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Dr Heather Price

Programme Leader, BA Psychosocial Studies with Professional Practice

PSYCHOSOCIAL STUDIES RESEARCH GROUP, Social Sciences

Heather has a teaching background in primary education and special educational needs. She is particularly interested in practice-near psychosocial research into the emotional well-being of children and young people in social and educational contexts.


    As a psychosocial practitioner and researcher, Heather is interested in how individuals influence (and are influenced by) wider group and socio-cultural processes. She is particularly interested in teaching and learning practices that take account of human emotions and relationships. 

    Heather has previously taught Masters in Education students in final year dissertation workshops and undergraduate modules on Childhood and Family Studies, child development, and mental health and emotional well-being. She currently leads modules on reflective practice for placement students, and is a doctoral supervisor.

    Heather’s classroom-based doctoral research was ethnographic and participative. She considered the emotional factors influencing young children’s success at literacy learning in a context where staff were implementing new practices arising from the National Literacy Strategy. 

    Heather is currently the lead researcher on a qualitative ethnographic research evaluation commissioned by the Mulberry Bush School (MBS), a residential National Centre of Excellence for the education of mostly looked-after children with severe emotional and behavioural difficulties. The team are studying the school’s therapeutic educational practices, through participation and observation in the classrooms and houses. 

    In collaboration with London Bubble Theatre Company, Heather is evaluating ‘Speech Bubbles’, a speech, communication and language needs drama intervention at Key Stage One. For this quantitative study, Heather has piloted use of one of the Communication Trust’s progression tools as a research instrument. 

    Heather took part in the UCL Institute of Education / Manchester University ESRC Seminar Series, ‘Bridging the Structure/Agency Divide: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Disadvantage and Education’. She is currently one of the contributors to an internationally-based ESRC application for funding to research into the everyday experiences of primary-aged looked-after children.



    Overview

    Since her doctoral award, Heather has continued to be interested in research, evaluation and teaching that uses practice-near methodologies. Her research typically includes detailed description and careful attention to processes of reflexivity and emotional and relational dynamics. 


    The qualitative research evaluation commissioned by the Mulberry Bush School in November 2014 complements the UCL Institute of Education’s quantitative longitudinal study into the progress and outcomes of pupils at the school. Our project will publish its final report in February 2017 and in an article in the forthcoming special issue of the Journal of Social Work Practice on residential childcare. Interim findings have been presented at the 3rd Psychoanalysis and Education Conference and at BERA’s 2015 Annual Conference. Heather has also led workshops at the Mulberry Bush School’s ‘Implications of Research for Practice’ Training Day, Jan 2017, attended by 60 staff members.

    The collaborative evaluation with the London Bubble Theatre Company began in September 2015 and involves several key primary schools in inner London. Interim results suggest that there are statistically significant improvements in performance on three key indicators for children who took part in the ‘Speech Bubbles’ programme, compared to children with a similar profile who did not. The improvements were in ‘Understanding spoken language’, ‘Storytelling and narrative’ and ‘Social interaction’, as assessed using the Communication Trust’s ‘Speech, Language and Communication’ progression tool for 5-6 year olds.

    Heather has also acted as co-lead on an evaluation of Tottenham Thinking Space, funded by Haringey Council and the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust. This is an award-winning community therapy project set up in the wake of the 2011 riots. Findings were presented at the BSA’s 2015 Annual Conference.

    Heather’s current involvement in funded awards includes an advisory role in the British Academy funded project, 'Charting the links between community therapies, psychiatric diagnosis and Mental Health Policy: A Study of the Archives of Hawkspur Camp (1936-1940) and Mulberry Bush School (1948-2000)’.

    Heather is a contributor to a forthcoming ESRC application for funding to research the everyday experiences of primary-aged looked-after children. This application is led by Professor Gillian Ruch at Sussex University and includes academics from Finland and Italy.

    Heather is a peer reviewer for Qualitative Research.

