BESA Journal Special Edition: Psychology of Education

Foreword by Dr. Victoria Blinkhorn, BESA Guest Editor

BESA Journal Vol 11 Issue 1CoverWelcome to the Psychology of Education Special Edition of the BESA journal Educationalfutures. It has been a pleasure to be involved in BESA and to edit this special edition which aims to provide a high quality selection of articles that draw on theory or methods from core areas of psychology in order to interrogate their application to education and educational contexts. A number of excellent papers were submitted for this special edition and I’d like to thank all the reviewers involved, along with the authors, for their continued hard work. I’d also like to thank Joe Gazdula for the support and guidance he has offered me throughout my time as editor.

This Psychology of Education Special Edition includes 3 excellent articles. The first paper by Misha Vickers explores and attempts to explain why fewer females elect to study Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths (STEM) as they progress through the education system, an issue that is often referred to as the ‘leaking STEM pipeline’. Misha draws upon key psychological theories in order to provide an explanation for the phenomenon and critically evaluates interventions that have already been used to encourage more females to study STEM.

The second article by Lorna Bourke and Alan Yates investigates the interaction between planning strategies and levels of anxiety in the development of argumentation and linguistic coherence in academic texts written by undergraduate students. This article is important as it presents where the interaction of anxiety on different modes of organisation strategy is implicated, which is needed before any recommendations are made for the most appropriate form of pre-writing instructions for students undertaking academic writing.

Finally, the third article by Stephen Pritchard analyses contemporary issues in education concerning creativity. He discusses the assessment of creativity present in the literature, the varying roots and conceptualisations of creativity, and argues that we need the approach it in a different way in order to improve our education system.

I really hope you enjoy this special edition, as it has been a very enjoyable experience for me, and no doubt for our authors too!

Dr. Victoria Blinkhorn
BESA Guest Editor

photo of victoria blinkhornDr. Victoria Blinkhorn attained a BA in Criminology from Liverpool Hope University in 2010. Throughout her degree, she developed a specific interest in Forensic Psychology.  In order to pursue that, she stayed at Liverpool Hope University to complete an MSc in Psychology, which also acted as an accredited conversion with the BPS. She then went on to the University of Huddersfield and completed the MSc in Forensic and Investigative Psychology in 2013. In the same year, she began working as an Associate Lecturer for Liverpool Hope University, specialising in Psychology of Education.Within the first year of this role, she began thinking about researching her PhD and undertook to write about female narcissism.  Her title became “Narcissism in females: Relationships to attitudes towards violence, sexual coercion, and offending behaviour in a non-forensic sample” and she obtained her PhD in 2018 from the University of Liverpool. After a short time at Sunderland University, she joined Liverpool John Moores University in March 2020 as Lecturer in Forensic Psychology.Her research interests concern how mental illnesses, personality disorders and traits help to explain offending behaviour in adults. She also undertakes work in some areas of applied psychology. In addition, she is a Principle Research Consultant for the NHS and National Probation Service investigating the effectiveness of the Psychologically Informed Consultation Service (PICS).