Dr Adam Lonsdale

BSc, PhD

Senior Lecturer in Psychology

Department of Psychology, Health and Professional Development


Areas of expertise

The social psychology of music and musical taste

Teaching and supervision


Dr Adam Lonsdale currently teaches on a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate modules and is the module leader for Academic Skills for Psychology, Questionnaire Design for Psychology and Personality and Individual Differences. He is also responsible for supervising both undergraduate and postgraduate dissertation projects. 


I welcome enquiries from potential PhD students who would like to work within one of my areas of interest (e.g., Musical taste & in-group favouritism; Why do we listen to music?; Musical preference & the influence of self-identity).

Research Students

Name Thesis title Completed
Shannon Skeffington Music and its uses across the lifespan Active


My research is primarily concerned with the social psychology of music; applying well-established theories from mainstream social psychology to better understand music and musical behaviour. In particular, I am interested in the social functions of music and the idea that people might use their musical tastes as a ‘badge’ of identity and group membership.

At present, I am working on several different projects. Currently I am working on a programme of research that aims to further investigate the effects of shared musical tastes on in-group favouritism and to re-examine these effects in the light of the predictions made by social identity theory. I am also developing several different programmes of research to investigate (1) how considerations of identity influence an individual’s willingness to pay for music; (2) why people listen to music; (3) the possible psychological benefits of choral singing; and (4) developing an integrated theory of musical preference and musical taste.

I am also interested in the application of theoretical frameworks outside of music psychology to study questions with more immediate real-world implications. For example, is it possible to reduce alcohol among undergraduates using brief online interventions? What role do non-intellectual factors play in the academic performance of university students? What do people think about the possible introduction of a minimum pricing policy for alcohol? Is it possible to predict psychological resilience among student social workers?

Research grants and awards

  • Lonsdale, A.J. (OCSLD - Brookes Teaching Excellence Fellowship (BTEF) - £4,120). How best to organise a student journal? A feasibility study to explore the practical, ethical, administrative, academic and legal implications of setting up an open-access online journal to publish the work of psychology students studying at Oxford Brookes. Awarded September 2020.
  • Lonsdale, A.J. (Oxford Brookes University Teaching and Learning Project (TLP) - £2,200). Predicting academic success at university: How early can you predict the academic performance of undergraduate psychology students? Awarded January 2019.
  • Lonsdale, A.J. (Department of Psychology, Health and Professional Development – Research Awards Scheme - £1,250). What factors predict student performance on their undergraduate research project? A multiple cohort study. Awarded October 2018.
  • Bunce, L., Childs, J., & Lonsdale, A.J. (Department of Psychology, Social Work & Public Health Research Awards Scheme - £5,000). Building academic success and resilience in social work students using a self-determination theory approach. Awarded November 2016.
  • Lonsdale, A.J. (Oxford Brookes University Teaching and Learning Project (TLP) - £1,350). Academic success and non-cognitive factors: What factors predict students’ final-year dissertation grades? Awarded December 2015.
  • Davies, E.L, Lonsdale, A.J., & Foxcroft, D.R. (Oxford Brookes University Competitive Funding Call - £15,785). Alcohol related social embarrassment: A pilot trial to explore the feasibility and effectiveness of a novel intervention to reduce alcohol consumption in undergraduates. Awarded May 2015.



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