    Research

    Price, H., Herd, J., Jones, D and Sampson, A. (abstract accepted) “A Study of the Mulberry Bush School: 60 years of psychodynamic and community therapy” 2018 special issue of the Journal of Social Work Practice on Psychodynamic and Systems Theories Perspectives on Residential Child Care

    H. Price (forthcoming, 2017) ‘Ch 4: Language and Communication Difficulties’, in R. Lupton, T. Bibby and C. Raffo (Eds) Responding to Educational Disadvantage in Schools: A Reader for Teachers, Basingstoke: Palgrave 

    Heather Price (2016) ‘Speech Bubbles’ Drama Intervention Programme: Preliminary Executive Summary of Effectiveness
    http://www.londonbubble.org.uk/page/reports-research-writing/

    Heather Price and Alice Sampson (2015) An Evaluation Assessing the Progress of Tottenham Thinking Space (prepared for Haringey Council) https://tavistockandportman.nhs.uk/training/conferences-events/thinking-space/

    Price, H.S. (2013) Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow: a Research Study with Dost Centre for Young Migrants and Refugees: a Relationship-based, 360° Service
    http://dostcentre.org/dost-home-away-home/

    Price, H.S. and Cooper, A.M. (2012) ‘The Baby in Mind: The Practical and Clinical Relevance of Debates about the Epistemological Status of the Observed Baby', in C. Urwin and J. Sternberg, Infant Observation and Research: Emotional Processes in Everyday Lives, London: Routledge

    Day Sclater, S., Jones, D., Price, H. S. and Yates, C. (2009) ‘Introduction' in S. Day Sclater, D. Jones, H. Price and C. Yates (Eds) Emotion: New Psychosocial Perspectives, Basingstoke: Palgrave

    Price, H. S. (2009) ‘Emotional Literacy in Schools: A Psychosocial Perspective', in S. Day Sclater, D. Jones, H. Price and C. Yates (Eds) Emotion: New Psychosocial Perspectives, Basingstoke: Palgrave

    Price, H. S. (2006) ‘Jumping on Shadows: Catching the Unconscious in the Classroom’ in Journal of Social Work Practice, 20:2 pp. 145-162

    Price, H. S. (2005) ‘Lutfa, A ‘Slow’ Learner: Understanding School Literacy Learning in its Social and Emotional Context’ in Infant Observation: the International Journal of Infant Observation and its Applications, 8:1 pp. 45-58

    Price, H. S. (2002) ‘The Emotional Context of Classroom Learning: A Psychoanalytic Perspective’, in European Journal of Psychotherapy, Counselling and Health, Vol. 5 No. 3 pp. 305-320

    Price, H. S (2001) ‘Emotional Labour in the Classroom: a Psychoanalytic Perspective’, in Journal of Social Work Practice, Vol. 15 No. 2, pp. 161-18

    Price, H.S (2000) ‘Being Happy is What Matters Most: A look at two high-achieving girls’ learning experiences in the classroom’, Psychoanalytic Studies, 2:1 pp. 51-64

    Brown, J. and Price, H. (1999) ‘Teaching Psychoanalysis: an impossible art?’ Psychoanalytic Studies, 1:1 pp. 87-101

    Price, H. S (1997) ‘Creating a Space for Reflection on Teaching: the 1997-1999 Department of Human Relations work discussion groups’, in Journal of Social Work Practice, 14:2 pp. 159-170

    Selected Presentations and Conference Papers:

    Price, H.S. ‘Findings from the UEL Qualitative Research Project, 2014-16’, ‘Implications of Research for Practice’ Training Day, Mulberry Bush School, Jan 2017

    Price, H. S. ‘The Mulberry Bush School: How to evaluate a psychoanalytically-informed intervention, using psychoanalytic insights?’3rd Psychoanalysis and Education Conference, University of Sheffield, October 2015

    Price, H. S. with Lees, H. et al ‘Refusing to progress, refusing to process: what is not learning, unlearning, going backwards for?’ Symposium, ‘Education: Below the Surface’, BERA Annual Conference, Queens University, Belfast, September 2015

