Department of Applied Social Science, Lancaster University icon

Department of Applied Social Science, Lancaster University



Department of Applied Social Science

Lancaster University

Bowland North College



Telephone: +44 (0) 1524 594098

Department of Applied Social Science, Lancaster University

The Department of Applied Social Science offers a lively and active research environment for students wishing to undertake higher degrees by research. Currently we have around 25 research students registered with us, pursuing MPhil and PhD degrees on either a full or part-time basis. Their projects cover a wide range of topics within the broad areas of criminology, social work, social policy, health and welfare, disability studies, criminal justice and applied sociology.

Staff in the Department are actively engaged in research (see list at the end of this booklet detailing their key interests), and there are a range of prestigious externally funded research projects taking place within the Department. We have been ranked as a centre of research excellence in the 1996 and 2001 Research Assessment Exercises (5 rating in both RAEs). We are currently recognised by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) as an outlet for postgraduate research training for +3 PhD and CASE awards, full-time and part-time.

In addition to its research activity, the Department currently runs teaching programmes in: Social Work (BA Honours) and Criminology (BA Honours) together with an MA and Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work. The teaching of 'applied social work' and 'social policy' has been graded Excellent by the Higher Education Funding Council for England in two separate Teaching Quality Assessments.

^ Themes in Research

Research in the department focuses on applied social science. The department has an established research record in several areas of research: drugs; crime and the criminal justice process; youth offending; disability studies; theories of welfare; gender and sexuality; child and family care; community care; and social work. Recent work in all areas of strength has been informed by a growing emphasis on issues of equal opportunities, social justice, poverty and social exclusion. The department’s research priorities will continue to be underpinned by the topics and interests on which its reputation in this field has been established.

^ Inter-departmental research

We have had various joint research projects with other departments, particularly within the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (most notably, the Institute for Health Research, the Centre for Gender and Women's Studies (previously Institute for Women’s Studies) and the Law School). In addition, we have links with departments in other faculties (such as the Centre for Applied Statistics) and are interested in promoting inter-disciplinary collaborative research.


Supervision is a very important aspect of postgraduate research. Supervisors are matched with research students on the basis of active research interests, experience and relevant expertise. The supervisor's role is to provide regular advice, support and feedback to research students in the development of their work.

Currently we can offer supervision in a wide range of research areas under the broad heading of 'applied social science', including the following (subject to staff availability):

  • Children's policy

  • Child health and welfare

  • Child protection and family support

  • Community care

  • Crime and the media

  • Crime and risk

  • Criminal careers

  • Criminal justice policy

  • Cybercrime

  • Decision-making in public services



  • Drugs

  • Equal opportunities

  • Family policy

  • Feminist social work

  • Gambling

  • Gender and social policy, Gender relations

  • Hate crime

Housing and social policy

Lesbian and gay issues in social policy and social work

  • Old age, Life course

  • Organised crime

  • Philosophy of social research

  • Policing

  • Policy and governance

  • Poverty and deprivation

  • Prisons

  • Professional sense-making

Public services management

  • Organisational structures of social welfare

  • Racism

  • Social work with offenders/probation

  • Theories of welfare; Welfare systems and social theory

  • Women and crime

  • Youth policy and youth justice

Research Training and Seminars

We have an active programme of research training and seminars, part of which is provided by the Department of Applied Social Science, and part of which draws on a programme of research training provided more widely by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. Students in the Department of Applied Social Science are able to select courses from this programme in consultation with their supervisor. Full-time, campus-based postgraduate research students in FASS are entitled to a laptop supplied by the Faculty during years 1 – 4 of their studies.

a. Departmentally Based Training and Seminars

Departmental Staff-Student Seminar Programme Our series of departmental seminars, with both internal and outside speakers, is open to all staff and postgraduate students. The sessions are held around twice a term, in the late afternoon/early evening.

