Fully Funded PhD Studentship in Depression The Revolting Self: Exploring the Role of Self-Disgust in Clinical Depression

Students with a high 2(1) or first class undergraduate degree in Psychology are invited to apply for this studentship, which is offered for a three year period to support research in relation to depression and is to be held within the Department of Psychology starting 1 October 2013.  

Primary supervisor: Prof Paul Overton 

Contact: p.g.overton@sheffield.ac.uk 

Until recently, literature on the role of disgust in depression has been contradictory and confusing. However, over the past few years our work has shown that – rather than general disgust sensitivity or propensity – disgust directed towards the self (‘self-disgust’) has a functional role in the genesis of depression, by mediating the relationship between dysfunctional thoughts and depressive symptoms. However, thus far our work has focused on non-clinical samples and hence in the present project we aim to extend this work to a clinically depressed population. We already have links with a private clinic in Germany that is currently providing us with patient data and we will seek to augment this with data from the UK. The project will focus on examining the role of self-disgust in clinical depression and looking at the impact that therapeutic interventions have on both self-disgust and depressive symptoms. The work undertaken during the project will further our understanding of an important causative factor in depression and thereby point the way towards new therapeutic interventions. 

Overton PG, Markland FE, Taggart HS, Bagshaw GL, Simpson J. (2008) Self-disgust mediates the relationship between dysfunctional cognitions and depressive symptomatology. Emotion 8:379-85. 

Also Read  PhD Studentship Sub-Cortical Visual Pathways of the Mouse

Powell PA, Simpson J, Overton PG. (2013) When disgust leads to dysphoria: A three-wave longitudinal study assessing the temporal relationship between self-disgust and depressive symptoms. Cogn Emot. 27:900-13. 

Candidates are encouraged to contact the named supervisor directly prior to any application and should specify the project area of interest in their application. Please note there are other projects in competition for this studentship.

Full details can be found on the following page:


The Trust provides a fee bursary and financial support at the basic Research Council rate (£13,726 per annum in 2013-14), plus support for Research Training (£500 per annum).

Informal enquiries to Professor Gillian Hardy are welcome:

Email: g.hardy@sheffield.ac.uk

Tel: 0114 2226568.

To make an application, please click the ‘Apply’ button below.

For enquiries regarding the application process please contact:

Angela Young

Postgraduate Secretary

Department of Psychology

Western Bank


S10 2TP 

Email: a.young@sheffield.ac.uk

Tel: 0114 2226564

Fax: 0114 2766515

Closing date for applications is the 30 August 2013. Interviews will be held during the week beginning 9 September 2013.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *