Newsroom James Cook University in Singapore and University of East Anglia, Norwich sign MOU agreement

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James Cook University in Singapore and University of East Anglia, Norwich sign MOU agreement

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Wed, 27 Nov 2019
James Cook University in Singapore and University of East Anglia, Norwich sign MOU agreement

The two universities are committed to working together and expanding their relationship.

James Cook University (JCU) in Singapore signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of East Anglia, Norwich (UEA) on 23 September 2019 to facilitate the international exchange of ideas and to promote cooperation in fields of mutual interest, particularly in the realm of Clinical Psychology.

Additionally, JCU in Singapore and UEA will work together to help support UEA students who are undertaking placement experience in Singapore. The MOU also paves the way for visits and staff exchanges between the two institutions.

The MOU cements the relationship between both institutions, building on existing efforts to work together.

Dr Sian Coker, Professor of Clinical Psychology in the Department of Clinical Psychology and Psychological Therapies in Norwich Medical School at UEA, recently joined JCU in Singapore as an Adjunct Professor.

(Professor Sian Coker (third from left) with Psychology Placement Coordinator at JCU in Singapore,
Ms Chua Kah Lin (second from left), and two Master of Psychology students)

She will draw upon her experience to help early- and mid-career staff at JCU in Singapore to enhance their capabilities and know-how. Furthermore, she will be fostering collaborative research activities amongst staff and postgraduate students of the clinical training programs at the two universities.

Since April 2015, Professor Coker has been working closely with our very own Dr Nigel Marsh, Professor of Clinical Psychology and Director of the Postgraduate Clinical Psychology Programme at JCU in Singapore.

On the other hand, Professor Marsh was appointed as Visiting Professor of UEA in February 2017, and he gave his invited professorial lecture at UEA’s Norwich Medical School in November 2017. This MOU will allow him to further develop his collaboration with UEA and, in particular, with Professor Coker.

(Professor Nigel Marsh with Professor Sian Coker at UEA on the occasion of Professor Marsh’s invited professorial lecture to UEA’s Norwich Medical School)

Professor Marsh said, “The collaboration between myself and Professor Coker has expanded to include colleagues at Sussex and Exeter universities in the UK, and Sunway University in Malaysia. In addition to visits of staff and students across the collaborating university campuses, the partnership has so far resulted in two publications detailing the outcome of projects with Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in Asia.

“A recent development in the collaboration was the news that a research grant, on which Professor Coker and I are co-applicants, had made it to the final round of the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) UK, Research and Innovation for Global Health Transformation funding scheme. The lead applicant on the grant is Professor David Fowler from the University of Sussex."

The grant is for funding the evaluation of co-designed low-intensity psychological and social interventions for 16 - 24-year-olds with serious mental illness. The project involves a new social recovery-focused youth mental health service model for low- and middle-income countries, and will be trialled in Nepal, India and Malaysia.

Professor Marsh noted that this very productive collaboration resulted from the old-fashioned (pre-internet) approach of networking and face-to-face introductions between trusted and respected colleagues.

He added that he is “confident that, over time, the benefits of this MOU will extend beyond the staff and students of JCU in Singapore’s postgraduate clinical psychology programme, and that there will be opportunities for Psychology Higher Degrees by Research (HDR) students and their research supervisors to benefit as well.”

For further information on areas of research strength in Psychology and future collaborative opportunities at James Cook University in Singapore, view our booklet here.

Find out more information about our Master of Psychology (Clinical) here.

Check out Professor Nigel Marsh’s staff and research profiles here.


Research: Professor Dean Jerry
Media: Pinky Sibal