^ Modules on Masters Programme Postgraduate research students may attend relevant modules on our taught Masters Programme (and on some programmes run by other departments), by agreement and prior arrangement with the course tutor/convenor.

b. Research Training in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

There is an extensive range of courses available to research students from all departments within the Faculty of Social Science, and we encourage our students to participate. Full details of the programme can be obtained from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, IAS Building, County South, Lancaster University, Lancaster LA1 4YD, Examples of courses included in the programme are:

^ Undertaking Research in the Social Sciences

*Introduction to Philosophy of the Social Sciences*

*Qualitative Methods in the Social Sciences*

How to Survive as a Postgraduate

Basic Skills in Social Data Analysis

Starting to Write the Thesis

Questionnaire Design

Introduction to Preparing and Presenting Conference Papers for First Year Research Students

Managing Research Projects

Ins and Outs of Copyright

Writing for Publication

Discourse Analysis

*distance learning package available*

In general, the Faculty provides a number of discussion groups for postgraduate research students from a range of disciplines to get together and address issues of common concern.

The University Graduate School also offers a programme of seminars and events for all postgraduate students.


The Department has an excellent record in publications. We wish to develop this with more joint papers between staff and students, or more papers produced by students as single authors.

^ How to Apply

We invite applications from well-qualified graduates or final year students - whether UK, EU, or other overseas. Please note the information in Appendix 1 as to the information that in due course we require for an application. Our procedures are designed to give candidates as much information as possible about research in the department and to allow us to make judgements as to a candidate's ability to undertake research at this level. Completed application forms are read by two members of the Department and candidates who appear able to undertake a higher degree by research are (normally) invited for interview.

^ However, we are keen to support good applicants in the process of completing their research applications. Therefore please approach us at any stage for advice.

For further information, or a form "Application for Admission for Graduate Study" please write to Tracy Davies at the address below:

Tracy Davies

Department of Applied Social Science,

Bowland North

University of Lancaster,

Lancaster LA1 4YT

Tel: 01524 594098

FAX: 01524 592475


If you have any further queries, please contact:

Professor Gill McIvor

Director of Postgraduate Studies (address as above)

Tel: 01524 594094

FAX: 01524 592475


Appendix 1 Writing a research application

Proposal Details

Attached to the application form should be a research proposal of 1 - 2 pages, covering:

i) the research topic (that is, the general field in which the research is to be carried out);

ii) topic and literature overview: this should be about a paragraph in which sets out the main current knowledge and themes in relation to the research topic;

iii) research issues: the issues that the student considers are important for further consideration;

iv) the importance of the research: a statement as to why the proposed research will make an important contribution to knowledge in this field;

v) the research question: this is a refinement from the research topic; it describes the particular issue and question that the researcher wants to examine;

vi) the research title: Applicants for an Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) award must have a precise title. A set number of letters and spaces is specified which the research title must not exceed; the trick is in some way to specify the generality of the field and the specificity of the research question;

vii) research method: the specification of the way the research question is to be examined. (In this area in particular we do not expect initial applicants necessarily to have firm and robust ideas about research methodology - we are happy that student and supervisor should work on the details of this as on the precise nature of the research topic.)


The various stages for submission of a proposal are:

  1. Informal discussion with Director of Postgraduate Studies (Professor Gill McIvor) and possibly other staff;

  1. Submission of a formal application to University Postgraduate Studies Office - clearly marked for the attention of the Department of Applied Social Science.

c) Interview (normally) with staff from the department:- the purpose of the interview is for staff to determine the potential of the applicant to undertake and complete postgraduate research; there is opportunity for applicants to do further work on a research application after the interview provided that staff members consider that the student has the ability to undertake such research;

d) Decision by the Department as to whether or not to offer a place.

Please note that applicants who do not want funding from ESRC or other grant aiding bodies may apply at any time during an academic year.


