University of Greenwich Psychology student awarded funding to join Super-recognisers team


Funding awarded by the British Psychological Society

Super-recognisers are individuals who are exceptionally good at recognising faces. The Super-recognisers team conduct research into face recognition ability. They are based at the University of Greenwich, and liaise with police forces, private organisations and universities across the world.246282

Second year Psychology student Katie Read has been chosen by British Psychological Society to receive funding through their Undergraduate Research Assistantship Scheme. The scheme is a prestigious award that marks out a student as a future researcher and potential academic.

Professor in Applied Psychology at the University of Greenwich and head of the Super-recognisers team Josh Davis said:

"I am delighted to supervise Katie Read on this exciting and prestigious British Psychological Society supported research assistantship. Katie is one of the top Level 5 (2nd year) academically achieving students on the BPS Psychology programme.

“In advance of applying, Katie conducted a literature review, and created a project design and wrote an ethics application. This involved ensuring the project could be delivered online, and that we could test the face naming ability of both super-recognisers who have exceptional face recognition abilities, and controls who have typical-range skills. I have been highly impressed by the way Katie has applied herself to these tasks. This research should be of interest to academics and to international police who are interested in deploying super-recognisers to roles in which correct identification of suspects is critical."

The funding will allow Katie to work with Josh and the Super-recognisers team for a total of eight weeks.

Katie said:

“I find the ability of super-recognisers fascinating because of its use in policing and application to everyday situations. This project was inspired by super-recognisers’ anecdotal comments based on their face naming ability in everyday life.

“Being awarded the BPS Research Assistantship Scheme has allowed me to gain experience and develop my confidence in quantitative research, facilitating my undergraduate studies and equipping me with a range of skills to take forward into my postgraduate studies and future career.”