Nina Smyth

Senior Lecturer

115 New Cavendish Street London W1W 6UW
Thursday 13:15-14:15 (term time only)

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I completed a BSc. (Hons) Psychology in 2008 at the University of Manchester and a MSc in Health Psychology in 2009 at the Institute of Psychiatry, Kings College London. I completed a PhD with the Psychophysiology and Stress Research Group (PSRG), awarded by the University of Westminster in 2013 for my thesis entitled ‘Cortisol secretion in saliva and hair: methodological considerations and relationships with state and trait well-being’. I then secured a Post-Doctoral Research post with the PSRG (funded by the Bial Foundation and the British Academy). I completed my Postgraduate Certificate of Higher Education and became a Fellow of Higher Education Academy in 2014. In late 2015 I became a Lecturer in the Dept. of Psychology at the University of Westminster, and was awarded Senior Lecturer in summer 2016.

I teach on a range of modules for the BSc Psychology course and MSc Psychology course.  I am module leader for the Level 5 module Psychological Research at Westminster. I supervise both undergraduate project students and master project students. I am a fellow of the Higher Education Academy.

 

I am a member of the internationally recognized Psychophysiology and Stress Research Group (PSRG). My research primarily focuses on the impact of well-being and stress on health and illness, and clarification of the physiological pathways involved. I use different methods of measuring cortisol such as saliva and hair. I am interested in the methodological issues associated with measurement of cortisol, particularly the impact of delayed saliva sampling on assessment of the cortisol awakening response. Using optimal measurement of cortisol, I am interested in investigating ways to restore patterns of cortisol in healthy and clinical populations.

Current research students:

I am currently supervising one PhD student, Natasha Ramachandran, whose research is focused on psychophysiology and stress.

I am also supervising one Professional Doctorate student, Mary Elliot, whose research is entitled ‘An exploratory study to assess the introduction of a new working practice, called “GEN2”, on the health and wellbeing of security employees at a UK international airport’.

2017

Salivary diurnal cortisol profiles in patients suffering from chronic breathlessness receiving supportive and palliative care services: a cross-sectional study (2017)
Ryan, R., Clow, A., Spathis, A., Smyth, N., Barclay, S., Fallon, M. and Booth, S. 2017. Salivary diurnal cortisol profiles in patients suffering from chronic breathlessness receiving supportive and palliative care services: a cross-sectional study. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 79, pp. 134-145.

2016

Putting the stress on conspiracy theories: examing associations between psychosocial stress, anxiety, and belief in conspiracy theories (2016)
Swami, V., Furnham, A., Smyth, N., Weis, L., Ley, A. and Clow, A. 2016. Putting the stress on conspiracy theories: examing associations between psychosocial stress, anxiety, and belief in conspiracy theories. Personality and Individual Differences . 99, pp. 72-76.
Assessment of the cortisol awakening response: Real-time analysis and curvilinear effects of sample timing inaccuracy (2016)
Smyth, N., Thorn, L., Hucklebridge, F., Clow, A. and Evans, P. 2016. Assessment of the cortisol awakening response: Real-time analysis and curvilinear effects of sample timing inaccuracy. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 74, pp. 380-386.
Relationship between post-awakening salivary cortisol and melatonin secretion in healthy participants (2016)
Ramachandran, N., Smyth, N., Thorn, L., Eardley, A.F., Evans, P. and Clow, A. 2016. Relationship between post-awakening salivary cortisol and melatonin secretion in healthy participants. Stress. 19 (2), pp. 260-263.
Hair cortisol concentrations in relation to ill-being and well-being in healthy young and old females (2016)
Smyth, N., Bianchin, M., Thorn, L., Hucklebridge, F., Kirschbaum, C., Stalder, T. and Clow, A. 2016. Hair cortisol concentrations in relation to ill-being and well-being in healthy young and old females. International Journal of Psychophysiology. 102, pp. 12-17.

2015

Detailed time course of the cortisol awakening response in healthy participants (2015)
Smyth, N., Thorn, L., Hucklebridge, F., Evans, P. and Clow, A. 2015. Detailed time course of the cortisol awakening response in healthy participants. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 62, pp. 200-203.
Post awakening salivary cortisol secretion and trait well-being: The importance of sample timing accuracy (2015)
Smyth, N., Thorn, L., Hucklebridge, F., Evans, P. and Clow, A. 2015. Post awakening salivary cortisol secretion and trait well-being: The importance of sample timing accuracy. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 58, pp. 141-151.
Anxious attachment style predicts an enhanced cortisol response to group psychosocial stress (2015)
Smyth, N., Thorn, L., Oskis, A., Hucklebridge, F., Evans, P. and Clow, A. 2015. Anxious attachment style predicts an enhanced cortisol response to group psychosocial stress. Stress. 18 (2), pp. 143-148.

2013

Salivary cortisol as a biomarker in social science research (2013)
Thorn, L., Smyth, N., Hucklebridge, F., Evans, P. and Clow, A. 2013. Salivary cortisol as a biomarker in social science research. Social and Personality Psychology Compass. 7 (9), pp. 605-625.
Delays of 5–15 min between awakening and the start of saliva sampling matter in assessment of the cortisol awakening response (2013)
Smyth, N., Clow, A., Thorn, L., Hucklebridge, F. and Evans, P. 2013. Delays of 5–15 min between awakening and the start of saliva sampling matter in assessment of the cortisol awakening response. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 38 (9), pp. 1476-1483.

2013

Cortisol secretion in saliva and hair: methodological considerations and relationships with state and trait well-being (2013)
Smyth, N. 2013. Cortisol secretion in saliva and hair: methodological considerations and relationships with state and trait well-being. PhD thesis University of Westminster School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Languages

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