Anxiety Research


Research into Therapy

We are looking to examine what occurs in therapy and your personal experiences with therapy.  We're asking you to speak about your most recent complete treatment experience, not on-going treatment.  Completed treatment experiences also include treatment that ended early.  To ensure that we are able to get the most accurate view possible, please answer the questions as honestly and accurately as possible.


Looking for volunteers to help me set up my research project

My name is Nasim Choudhri.  I am a Trainee Clinical Psychologist.  As part of the requirements of my course, I am undertaking a research project entitled “Can the contemplation of urban environments change the way we think and feel?”  The aim of the research is to explore how the places in which we live and spend time affects how we think and feel.  From the existing research in this area, we know that people are more likely to experience common mental health problems such as anxiety and depression if they live in towns and cities compared with living in rural places.  We also know that depression and anxiety affects the way that we think and feel, such as thinking negatively about the future or worrying about future events.  By exploring whether looking at photographs of different places changes the way people think and feel, I hope to understand more about why and how the spaces around us can influence the likelihood of people become depressed or anxious.  I am currently looking for volunteers to review the materials and procedures that will be used within my research project, e.g. measures, photographs, recruitment adverts.  I am looking for 5 volunteers who would be willing to meet with me to provide advice and input into my research project.  There will be three meetings and these will take place between 30th March and 30th April 2015 and held at the University of Liverpool.  Volunteers will be reimbursed for their time and travel expenses (travel expenses will be a flat rate of £10 per return journey).  Once the research materials and procedures have been agreed and approved in the process described above, recruitment for participants will begin.  

Please contact if you would like to take part in the steering group or would like further information.


Understanding Anxiety: How does it feel to experience a panic attack?

Description: What do people go through when they suffer from anxiety? The experience of a panic attack is extremely difficult to explain, even to someone who ‘understands’ or has also experienced it because its effects are so varied and differ from person to person.

This project aims to give an understanding of how it feels to have a panic attack, using sensory information, allowing the audience to truly understand what anxiety and consequently panic attacks are and what the person sees and to inform others of the experience of having a panic attack. Furthermore it will allow a form of release for those who do go through it, as sometimes the frustrating part of the whole thing is not being able to explain how you feel.

The aim is to produce a visual appreciation of anxiety and panic attacks, therefore it requires participants who experience panic attacks (currently or in the past) to draw or get something down in a visual form that gives an impression of your panic attack. It will be confidential as I appreciate the personal nature of the subject, therefore no names or reasons as to what triggers your panic attack will be included in the final product.

Expiry date: 29th April 2015

Contact Person: Jenna Godbolt


Number: 07933770355



Why Worry: Exploring thoughts and feelings around social situations

We are conducting research at the Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London, and we are looking for people who have social anxiety to participate in our study. The research is investigating why and how people might experience social anxiety symptoms.We are looking for…English-speaking volunteers aged 18 and over, who experience social anxiety. 

If you do meet the above requirement and you would like to find out more, please contact us. We will send you an information sheet about the study and if you wish to participate we would be happy to call you to answer any questions you might have, and to ask you a few questions to see if you would be eligible to participate.

The research study will involve you attending for an appointment at the Institute of Psychiatry in Denmark Hill (in South London). During the appointment we will ask you about symptoms you may be experiencing. We will also ask you to complete some questionnaires and activities.

The appointment will take several hours.There will be plenty of opportunities for you to have breaks. If you prefer, the appointment can take place over two days. We will reimburse reasonable travel expenses, as well as up to £50 as a thank you payment.

 Please contact Lisa (Yuanyuan) Huo or Debbie Spain if you would like more information. 

Contact phone 020 7848 5233 Contact email: or



Effects of emotion and load on eye movements and pupillary responses

Individuals between the ages of 18 and 30, who do not wear hard contact lenses or two/tri-focal glasses are required for working memory-guided eye movement and pupillary response study. The study will take 1.5 hours to complete and will involve computer-based eye movement generation tasks and online questionnaires to be completed after experiment. During experiment, as well as your eye movements, pupil diameters will be tracked and measured.

What is the research about?
The aim of the study is to explore how emotion and cognitive load affect visuo-spatial working memory and attention allocation of anxious and non-anxious individuals in terms of saccade accuracies, latencies and pupillary responses. Generally speaking, it is aimed to examine the effects of anxiety on working memory guided eye movements and pupillary responses.

What will happen to me if I take part?
The study will consist of two sessions, involving eye tracking and pupillary response measurement and online questionnaires. You will be asked to place your head onto a chin rest and respond to stimuli presented on a display monitor. You will be presented a face stimulus and you will be asked to encode the location of that stimulus. After some delay, you will be are asked to generate saccades towards or away from that stimulus.

Are there any benefits in my taking part?
You’ll receive a monetary reward of £10 for your contribution.

Are there any risks involved?
Since eye and pupil tracking are non-invasive measures, you may only feel a minimal, non-hazardous discomfort (eye-strain).

