Dr Lee Curley

Phd Psychology student Lee Curley photographed for brochure

Lee was a Postgraduate Research student and is a Teaching Associate. He passed his PhD viva on March 21st, 2018, and graduated as Dr Lee Curley on June 28th, 2018!

The main focus of my research is on decision making that occurs in legal/forensic environments. I started my PhD in January 2015. Since then I have investigated the decision making processes behind mock jurors within the Scottish, three verdict system. This investigation is very novel, and integrated legal research with theoretical decision making models. I have now written up my PhD thesis.

In addition to my research, I am also a casual lecturer at Edinburgh Napier University, which has allowed me to teach on modules surrounding introductory psychology, cognitive psychology, social psychology, statistics, research methods and bio/psychological processes. Additionally, I have lectured on topics such as juror decision making (for both the psychology and law departments at Edinburgh Napier University), the cognitive structure behind decision making, and the biological processes underlying emotion, motivation, and sleep.

As well as teaching groups of individuals, I have also started to mentor and supervise individual students. For instance, from May 2016 until the end of July 2016, I mentored an intern student. During this time, I helped mentor the student in statistical analysis, participant recruitment methods, research design, and some decision making theories.  From September 2016 until April 2017, I gained experience of co-supervising an Honours student who investigated biases and heuristics within the court room.

During my time as a PhD student, I have presented my work at the postgraduate research conference of Edinburgh Napier University (three times), to Forensic and Criminology Masters students who study at Edinburgh Napier University, at a seminar series at Edinburgh Napier University, and at Nuremberg at a conference organised by the European Association of Psychology and Law. Additionally, in 2016 I presented my work in New York City at the International Association of Forensic Mental Health Services Conference. I also presented at a conference held at the University of Strathclyde. In June 2017, I presented my work at the International Association of Forensic Mental Health Services Conference, this time the Conference was held in Split, Croatia.

As well as presenting, I co-created (alongside Liam Ralph) the postgraduate Forensic Psychology and Criminology Research Network (POPCORN). So far, I have organised and presented at two conferences for the research network, which have gone really well.

Since January 2015, I have been awarded £7,043.33 of funding. This funding came from several different institutions, charities and agencies (please ask if you want more information on this). These grants have allowed me to pay tuition fees and attend international conferences. In addition to funding, I have three publications so far. One is a discussion piece on heuristics, which can be found in PSYPAG’s (Postgraduate Psychology Affairs Group) journal. The second piece was an empirical study investigating the relationship between accurate eyewitness testimony and personality, which can be found in the Journal of Articles in Support of the Null Hypothesis. My third publication related to a fact sheet on juror decision making, which was published by the European Association of Psychology and Law. Two additional papers of mine are currently in the process of being reviewed. Additionally, I possess experience of reviewing papers for both the Journal of Medicine, Science and Law, and Europe’s Journal of Psychology.

Finally, I possess experience of public engagement. For instance, I have published one article in The Scotsman on the implications of the Not Proven Verdict, two articles in The Conversation (one on eyewitness testimony and one on the implications of decision theory for political campaigns), and a blog in The British Society of Criminology on decision theory and its implications for policing. Police Professional have also interviewed me on eyewitness testimony.

If you are interested in my research, please contact me by email: Lee.curley@napier.ac.uk. Additionally, please follow me on twitter @Psycurlogy.


Latest Work:

September 5th, 2018: How juror bias can be tackled to ensure fairer trials, in The Conversation

Curley, L. J. (2017). Decision Making Process of Jurors. In B. Baker, R. Minhas, L. Wilson (eds.). Factbook: Psychology and Law (2nd ed.). Kelowna: European Association of Psychology and Law Student Society.

Curley, L. J., MacLean, R., & Murray, J. (2017). The Relationship between the Big 5 Personality Traits and Eyewitness Recognition. Journal of Articles in Support of the Null Hypothesis13 (2), 1539 – 8714.

Curley, L., Murray, J. & MacLean, R. (2016). Heuristics: The good, the bad, and the biased. What value can bias have for decision makers? The Quarterly. 100, 41-44. Available here.

Curley, L.J., Murray, J., MacLean, R., & Laybourn, P. (2017). Are consistent juror decisions related to fast and frugal decision making? Investigating the relationship between juror consistency, decision speed and cue utilisation. Medicine, Science and the Law. 57(4) 211-219. Available here.

Conversation article:

Article in the Scotsman:
Jury still out on merits 
of the Not Proven verdict

My blog pieces:

“I’ve never had an experience like it”
The second account in our conference experience series: Lee visits New York

“This is the start of something big…”
Lee Curley introduces our new Forensic Psychology research network (PoPCoRN), and reports the success of the first seminar series

“Such a worthwhile experience for any young academic…”
Read more about Lee’s experiences of presenting his latest research

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