Go to main content

When it is darkest: Understanding suicide risk

18 August 2021 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
see pricing tab
Image alt text

This webinar aims to dispel myths about suicide and help people to understand the complex set of factors that lead to suicide.

Understanding the complex set of factors that lead to suicide will help those who work with people who are suicidal and form the basis for assessment and intervention. Suicide prevention is a national priority and psychology has a central role to play in understanding and preventing suicide.

Suicide is a major public health concern accounting for 800 000 deaths globally each year. Although there have been many advances in understanding suicide risk in recent decades, our ability to predict suicide is no better now than it was 50 years ago.

There are many potential explanations for this lack of progress, but the absence, until recently, of comprehensive theoretical models that predict the emergence of suicidal ideation distinct from the transition between suicidal ideation and suicide attempts/suicide is key to this lack of progress.

The Integrated Motivational–Volitional (IMV) model of suicidal behaviour is one such theoretical model. Defeat and entrapment drive the emergence of suicidal ideation and a group of factors, entitled volitional moderators (VMs), govern the transition from suicidal ideation to suicidal behaviour.

According to the IMV model, VMs include access to the means of suicide, exposure to suicidal behaviour, capability for suicide (fearlessness about death and increased physical pain tolerance), planning, impulsivity, mental imagery and past suicidal behaviour.

Here's a link to a chat between Rory and the Editor of the Psychologist magazine: ‘Even the bleakest moments are not permanent’

Target audience

This webinar is suitable for academics, clinical, health, counselling and occupational psychologists and applicable across their career trajectory.

Learning Outcomes

Have an understanding of the myths surrounding suicide

2. Have an appreciation that the factors that lead to suicidal thoughts are different from those associated with suicidal acts

3. Have knowledge of the Integrated Motivational-Volitional Model of Suicidal Behaviour and the role of psychologists in preventing suicide

4. Have knowledge of the evidence for what psychological interventions are effective in reducing suicidal behaviour

Presenter: Professor Rory O’Connor CPsychol AFBPsS

Rory O'Connor has 25 years working in the field of suicide research and prevention and has extensive experience of delivering webinars/workshops/training.

Rory O’Connor PhD CPsychol FAcSS is Professor of Health Psychology at the University of Glasgow in Scotland, President of the International Association for Suicide Prevention and a Past President of the International Academy of Suicide Research. Rory leads the Suicidal Behaviour Research Laboratory (www.suicideresearch.info; @suicideresearch) at Glasgow, one of the leading suicide/self-harm research groups internationally. He also leads the Mental Health & Wellbeing Research Group at Glasgow.  He has published extensively in the field of suicide and self-harm, specifically concerning the psychological processes which precipitate suicidal behaviour and self-harm.  He is also co-author/editor of several books.  He is Co-Editor-in-Chief of Archives of Suicide Research and Associate Editor of Suicide and Life-Threatening Behaviour.  Rory acts as an advisor to a range of national and international organisations including national governments on the areas of suicide and self-harm.  He is also Co-Chair of the Academic Advisory Group to the Scottish Government’s National Suicide Prevention Leadership Group. 


Start: 14:00

Finish: 16:00


Non-members £80.00 (£ 66.67 + VAT)
BPS members

£48.50 (£40.42 + VAT)

Please note:

  1. Online bookings will close at 14:00 on 18 August 2021
  2. A Zoom link to join the webinar will be sent to everyone registered on the webinar day by email.

To register for the webinar you need to sign into your BPS user account or create a new account by clicking the ‘create an account’ button. When signed in, click the ‘register’ button to book onto the workshop.

There is a £15 cancellation fee.

Professional Development Centre
[email protected]

Top of page