Dr Thomas H Bak

Thomas Bak

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

Born and raised in Cracow, Poland, Dr Thomas H Bak studied medicine in Germany and Switzerland, obtaining his medical doctorate with a thesis on acute aphasias (language disorders caused by brain diseases) at the University of Freiburg (Germany). He worked clinically in psychiatry, neurology and neurosurgery in Basel, Bern, Berlin and Cambridge.

During his time in Cambridge (1995-2006), he established the Clinic for Disorders of Movement and Cognition (DMC). His research addressed in particular the relationship between language, cognition and movement in neurodegenerative diseases and embodied cognition, with a focus on specific deficits in processing verbs/actions and nouns/objects. In this context he developed the Kissing & Dancing Test (KDT) to examine action knowledge. He was also part of the team which developed Addenbrooke’s Cognitive Examination (ACE).

In 2006, he moved to Edinburgh where he continues to work, based at the Anne Rowling Regenerative Neurology Clinic (ARRNC) at the Royal Infirmary (RIE), on the interaction between motor and cognitive functions in patients with dementia. Together with his colleague Sharon Abrahams he developed the Edinburgh Cognitive Assessment (ECAS) for patients in whom dementia is further complicated by motor problems (e.g. weakness, parkinsonism etc). Currently, he is working on Edinburgh Motor Assessment (EMAS), a brief motor screening tool designed specifically for patients with dementia and/or progressive aphasia.

In addition, over the last years he has been focusing increasingly on different aspects of the interaction between bilingualism, language learning and cognition, across the lifespan, in healthy ageing and in brain diseases such as dementia and stroke. He has been working with different populations, in Scotland (Edinburgh, Inner and Outer Hebrides) and across the world (India, Singapore, Malta). From 1 July 2016 he is the strand-leader on Cognition, Health and Well-being on an interdisciplinary, collaborative AHRC grant “Multilingualism: empowering individuals, transforming societies”.

Since 2010, he is the president of the World Federation of Neurology Research Group on Aphasia, Dementia and Cognitive Disorders (WFN RG ADCD). He has teaching experience in seven languages and organised WFN-sponsored teaching courses in cognitive neurology in Europe, Asia and South America (as part of the programme “Cognitive clinics world-wide”).

Main research interests:

  • The interaction between bilingualism and cognitive functions across the lifespan and in brain diseases such as dementia and stroke.
  • Cognitive effects of language learning, in particular in adult learners
  • Embodied cognition and specific deficits in processing of verbs/actions and nouns/objects.
  • The relationship between language, cognition and motor functions in dementia, progressive aphasia and other neurodegenerative diseases
  • Cognitive and motor screening in dementia and neurodegenerative diseases
  • Cross-cultural and cross-linguistic aspects of cognitive evaluation
  • Design and adaptation of cognitive tests to different languages and cultures

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Dr Angus Macbeth

Angus Macbeth

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

Angus joined the School of Health in Social Sciences in 2014 as a Lecturer in Clinical Psychology. Prior to this he worked as a Clinical Psychologist with NHS Grampian, working in adult mental health, in the rural setting of Dr Gray’s Hospital, Elgin.  His PhD research was completed at the University of Glasgow with Professor Andrew Gumley, investigating attachment and mentalisation in First Episode Psychosis (FEP). Subsequently, he completed his Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the University of Glasgow. From 2012 – 2014 he was an NRS Career Research Fellow, funded by NHS Research Scotland; and Honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of Aberdeen, working with the Psychiatry Research Group and the Centre for Rural Health. Angus continues to work with NHS Grampian as an Honorary Principal Clinical Psychologist in Adult Mental Health. He is an Associate Editor for Psychology and Psychotherapy: Theory, Research and Practice.

