psychology
  • Overseeing, monitoring, coordinating and communicating guidance from the Society on ethical matters to members and the public
  • Preparing new ethical guidance statements and modifying existing statements when deficiencies in the current guidance available from the Society become apparent
  • Developing mechanisms for providing ethical advice to members, the public and the media on professional practice
  • Considering the impact of ethical issues and guidance on training, education and continuing professional development, and communicating relevant information with institutions responsible for delivery in those areas
  • Assisting members in the consideration and resolution of ethical dilemmas
  • Monitoring decisions taken by the Member Conduct Officer and the Board of Trustees, incorporating outcomes of decisions on ethical issues into the Society’s ethical guidance
  • Maintaining awareness of ethical guidance statements from other psychological organisations in the UK, Europe, and internationally
  • Encouraging institutions in which psychologists work to establish their own multidisciplinary or other appropriate Ethics Committees, and supporting mechanisms to review proposals for research or other activities, enquiries and investigations – the Ethics Committee does not undertake such reviews of individual proposals itself

Download the Ethics Committee terms of reference

For any enquiries, please contact [email protected].

Dr Rosalyn Collings

Chair 2022 - 2025

Dr Ryan Kemp

Division of Clinical Psychology

Dr Jasmine Hearn

Division of Health Psychology

Dr Jasmine Hearn is an academic psychologist, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, and Programme Director for MSc Health Psychology at Manchester Metropolitan University.

She is a member of the Division of Health Psychology and her research focuses on the experience and communication of chronic pain in a range of long-term health conditions such as spinal cord injury and endometriosis.

Dr Matthew Davis

Division of Occupational Psychology

Dr Matthew Davis is an Associate Professor in Organisational Psychology at Leeds University Business School.

Matthew has led a range of applied research projects and works with both public and private sector organisations to develop insights and strategies to support hybrid working, workplace design and sustainability.

He is an Expert Member of the UK Ministry of Defence Research Ethics Committee. 

Dr Kate Geraghty

Division of Forensic Psychology Representative

Miss Julie Freeborn

Division of Occupational Psychology

Professor John Oates

Co-optee (Research Ethics / AREC)

Professor John Oates, Honorary BPS Fellow, is Emeritus Professor of Developmental Psychology at the Open University.

He has led two revisions of the BPS Code of Human Research Ethics, chairs the BPS Media Ethics Advisory Group and is a member of the BPS Challenging Histories group.

He is an advisor to the United Kingdom Research Integrity Office and an ethics reviewer for the European Commission.

Professor Jonathan Foster

Division of Neuropsychology Representative

Professor Jonathan Foster has worked internationally as a clinical neuropsychologist (UK, North America and Australia), including in a range of human ethics-related roles.

He has published extensively, with over 11,500 citations of his original works and an h-index of 49 (Google Scholar - February 2023).

He is especially interested in brain-related memory disorders and relevant clinical applications.

Ms Rachael Goodwin

Member Board Rep

Dr Helen Molden

Division of Counselling Psychology

Dr Gina Pauli

University Ethics Committee Representative

Dr Jasmine Hearn is an academic psychologist, Senior Lecturer in Psychology, and Programme Director for MSc Health Psychology at Manchester Metropolitan University.

She is a member of the Division of Health Psychology and her research focuses on the experience and communication of chronic pain in a range of long-term health conditions such as spinal cord injury and endometriosis.

Dr Sandy Woolfson

Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology

Activities

About the Challenging Histories Group

The Challenging Histories Group ran from September 2021 to December 2023.

We identified, developed and coordinated projects regarding the challenging aspects of Psychology’s past.

As part of this, we undertook analysis of prominent historical cases of unethical conduct in UK psychology.

The main responsibilities of the Challenging Histories Group were to:

  • Identify historic unethical conduct by psychologists to review, and make recommendations on appropriate actions if necessary 
  • Scope and support outreach projects to present discussions around the challenging aspects of psychology 
  • Identify gaps in resources for the teaching of psychology’s challenging history and recommend relevant issues, themes and authors for these resources
  • Collaborate with other relevant learned societies and professional bodies in addressing these issues
  • Uncover the hidden voices of dissent within psychology’s history and link this to contemporary psychological practice and research 

Some of this work has been transferred to the History of Psychology Centre Advisory Committee.

