This research aims to tackle critical public health challenges concerning adolescent health, emphasizing healthier behaviours, and countering weight stigma, loneliness, and eating disorders. We aim to create evidence-based interventions to empower young individuals, fostering healthy behaviours using innovative technology adaptable across school, home, and online environments.
This PhD area could include components relating to the following:
- School-based health promotion and obesity prevention:
- Evaluate current UK school-based health promotion programs, seeking opportunities to integrate both obesity and eating disorder prevention into curricula.
- Analyse primary and secondary school PSHE curriculum resources, assessing their approach to health responsibility and investigate the impact of personalized health messages on youth well-being.
- Developing social media interventions and new approaches to managing screen-time:
- Examine discourse on social media platforms related to physical activity, diet/nutrition, and body image among adolescents.
- Collaborate with young people to create evidence-based social media interventions while addressing mental health concerns.
The overall content and direction of the project will be informed by the interests and skills of the successful candidate, and by relevant recent literature. We envisage a mixed-methods project, employing both qualitative and quantitative methods, will likely be the optimal way to answer research questions in this area (e.g., combing data from existing national surveys with novel data collection).
For more information or informal discussion about this project or similar projects, please contact Dr Andrea Smith (Andrea.firstname.lastname@example.org), Dr Amy Ahern (email@example.com) or Dr Esther van Sluijs (Esther.VanSluijs@mrc-epid.cam.ac.uk).