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About Prof Moira Lafferty

Moira is an associate fellow and chartered psychologist of the British Psychological Society. She is a full member of the Division of Sport and Exercise Psychology and holds the position of Chief Supervisor/ Registrar for the Qualification in Sport and Exercise Psychology. She is a HCPC Registered Sport and Exercise Psychologist, RAPPS registered Supervisor and chartered scientist. 

Moira is also a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and approved PhD. supervisor. At present she is supervising four Doctoral students and has supervised four PhD. students to successful completion.

In her role as Head of Department Moira oversees the Department Postgraduate Taught Course portfolio and has a leading role in the Department research strategy development. She is Chair of the School Ethics Committee and leads on collaborative arrangements.


At undergraduate level Moira teaches on the Research Dissertation module (PS6001) and on Recent Trends in Psychology (PS6005) At postgraduate level Moira contributes to Advanced Skills for Research and Practice (PS7303) and teaches on a number of modules on the MSc. Applied Psychology. Moira also supervises under and postgraduate dissertations in the area of sport and exercise psychology and is currently on the supervisory team for six doctoral students.  


As a HCPC registered sport psychologist Moira has worked with numerous teams and individuals at National and International level including; hockey, rugby, squash, badminton, netball and gymnastics. She worked with the GB European Dressage Pony Squad from 2012 to 2016 during which time they medalled on 3 occasions. She has also worked with the BYRDS NW Dressage squads and athletes on the National High Performance Camp programme and National Academy programme.

Moira’s research interests focus on team performance, team formation, the role of the coach and psychological aspects of performance especially those relating to the young and developing athlete. She is the lead researcher and developer of the CHANGES-Intervention programme (Challenging Hazing and Negative Group Events in Sport) and has recently signed collaborative partnership agreements with both British Universities and Colleges Sport and Scottish Student Sport to further the integration of CHANGES into student sport. CHANGES has previously been nominated and short-listed for an Educate North Award (2016).

Currently, Moira is engaged in several research collaborations. She is a member of a funded research group led by Dr. David Todd at Liverpool John Moores exploring trainee sport psychologists’ journey, supervision and neophyte practitioner development. With Dr. Wakefield from Liverpool Hope University Moira is investigating the role of initiation practices in sport teams and the psychological impact of such activities as well as examining the efficacy of the CHANGES programme.

As well as research in applied sport psychology Moira has also been in receipt of two HLTSN grants to explore teaching and learning in Higher Education to explore students’ perceptions of research and the dissertation process.

Published Work

Recent Publications

Lafferty, M.E., & Roberts, E. (2022). From Physical to Virtual: Reflections on the move from the lecture hall to the cyber room (p.199-211). In D. Forbes & R. Walker (Eds). ‘Developing Online Teaching in Higher Education. Global Perspectives on Continuing Professional Learning and Development. Springer. ISBN: 978-981-19-5587-7

Eubank, M., Lafferty, M.E., & Breslin, G. (2022). The British Psychological Society Qualifications in Sport and Exercise Psychology Stage 2 (Chapter 1). In V. Shanmuganathan-Felton & S Smith (Eds), Developing a Sport Psychology Consultancy: A Toolkit for Students and Trainees. Routledge.

Lafferty, M.E., & Tod, D. (2022). Life-long learning: life beyond the training (Chapter 13). In V. Shanmuganathan-Felton & S Smith (Eds), Developing a Sport Psychology Consultancy: A Toolkit for Students and Trainees.

Tod, D., Pullinger, S., & Lafferty, M.E. (in press). A Systematic Review of the Qualitative Research Examining the Characteristics of Helpful Sport and Exercise Psychology Practitioners. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology. (Accepted)

Lafferty, M.E., Coyle, M., Prince, H.R., & Szabadics, A. (2022). “It’s not just a man’s world” – Helping female sport psychologists to thrive not just survive. Lessons for supervisors, trainees, practitioners and mentors. Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 17(2) 6-18.

Oakley, L., Lafferty, M. & McFarlane, L. (2022).‘The fruit of consultation’: Findings from an online survey on co-production as a solution to the challenges of safeguarding children and young people in International Christian work. Child Abuse Review, 31(5), e2767.   /

Morris, R., Pattinson, E. M., Lafferty, M., Brown, D., Emeka, L., Williams, J., Byrne, L., Shanmuganathan-Felton, V., & Kiemle-Gabbay, L. R. (2022). Understanding Inequality: The Experiences and Perceptions of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion of those Working or Studying within Sport and Exercise Psychology. Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 17(1), 4-15.

Lafferty, M.E. (2021). The views of the few or the voices of many: Methods of exploring leadership roles through alternative approaches within Higher Education. In D. Mifsud (Ed). Narratives of Educational Leadership: Representing Research via Creative Analytic Practices. Springer (pp. 179–198).

Wadsworth, N., McEwan, H., Lafferty, M.E., Eubank, M., & Tod, D.  (2021). A Systematic Review Exploring the Reflective Accounts of Applied Sport Psychology Practitioners. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology.

