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Cognitive Psychology Section

The Cognitive Psychology section of the British Psychological Society was formed in 1978 as a national forum for the discussion of research and issues of professional concern to cognitive psychologists.

About

The Section's activities include an Annual Conference, usually held in September; one or more specialist events in the year, and symposia at the main Society Conference in March/April.

Members of the BPS Cognitive Psychology Section comprise psychologists in industry, the health service, government departments, and colleges and universities.

Their interests cover most aspects of cognitive psychology and related areas.

Our members receive reduced registration fees at conferences and special workshops organised by the Section, including an annual conference.

Symposia at our recent annual conferences have included face processing, working memory, and problem solving.

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Cognitive Psychology Section

Download the Cognitive Psychology Bulletin

Resources

Useful Links

Publications

The Cognitive Psychology Bulletin

This publication from the BPS Cognitive Psychology Section is for psychologists working in the fields of industry, the health service, government departments, and colleges and universities. Their interests cover most aspects of cognitive psychology and related areas. The aim of The Cognitive Psychology Bulletin is to keep members informed about:

  • Section and other relevant Society activities;
  • innovative practice changes in statutory provision and legislation;
  • latest research; and
  • training courses, events and conferences

It also provides a means for psychologists, trainees and assistants to make contact with colleagues working with similar issues or projects.

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Awards

Annual Award

The deadline for nominations for this award has now passed

Call for Nominations for the British Psychological Society Cognitive Psychology Section Award 2022

The BPS Cognitive Psychology Section Award recognises outstanding published contributions to research in the area of Cognitive Psychology.

Eligible publications are limited to scientific journal papers reporting novel observations and providing significant theoretical insight into human cognition.

The Award Panel will give greater consideration to studies with broad appeal and widespread implications, particularly studies that address longstanding problems and that advance conceptual understanding in unexpected or counterintuitive ways.

Criteria

Nominated publications for the 2022 award should have a publication date of 2020, 2021 or 2022 and should not have been nominated for the award previously.  'Online first' articles with a DOI which can be downloaded as full published text are also eligible.

The majority of the work should have been conducted in the UK and at least one of the authors of the paper should currently be based in the UK, but they need not be a member of the BPS.

It is customary for a UK-based winner of the award to present a keynote address at the Annual Cognitive Section Conference, which in 2022 will take place in person at the University of Sussex on 7 - 9 September. 

All eligible, nominated publications will be considered by the Award Panel, comprising a subgroup of the Cognitive Psychology Section Committee in consultation with expert assessors, if necessary.

An electronic copy of the relevant publication should be submitted, along with a supporting statement of not more than 500 words from a nominator (which might be one of the authors).

It is the responsibility of the nominator to ensure that the authors consent to their work being considered for the award and that the authors are available to present the keynote address at the conference.

This award is open to members and non-members of The British Psychological Society. The deadline has been extended to Monday 28th March 2022. 

Guidance for nominations

You will need the following information:

Nominee(s):
  1. Name
  2. Title
  3. Organisation/affiliation
  4. BPS membership number (if applicable)
  5. Email address
Nominator(s):
  1. Name
  2. Title
  3. Organisation/affiliation
  4. BPS membership number (if applicable)
  5. Email address
You will also need to provide:
  • a nomination statement (maximum 500 words in narrative format)
  • supporting documentary evidence (an electronic copy of the relevant publication)
  • How to apply
  • For any queries relating to this award please contact [email protected]

Allan McNeill Postgraduate Poster Prize

The Allan McNeill Postgraduate Poster Prize is awarded during the annual conference. 

Undergraduate Project Prize

The Undergraduate Project Prize recognises outstanding research conducted by undergraduate students in the area of Cognitive Psychology. Eligible projects should report novel observations and provide theoretical insights into cognition. The work must have been conducted in the UK. As we did not run this prize in 2020, we are accepting nominations of projects by students who graduated in both 2020 and 2021.

Criteria

Projects must be nominated by supervisors. An electronic copy of the project abstract should be submitted, along with a supporting statement of not more than 500 words from the research supervisor. It is the responsibility of the supervisor to ensure that the student consents to their work being considered for the prize. There should be no more than one submission from a psychology department per academic year (maximum of two). The nominee does not need to be a member of the Society or Section.

Nominated projects will be considered by the Award Panel, comprising a subgroup of the Cognitive Psychology Section Committee in consultation with expert assessors, if necessary. The winner of the prize will be invited to present a poster at the Annual Cognitive Section Conference(link is external). Conference registration will also be offered free of charge to the prize winner. It is the responsibility of the supervisor to ensure that the student is available to present the poster at the conference.

