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Emma Soneson


Senior Postdoctoral Researcher

Emma is pleased to consider applications from prospective MSc students with interest in school mental health or public mental health.

I am a mixed methods researcher in child and adolescent mental health whose research areas range from psychiatric epidemiology to intervention development and evaluation. I am especially interested in public health approaches, the intersections between education and mental health, and ways in which we can support schools to take a central role in mental health promotion and prevention.

My current role is as a Postdoctoral Researcher on the BrainWaves Study, an innovative new programme that includes the (1) development of a new cohort study of adolescent mental health and wellbeing, (2) creation of a new trials platform to evaluate school-based mental health interventions, and (3) development of evidence-based educational materials for schools.

I also work closely with the OxWell Student Survey (PI Prof Mina Fazel), a large schools-based survey exploring a wide range of factors related to child and adolescent mental health and wellbeing. To date, I have used the data from this survey to

My future analyses within the OxWell Study will continue to focus on how to ensure that mental health support is available, accessible, and acceptable to children and adolescents. 

Prior to joining the department, I completed a PhD in Psychiatry and an MPhil in Public Health at the University of Cambridge. My PhD research, funded by the Gates Cambridge Trust and UKRI Emerging Minds Network, focused on how we can use public health approaches to improve early identification and intervention for child and adolescent mental health difficulties. In addition to the analyses of OxWell data (described above), my PhD research involved two applied research studies, the first of which aimed to establish stakeholder consensus regarding school-based identification programmes and the second to explore the feasibility of an online mental health training programme for primary school staff.

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