Name, position and research interests Room Ext

Academic Staff

Jill Anderson


Research Associate

Mental health; communities of practice in an education and training context;

user/survivor and carer involvement in education;

voluntary sector social work C146 92836

Karen Broadhurst

(BA, DipSW, PGCE, PhD)

Lecturer in Applied Social Science

^ Philosophy of social research, ethnomethodology, conversation

analysis and membership categorisation analysis; help-seeking

and family support mobilities, in particular policy and practice

with children missing from school systems, policy and practice

with unaccompanied migrants C07 94116

Claire Fitzpatrick

(BA, PhD, Lancaster)

Lecturer in Criminology

Youth justice; children in care; youth offending C15 94113

Chris Grover

(BA, PhD, Lancaster)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

^ Social policy and criminology; loaning social security benefits;

income maintenance and low wages; welfare reform; living wages C13 94122

Paul Iganski

BA(Hons), Goldsmiths' College, London University; MA(Econ), Manchester

University; PhD, London School of Economics.

Lecturer in Criminology

^ Hate crime; legislating against hate; antisemitism; racist violence; ethnicity,

equality of opportunity and health services. C06 94121

Stuart Kirby

(BSc, Lancaster; PhD, Surrey; C.Psychol.)

Lecturer in Criminology

^ Policing, community safety, and serious & organised crime C17 94124

Claire Mason

(BSc Hons, Southampton; MA Social Work, Lancaster; DipSW, Lancaster)

Lecturer in Applied Social Science

Child protection and family support C156 94125

Corinne May-Chahal

(BA, CQSW/DASS, PhD, Lancaster)

Professor of Applied Social Science

^ Child care, human rights, gambling, family justice C145 94104

Gill McIvor

(BA, Strathclyde; PhD, Stirling; CSQW, Stirling)

Professor of Criminology

Criminal justice social work; penal policy; women who offend;

young offenders; specialist courts and therapeutic jurisprudence;

risk assessment and management; alternatives to imprisonment C143 94094

Fiona Measham

(BA, Cantab; MA, Warwick; PhD, Manchester)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

^ Alcohol and illicit drug use; cultural & historical

criminology; research methods C03 94106

Suzanne Moffatt

(BA, MA, Dip SW)

Teaching Fellow

Feminism, motherhood and gender constructions; feminist critical

discourse analysis; social work and gender; social policy related

to lone motherhood C123 94091

Karenza Moore

(BA, MA, East Anglia; PhD, Surrey)

Lecturer in Criminology

^ Drug and alcohol use; clubbing/raving; cybercrime; crime and new

technologies; youth crime; crime and the media; crime in the night-time

Economy; crime and risk C08 93570

Hannah Morgan

(BA, MA, Leeds)

Lecturer in Applied Social Science
Disability studies; citizenship; qualitative methods;
EU law and policy C138 94110

Ian Paylor

(BA, CQSW, PhD, Lancaster)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

Social exclusion; youth; drugs; income maintenance; the

Relationship between crime and social factors C05 94127

Sue Penna

(BA, CQSW, PhD, Lancaster)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

^ Policy and governance; transnational organised crime ;social harm C04 94101

Linda Piggott

(BA, PGCE, Leeds; MA, Lancaster)

Teaching Fellow

Learning experience of disabled students in Higher Education;

Researching Equity, Access and Participation; Learning Disability Services;

disability and social policy; disability and employment C142 94093

Bob Sapey

(MA, Plymouth; CQSW; PG Cert in Teaching & Learning in HE)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

Head of Department

^ Disability, technologies, community care C139 94863

David Smith

(MA, Oxford; BPhil, Exeter)

Professor of Criminology

Criminal justice policy; criminology; social work with

Offenders; Racism and crime C141 94112

Cheryl Simmill-Binning

(BA, PhD, Lancaster)

Research Associate

^ Community and partnership especially considering issues surrounding

ethnicity, policing, education, health, transport, design and planning C137 94126

John Stewart

(BA, Lancaster; MA Econ, Manchester)

Senior Lecturer in Applied Social Science

^ Policy making with reference to deprivation and crime C123 94091

Carolyn Taylor

(BA, MA, CSWQ, PhD, Salford)

Senior Lecturer in Social Work

Child welfare past and present; discourse

and textual analyses of professional practice; rhetoric & argumentation in

practice; professional identities; assessment & decision-making in

professional practice. C09 94107

Sue White

(BSc, Bradford; CQSW, Leeds; MA, PhD, Salford)