    Price, H.S. ‘Evaluating the Tottenham Thinking Space Project’, Roundtable Session, BSA Annual Conference 2015, Frontiers Stream, Glasgow Caledonian University, April 2015

    Price, H. S. and Deveci, Y. ‘Life at the Border: Discretionary Landscapes’, 1st Annual Conference for the Association of Psychosocial Studies (5th of the national network), December 2014

    Price, H.S. ‘Counteracting audit pressure with reflection: Using ‘work discussion’ methods with teachers’ UCL Institute of Education/ Manchester University 2014-16 ESRC Seminar Series, ‘Bridging the Structure/Agency Divide: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Disadvantage and Education’, UCL Institute of Education, March 2014

    Price, H.S. and Deveci, Y. ‘Life at the Border’, Tavistock Policy Seminar Series, Tavistock Clinic, June 2013

    Price, H. S. ‘What transformative impact does Dost have on young people’s lives?’, Dost Centre for Young Refugees and Migrants,  February 2013


    Publications

     Funder Title Amount and date Principal Investigator Co-investigators
     Mulberry Bush School  UEL
    Qualitative Research Project: The Mulberry Bush School
     £63 k

    May
    2015
     Dr
    Heather Price
     Dr
    Jane Herd, Dr David Jones, Alice Sampson
     Haringey Council/Tavistock and
    Portman NHS Trust
     Evaluation
    of Tottenham Thinking Space Pilot
     £23 k

    Sept
    2013-Feb 2016
     N/A
     Dr
    Heather Price and Alice Sampson
     London Bubble Theatre Company  Evaluation of London Bubble
    Theatre Company’s Speech Bubbles Programme
     £6 k

    Aug
    2015-Sept 2017
     Dr
    Heather Price
     Dr
    Eric Ansong
     School of Law and Social
    Sciences, UEL
     ‘Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow’: A Research Study with Dost
    Centre for Young Migrants and Refugees
     £5
    k
     Dr
    Heather Price
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    Funding

    Heather has previously volunteered for the Samaritans

    Interests

    • Experienced doctoral supervisor and examiner 
    • Programme Leader, B.A. (Hons) Psychosocial Studies; Programme Leader, B.A. (Hons) Psychosocial Studies with Professional Practice (led on design and validation); Third Sector Placement Co-ordinator
    • Deputy Course Tutor, MA Psychoanalytic Studies; infant observation seminar leader, dissertation workshop leader, MA dissertation supervision on a range of clinical practitioner programmes at the Tavistock Clinic, including MA in Emotional Factors in Teaching and Learning 
    • Experienced Committee member: Quality, Teaching and Learning, Student Success and Research Degrees 
    • Internal Advisor, Tavistock Relationships Validation of MA in Couple and Individual Psychodynamic Psychotherapy; External Advisor, University of Chester Validation of MA in Education
    • UEL Link Tutor, Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust 
    • Experienced in preparation of online (and distance) teaching and learning material

    Best Personal Tutor, UEL Student-led Awards, 2013

    Fellow, Higher Education Academy
    Founding Member and Member of the Steering Committee, Association for Psychosocial Studies; Member, British Education Research Association; Member, British Sociological Association

    Journal reviewer: Qualitative Research




    Portfolio

    Current Modules:

    • PS7003 The Relational Turn in Psychoanalysis, Culture and Society
    • PS6001 Psychosocial Practice, Reflection and Reflexivity
    • PS5004 Psychosocial Work Reflection
    • PS5001 Research and Reflective Practice
    • PS5003 Mental Disorder and Psychological Treatment
    • PS4001 Knowledge, Skills and Experience

    Past Modules:

    Heather has taught modules at undergraduate level on Childhood, Youth and Family Studies, Individual Development across the Life Course, the Individual and Society, and Counselling; she has also taught dissertation workshops for final year MA in Education and MA in Psychoanalytic Studies students, and has taught modules on Psychoanalytic Studies and Psychosocial Studies at Masters level.


    Teaching