Dr Colin Foad

Dr Colin Foad

School of Psychology

Research summary

I am interested in hypocrisy  and how associated powers of context contribute to people’s perceptions of  their attitudes, beliefs and actions. This interest led me to develop social  context mismatch theory, which outlines how understanding multiple contextual  influences simultaneously can help explain why people often fail to act as they  think they should.

Teaching summary

I currently have a year 1 tutor group, lecture  on introductory social psychology (PS2016), run a year 2 practical (PS2007) and  provide supervision for placement students and final year project students. I  have also provided support for the level 5 cognitive psychology course (PS2015)  and the level 4 introduction to psychology (PS1016).

Undergraduate education

2006-2007. Social Policy  & Exploring Psychology, Open University (part-time).
2007-2010. BSc in Psychology, University of  Sussex.

Postgraduate education

2010-2011. MSc in Social  Science Research Methods, Cardiff University.
2011-2015. PhD in Psychology at Cardiff  University, supervised by Professor Greg Maio.


Current: Lecturer  (part-time), School of Psychology, Cardiff University; Research Associate  (part-time), School of Psychology, Cardiff University.

Previous employment includes  numerous jobs, from off-licence manager to insurance auditor! Perhaps the most  interesting and relevant past employment was spending four years as a crime analyst  for Hertfordshire Police (2003-2007), and doing three years part-time student  satisfaction research for the University of Sussex and the student’s union,  whilst studying towards my degree (2007-2010).



Research topics and related papers

The research for my MSc focussed  on the effects of attitudes that relate to nurturing. Specifically, it  considered whether priming particular values relating to children could elicit  changes in the importance assigned to pro-social values. The research for my  PhD considered the existing literature on hypocrisy and how a greater  appreciation of multiple contextual influences (particularly temporal) could  illustrate why people often fail to live up to their own standards. I am  currently conducting research into the relationship between mindfulness, values  and attitudes.


2010-14 ESRC 1+3 studentship
2010-15 School of Psychology (Cardiff), Graduate Teaching  Assistant support
2015-18 Leverhulme project, post-doctoral research associate

Research group

Social & Environmental Psychology

Research collaborators

Professor Geoff Haddock