Professor of Social Work

^ Professional sense-making, and how science, formal knowledge, rhetoric,

moral judgement and subjectivity interact in professional practice; electronic

information sharing in multi-disciplinary child welfare practice;

'error and 'blame' in child welfare practice C154 94108

Alison Wilson

(BA, MA)

Research Associate

^ Drugs and Alcohol; Confidential Inquiries into Drug related Deaths; user &

carer involvement; health, youth; drugs; user and family support; families

and substance misuse; statutory & voluntary sector service evaluations;

gambling C140 94105

Sue Wise

(BA Hons, Manchester Polytechnic; MA Econ, CQSW, PhD, Manchester)

Professor of Social Justice

Equal opportunities; feminist theory; lesbian and gay issues

in social policy; new social movements C02 94114

Academic Related Staff

Gina Aylward

(BA, Lancaster; CQSW, Lancaster; PG Diploma in Psychodynamic

Approaches to Social Work, Manchester)

Assistant Practice Learning Co-ordinator C148 94111

Beverly Crane


Practice Learning Facilitator C152 94097

Dawn Fletcher

Teaching Assistant

Chris Sherrington

(Dip HE, Hertfordshire; DipSW, CCETSW)

Practice Learning Facilitator C152 94107

Wendy Tonge
(DipSW, PgDip Practice Teaching)

Practice Learning Co-ordinator C150 94128

Simon Unsworth

Practice Learning Development C148/152

Rob Womack

Practice Learning Facilitator C148/152

Administrative Staff

Veronica Holmes

Departmental Officer C149 94095

Mirvine Barden

Social Work Courses Co-ordinator C151 94098

Helen Lewis (part-time)

Criminology Course Co-ordinator C155 94099

Chris Brown (part-time)

Criminology Course Co-ordinator C155 94099

Tracy Davies (part-time)

Postgraduate Research Students and

Social Work Courses Co-ordinator (part time) C151 94098

Karen Hughes (part-time Secretary)

Criminology C155 94099


This list of current, and recent, research students gives a flavour of the types of work undertaken by postgraduate research students in the Department.

Victoria Album

The Effectiveness of Drug Service Provision within the Criminal Justice System

Jude Amos

Evaluation of ‘Dream Scheme’ Project

Roy Antrobus

^ Concept of Self-Neglect Among Older People

Morag Brannock

Gender, Class & Ethnicity: Meanings, perception & Experiences of accessing drugs, rehabilitation & resettlement programmes in prison

Peter Denenberg

Discourse and childhood

Glenis Donaldson

The social implications of wheelchair use

David Elgee

^ Organised Crime Models

Janet Elleray

Children’s Emotional Literacy

Michael Handrinos

Credit Unions, Bridging the Gap in Financial Exclusion

Man Kwong Har

Critical postmodern social work

Marjorie Hearton

^ Disruption in adoption

David Hoyle

Constructions of ‘truancy’ in the British education service

Philip Johnson

Perceptions of Community Punishment Orders

Vivienne Kaye

Jewish defence strategies against antisemitism

Julia Kelly

^ Internet access policy and practice

Marinella Marmo

The New Retributivism in Europe

Steven Mee

The evaluation of people with learning disability

Susanne Moffatt

Social Work and Gender Studies

Rodney Passant

Crime and health

Jayn Pearson

Women as Perpetrators of Abuse

Donna Reeve


Negotiating disability in everyday life: the experience of psycho-emotional disablism

Helena Sierra

Medical Sociology

Fiona Smart

Mothers’ experience of health following the unplanned admission of their children to hospital

Georgia Spiliopoulos

Female Adult Migrants and Help-Seeking

Kiyoko Sueda

A Multi-Dimensional Analysis of the Perception of Face

Abe Sweiry

Contemporary antisemitism in the UK

Roshani Swift

Mental Disorder and Criminal Law Protection

Claire Taylor

The relationship between care and criminal careers

Kellie Thompson

Initial Response Team

Marie Thompson

Youth offending and restorative justice

Joanne Wood

An Exploration of the Effectiveness of Multi Agency Public Protection Panels


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