Tod, D., Eubank, M., McEwan, H., Chandler, C., & Lafferty, M.E. (2021). Supervision: Research Questions to Move the Field Forward. Chapter 25 in In E. Filho & I. Basevitch (Eds), Sport, Exercise and Performance Psychology: Research Directions To Advance the Field. Oxford University Press; USA.

Wadsworth, N., McEwan, H., Lafferty, M.E. Eubank, M., Tod, D. (2021). Stories of Critical Moments Contributing to the Development of Applied Sport Psychology Practitioners. The Sport Psychologist. Advance online publication

Tod, D., Eubank, M., McEwan, H., Chandler, C., & Lafferty, M.E. (2020).  The Gravitational Pull of Identity: Professional Growth in Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychologists. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 11(4), 233-242.

Lafferty, M.E., Breslin, G., Butt, J., Lowry, R., Britton, D., Morris, R., Barker, J., Slater, M., & Eubank M. (2020). Supporting Youth Athletes During COVID-19 Advice for parents and Guardians. BPS Division of Sport & Exercise Psychology Guidance Document.

Breslin, G., Lowry, R., Lafferty, M.E., Britton, D., Morris, R., Barker, J., Slater, M., & Eubank M. (2020). Advice for athletes during COVID. BPS Division of Sport & Exercise Psychology Guidance Document.

Tod, D., & Lafferty, M.E. (2020). Integrative approaches. In D. Tod & M. Eubank (Eds), Applied Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology: Current Approaches to Helping Clients. Routledge.

Lafferty, M.E., Hemmings, B., Katz, J., Cunliffe, M., & Eubank, R. (2019). Many Roads Can Lead to Rome – Supervisors perspectives on successful supervision and the challenges. Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 15(2) Special issue: QSEP 10th Anniversary.

Eubank, M., Holder, T., Lowry, R., Manley, A., Maynard, I., McCormick, A., Smith J., Thelwell, R., Woodman, T., & Lafferty, M.E. (2019). “All roads lead to Rome”, but “Rome wasn’t built in a day". Advice on QSEP navigation from the ‘Roman Gods’ of assessment!  Sport & Exercise Psychology Review, 15(2). Special issue: QSEP 10th Anniversary.

Lafferty, M.E. (2019). A personal journey of a long and winding road to Professorial status. An alternative pathway and the challenges, trials and tribulations. In D. Mifsud & R. Murray (Eds), The Positioning and Making of Female Professors: Pushing Career Advancement Open (pp. 201-215). Palgrave Macmillan.

Ryrie, A., & Lafferty, M.E. (2019). ‘It’s not just part of my life, it is my life’: The paradoxical identities of a community judo coach. In L. Gale & B. Ives (Eds), Coaching in the community: Developing knowledge and insight. Manchester Metropolitan University Press.

Lafferty, M.E., & Wakefield, C. (2018). Becoming part of the team: Female student athletes’ engagement in initiation activities. The Sport Psychologist, 32(2), 125 – 135. IF: 1.222

Lafferty, M.E., Wakefield, C., & Brown, H. (print: 2017 online: 2016) “We do it for the team” –Student-athletes’ initiation practices and their impact on group cohesion. International Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 15:4, 438-446, DOI: 10.1080/1612197X.2015.1121507 (Early Online, 2016). SNIP- IF: 1.063.

Lafferty, M.E. (2017). Chapter 5 Film: Using Secondary data as a mechanism to support student learning. In ‘Teaching Visual Methods in the Social Sciences (Routledge) edited by S. Watt and C. Wakefield. United Kingdom, Routledge.

Brown, H., Lafferty, M.E., & Triggs, C. (2015). In the face of adversity: Resiliency in winter sport athletes. Science & Sports. 30, e110 – e117. (IF: 0.516) doi:10.1016/j.scispo.2014.09.006

Lafferty, M.E., & Triggs, C. (2014). The Working with Parents in Sport Model (WWPS-Model) - A practical guide for practitioners working with parents of elite young performers. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 5: 117-128. ISSN: 2152-0704 print / 2152-0712 online. DOI: 10.1080/21520704.2014.914113

Lafferty, M. E. (2013). Using feature films in the teaching and assessment of sport psychology. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 9(2), 74-82.

Lafferty, M.E., & Eubank, M. (2013). Getting started and assessing trainee competence on the Qualification in Sport and Exercise Psychology. Sport and Exercise Psychology Review, 9(1), 5-10.

Triggs, C., Lafferty, M.E., Brown, H. & Tolley, H. (2011). Metaphorical use of song lyrics within sport psychology practice; Targeting the transition within a Premier League football youth academy. Journal of Sport Psychology in Action, 2(3), 183-195. DOI: 10.1080/21520704.2011.619046.

Lafferty, M.E., Kenyon, R. & Wright, C. (2008). Club-based and non-club based physiotherapists views on the psychological content of their practice when treating sports injuries. Research in Sport Medicine. 16(4), 295-306. DOI: 10.1080/15438620802523378


Moira completed both her MSc. and doctoral research at Liverpool John Moores University. Her PhD. programme of study examined the effects of active therapy for children with Down’s syndrome and was awarded in 1998.
In 2001 Moira completed a Post Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in Higher Education and is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy.