Dr Helen Gavin
email@example.com | 01484 472789
I am currently Director of Graduate Education for the School of Human and Health Sciences, with responsibility for the management of all processes concerning the wellbeing and educational experience of postgraduate researchers in a wide range of disciplines. This entails the guidance, mentoring and direction of students embarking on the postgraduate stages of a research career. The role also involves the development, implementation and monitoring of policies to facilitate the attainment of the University’s strategic aims for its research profile, and acting as the Dean’s representative on matters regarding PGR students.
I joined the University of Huddersfield as Divisional Head of Psychology and Counselling in 2005, having previously been Head of the School of Psychology at the University of the West of England, and senior lecturer in psychology at the University of Teesside. An environment in which research and research-led teaching has always been of paramount importance to me, and I moved from a line management position into a more research focused role when the University’s priorities moved to research in the last few years.
Outside of academia, I have experience of working in the secure communications field, actively involved in the integrity of information in networks. In addition, I have worked on projects examining practice in police and government services.
Research and Scholarship
University research group memberships
I am currently a member of the Institute for Research in Citizenship and Applied Human Sciences and the Centre for Applied Psychological and Health Research.
My research interests lie in two areas. My main research profile is in criminal psychology, particularly centred on the study of deviant sexual practices and the expression of aggression. I head up a research interest group in Sex, Violence, and Aggression, under the umbrella of Psychological Research, but with members across the university and associate members world-wide. Complementary to this research stream, I am interested in the psychology of culture, including music and folk tales. These two topics come together in a variety of unexpected ways, and providing a breadth of research opportunities and contacts, and inform teaching and research supervision.
In addition, I provide consultancy at all levels of the design and analysis of studies for private companies, the Home Office and NHS R&D units.
Publications and Other Research Outputs
Bent, J. and Gavin, H. (2016) ‘Enduring belief in demonic possession: A biopsychosocial perspective’. In: The Supernatural in Theory and Practice, 11-13 March 016, Budapest
Gavin, H. and Porter, T. (2016) ‘Infanticide and neonaticide’. In: Current Perspectives in Forensic Psychology and Criminal Behavior. Thousand Oaks California USA: Sage. pp. 159-170. ISBN 9781483376219
Agazue, C. and Gavin, H. (2015) ‘Evil and Superstition in Sub-Saharan Africa: Religious Infanticide and Filicide’. In: Perceiving Evil: Evil, Women and the Feminine. : Inter-Disciplinary Press. . ISBN 978-1-84888-005-4
Gavin, H (2015) ‘Jealous Men but Evil Women: The Double Standard in Cases of Domestic Homicide’. In: Perceiving Evil: Evil, Women and the Feminine. : Inter-Disciplinary Press. . ISBN 978-1-84888-005-4
Gavin, H (2015) ‘Violent crime as old as the Bible: Boko Haram uses rape as a weapon of war’ The Conversation . ISSN 2044-5032
Porter, T. and Gavin, H. (2015) ‘Perceptions of Evil from Abu Ghraib: Female Prison Guards and Sexual Violence’. In: Evil, Women and the Feminine, 7th Global Meeting, 6-8 May, 2015, Dubrovnik, Croatia
Gavin, H (2015) ‘Farewell Terry Pratchett: a psychological analysis of Discworld’ The Conversation . ISSN 2044-5032
Gavin, H. and Porter, T. (2015) Female Aggression . London: Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 978-0-470-97548-0
Gavin, H (2014) ‘Reasons for female neonaticide in India’ Paediatrics and International Child Health , 34 (3), pp. 153-153. ISSN 2046-9047
Naz, S. and Gavin, H. (2014) ‘Cross Cultural Variations in Attitude towards use of Psychological Support Among Police Officers’ Pakistan Journal of Criminology , 5 (2), pp. 31-46. ISSN 2074-2738
Gavin, H (2014) ‘Evil or Insane? The Female Serial Killer and Her Doubly Deviant Femininity’. In: Transgressive Womanhood. Oxford: Inter-disciplinary press. pp. 49-60. ISBN 978-1-84888-283-6
Gavin, H (2014) ‘Jealous Men but Evil Women: The Double Standard in Cases of Domestic Homicide’. In: 6th Global Conference Evil, Woman and the Feminine, 2nd-4th May 2014, Lisobon, Portugal
Gavin, H (2014) Criminological and Forensic Psychology . London: SAGE. ISBN 9781848607019
Togobo, M., Gavin, H., Rogawski, K. and DeBono, M. (2013) ‘A study to determine the fertility rates of men with congenital and acquired vasal obstruction following the use of three sperm retrieval techniques’. In: 33rd Congress of the Societe Internationale D'Urologie, 8-13 September 2013, Vancouver, Canada , pp. 1-1
Gavin, H (2013) ‘Evil or insane? The female serial killer and her doubly deviant femininity’. In: Fifth Global Conference on Evil, Women and the Feminine, 18th - 20th May 2013, Prague, Czech Republic
