Read the latest research news from the School of Psychology, including grant funding success, media coverage.

Research with the School of Psychology

From undergraduate to postgraduate, students are engaged in active research whether it's as participants or as researchers. The School has diverse research interests, including social cognition, cross-cultural psychology, language and communication, gender, memory, cognitive and social development, neuropsychology, abnormal and criminal behaviour, addiction, the effects of drugs on behaviour and cognition, reinforcement processes and comparative cognition.

Many of our staff are world renowned experts in their field and in addition to teaching and researching also act as reviewers and editors for international journals. With the varied research and teaching, staff contribute to, the School has access to extensive networks in the community and research collaborations across Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand, and the world.

Students receive the best supervision possible and graduate with well developed research skills, the ability to critically evaluate information and will be able to apply their skills to any field. Typically students will hone their communication skills by participating in poster sessions or demonstrate psychology phenomena to stakeholder groups and of course by attending conferences. All of these experiences make our students dynamic, versatile and equipped for whatever career path they may take in the future.

Discover our Research

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Research lab websites

Our School's research quality and output is recognised as number one in New Zealand. Find out more about our current research labs.

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PhD students

Meet our Psychology PhD students and explore their research topics.

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PhD alumni

Meet our PhD alumni and explore their research topics.

Emotional Arousal Pattern database

Access the Emotional Arousal Pattern (EMAP) database, a shared database for psychophysiological responding to affective stimuli.

The University Research Environment

We top research ranking

Victoria University of Wellington is ranked first among New Zealand universities based on the research performance of its academic staff.

The University's 2013 PBRF News Release
“Today's release by the Tertiary Education Commission of the latest PBRF Evaluation ranks Victoria University of Wellington as number one in New Zealand. This validates the commitment of our staff to undertaking and disseminating world class research,” said Vice-Chancellor Professor Pat Walsh.

“With 678 staff actively involved in research, and 70 percent of them operating at the highest levels (ranked as either an A or B), we now have external confirmation of our status as New Zealand’s most research intensive university.

“In 2009 the University Council set an ambitious goal to dramatically improve our research performance and staff have been very focused on achieving this. That commitment has certainly paid off and we are very proud of what we have accomplished.”

The Chancellor, Ian McKinnon, said he is delighted by the results and congratulates the leadership of the University, its Vice-Chancellor, and of course its staff, on the focus given to the importance of research and its value to New Zealand society.

“The Council has been quite clear in its strategic direction in this area and the University has not just responded but has done so at an outstanding level.”

In addition Victoria University of Wellington ranks first or second in 24 subject areas, an increase from 11 in 2006.

First in Research Excellence

It's official, Psychology at Victoria University of Wellington is still the best. Nationally, Psychology has been one of the highest-performing disciplines across all rounds of the ranking exercise, with our School of Psychology ranked 2nd in 2003, and 1st for research in 2006. In spite of this competition, Psychology at Victoria University of Wellington has actually stretched its lead over the next highest-ranked Universities in taking top honours in the latest PBRF round. The School has also recently hired a number of new academic staff, two of whom have obtained Marsden grants in 2016.

The result is a reflection of the excellence to which all staff and students aspire. In spite of the breadth of the School, it's hard to pick out any one area as particularly successful. All of the specialist programmes (Cross-Cultural psychology, Forensic psychology, and Cognitive and Behavioural Neuoscience) were well-represented among the top tier of results, with similarly high performance in the areas of traditional School strength (including cognitive, developmental, social, and organizational psychology).

This caps a highly successful period in the School, marked by significant levels of external research funding success, ongoing popularity among undergraduate students, and increasing numbers of Masters and Doctoral students. In addition the School has received more national teaching awards than any other psychology department in New Zealand.

We are very proud of our achievements, and look forward to our students benefiting from our commitment to excellence across all areas of our teaching and research.

Equipment database

Our online equipment database showcases a selection of the specialised equipment and facilities owned and operated by the University. You can explore them using our search tool.