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Personal profile


Ailsa joined the University of Edinburgh in 2011 as a Senior Lecturer in Physical Activity and Health. Ailsa’s main remit is to establish and teach on a new MSc Physical Activity for Health (launch 2013) and undertake research within this area. Ailsa’s background is in sport and exercise psychology and she is BASES Accredited, BPS Chartered and holds Health Professions Council status in this field.

Academic qualifications include:

PGCert in Academic Practice, Heriot Watt University

PGCert in Counselling Skills, University of Strathclyde.

PhD – Professional practice in sport psychology, Coventry University.

MSc. Sport and Exercise Sciences (Psychology), Liverpool John Moores University

MA (Hons) Psychology, University of Edinburgh.

Current Research Interests

Main research interests are focused on the psychological determinants and consequences of physical activity within a range of groups including adolescent girls, adults and older adults. Previous research has focused on professional practice issues within sport psychology.

Collaborative Activity

In collaboration with Dr Samantha Fawkner, we have developed a programme of research focusing on physical activity in adolescent girls. Within this programme, past work has focused on determinants of the decline in physical activity across adolescence, and using new technology to encourage girls to be more active. Current projects focus on walking for health in adolescent girls and the role of social support in influencing physical activity and sedentary behaviour. This research has been funded by sportscotland, the Chief Scientist Office, ESRC, West Lothian Community Health and Care Partnership , Paths for All and SPARColl.


Main teaching is in the area of sport and exercise psychology and physical activity for health, including undergraduate and postgraduate project supervision


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