The aim of the Male Psychology Section is to take a lead in promoting awareness, research, teaching and understanding of male psychology in order to improve the well-being of men and boys alongside the women and girls who share their lives.
On this page you'll find news, updates, and blog articles specifically relevant to the work and interests of the Male Psychology Section.
For news and articles relevant to the wider society please visit the main BPS news page.
Male Psychology takes a positive view of men and masculinityShow content
In August 2018 the British Psychological Society (BPS) membership voted for the creation of a Male Psychology Section of the BPS. The aim of this blog is to outline our mission and values.
Male psychology is the study of the psychology of men and boys. The aim of the Male Psychology Section is to take a lead in promoting awareness, research and understanding of male psychology. This includes issues that predominantly effect men and boys, such as suicide, homelessness, addiction, imprisonment, and educational underachievement. The Male Psychology Section aims to expand our overall understanding of the full diversity of the human condition and enrich our understanding of men and women, both in their distinctions and in their common humanity. Understanding gender distinctions allows us to develop gender-appropriate psychological interventions, so that women can benefit from our activities too (Holloway et al, 2018).
We believe that in order to overcome problems that mainly affect men, we must to some degree challenge attitudinal bias in relation to the male gender, for example, negative and judgmental conceptions of masculinity. We want men to accept themselves and others around them, and to strive towards a future that benefits them and their community. Therefore we support positive conceptions of masculinity, such as the Positive psychology/positive masculinity (PPPM) model (Englar-Carlson & Kiselica, 2013) which have the potential to bring out the best in men. We suggest that therapies should be adapted in order to maximise their appeal to men and efficacy for men (Liddon, Kingerlee, Seager & Barry, 2019).
The Male Psychology Section is not just for psychologists who are male: we are open to any psychologists (or psychology students) who are interested in promoting the wellbeing of men and boys. In the end, we think that anything that helps the mental health of men and boys must also be beneficial to women and girls, and beneficial to society as a whole.
Englar‐Carlson, M., & Kiselica, M. S. (2013). Affirming the strengths in men: A positive masculinity approach to assisting male clients. Journal of Counseling & Development, 91(4), 399-409.
Holloway K, Seager M, Barry JA (2018). Are clinical psychologists, psychotherapists and counsellors overlooking the needs of their male clients? Clinical Psychology Forum, July 2018. Authors’ copy available online
Liddon L, Kingerlee R, Seager M & Barry JA (2019). What are the factors that make a male-friendly therapy? in Barry JA, Kingerlee R, Seager MJ and Sullivan L (Eds.) (2019). The Palgrave Handbook of Male Psychology and Mental Health.
The University of Sunderland to offer undergraduate module in Male Psychology - the first in the UK (and the world) to do soShow content
Male psychology is a recent development in academia, having first being proposed by UK consultant clinical psychologist Martin Seager in 2010. Male Psychology values any perspectives – including biological factors - that can help in the understanding of the psychology of men and boys.
The University of Sunderland will offer students the chance to study a male psychology undergraduate module, at stage three. Accreditation for this option module is currently in progress with the British Psychological Society.
In the new module, sex differences in evolved cognitive architecture will be studied. The course looks at a basic ‘template’ in which men and women develop and interact with their environment. It examines why men and women are predisposed to experience many things differently, and how these differences are embodied.
The module will also explore the concept of masculinity from cross-cultural and comparative perspectives, and challenge the fashionable notion that masculinity is inherently toxic.
Sex differences in the experience of trauma, and how trauma is managed will also come under the microscope.
This module will consider the impact of gender roles and stereotyping in mental health.
For example, if men are seen as interested only in uncommitted sexual relations, how much empathy exists when it comes to the long-term mental health impact of involuntary childlessness on men?
Also, if men are seen as dominant, aggressive, assertive and power-seeking, how does this stereotype impact the way society views male victims of intimate partner violence?
The core textbooks for the module include the 'Palgrave Handbook of Male Psychology and Mental Health', and a forthcoming textbook ‘Perspectives in Male Psychology.’
Stage three students will begin a critical introduction to male psychology, including guest lectures from members of the Male Psychology Section of the BPS, and authors of The Handbook of Male Psychology.
The module hopes to shed new light on the psychology of men and boys, and aims to inform a new generation of psychologists in ways that will be provide practical and theoretical value irrespective of what their main area of interest is.
Male Psychology is a rapidly expanding field and The University of Sunderland is pleased to offer this module for its undergraduate students.