Guidance for nominations

You will need the following information:

Students:

  1. Name
  2. Organisation/affiliation
  3. BPS membership number (if applicable)
  4. Email address

Supervisors:

  1. Name
  2. Organisation/affiliation
  3. BPS membership number (if applicable)
  4. Email address

You will also need to provide:

  • a nomination statement (maximum 500 words in narrative format)
  • supporting documentary evidence (an electronic copy of the project abstract)
  • Which cohort the student is in (2020 graduate or 2021 graduate)

Deadline for submissions is 5pm on Monday 11 July 2021

Apply for the Undergraduate Project Prize 

Previous Awards Winners

Annual Award

2021

  • Sam C. Berens
  • Blake A. Richards
  • Aidan J. Horner 

Berens, S.C., Richards, B.A., & Horner, A.J., (2020) Dissociating memory accessibility and precision in forgetting. Nature Human Behaviour, 4, 866–877

2020

  • Richard Cooper
  • Catherine Byde 
  • Roberto de Cecilio
  • Chelsea Fulks 
  • Danila S. Morais 

Cooper, R. P., Byde, C., de Cecilio, R., Fulks, C., & Morais, D. S. (2018). Set-shifting and place-keeping as separable control processes. Cognitive psychology, 105, 53-80.

2019

  • Deborah Talmi
  • Lynn J Lohnas
  • Nathaniel D Daw

A retrieved context model of the emotional modulation of memory. Psychological review, 126(4), 455.

2018

  • Joanne Taylor (Aston University)
  • Kathleen Rastle (Royal Holloway, University of London)
  • Matthew Davies (University of Cambridge)

Comparing and validating methods of reading instruction using behavioural and neural findings in an artificial orthography. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 146(6), 826.

2017

  • Kay Ritchie
  • Mike Burton
  • Rob Jenkins
  • Robin Kramer

Identity from variation: representations of faces derived from multiple instances. Cognitive Science, 40, 202-223. 

2016

  • Coral Dando
  • Thomas Ormerod

Finding a Needle in a Haystack: Toward a Psychologically Informed Method for Aviation Security Screening. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 144, 76-84.

2015

  • Colin Hamilton
  • Debra Griffiths
  • Kenny Coventry

Spatial demonstratives and perceptual space: Describing and remembering object location. Cognitive Psychology, 69, 46-70.

2014

  • Andrew Young
  • Richard Harris
  • Tim Andrews

Morphing between expressions dissociates continuous from categorical representations of facial expression in the human brain. PNAS 18 December 2012, 109, 51.

2013

  • Morten Christiansen
  • Padraic Monaghan
  • Stanka Fitneva

The arbitrariness of the sign: Learning advantages from the structure of the vocabulary. Journal of Experimental Psychology, General, 140, 325-347.

2012

  • Dietmar Heinke
  • Eirini Mavritsaki
  • Glyn Humphreys
  • Gustavo Deco
  • Harriet Allen

2011

  • Paul Warren 
  • Ulrike Hahn

2010

  • Gruffydd Humphreys 
  • Marc Buehner

2009

  • Gordon Brown
  • Ian Neath
  • Nick Chater 

2008

  • Brenda Jansen
  • Han van der Maas
  • Mark Rendell 
  • Olaf Booij
  • Philip Quinlan

2007

  • Andrew Calder
  • Andrew Young 

2006

  • Aleksandra Hirst
  • Essi Viding 
  • Jan de Fockert
  • Nillie Lavie

2005

  • Annette Kinder
  • David Shanks 

2004

  • Cecilia Heyes

2003

  • George Sperling
  • Shui-I Shih

2002

  • Charles Spence
  • David Shore
  • Ray Klein 

2001

  • Debi Roberson
  • Ian Davies
  • Jules Davidoff

2000

  • Mike Burton
  • Peter Hancock
  • Vicki Bruce 
Allan McNeill Postgraduate Poster Prize

2020

Clodagh Towns (UCL)

Group biases influence neurotypical adults' ability to take the autistic perspective

2019 

2018

Christopher Atkin (Nottingham Trent University)

The same or different? Capacity limitations in visual imagery versus visual memory of simple structural objects

2017

Charlotte Fry et al. (Cardiff University)

Profiling Executive Functions in Homeless Youth: Comparison with Housed Peers.

