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Heather is a chartered psychologist with the BPS, and lecturer in Psychology, specialising in Social Psychology and Qualitative research methods. Heather teaches across several undergraduate and postgraduate courses and supervises PhD, MSc and BSc projects.
Heather completed her PhD in 2022, examining the consequences of exiting conservative religion, and also holds a BSc (Hons) in Psychology and Postgraduate Certificate in Higher education. Heather supports and is available for public engagement and has appeared on TV and media/news outlets.
Heather has held academic teaching positions since 2018, achieving fellowship of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA) in 2020. Heather has also published pedagogical work and is interested in exploring student learning and engagement.
Please get in touch should you be interested in studying for a PhD under her supervision.
Research Interests and Research Subject Specialisms:
Conservative religion and the LGBTQ+ community
Exiting high-control religion
Identity transition out of conservative religious environments
Religious ostracism (shunning) and mental health
Underpinned by Social identity Theory, my doctoral research investigated how people transition their identity out of high-control religion. Previous research has documented that this process can be associated with experiences of ostracism or “shunning”, and I am interested in how individuals overcome such threats to their sense of self, wellbeing and self-esteem.
Social and Critical psychology
The Psychology of Religion
Qualitative Research methods
Publications and Research:
Ransom, H.J., Monk, R.L., Qureshi, A. & Heim, D. (2020). Life after Social Death: Leaving the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Identity Transition and Recovery. Pastoral Psychology 70, 53–69. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11089-020-00935-0
Ransom, H.J., Monk, R.L. & Heim, D. (2021). Grieving the Living: The Social Death of Former Jehovah’s Witnesses. Journal of Religion and Health (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10943-020-01156-8
Spiridon, E., Davies, J., Kaye, L.K., Nicolson, R.I., Tang, B.W.X., Tan, A.J.Y., & Ransom, H.J. (2021) Exploring the impact of group identity at university on psychological and behavioural outcomes, Journal of Further and Higher Education, 45:7, 932-942, DOI: 10.1080/0309877X.2020.1831450
Spiridon, E., Kaye, L.K., Nicolson, R., Ransom, H.J., Tan, A.J.Y., & Tang, B.W.X. (2020). Integrated learning communities as a peer support initiative for first year university students.Journal of Applied Social Psychology. https://doi.org/10.1111/jasp.12668
Professional Online Profile Links (e.g. LinkedIn)
British Psychological Society - Chartered Membership (389098) Member of Social Psychology and Qualitative Methods Sections.
Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA).
Narrative Research Network, Faculty of Education, Edge Hill University.