If you would like more information about this work, please contact [email protected].

Activities

The groups outputs include:

  • Reviewing Hans Eysenck’s (1916-1997) publications in BPS Journals and publishing a note of concern
  • Issuing a response the University of Birmingham’s report on conversion therapy and starting the process of reviewing publications concerning conversion therapy in BPS journals.
  • Holding a symposium on the history and legacy of eugenics in psychology at the European Congress of Psychology 2023 and curating an accompanying online exhibition.
  • Developing a draft investigatory framework to reassess historic psychological practice and research.
  • Beginning a research project investigating Cyril Burt’s (1883-1971) activities during his time active at the BPS.
  • Presenting hidden histories and those who have been overlooked in UK psychology - if you have any suggestions of hidden histories, please contact [email protected]
  • Producing a report of their work, with recommendations to make sure the work started by the group continues across the society

Members

Dr Rosalyn Collings: Chair of BPS Ethics Committee

Dr Rosalyn Collings is a chartered psychologist (academic) and consultant statistician (Fellow of the Royal Statistical Society). Roz is currently the Head of Psychology (Curriculum) at the University of Wolverhampton, and she has taught research methodology, statistics, and ethics for 20 years.

Roz has been involved in the design and inception of school/ departmental/ faculty ethics committees since 2010 and has served as a lay person on the UK Council for Psychotherapists ethics committee that involved the redesign and launch of their codes of ethics and conduct in 2018. Within her role of Head of Psychology Roz works on curriculum and assessment design and has received commendations for the integration of ethics teaching and assessment throughout the entire program at her previous institution.   

Roz has been passionate about ethics for all her academic career and spends her time generating discussion around ethical principles and encouraging others to see ethics as more than just a process. She is particularly interested in society learning from past mistakes, allowing a voice for “vulnerable groups” within research and the ethical academy. 

Professor Elizabeth Hurren

Professor Elizabeth Hurren is Chair of Modern History at the University of Leicester. Elizabeth is an international expert on a history of the body, sex and science, having published extensively on body disputes where the poorest in society have been discriminated in the past by the medical sciences.

Her recent research explores infringements of medical ethics and a lack of informed consent, for the socially disadvantaged discriminated against by age, ethnic origin, gender, and disability – findings available on Open Access in her latest Cambridge University book (2021).

Her publication profile includes 5 books, (one short-listed for the British Medical Association’s Book of the Year Prize in 2015) and 30+ articles of an international standing featuring issues of race, sexuality and gender.   

Professor Marius Turda

Marius Turda is Professor and Director of the Centre for Medical Humanities at Oxford Brookes University. He is the founding director of the Cantemir Institute at the University of Oxford (2012-13), founder of the Working Group in the History of Race and Eugenics (est. 2006), and founder of the Centre for the History of Eugenics and Racism in Cluj (est. 2020).

His most recent books include Teleology and Modernity (2019); Religion, Evolution and Heredity (2019); Historicizing Race (2018); The History of Eugenics in East-Central Europe, 1900-1944: Texts and Commentaries (2016); Eugenics and Nation in Early Twentieth Century Hungary (2014); Latin Eugenics in Comparative Perspective, 1860-1940 (2014); Crafting Humans: From Genesis to Eugenics and beyond (2013).

He is the General Editor of Bloomsbury’s A Cultural History of Race, published in 6 volumes in 2021.  Between 2018 and 2022, he curated three exhibitions on eugenics and was one of the main consultants for the acclaimed BBC documentary ‘Eugenics: Science’s Greatest Scandal’ (2019).   

Dr Anthony Pelosi

Anthony Pelosi is a consultant psychiatrist who currently specialises in the inpatient treatment of people with severe and extreme eating disorders.  He is an honorary professor at the University of Glasgow.

He has a longstanding interest in application of the principles and methods of epidemiology to the organisation of psychiatric services.

He also has an interest in how universities, professional regulators, and academic journals deal with situations where there is prima facie evidence of scientific misconduct within published research.  