Angus is interested in using developmental psychopathology to inform our understanding of risk and resilience in psychiatric disorder, particularly in perinatal mental health. He has a long-standing interest in psychological frameworks, treatment models and the psychological management of psychotic disorders and other complex mental health difficulties including borderline personality disorder and Cluster C personality disorders. Finally, Angus is also interested in using data-linkage strategies for optimising use of routine data, meta-analysis, and the use of small-scale research designs to measure pathways into care and service delivery

Alongside collaborations with University of Edinburgh Angus has external collaborations with the University of Aberdeen, University of Glasgow, University of Copenhagen, University of Southern Denmark, and the Centre for Metacognitive Therapy, Rome.

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Dr Ethel Quayle

Ethel Quayle

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

I trained as a clinical psychologist at Queen’s University Belfast before completing my doctorate at Surrey University. During this time I was employed in a variety of clinical positions in adult mental health in the UK and Ireland before joining University College Cork in 1995. In Cork I was responsible for post-graduate training in CBT (MA and HDip) as well as director of the COPINE Project. As a practitioner I had worked with both sex offenders and their victims and for the last fourteen years have been working in the area of Internet abuse images, collaborating internationally with government and non-government agencies. The COPINE project took as its focus children made vulnerable through the new technologies.

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Dr Laura A. Cariola

Laura Cariola

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

I am a linguist and psychologist with a special interest in psychodynamic concepts that underpin language behaviour and social interactions. Currently, I am a research assistant in Clinical Psychology at the University of Edinburgh. My research relates to public health, such as perinatal mental health and adolescents’ online behaviour.

Most of my research relates to the concept of body image boundaries and how it influences language behaviour in relation to autobiographical memories and psychotherapy processes.

I am also the co-founding editor (together with Dr. Andrew Wilson) of the journal ‘Language and Psychoanalysis’. The ‘Language and Mind Network’ which aims to bring together individuals with an interest in the intersection of language and psychology, including psychotherapy, clinical psychology and the humanities, and thus to encourage dialogue and collaboration.

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Dr Lorena Georgiadou

Lorena Georgadiou

Affiliation : University of Edinburgh

Lorena Georgiadou is Lecturer in Counselling, Psychotherapy and Applied Social Sciences at the University of Edinburgh. She is interested in the role of linguistic and cultural diversity in relational contexts such as Higher Education, counselling and research practice.

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Dr Jonathan Wyatt

Jonathan Wyatt

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

Jonathan Wyatt is a senior lecturer at the University of Edinburgh. His article with Beatrice Allegranti, ‘Witnesing Loss: A Materialist Feminist Account’, won the 2015 Norman K. Denzin Qualitative Research Award. His recent books include On (writing) families: Autoethnographies of presence and absence, love and loss, co-edited with Tony Adams and published by Sense.

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Dr Billy Lee

Billy Lee

Affiliation: University of Edinburgh

My research investigates “lived experience”. I am interested in how our personal histories, bodies, culture, and existential situation influence how we experience ourselves and other people, and how we interpret, avoid and express feeling and being. I use Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis to conduct experience-near interviews with special populations. My current projects include i) therapeutic listening and communication; ii) life transitions and identity development; iii) and emotional communication and perception

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Prof Matthias Schwannauer

Matthias Schwannauer

Affiliation : University of Edinburgh

Matthias Schwannauer graduated with first degrees in Philosophy and Psychology from the University of Marburg in 1994. In 1998 he completed his applied clinical psychology training at the University of Marburg with internships in Marburg, Berlin and Edinburgh. His first position as a qualified clinical psychologist was in the Adolescent Mental Health Services in Greater Glasgow NHS. He moved to NHS Lothian and the University of Edinburgh in January 2000. During this time he was able to carry out his PhD research into psychological interventions for bipolar disorders.  This research involved the implementation of a randomised controlled trial of Cognitive Interpersonal Therapy and an investigation of the role of interpersonal and cognitive factors in mood regulation in bipolar disorders and the recovery process.

Since 2009 he is Head of Clinical & Health Psychology and Programme Director for the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology training programme at the University of Edinburgh. He is further a Consultant Clinical Psychologist in the Early Psychosis Support Service at CAMHS Lothian.

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