Emma Morgan (Cardiff University)

Comparing Methods of Categorisation

2016

Anna Mas-Casadesus (University of Edinburgh)

Cross-modal selective attention in synaesthetes: Evidence for better filtering abilities

Natalie Gentry (University of Kent)

The eyes have it! The role of specific facial features for identity matching

2015

*Salgado-Montejo, A., Alvarado, J.A., Velasco, C., Salgado, C.J., Hasse, K.. & Spence, C. (*Crossmodal Research Lab, University of Oxford, UK)

The influence of angularity, symmetry, and the number of elements on shapevalence and shape-taste matches. (2015)

*Shah, P., Sowden, S., Happe, F., Cook, R., & Bird, G. (*MRC Social, Genetic, & Developmental Psychiatry Centre, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London, UK)

Orienting towards face-like stimuli in early childhood. (2015)

2014

Frederic Vallée-Tourangeau, Sue Anthony & *Nicholas Shipp (*University of Hertfordshire & Kingston University, UK)

Looking at hands, objects or words? Tracking eye movements on an action-based based categorisation task

2013

Peter, M (University of Liverpool, UK). 

The role of verb bias in structural priming: Evidence from children and adults.

2012

Graham Hole, Peter J B Hancock & Sarah Laurence (University of Sussex, UK).  

The contribution of low-level adaptation to face identity after-effects.

2011

Hallett, R (Keele University, UK). 

The influence of age and music on exercise outcomes and affect for gym-based sessions.

2010

Morson S, Moulin C., & Souchay, C (University of Leeds, UK)

Parlez-vous Français? Feeling of knowing and ageing in a novel learning task.

2009

Manfredi, V., Bonfiglio, S., & Borelli, V.(University of Pavia, Italy).

Facial expression recognition in context.

Brown, J., Aczél, B., Jiménez, L., & Plaisted-Grant, K. (University of Cambridge, UK & University of Santiago, Chile).

Determining Implicit and Explicit Contributions to Sequence Learning in ASC.

Jeyaratnam, P., Irvine, K., & Laws, K. (University of Hertfordshire, UK). 

Sex differences in the cognitive abilities of Alzheimer's disease sufferers: A meta-analytic study.

Undergraduate Project Prize

2021

Christina Sarantopoulos (University College London)

'The Effects of Pronunciation Ease and Contextual Diversity on Word Learning Through Reading' - Supervised by Dr Jo Taylor

2018

Annie Morsi (University of Manchester)

Investigating individual variation in face recognition and extraversion 

2017

Luiza- Diandra Bretfelean (University of Greenwich)

Super-recognition: Long-term reliable memory of unfamiliar faces following a ‘fleeting glimpse’

Past winners section

  • Allan McNeill

PG Poster Prize

2020

  • Clodagh Towns (UCL)

Group biases influence neurotypical adults' ability to take the autistic perspective

Funding

Postgraduate Rapid Project Grant

Please note that the deadline has now passed for applications

The BPS Cognitive Psychology Section aims to provide some financial assistance to help UK cognitive psychology postgraduates carry out their research. The maximum value of awards is £400 per applicant.

This Grant is intended to help postgraduate researchers run their projects. We therefore anticipate that grants will cover the costs associated with conducting research, for example for participant payment via online recruitment sites e.g., Prolific, Gorilla, or in person. However, we will also consider applications for other expenses incurred by the applicant in running their empirical studies, for example equipment, software etc. that are needed, so long as a good justification is provided.

It is expected that grants will cover the full costs required. If the sum requested will not cover the full cost of the proposed activity, you will need to specify in your application any other source of funding. In such circumstance’s grants will only be released once a letter of confirmation has been received to indicate that the other funds have been awarded.

Although the maximum award is £400, applicants should only apply for the amount needed. For example, if your power analysis shows that you need 100 participants, you should only bid for enough money to cover 100 participants. This will allow us to support as many projects as possible.

Awardees will be required to submit expense claim forms (provided by the BPS) along with receipts in order to claim the award.

  • Closing date for applications is 11th March 2022
Eligibility

This Grant is open to postgraduates registered for research degrees at any UK institution. To apply, postgraduates must be members of the BPS Cognitive Psychology Section. To apply, postgraduates must be conducting research within the field of cognitive psychology.

Guidance for applications

To apply, you will need to submit the following information

Student Applicant

  1. Name
  2. Email address
  3. Organisation/affiliation
  4. Name of degree. Please confirm that this is a research degree, not a taught degree.
  5. BPS Membership Number
  6. Are you a member of the Cognitive Section of the BPS?
  7. Working thesis title (this does not have to be the final title of your thesis, just the working title)
  8. Justification of funds (i.e. a statement outlining what the grant will be used for within your research degree and why the Grant is needed. Priority will be given to applications who do not have other resources from their own department or external funding agency so please address this in your statement)
  9. Details of the funding required (i.e. how much you are applying for with itemised costings to a maximum of £400)
  10. Anticipated claim date (please state the date by which you anticipate claiming the funds)

 Supervisor

  1. Name
  2. Email address
  3. Organisation/affiliation
  4. Supporting statement (within this statement please confirm the availability of other sources of funding from your own institution or external funding agency)

All complete application forms that meet the eligibility criteria will be entered in to a lottery and funds will be allocated based on a random lottery draw.