Will my participation be confidential?
You will be given a unique identifiying number for the experiment, which will be disconnected from your name. All data will therefore be stored in an anonymised format.

What happens if I change my mind?
You may withdraw your consent at any time. You will not be penalised for this.

Where can I get more information?

Contact: Piril Hepsomali

How can caring for someone with a mental illness impact the immediate family

Aim of the study
This study aims to interview family members who are currently or who have cared for someone with a mental illness. It aims to explore the impact mental illness can have on others, how it has changed the carers home life and relationships, along with how they feel mental illness are perceived by others.

What would it involve?
The study will involve a semi structured interview either by phone or face to face depending on what you prefer. The interview could take between 30 minutes to an hour. It is also completely confidential, the transcripts will be destroyed once the research has commenced along with any names changed to protect anonymity. The interview can be stopped at anytime and any questions can be avoided if you are uncomfortable answering.

Contact Person: Joanne Fitzpatrick
Phone: 07769201498

Do you feel anxious when going to the toilet in a public restroom?


We are conducting this study and are looking for both male and female participants who are at least 18 years of age. This project is concerned with exploring rates and perceptions associated with toilet anxiety, also known as shy bladder syndrome/shy bowel syndrome, and avoidant paruresis/parcopresis. Toilet anxiety refers to having difficulty going to the toilet (i.e., urinating and/or having a bowel motion) which is associated with worry and nervousness. The findings from this research will be used to develop an online resource for individuals experiencing toilet anxiety-

Participation is voluntary and you may withdraw from the study at any time. It is expected that the survey will take approximately 30 minutes of your time. The survey is available on the following link:

Thank you for your interest

Dr Simon Knowles & Dr Jason Skues

Expiry date 01 June 2016

Virtual Exposure Therapy for Claustrophobia

We are looking for participants suffering with claustrophobia, more specifically a fear of lifts. A pre-requisite is that you have avoided lifts for at least a year due to your fear. We are providing 5 free sessions of virtual exposure treatment with elements of CBT and a psycho-educational element in Harley street over the summer and autumn of 2014.

Expiry Date: January 2015
Contact Person: Dr Vanessa Ruspoli

 Young people with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

A research team based at the University of Cambridge are looking for individuals with OCD between the ages of 12 and 19 to participate in a study about how young people with OCD learn, make decisions and control their actions.

You can participate if you:

  • are 12 to 19 years old
  • have a primary diagnosis of OCD and no additional psychiatric disorders (e.g. depression, ADHD, autism)
  • are a native or fluent English-speaker
  • have normal or corrected-to-normal vision
  • have no current or previous alcohol or drug dependence

You would be asked to do:

  • a few tasks on a touch-screen computer
  • a few questionnaires
  • a short interview with a psychiatrist

The study takes about 4 hours. You can either travel to Cambridge or we can travel to your town.

For your time, we will pay you  £40 and we will reimburse you for travel expenses.

Expiry Date: 31st December 2016
Contact Person: Julia Gottwald
Phone: +44 (0) 7503 626448

Brain activity during learning in individuals with OCD

A study team based at the University of Cambridge are looking for people aged between 18 and 70 years old to participate in a study investigating brain activity during learning in individuals with OCD. To be eligible, you must not be taking any medication for your OCD at present.

The study involves completing some questionnaires and some computer tasks and you may be asked to perform some tasks while lying in an MRI scanner.

The study requires you to come to Cambridge and each testing session will take about three hours.

We will reimburse you £50 (if the testing involves scanning) or £25 (for a behavioural testing session) for participation plus all travel expenses.

Expiry Date: 30th November 2014
Contact Person: Annemieke Apergis-Schoute
Phone: 01223 333 587

Brain study on anxiety and depression

Do you worry all the time? Do you feel down most of the time? Are you scared of particular animals or situations?

If so, we are running a neuroimaging study investigating how anxiety and depression can influence brain function and would like to invite you to participate.

The study comprises a maximum of three visits to the FMRIB centre in the John Radcliffe Hospital (each visit will last about 2 hours each). During the first visit we will ask you to complete several questionnaires.

During the other two visits we will measure your brain activity using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) while you perform simple computer-­based tasks.

You will be paid up to £100 plus any travel expenses.

If you are interested or if you want more information about the study please contact:
The CAN (Cognitive Affective Neuroscience) team: / 01865 222581
Or visit our Facebook page
Please quote ‘CLIN’ when you get in touch

Contact Person: The CAN (Cognitive Affective Neuroscience) team
Phone: 01865 222581


Health Beliefs in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Do you experience symptoms of OCD?
Do you have an adult family member (e.g. mum, dad, partner, son, daughter) with OCD?*

If yes to either of these questions and you are a UK resident over 16 years of age, we would you like to invite you to take part in a research interview, which is being carried out as part of a PhD project at the University of Manchester.

We are hoping to learn more about the experiences of people with OCD and their family members. We would like to invite you to take part in a confidential interview, where we would discuss these experiences.