Dr Anthony Wainwright

Tony Wainwright is a clinical psychologist and deputy academic director at the University of Exeter Clinical Psychology training programme. He has recently co-edited a book on human rights education for psychologists and is a member of the steering group of the Global Network of Psychologists for Human Rights.

He has a long-standing interest in the role psychology has played in protecting human rights and also the part they have played in human rights violations. He co-edited a special issue of the European Psychologist on psychology and human rights

He is the immediate past chair of the British Psychological Society Climate and Environmental Crisis Steering group and has been a long-standing campaigner to bring the issue of climate change to public and professional attention. He is a past chair of the BPS Ethics Committee and a recent past member of its steering group on psychology and human rights.  He teaches, among other things, on human rights, ethics, leadership, prevention and public health. 

Dr John Hall

John Hall trained as a clinical psychologist at Leeds, followed by a PhD there. From 1980 he was Head Clinical Psychologist for Oxfordshire Mental Healthcare Trust, and Senior Clinical Lecturer in Clinical Psychology at Oxford University.

From 2002 he was both part-time Professor of Mental Health at Oxford Brookes University, and part-time Research Director of the Health and Social Care Advisory Service, London, where he conducted independent reviews of mental health services.   

Since 2002 he has developed research interests in the histories of both applied psychology and mental health, and completed a MA in Medical History, and was (with David Pilgrim and Graham Turpin) the lead editor for the first history of clinical psychology in Britain, published in 2015.

He has been a committee member of the BPS History and Philosophy of Psychology Section, and has recently joined the committee of the Royal College of Psychiatrists History of Psychiatry Section. He has a particular interest in critical history, and in the changing functions and roles of different mental health practitioners. 

Professor John Oates HonFBPsS, FAcSS

Professor John Oates is Emeritus Professor of Developmental Psychology, Open University. Member of British Psychological Society Ethics Committee, lead for BPS Code of Human Research Ethics, Media Ethics Advisory Group and BPS guidelines Psychology in Media Productions.

He established Open University Research Ethics Committee, chairing it for seven years, and was Council Trustee of the Association for Research Ethics. Lead for Research Ethics Support and Review national guidance on ethics review with United Kingdom Integrity Office and ARMA.

With colleagues from the Academy of Social Sciences Research Ethics Group of Fellows, co-organised a symposia and conferences series with UK learned societies towards universal ethics principles now adopted by the Academy. Member of the Economic and Social Research Council ethics advisory group for the Framework for Research Ethics launched in 2016. Advisor to the United Kingdom Research Integrity Office, ethics reviewer for the European Research Council. http://www.open.ac.uk/people/jmo2 

Dr Simon Goodson

Simon Goodson is a principal lecturer at Nottingham Trent University. He has been actively involved with the development of psychology teaching and learning for a number of years.

He is currently the Chair of the Undergraduate Education Committee for the BPS, which is responsible for providing the standards of accreditation of Undergraduate and Master’s Conversion courses, both national and international. He is the current chair of the QAA review panel for the psychology Benchmark Statement and has contributed to previous revisions.  

He is a past chair of the Division of Teachers and Researchers in Psychology and the BPS Ethics committee and contributed to the BPS Code of Human Research Ethics. 

Dr Jolel Miah

Jolel is a Health Psychologist and currently a Lecturer in Psychology at the University of Sunderland and a Chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society. 

He is a British-born Bangladeshi and a follower of Islam who left high school with 3C’s from his secondary education but later embarked on a journey to become a first-generation student with a BSc in Psychology at the University of Hertfordshire, MSc in Health Psychology, and a PhD in Applied Psychology from the University of Bedfordshire. 

In 2014 he co-founded a mental health charity ‘Our Minds Matter which provides psycho-education to faith communities and helps shape local health services. In 2019 he started a podcast ‘Psychology Cast’ and won ‘I’m a scientist get me out of here’ sponsored by the British Psychological Society. 

He completed his second Doctorate qualification in Health Psychology and completed his Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education in 2022. He has worked in a range of settings such as; voluntary, statutory, public and private sectors and settings; prison service, public health commissioning, sexual health screening, weight management, and NHS Health Checks to name a few.

