Dr Madeleine Pownall

Dr Madeleine Pownall


I am a Lecturer (Teaching and Scholarship) in the School of Psychology. I completed my PhD in 2022 on women’s experiences of cognitive changes throughout pregnancy, using stereotype threat and self-objectification paradigms. I am also a Leeds Institute for Teaching Excellence (LITE) Fellow, on a project with Dr Richard Harris and Dr Pam Birtill on “Global Citizenship in the Curriculum”. I sit on several committees, including the Framework for Open and Reproducible Research Training; Executive Committee of the Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science; the Psychology of Women and Equalities Committee.. I am also an Associate Editor for The Psychologist magazine and run the Voices in Psychology programme.


  • Leeds Institute for Teaching Excellence Fellow
  • Admissions Tutor

Research interests

I am interested in work which offers critical or creative ways of thinking about student engagement, student achievement, and success in Higher Education. I am a member of Research in the Psychology of Student Education (RitPOSE) Group at Leeds; with this group, I am currently involved in projects exploring undergraduate transitions, pre-tertiary education, and assessment and feedback. More broadly, I am a critical feminist psychologist and all of my work is through this lens. I am interested in how psychological science can use teachings from feminist psychology to be more diverse, welcoming, inclusive, and critical. I also have an interest in feminist pedagogy and creative approaches to teaching and learning.

I am an advocate for open scholarship and try to embed this into my teaching and research. I attended the Advanced Methods for Reproducible Science Workshop (hosted by the UK Reproducibility Network), which prompted a keen interest in the ongoing debates and discussions surrounding open science. More recently, my work considers how open science can be more inclusive, including to diverse methodologies and different groups of academics, and how open science conversations can strive to be more constructive.


  • PhD in Social Psychology
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA)
  • Psychology BSc (First Class Hons), University of Lincoln

Professional memberships

  • Chair of the Psychology Postgraduate Affairs Group (PsyPAG)
  • European Association of Social Psychology
  • Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues
  • The Psychology of Women and Equalities Section of the British Psychological Society
  • Association of Women in Psychology

Student education

My module, Feminist Social Psychology PSYC3549, runs in the second semester of third year. teach on a range of modules and programmes, including Research Skills 1, 2, and 3, Social Psychology, Psychology at Leeds, and Advanced Social Psychology. I am a member of the research group, Research in the Psychology of Student Education Group.

Teaching Awards
2022 University Early Career Teching Award, University of Leeds
2021 Wilbert J. McKeachie Teaching Excellence Award,  Society for the Teaching of Psychology
2020 DART-P PsyPAG Teaching Award 

<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>