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Dr Jolel Miah

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Lecturer in Psychology

I am a Health Psychologist and a Chartered Psychologist. I am also a fellow of the Higher Education Academy. With a strong commitment to promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion, I serve on the British Psychology Society's Equality Diversity and Inclusion Board. Currently, I hold the position of Lecturer in Psychology at University of Sunderland, where I also serve as one of the co-chairs for the Decolonisation Curriculum group.

My academic journey began with a BSc in Psychology from the University of Hertfordshire, followed by an MSc in Health Psychology from the University of Bedfordshire. Driven by my passion for research, I pursued two doctorates: a PhD and a Stage 2 Qualification in Health Psychology – Independent Route. During this rigorous academic pursuit, I dedicated over eight years, submitting a portfolio comprising of more than 17,000 hours of work. My research primarily focused on developing psychological frameworks for public interventions in physical activity, demonstrating my expertise and commitment to improving public health.

Throughout my professional career, I have gained extensive experience working across various sectors, including commissioning, mental health, charities, sexual health, and the prison service, among others. My diverse background has provided me with a deep understanding of different contexts and enabled me to apply psychological principles effectively in various settings.

In 2014, I co-founded a mental health charity called 'Our Minds Matter'.  This organisation plays a crucial role in providing psychoeducation on mental health within faith communities and offering consultancy services to local wellbeing providers. Demonstrating my passion for raising awareness and sharing knowledge, I also host a podcast named Psychology Cast, where I interview individuals about their motivations and explore psychological concepts. I actively utilise social media platforms and host the Equality Diversity Inclusion in Health Psychology Podcast

My extensive academic achievements, combined with my commitment to promoting inclusivity and mental health, make me a respected figure in the field of psychology. My dedication to research, teaching, and community outreach has positioned me as a valuable asset in advancing psychological understanding and wellbeing in society.

Teaching and supervision

I teach across Foundation, undergraduate and postgraduate courses in Psychology and I am currently module leader for:

  • PSY125 – Psychology in the Media
  • PSYM63 – Psychological Approaches to Public Health

Research interests for potential research students

  • I am interested in supervising projects that examine mental wellbeing in faith communities and religious groups.
  • In addition, I am also interested in supervising projects that explore the experiences of people who are from the Black, Asian, and Ethnic Minorities in higher education and health settings.
  • I have worked in the prison service as a part of my previous public health roles and would be interested in supervising projects in relation to healthcare. 


I am a dedicated researcher spearheading a significant project focused on cervical cancer screening among Bangladeshi women residing in Sunderland. This vital research initiative aims to understand the factors influencing the uptake of cervical cancer screening within this specific community. In collaboration with esteemed institutions and organisations such as the Northern Cancer Alliance, Sunderland City Council, University of Sunderland, and Sunderland Bangladeshi International Centre.

My research interests are primarily focused on applied psychology, aiming to address practical challenges and generate positive outcomes in various domains. During my doctoral studies, I conducted research evaluating a public health intervention that aimed to measure changes in physical activity within the population. To understand the factors influencing behavior change, I employed two established psychological models, the Theory of Planned Behavior and the Health Belief Model. Adopting a longitudinal approach, I utilised statistical techniques such as ANOVAs (analysis of variance) and Path Analyses to predict psychosocial predictors associated with the intervention.

In addition to my work on physical activity, I am particularly interested in applied health psychology and behavior change, with a specific focus on marginalized groups and underrepresented communities, including Black, Asian, and ethnic minorities. I am dedicated to understanding the unique challenges and barriers these communities face in relation to health and wellbeing. Through my research, I aim to develop effective interventions and strategies that promote positive behavior change and address health disparities within these populations.

Beyond these primary research interests, I have also explored several intriguing areas within the field of psychology. One area of focus is mental health within faith communities. Recognising the significance of religion and spirituality in individuals' lives, I investigate the intersection between mental health and faith, aiming to enhance understanding and support for individuals within these communities.

Moreover, I examine the psycho-spiritual connection in community health interventions. I recognise the potential benefits of integrating psychological and spiritual dimensions in interventions, believing that a holistic approach can lead to more effective health outcomes and overall wellbeing within communities.

Additionally, I am actively engaged in studying the academic representation of Black, Asian, and ethnic minorities within higher education. I aim to understand the challenges and barriers these groups face and work towards promoting inclusivity and representation within academic settings. By shedding light on these issues, I strive to contribute to a more equitable and diverse academic landscape.

I also have a keen interest in men's health within the prison service. Recognising the unique health needs of incarcerated men, I explore ways to improve their physical and mental wellbeing. By focusing on this specific population, I seek to develop interventions and strategies that address their health concerns and contribute to successful rehabilitation and reintegration into society.

Overall, my research interests encompass applied psychology, health psychology, marginalised communities, academic representation, and men's health in the prison service. Through my work, I aim to generate knowledge, implement positive changes, and make a meaningful impact on the wellbeing of individuals and communities.


Jump to: Article
Number of items: 2.


Miah, Jolel, Guppy, Andy and Cook, Erica (2023) Can travel advisors influence physical activity in personal travel planning projects using the Theory of Planned Behaviour? A longitudinal study. Journal of Psychology, 7 (2). pp. 67-79. ISSN 2515-138X

Miah, Jolel (2018) Mental well-being and the power of prayer. Mental Health Practice, 21 (9). p. 15.

This list was generated on Sat Jul 20 06:19:18 2024 BST.

  • Psycho-spiritual interventions and co design in religious and faith communities
  • Health and education inequalities faced by Black, Asian, and Ethnic minorities
  • Healthcare in men's prison service

Find my personal website with details of my projects and research at: drjolel.com


Conferences and seminars:

  • Miah, Jolel (2023) Substance Misuse in South Asian communities public engagement workshop. University of Sunderland. 
  • Miah, Jolel (2021) Can speaking to someone for 20 minutes on their doorstep change their physical activity behaviour. In: Physical Activity Symposium, PsyPAG, 29-30 Jul 2021, Leeds, UK.
  • Benjamin, Jonny, Gilbert, Steve, Kessedjian, Alan, & Miah, Jolel (2021). Men’s experience. Exploring barriers to men talk about their mental. British Psychological Society. 25 January, Online, UK
  • Miah, Jolel (2018). Mental Wellbeing: Spirituality and Culture. University of Bedfordshire. 12 July, Bedford UK.
  • Miah, Jolel (2018) Young Minds Matter. Faith and Character. University of Bedfordshire. 3 July, Luton UK
  • Curtis, Kirstina & Miah, Jolel (2017) Appiness - Apps for Improving the Publics Health and Wellbeing. Behavioural Science Public Health Network 14 Nov, Coventry UK
  • Miah, Jolel (2017) Faith and Culture: Breaking the Stigma of Mental Health in Luton. University of Bedfordshire 16 Feb, Luton UK
  • Puthussery, Shuby & Miah Jolel., (2016) Student perspectives on co-creation of learning resources and its benefits on learner development. Higher Education Academy. Glasgow UK

Last updated 31 May 2024