Centre for Psychological Research (CfPR)

Director(s): Dr Kate Wilmut, Dr Mark Burgess

About us

The Centre for Psychological Research has a thriving community of research active staff and research scholars. Our research spans 4 broad areas:

  • Developmental Psychology
  • Cognition and Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Applied Social Psychology
  • Prevention Science. 

We attract significant finding awards from various sources including industry, the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), Technology Strategy Board and the Leverhulme Trust. We work with health and education professionals as well as partners in industry to develop knowledge and understanding that informs policy and improves people’s lives. 

Related courses

Research impact

Woman holding a baby and a balloon

We work with health and education professionals as well as partners in industry to develop knowledge and understanding that informs policy and improves people’s lives.

The quality and impact of our research has been reflected in the UK government’s latest Research Excellence Framework, where the majority of our research was judged to be world leading or of international standing.

Group's Leadership

Dr Kate Wilmut
Reader in Psychology
(Director of the Centre)

Dr Mark Burgess
Reader in Psychology
(Director of the Centre)

Dr Emma Davies
Senior Lecturer in Psychology
(Interdisciplinary Research)

Dr Nayeli Gonzalez-Gomez
Senior Lecturer in Psychology

Dr Sanjay Kumar
Senior Lecturer in Psychology
(Public Engagement)

Dr Michael Pilling
Senior Lecturer in Psychology

Knowledge exchange

Learning to ride a bike is an important milestone for most children. However, this is a complex skill that children with movement difficulties may struggle to master.

These sessions fuse our theoretical knowledge with our practical understanding of the experiences of children with movement difficulties. They involve progressive tasks that enhance the children’s skills, build their confidence, and ultimately result in them riding a bike proficiently. Riding a bike is more than just a physical skill, it gives a child a sense of freedom and enables them to connect with other people.

child completing a drawing task

The Brookes Science Bazaar, one of the Science Festival’s flagship events, attracts over 700 visitors in a single day and is hugely popular with children (and adults) of all ages. Psychology staff introduce visitors to the discipline through interactive sessions to demonstrate such things as reaction times and visual illusions.


We are experts in assessing and understanding attitudes, behaviours and the way that people process information. Our consultancy packages are tailored specifically to an organisation’s needs, and we have worked with a variety of industries, charities and public sectors.

Previous work has involved:

  • assessing existing practice
  • identifying obstacles and facilitators to future change
  • gaining comprehensive feedback from service users
  • designing interventions that are easy to understand and implement
  • evaluating interventions and suggesting improvements where appropriate
  • charting change over time
  • recommending policy for improving practice
  • providing professional training and development.

We bring a range of methodological and analytical expertise to each situation and have access to specialist equipment and software. Please contact us if you would like to discuss a project: mark.burgess@brookes.ac.uk or k.wilmut@brookes.ac.uk.