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Katy Burgess  BSc (Hons), PhD, SFHEA, CPsychol

Dr Katy Burgess BSc (Hons), PhD, SFHEA, CPsychol

Senior Lecturer

School of Psychology


My career to date has centred on learning and memory mechanisms in humans and nonhuman animals, and the application of this knowledge in clinical and educational contexts.

I am particularly passionate about providing students with the best possible learning environment, and ensuring teaching methods are aligned with the literature on how we best learn new information. My current research is concerned with the testing effect, which is a well-established finding that testing yourself on new information improves memory more than other methods of learning (such as note taking, mind-mapping, reading).












My interest in learning and memory was sparked by my undergraduate degree in Psychology at Durham University. I then moved to Cardiff University to complete a PhD in learning and reasoning under the supervision of Professors Rob Honey and Dominic Dwyer. I became interested in the clinical applications of learning and thus worked in clinical settings for a few years (Mind Cymru, St Andrews Healthcare) to help rehabilitate patients with mental illness and brain injury.

I then returned to academia as I was offered a teaching position at Leicester University. I really enjoyed teaching and accepted a teaching position at Bristol University where I worked for 6 years. During this time I became passionate about embedding cognitive research findings into curricula to ensure students are able to perform to their full potential. I am excited to continue my career improving teaching and learning at Cardiff University.

Research themes


  • Reinforcement learning
  • Learning, motivation and emotion
  • Memory
  • Curriculum and pedagogy theory and development
  • Teacher and student wellbeing