Gavin, H (2013) ‘Guess who's coming to dinner? Inside the mind of the cannibal serial killer’. In: Cannibals: cannibalism consumption and culture, 25-26 April, 2013, University of Manchester
Hinchcliffe, V. and Gavin, H. (2013) ‘Utilising New Media Technology: Web-Based Diaries for Data Collection with Adult Participants with Autistic Spectrum Disorder’. In: Advancing Research Methods with New Technologies. Hershey PA, USA: IGI Global. pp. 285-302. ISBN 9781466639188
Yeadon-Lee, T. and Gavin, H. (2013) ‘Is Nonce the New Queer?’. In: Queer Sexualities. : Inter-Disciplinary Press. . ISBN 9781848881556
Bent, J., Gavin, H. and Porter, T. (2013) ‘Sugar and Spice but not very nice.’. In: The female of the Species: Cultural Conceptions of Evil, Women and teh feminine. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplianry Net. pp. 107-120. ISBN 9781848881310
Bent, J., Gavin, H. and Porter, T. (2013) ‘Sugar and Spice, But Not Very Nice: Representations of Evil Little Girls in Cartoons and Comic Books/Strips’. In: The female of the species: cultural constructions of Evil, Women and the feminine.. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press. pp. 107-120. ISBN 978-1-84888-131-0
Rainford, A. and Gavin, H. (2012) ‘Impressions of evil: the public and professional view of a female murderer.’. In: 4th Global Conference on Evil, Women and the Feminine, 6-8 May 2012, Prague, Czech Republic
Gavin, H (2012) ‘The damsel in distress: not as sweet as she is painted?’. In: 4th Global Conference on Evil, Women and the Feminine, 6-8 May 2012, Prague, Czech Republic
Bent, J. and Gavin, H. (2012) ‘The Maids, Mother and 'The Other One' of the Discworld’. In: Magic and the Supernatural. Oxford: Interdisciplinary Press. . ISBN 978-1-84888-095-5
Gavin, H (2011) ‘Sticks and stones may break my bones: An examination of the effects of emotional abuse’ Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma , 20 (5), pp. 503-529. ISSN 1092-6771
Bent, J., Porter, T. and Gavin, H. (2011) ‘Sugar and Spice, But Not Very Nice: Representations of Evil Little Girls in Cartoons and Comic Books/Strips’. In: 3rd Global Conference: Evil, Women and the Feminine, 13-16 May 2011, Warsaw, Poland
Gavin, H (2011) ‘Deadlier than the male? An examination of representations of female aggression as evil’. In: 3rd Global Conference: Evil, Women and the Feminine, 13-16 May 2011, Warsaw, Poland
Walker, J. and Gavin, H. (2011) ‘Interpretations of domestic violence: defining intimate partner abuse’. In: The 12th Conference of the International Academy of Investigative Psychology. Crime, Criminalistics & Criminal Psychology: New Directions in Investigative Behavioural Science, 31st March-2nd April 2011, Amsterdam
Bent, J., Porter, T. and Gavin, H. (2011) ‘Sugar and Spice, but Not Very Nice: Depictions of Evil Little Girls in Cartoons and Comics’. In: The Evil Body. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press. pp. 152-160. ISBN 978-1-84888-074-0
Gavin, H (2011) ‘Deadlier Than the Male? An Examination of Female Aggression as Evil’. In: The Evil Body. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplnary Press. pp. 261-270. ISBN 978-1-84888-074-0
Gavin, H (2010) ‘Mummy wouldnt do that The Perception and Construction of the Female Child Sex Abuser’. In: Grotesque Femininities: Evil, Women & the Feminine. Oxford: Inter-Disciplnary Press Ltd.. pp. 61-78. ISBN 9781848880382
Gavin, H (2010) ‘Sex, food and the pursuit of happiness (with apologies to John Locke)’. In: British Psychological Society North East of Britain Branch Third Annual Conference, 22nd October 2010, Durham, UK
Gavin, H (2010) ‘Mummy Wouldnt do That: The Perception and Construction of the Female Child Sex Abuser’. In: Grotesque Feminities: Evil, Women and the Feminine. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary.Net. . ISBN 978-1-84888-038-2
Gavin, H. and Bent, J. (2010) ‘Sexual Deviancy and the Sex Police: An Examination of the Religious, Cultural and Psycho-Legal Antecedents of Perceived Perversion’. In: Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll:Psychological, Legal and Cultural examinations of sex and sexuality. Oxford, Uk: Inter-Disciplinary Press. pp. 3-11. ISBN 978-1-84888-031-3
Palit, V. and Gavin, H. (2010) ‘Prognostic indicators & overall survival in men presenting with PSA levels greater than 1000ng/ml.’. In: British Association of Urological Surgeons Annual Meeting, 21-24 June 2010, Manchester Central
Gavin, H. and Bent, J. (2010) ‘Sexual deviancy and the sex police. An examination of the religious, cultural and psycholegal antecedents of perceived perversion.’. In: Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll: Psychological, Legal and Cultural Examinations of Sex and Sexuality. Oxford: Inter-Disciplinary Press. pp. 3-12. ISBN 978-1-84888-031-3
Porter, T. and Gavin, H. (2010) ‘Infanticide and Neonaticide: A Review of 40 Years of Research Literature on Incidence and Causes’ Trauma, Violence and Abuse , 11 (3), pp. 99-112. ISSN 1524-8380
