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PhD studentship on offer at the Centre for Mood Disorders

*NOTE: Applications should be emailed to*

NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands-funded PhD studentship at the Centre for Mood Disorders, University of Nottingham.

We are looking for an enthusiastic PhD student who will carry out research exploring how a self-management programme may reduce regular urgent care use in people with high health anxiety. 

People with high levels of health anxiety may seek reassurance from health professionals urgently when their health anxiety becomes too severe. They may believe that they are physically ill and something catastrophic may happen to them if they do not seek such help. In some people this keeps happening and as a result they seek help from health services every couple of months. Often these people do not know they have health anxiety or any mental health problem believing themselves to be physically unwell. 

We have recently shown that 6-12 sessions of talking treatment delivered through videoconferencing reduced health anxiety, depression, general anxiety and improved overall health, saving £1,000 per person per year in health and care costs compared to usual care. We also noticed that most people with high health anxiety who repeatedly used urgent care, showed a marked reduction in health anxiety with a simple explanation of the condition and monitoring of their condition. Therefore we believe that some people could be helped by an internet delivered self-management programme supported by one internet delivered meeting with a researcher who would explain health anxiety, the self-management programme and how to monitor they condition. The PhD is to develop and then test the feasibility and acceptability of such a programme.  

The PhD will be hosted by the Division of Psychiatry and Applied Psychology and the Centre for Mood Disorders, at the Institute of Mental Health, School of Medicine, University of Nottingham. The student will be supervised by Professor Richard Morriss, the NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands Mental Health and Well-being lead, Professor Thomas Schroder and Dr Sam Malins who was the lead therapist for the previous NIHR CLAHRC study. This funded PhD will commence in Autumn 2019. A yearly stipend at current UKR&I rates (£15,009), plus UK/EU student tuition fees (£4,327), is available to the successful applicant. 

How to apply

Applicants should have a 2.1 or higher honours degree in a relevant subject.

The successful applicant will be expected to visit research sites on a regular basis and should be able to travel across the East Midlands.

You must complete our application form, which can be found here.Your application must include a research proposal, which should explore the key issues that you want to examine in more detail, and what methodological approaches you would employ.

In addition, please also enclose the following with your application form:

  • Transcripts of all your academic qualifications. If you have not completed your degree yet, you should include a transcript of the marks received to date. Any offer is conditional upon achieving the required standard
  • Two academic references.
  • English language test result, if English is not your first language.

Entry onto the Division of Psychiatry and Applied Psychology PhD programme is very competitive. If you fulfil all of the admissions requirements it does not guarantee that you will be offered a place. We also consider:

  • The quality of your research proposal. 
  • References.
  • Your personal statement.

Please quote ref: “CLAHRC MH&W PhD 2019” in all correspondence.

Closing date: 8am (BST) on 8th July 2019. Applications received after this time will not be considered. Applications should be emailed to

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to an interview on 31stJuly 2019 (to be held in Nottingham).The successful candidate will be notified as soon as possible after interview.

For further information, please email:

Published on: 7 Jun 2019