We will ask you some questions about:
•    Your experiences and knowledge of OCD
•    How OCD impacts you and your family
•    Your support needs

This research will help us to understand what helps families to cope with the mental health problem. We hope that this information will lead to a better understanding of the kind of support needed by both people with OCD and their family members.

*Please note that in the case of family members of persons with OCD, we will also need to speak to your family member with OCD before your interview can take place.

To find out more about the study, please contact Rebecca Pedley (Research Associate) on:
0161 306 7331

Anxiety Symptoms Prevention Investigation (ASPI).

We know that anxiety runs in families.  So, we know that many of the anxious adults that we see in mental health services will have children who also go on to be anxious.  Although some of this transmission is genetic, much of it now appears to be environmental.  We are starting to unpick some of these environmental influences, and think that there may be things that we can do to reduce the risk that these children are exposed to.

This project is funded by the National Institute of Health Research and has two key aims.  The first is to investigate how parents’ actions might transmit anxiety to their child.  The second is to develop and to begin to test a new intervention aimed at such parents.

The project is testing a new workshop for parents who have anxiety disorders, and we are looking for parents in the Greater manchester area to come and help us out at a workshop scheduled for 6th December.

If you are interested and would like to know more contact Clare Holden on or 0161 7014533.

CI: Dr Sam Cartwright-Hatton, 01273 876690,
RA: Dr Suzanne Dash, 01273 876650,
CSO: Humera Hussain (Tel: 07436 546668; Email:

Brain wave activity in OCD

The Open University is currently investigating brain activity in people with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD). Could differences in the ‘brain waves’ explain why some sufferers respond well to medication and/or psychotherapy whilst others may not? The more we know about potential neurophysiological (i.e. brain) differences between sufferers, the more we may be able to progress towards personalized forms of treatment.

We are recruiting people with OCD between 18 and 70 years of age without learning disabilities to participate in the study. If you decide to participate, we will need four hours of your time (either morning or afternoon) or two sessions of about two hours each that can be scheduled according to your convenience. During this time, your brain activity will be recorded using a non invasive technique known as Quantitative Electroencephalography. You will also be interviewed and asked to fill two questionnaires.

The study has been approved by the Open University’s Human Ethics Committee.

By participating in this study, you will be contributing to scientific advancements in OCD research. The study does not involve any therapy but you may gain interesting insights about OCD and the brain.

Contact Person: Loes Koorenhof

Aspects of parenting and anxiety

There is now a lot of evidence that people who suffer from an anxiety disorder are more likely than average to have a relative who suffers from a similar problem. Whilst this may be partly due to shared genes, it is also likely that experiences and attitudes gained when growing up also play a role. However, little is known about how or which experiences might be related to anxiety, and importantly what experiences may protect against developing anxiety in later life.

If we understood more about these processes, it may help us prevent the development of anxiety in future generations. We are looking to recruit fathers with anxiety disorders with children aged 7-12 who live with their children. Participation will involve an interview conducted over the phone and questionnaires for fathers, their children and their partner.

Time and travel expenses will be reimbursed. This research is being done at the Institute of Psychiatry, London by Rebecca Chilvers, Fiona Challacombe and Paul Salkovskis.

Contact Person: Dr Rebecca Chilvers
07842 047339

Studying the biological basis of emotions in adolescents

Can we understand why some young people suffer from problems such as anxiety? Researchers at Oxford University are trying to find out

We are studying how the brain changes in response to emotional events. We are looking for young people (aged between 12 and 17) who have difficulties with anxiety. Please visit for more information and our contact details

Contact: Anneke Haddad
Telephone: 01865 271381

Survey of people with OCD and BDD struggling with referrals into specialist treatment centres

We are conducting a study looking at the difficulties people with OCD or BDD have experienced in accessing specialist help for their problems. If you have experienced difficulty obtaining referral to a national or regional specialist service when cognitive behaviour therapy or medication hasn’t worked locally we would like to ask you to complete either an online survey or a questionnaire through the post about the difficulties you have had, or are having. We are interested in hearing from people with OCD or BDD of all age ranges, including children and young people. If you have not had any difficulties accessing treatment or are happy with the treatment you are receiving and feel it is working for you, this study is not for you. Also, please only complete the survey if you live in the UK and are eligible for NHS treatment.

You are under no obligation to take part in the study and if you decide not to, it will not influence any treatment you are receiving presently or in the future. It is important to be aware that taking part in the study will not guarantee you receive treatment at a specialist centre. In order to be able to follow up on the difficulties people have accessing specialist treatment, we will need your name and contact details. This personal information will be safely stored and will not be accessed by anyone other than the researchers.

If you wish to take part, please go to the link below, which will lead you to a questionnaire concerning your OCD or BDD and the problems you have experienced. If you do not have internet access and would like to take part, please contact us (see below) and we can send or email you a paper copy of the questionnaire.

If you have any questions about the study, or would like to complete a paper copy of the questionnaire by post or email, please contact Dr Anna Stout on 0203 228 2101, or at

Contact: Dr Anna Stout
0203 228 2101

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