He likes to speak and learn from people who are seeking the truth of this complex and fascinating world. Jolel believes there are many lenses through which the world can be looked upon and this is well documented in the diverse field of Psychology. He now spends his time sharing his knowledge, experience and skills with the students he teaches and the peers he works with.

Jolel is a board member of the BPS for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and continues his effort in the industry by advocating for access to health and education.

Philip R Botterill C.Psychol AFBPsS

Philip Botterill is a retired practitioner psychologist and teacher. His most recent post was that of a Senior Educational Psychologist in Birmingham. As a mainstream school teacher and as a psychologist his practice has emphasised working preventatively with systems that are universally used i.e., early years, primary and secondary education.

He has managed and worked in services provided by multi-cultural and multi-ethnic to multi-cultural and multi-ethnic populations. As a teacher, he was in the vanguard of the local implementation of the 1981 Education Act, challenging the separation of children from their peers when separated on the basis of early headline diagnoses/labelling.

As an Educational Psychologist, he gave formal individual case psychological advice in a variety of local settings. Philip was also seconded to develop a multi-professional team as part of a local DFE B.E.S.T project. He has had a post in a Community Forensic Psychology Service, providing expert witness testimony to the courts and consulting to family centres. He has been a member of a regional children’s hospital ethics group and a local health authority CAMHS steering group.

He led a service project to revisit and formulate approaches to inclusion and equal opportunities and led local developments of professional peer supervision and reference/review of ethics.

In the early 2000s, as an honorary lecturer to the University of Birmingham, Philip pioneered LGBT+ needs training to an EP training course as part of a ‘vulnerable young people, theme. Through times of personal challenge, as a gay man before, during and after Clause 28, he has navigated a professional route. 

In the 1990s he contributed to a lively open correspondence in ‘The Psychologist’ on the beginnings of what is now the Psychology of Sexualities section as well as direct correspondence with the BPS on the barriers to the inclusion of sexual orientation in the BPS Equal Opportunities Statements. 

In 1997 Philip provided, to a large local authority, an internal paper ‘Minority Sexuality and Education’. This detailed the emerging evidence of poor mental health and poor educational outcomes for such young people and led to awareness training across services.

Dr R. Michael Chamarette, C. Psychol, AFBPS

In addition to those of a Practitioner Psychologist, Dr Chamarette’s specialisms span several areas.

An MA in history was followed by a PhD in history of science at The Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine at King's College, London.

As a post-doc researcher, his interests are the history of psychology in Britain from the late nineteenth century onwards, with publications so far emphasising Francis Galton, Cyril Burt and the intersection of eugenics and psychometrics.

Serving on the committee of the History and Philosophy of Psychology Section of the BPS since 2016, he represents this section on the Challenging Histories Group.

Other experience includes management (Member Chartered Management Institute), and teaching in higher and secondary education.

About

The Media Ethics Advisory Group (MEAG) brings together BPS members with extensive experience in working with broadcast and film productions in a variety of roles including collaboration in design and planning, and screening and supporting contributors.

We promote the care and protection of persons contributing to and associated with media productions and the ethical presentation and application of the discipline of psychology in media productions.

As well as answering queries and requests from production companies, we support other members in their work with productions, and engage with broadcasters and media production companies to help them to make use of psychology and psychologists to enhance their duty of care to contributors and the accurate portrayal of psychology.

Activities

Activities include:

  1. Development of the BPS Psychology and Media Productions guidance document.
  2. Providing information and ethics advice in response to media queries to the BPS concerning the involvement and care of participants in media productions.
  3. Providing information and front-line support to BPS member psychologists who are engaged with or planning to engage with the media, or who are supporting participants involved in media productions.
  4. Promoting best practice in the representation of psychology and psychologists in the media.
  5. Promoting best practice, policies and legislation to protect public participation in media productions.

The group has contributed to:

  • BPS submissions to Government and Ofcom consultations on duty of care in broadcasting, and the Thane review of children in productions.
  • A collaboration with the BBC and ITV in developing and delivering a BPS-accredited training course for psychologists in working in productions.
  • The production of a BPS CPD course for members seeking to work with productions.
  • The establishment of a BPS Directory of members available to work with productions.

