Naomi Heffer – Bath Spa University

Personal statement

Naomi is a Lecturer in Psychology whose current work is focused mainly on the Clinical Psychology module of the BSc Psychology course.

Her research interests are focused on the cognitive mechanisms underlying mood and stress-related disorders, including anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). She is particularly interested in individual differences in social perception, such as differences in emotion processing from facial expressions, and uses behavioural tasks, neuroimaging and other physiological measures to address her research questions. She is also a keen science communicator and promoter of public engagement, having spent three months working in the digital team at The Royal Institution in London, and producing blogs, videos and podcasts for her science communication website SENSE(LESS).

Previously, she received a first-class BA in Neuroscience from the University of Oxford, during which time she also worked as part of an international task force on lithium treatment for bipolar disorder. Her undergraduate dissertation focused on how using non-invasive brain stimulation can affect the brain’s oscillatory activity and the excitability of cortical neurons.

She is in the process of completing her PhD under the supervision of Dr Karin Petrini and Dr Chris Ashwin from the University of Bath, and Professors Anke Karl and Krasimira Tsaneva-Atanasova from the University of Exeter. Her thesis focuses on multisensory emotion perception, and how multisensory processes may be altered in individuals with high trait anxiety and PTSD.

Academic qualifications

  • BA (Hons) Neuroscience, St Hugh's College, University of Oxford

Teaching subjects

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
  • Statistics and research methods

Research and academic outputs

Go to ResearchSPAce

High trait anxiety enhances optimal integration of auditory and visual threat cues
article

Heffer, N, Gradidge, M, Karl, A, Ashwin, C and Petrini, K (2022) 'High trait anxiety enhances optimal integration of auditory and visual threat cues.' Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 74. e101693. ISSN 0005-7916


Anxiety biases audiovisual processing of social signals
article

Heffer, N, Karl, A, Jicol, C, Ashwin, C and Petrini, K (2021) 'Anxiety biases audiovisual processing of social signals.' Behavioural Brain Research, 410. e113346. ISSN 0166-4328


Efficacy and tolerability of lithium for the treatment of acute mania in children with bipolar disorder: a systematic review
article

Duffy, A, Heffer, N, Goodday, S.M, Weir, A, Patten, S, Malhi, G.S and Cipriani, A (2018) 'Efficacy and tolerability of lithium for the treatment of acute mania in children with bipolar disorder: a systematic review.' Bipolar Disorders, 20 (7). pp. 583-593. ISSN 1398-5647


The clinical trajectory of emerging bipolar disorder among the high-risk offspring of bipolar parents: current understanding and future considerations
article

Duffy, A, Vandeleur, C, Heffer, N and Preisig, M (2017) 'The clinical trajectory of emerging bipolar disorder among the high-risk offspring of bipolar parents: current understanding and future considerations.' International Journal of Bipolar Disorders, 5. art. 37. ISSN 2194-7511


Efficacy and tolerability of lithium in treating acute mania in youth with bipolar disorder: protocol for a systematic review
article

Duffy, A, Patten, S, Goodday, S, Weir, A, Heffer, N and Cipriani, A (2017) 'Efficacy and tolerability of lithium in treating acute mania in youth with bipolar disorder: protocol for a systematic review.' International Journal of Bipolar Disorders, 5. art. 2. ISSN 2194-7511


Multisensory processing of emotional cues predicts psychological distress following exposure to a virtual reality stressor
conference_item

Heffer, N, Dennie, E, Ashwin, C, Petrini, K and Karl, A (2021) Multisensory processing of emotional cues predicts psychological distress following exposure to a virtual reality stressor. In: Society for Affective Science Conference, 13 - 16 April 2021, [online].


Investigating audiovisual emotion processing using EEG
conference_item

Heffer, N, Karl, A, Tsaneva-Atanasova, K, Ashwin, C and Petrini, K (2021) Investigating audiovisual emotion processing using EEG. In: 5th HBP Student Conference on Interdisciplinary Brain Research, 1 - 4 February 2021, [online].


Examining multisensory processing of social and non-social information in relation to the degree of trait anxiety in a non-clinical sample
conference_item

Heffer, N, Jicol, C, Karl, A, Ashwin, C and Petrini, K (2019) Examining multisensory processing of social and non-social information in relation to the degree of trait anxiety in a non-clinical sample. In: BNA2019 Festival of Neuroscience, 14 - 17 April 2019, Dublin, Ireland.


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