Salut i Psicologia

Psychology: tools, interventions and practices for health

Within this line of research, we are working on psychological interventions for the prevention and promotion of health and well-being in different contexts (face-to-face vs. online environments, schools, organizations, etc) and conditions (health, illness, disabilities, psychological disorders, stages and vital moments, interpersonal relationships, etc). We also investigate psychological aspects related to the use of ICT for health.

Specific thesis projects offered inside of this line of research include the following:

Thesis Proposals

Researchers

Research Group

Psychology, health and the internet

"eHealth is not about technology; it's about  people using technology for health purposes." 
 
How to improve social support and increase quality of life through ICTs? How to reduce the impact of a chronic disease on daily life? Are smartphones really that bad for teenagers? Can we enhance the adoption of assistive technologies for ageing people? How do develop psychological intervention to improve perceived quality of life?
 
Psychology has a crucial role in health promotion and the improvement of quality of life through ICTs. Our research paths aim at the analysis of how ICTs are used for health development among different groups (rare diseases, children, teenagers or the elderly) both by professionals and citizens (ePacients) and promote a better use.
 
Research topics:
 
  • Children, adolescents and ICT: problematic use and protective factors.
  • Ageing and assistive technologies for autonomy and well-being.
  • Cognition and ICT: how multitasking impacts on cognitive processes.
  • The impact of chronic diseases on daily life going into psychological variables such self-efficacy, coping strategies or empowerment.
 
Mail:ehernandez@uoc.edu
 
Mail: marmayones@uoc.edu
 
Mail: mboixados@uoc.edu
 
 
Mail: bgomezz@uoc.edu
 
Mail: mpousada@uoc.edu
 

PSiNET

Behavioural Design in Health

How do we help people change their behaviour or daily routines? How do we design behavioural solutions for controlling a chronic condition, getting back in shape or any other need or interest? How do we help facilitate the move to online intervention? How do we increase engagement and adherence in health programmes? In sum, how do we develop effective behavioural design to help people to change their habits?

Behavioural design refers to the specific theoretical models and applied strategies used in interventions and its aim is to:

  • Understand how the mind makes decisions;
  • Describe the key factors that must converge in order for action to be taken; and
  • Develop strategies for changing behaviour.

Behavioural change techniques are one of the most important factors in determining the success or failure of online interventions (e-health).

Research topics:

  • The design of devices and mobile technologies to help change behaviour.
  • Sustaining changes in behaviour by promoting healthy habits.
  • Personal motivation and decision-making processes and their role in starting and sustaining changes in behaviour.
  • Persuasive systems design for online interventions aimed at disease prevention or health promotion.
  • Theoretical models (Behaviour Change Wheel, Persuasive System Design, Behavior Fogg Model) and their application in Health Promotion.

Dr Manuel Armayones Ruiz

Mail: marmayones@uoc.edu

Dr Beni Gómez- Zúñiga 

Mail: bgomezz@uoc.edu

Dr Modesta Pousada Fernández

Mail: mpousada@uoc.edu
 
 
PSiNET

Interpersonal Relationships and Psychotherapy

Our research seeks to contribute to enhancement of the quality of psychological interventions in both individual and in couple and family therapy from an integrative perspective. Within this field, we pay special attention to the following topics: self-identity and change; relational welfare; narrative change; systemic therapy; grief therapy; couple and sexual therapy; patterns of interpersonal interaction.

We aim at developing applied research projects focused on the improvement of the socio-sanitary response to participants with different health problems, as well as the promotion of psychological and relational welfare in the community. 

Research topics:

  • Focused on the development of innovative methodologies of constructivist assessment of change, relational dynamics or personal identity, especially through the use of ICT (Virtual/Mixed Reality and Health).
  • Focused on the study of the role of relational welfare in psychological and physical health.
  • Focused on the effectiveness of individual, family and couple psychotherapy, from a practitioner-oriented approach.

Dr Adrián Montesano del Campo

Mail: amontesano@uoc.edu

Intervention in Clinical and Health Psychology

Research in legal psychology

Can psychological research favour criminal investigation? Is it possible to determine the mental processes of an individual who has committed a crime? Can we improve police and judicial intervention in victims and mitigate the effects caused by the experience of a traumatic process? Our purpose is to develope research projects that answer these questions and, with them, contribute and promotes the excercise of psychology in the legal system.

 
Research topics:
 
  • Design and evaluation of techniques that improve the recall of witnesses who saw a criminal act.
  • Study and evaluation of psychological phenomena, behavioural and relational, that have an impact on criminal behaviour.
  • Improvement of the victim's situation and their interaction with the legal system, and intervention and developing prevention programs for secondary victimization.
 

Dr Modesta Pousada Fernández

Mail: mpousada@uoc.edu

PSiNET

Virtual Communities of Practice for caregivers: a psychological approach

Caring for a person with a long-term condition impacts caregivers' health and deteriorates their quality of life.  Virtual communities of practice for caregivers can provide them with knowledge, social support and coping strategies.
 
Are virtual communities of practice a goog structure for health?
 
How is an online intervention based on virtual communities designed?
 
How are interactions in these communities promoted?
 
How is a powerful environment for caregivers stimulated?
 
Virtual communities of practice can be built intentionally to promote knowledge to help with quality care. 
 
Mail: bgomezz@uoc.edu
 
Mail: mpousada@uoc.edu
PSiNET

Health Literacy (HL)

"Health literacy means more than simply being able to "read pamphlets", "make appointments", "understand food labels" or "comply with prescribed actions" from a doctor."

Health literacy is an issue on the global agenda and one of the three pillars for health promotion.
 
It is not just a personal skill. It depends on the individual's skills, the community's resources and the complexity and demands of the health system.
 
HL aims to:
 
  • Improve health and quality of life from a public health perspective.
  • Support making informed and efficient decisions about health.
 
How does HL help people make better decisions about health?
 
How can social networks contribute to amplifying health messages and ultimately improving health? 
 
Wich are the skills needed by people (professionals and citizenship) to navigate digital healthcare services?
 
Research topics:
 
  • Health interventions through social networks.
  • Digital health literacy.
  • Skills and learning ecologies among health professionals and in citizenship.
Mail: mboixados@uoc.edu
 
Mail: ehernandez@uoc.edu
 
PSiNET

Psychopathology, Adaptation Processes and Resilience 

Our research starts from the study of psychopathology and clinical psychology to better understand certain clinical disorders, their risk and protection factors and the processes of adaptation to adversity. Thus, some of the topics addressed are the evaluation and diagnosis of psychopathological conditions, the assessment of psychotherapy outcomes and processes, routine monitoring, the psychopathology of trauma, victimization and resilience processes, and response to psychosocial stressors (grief and loss, crisis intervention, care responsabilities, etc.)

Research topics:
 
  • Focused on the psychology of bond and affective relationships: stress management, grief and loss, adaptation processes, separations/divorces, psychosocial stressors, etc.
  • Focused on the field of emergency psychology: study of the benefits of early crisis intervention, communication of bad news, needs of victims and social support, effectiveness of interventions in trauma, care for vulnerable groups (evictions, immigration, etc.).
  • Focused on victimization: forms, risk and protective factors, intervention programs with victims, child abuse, sexual abuse/assault, partner violence, workplace/school harassment, etc.

Dr Adrián Montesano del Campo

Mail: amontesano@uoc.edu

Intervention in Clinical and Health Psychology