Further conditions

A condition of the Grant is that all successful applicants write an 800-word report for the Cognitive Psychology Bulletin. Reports should provide a summary of how the Grant was or will be used within your research. For example, you might briefly report the research aims, methods and interim results if you have them. The final date for submissions is Friday 21st October 2022. The Bulletin is published once a year, is edited and has an ISBN. All Grant recipients must make their supervisors aware that they are accepting the funding on these grounds.

Finally, whilst we will try to include all of the reports in the Cognitive Psychology Bulletin, we cannot guarantee that all reports will be published. 

Applications submitted by the applicant without a statement from their supervisor will not be considered.

Retrospective applications will not be considered. The number of Grants available will depend on resources and award of a Grant cannot be guaranteed even if all requirements for eligibility have been met. 

Decisions will be final, and no correspondence will be entered into regarding unsuccessful applications.

Cognitive Section Conference Postgraduate Bursary 2022

The Cognitive Psychology Section aims to provide some financial assistance to help postgraduates attend and present posters/papers at the conference. The maximum value of awards is £400 per applicant. Awards could contribute towards registration, accommodation at the conference venue, or travel to the conference. You can apply for a bursary following successful submission of an abstract for the conference.

Eligibility

The award is open to postgraduates registered for research degrees at any UK or Republic of Ireland institution. To apply, postgraduates must be members of the BPS Cognitive Psychology Section and should be presenting research conducted as part of their current PG course.  

Guidance for nominations

To apply you will need the following information:

Nominee(s):

  1. Name
  2. Title
  3. Organisation/affiliation
  4. BPS membership number

You will also need to provide:

  • a copy of the abstract submitted to the conference
  • a cover letter containing any other relevant information
  • details of any funding required (accommodation/registration/travel/etc)
  • a signed supporting statement from student's supervisor (if the student’s supervisor is not available due to annual leave, we can accept a statement from another academic at the student’s institution who is familiar with the students work)
Further conditions

Retrospective applications will not be considered. The number of bursaries available each year will depend on resources and award of a bursary cannot be guaranteed even if all requirements for eligibility have been met. Precedence will be given to those who have not been awarded a Cognitive Section PG Bursary before.

Decisions will be final, and no correspondence will be entered into regarding unsuccessful applications.

Note: To join the Cognitive Section, individuals must already be a member of the British Psychological Society.

Apply for a Postgraduate Conference Bursary

Committee

Chair: Thomas Ormerod

Past Chair: Duncan Guest

Honorary Treasurer: Kay Ritchie

Honorary Secretary: Philip Fine

Commitee Members

  • Harriet Smith
  • Tom Ormerod
  • Josh Davis
  • Daniel Clark
  • Kay Ritchie
  • Sanjay Kumar
  • Natalie Butcher
  • Olivia Afonso

Coucil Representative: Vacant

PsyPAG Representative: Christopher Robus

Join

Membership of the Cognitive Psychology Section is only open to members of the British Psychological Society.

If you are not a member you can join the Section at the same time as applying for membership of the society.

Apply to join the society

Benefits of belonging

Benefits of Cognitive Psychology Section Membership

  • A hard copy of Cognitive Bulletin, annually
  • Opportunity to voice your opinion, either at the Section's AGM, and/or by becoming a member of the Section Committee
  • Reduced cost of books resulting from selected section-sponsored meetings
  • Reduced registration rates for the Section's Annual Conference

Member Announcement Email List

The Cognitive Psychology Section uses its membership announcement email list to inform its members of activities and initiatives that are relevant to their interests and to make requests for engagement on topical issues. 

By becoming a member of the Section you are automatically added to the announcement list.

To receive these emails you will need to:

  1. become a member of the Cognitive Psychology Section
  2. opted into receiving email communication from the Society (you can change your preference by logging on to your account via the member portal)

Getting involved with the Cognitive Psychology Section Committee

The Cognitive Psychology Section relies on a wide range of people getting involved, and the work of the Section is largely achieved through the dedication of unpaid volunteers.

Our volunteers come from a wide range of different backgrounds, whether they be practitioners or academics, or full members or students members, and together form an open and inclusive community.