Appleby, V., Gavin, H., Kon, M., Georgiades, I. and Moreea, S. (2010) ‘The adequacy of liver biopsies can be predicted from the length of fresh tissue obtained at the time of biopsy review of’. In: European Association for the study of liver diseases, April 14-18, 2010, Vienna, Austria
Bent, J. and Gavin, H. (2010) ‘The Maids, Mother and The Other One of the Discworld: Exploring the magical aspect of Terry Pratchett's Witches.’. In: 1st Global Conference: Magic and the Supernatural, 15 - 17 March 2010, Salzburg, Austria
Gavin, H. and Hockey, D. (2010) ‘Criminal Careers and Cognitive Scripts: An Investigation into Criminal Versatility’ The Qualitative Report , 15 (2), pp. 389-410. ISSN 1052-0147
Gavin, H (2009) ‘The Psychology of Sexual Deviance’. In: The [British Psychological Society] North East of England Branch 2nd Annual Conference, 26-27 June 2009, Sheffield Park Hotel
Hinchcliffe, V. and Gavin, H. (2009) ‘Social and Virtual Networks: Evaluating Synchronous Online Interviewing Using Instant Messenger’ The Qualitative Report , 14 (2), pp. 318-340. ISSN 1052-0147
Gavin, H (2009) ‘Mummy wouldnt do that the perception and construction of the female child sex abuser’. In: Evil, Women and the Feminine, 1-3 May 2009, Budapest, Hungary
Pressler, S., Hilton, N. and Gavin, H. (2009) ‘'I can't wear my cosy pink hoodie to keep warm when I go to the shop for my mum': a phenomenological exploration of being a young person in the UK in 2008’. In: University of Huddersfield Research Festival 2009, 23 March - 2 April 2009, University of Huddersfield, UK.
Hinchcliffe, V. and Gavin, H. (2008) ‘Internet mediated research: a critical reflection upon the practice of using instant messenger for higher educational research interviewing’ Psychology and Society , 1 (1), pp. 91-104.
Gavin, H (2008) Understanding research methods & statistics in psychology . London: Sage. ISBN 978-1412934411
Gavin, H (2007) ‘Criminal mind set and internalised justification’. In: 3rd International Congress of Psychology and Law, Adelaide Australia, 3rd-8th July 2007, Adelaide, Australia
Gavin, H (2007) The psychology of pants, or how to interpret personality from his underwear drawer. Manchester: Brazen PR .
Gavin, H (2006) ‘Intrusive music: The perception of everyday music explored by diaries’ The Qualitative Report , 11 (3), pp. 550-565. ISSN 1052-0147
Gavin, H (2005) ‘The Social Construction of the Child Sex Offender Explored by Narrative’ The Qualitative Report , 10 (3), pp. 395-413. ISSN 1052-0147
Gavin, H (2005) Police recruitment in the 21st century, fair and transparent practice Central Police Training and Development Authority (Unpublished)
Gavin, H (2001) ‘Reconstructed Memories and Adult Musical Expertise’ Music Education Research , 3 (1), pp. 51-61. ISSN 1461-3808
Gavin, H (2001) The Third Person Effect and Perceptual Elements of Television London: Hallmark Channel (Unpublished)
- Editorial board member – Journal of Criminal Psychology
- Reviewer for submissions for several international journals, and grant applications for a research council
- Several invited presentations as keynote speaker at local and international conferences and lecture series
- Regularly asked to comment on events such as murders and female aggression by local, national and international media
- Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
- Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society
- Chartered Psychologist
- Chartered Scientist
Research Degree Supervision
Several previously supervised students have successfully submitted doctoral theses in the following areas:
- Mental models
- Psychological function under fire
- Evaluation of clinical psychology practice
- Sexual deviancy and non-offending psychopathy
- Police officers and traumatic events
- Social communication difficulty and technological aids
Currently supervising PhD students researching in:
- Mental disorder in sex offenders
- Intimate partner violence in hidden populations
- Psychopathy and emotional abuse
- Superstition and ritualised child abuse and murder
- Neurobehavioural functioning after head injury
- Emotional responses to crime
- Criminal patterns of repetition
- Learning disabilities and sexual offending
- Economic deprivation and juvenile crime in Libya
- Anticipating shifts in criminal MO
- Male victims of rape and sexual assault
I have examined several PhD candidates presenting topics such as Homicide, Sexual Offending, Clinical Practice and Intelligence networks. I will consider supervision or examination of research students in most areas of criminal psychology, personality disorders or music psychology, or projects using innovative research methods.
My administrative responsibilities are as Director of Graduate Education, concerning the management of processes involving postgraduate researchers in the school, and acting as the Dean’s representative where appropriate.
Teaching and Professional Activities
I lead modules in Forensic/Criminal Psychology at undergraduate and postgraduate level. I also lead postgraduate research methods and research dissertation modules. I contribute to postgraduate modules in Clinical Forensic Psychology and Research Methods in Investigative Psychology.