Meetings

MEAG will meet (virtually over video-conferencing software) twice a year, in February and September. Meetings are scheduled to enable reporting to the Ethics Committee prior to its meetings.

Members

MEAG is seeking to increase its membership and welcomes expressions of interest from members with relevant knowledge, skills and experience.

If you are a BPS member and are interested in participating in MEAG, please complete this online statement of interest.

If you have any questions, please email: [email protected].

Current Members

John Oates (Chair)

John Oates HonFBPsS, FAcSS, Professor Emeritus of Developmental Psychology, Open University. Member of BPS Ethics Committee and Research Ethics Reference Group, lead for Code of Human Research Ethics and BPS guidelines Psychology in Media Productions, Chair BPS Media Ethics Advisory Group. Lead for Research Ethics Support and Review guidance with United Kingdom Research Integrity Office and Association of Research Administrators and Managers. Ethics reviewer for the European Research Council. Academic member of the BBC series Child of Our Time production from its inception in 2000 up to 2011 and work on numerous documentary productions with the BBC and independent productions in UK and Hungary.

Charlotte Armitage

Charlotte is a psychologist and psychotherapist, specialising in the Film and TV industry, particularly psychological duty of care processes in production, psychological assessments of contributors and therapeutic services for on-screen contributors, actors, production teams and journalists. She works across a range of programming formats including scripted, documentary and reality tv, however she predominately works on high-risk reality TV productions and true crime documentaries. Charlotte is a clinical supervisor for those who work in duty of care. Charlotte is currently the lead mental health professional for Big Brother 2023, TOWIE, Celebs Go Dating and a number of true crime documentaries.

Louise Bourner

Louise is a BACP registered Psychotherapist and Counsellor with a master's degree in Integrative Counselling and Psychotherapy and an undergraduate degree in Applied Psychology. She currently works in NHS brief therapy as well as in private practice. Her prior career was as a television producer/director, primarily at the BBC, and has over 20 years of specialist factual experience; specialising in longitudinal work with children, young people and families. She has a special interest in the wellbeing of production staff in all creative sectors, in addition to contributor care. 

Kairen Cullen

Dr Kairen Cullen is an HCPC registered Practitioner Psychologist (Educational), who has worked extensively with media productions and is also a writer.  She is an associate fellow of The British Psychological Society, served as Chair of the Division of Educational and Child Psychology, and was one of the first divisional press officers. 

Claudia Hammond

Claudia Hammond is an award-winning broadcaster and author. She is the presenter of All in the Mind on BBC Radio 4 as well as Health Check and The Evidence on the BBC World Service. In her work she shares the ways that psychological and medical research can help us in our everyday lives, whether through radio, TV, podcasts, public events or books. She is Visiting Professor of the Public Understanding of Psychology at the University of Sussex and the author of five books on psychology, including most recently, The Keys to Kindness.

Cynthia McVey

Dr Cynthia McVey, (retired Head of Psychology, Glasgow Caledonian University), is a health psychologist and chartered psychologist with the British Psychological Society. She has been involved with the media since the 1990s. Cynthia began with newspaper interviews, regular live radio, and various tv appearances, including on BBC’s Castaway 2000 and Tonight with Trevor McDonald Specials; one on Northern Ireland and one on teenage behaviour, which included assessment and care of participants. Subsequently, Cynthia worked with participants in reality and in documentary programmes and now works on these in a team with a clinical and forensic Psychologist and another health Psychologist.  

Cynthia has published articles on ethics and reality tv and was involved in the formation of legislation regarding licensing of children in performance. She provides script reviews, advice and support for broadcasters, producers, actors, and media participants before, during, and after broadcasting. 

Kisane Prutton

Kisane Prutton (C.Psychol; HCPC) was a TV producer/director for the BBC, ITV, and independent sector. She is now qualified and practices as a chartered psychologist, specialising in coaching psychology and conflict resolution. Her approach and her PhD research are underpinned by care ethics.