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Dr Claire Hewson

Profile summary

Professional biography

I commenced a degree in psychology at the University of Hertfordshire (then Hatfield Polytechnic) in 1987, with interests in social psychology, gender, feminist and social constructionist perspectives. Subsequently, I developed interests in cognitive psychology, philosophy of science and philosophy of mind, and upon finishing my degree I went on to study at the Centre for Cognitive Science (now 'Informatics') at Edinburgh University where I completed an MSc in Cognitive Science and Natural Language in 1991. I stayed on there to complete a PhD in 1996; my thesis focused on the nature of 'folk psychology' and its role in developed scientific psychological theories. After then working for a brief period as a Research Associate at the Human Communication Research Centre, Edinburgh University, I took up a full time Lectureship at the University of Bolton in 1997. I have been working at The Open University since September 2007.

Research interests

My research interests are fairly broad and interdisciplinary. Recently I have been involved in researching the use of the internet in teaching, learning and research methodology; and the nature, role and status of folk psychology. In relation to the latter my focus has been on exploring how empirical data can inform issues within the 'folk psychology debate' - for example, how empirical claims about peoples' intuitions made by philosophers can be verified, or otherwise, by carrying out empirical research which probes peoples' actual intuitions. My interests in this area also extend to lay beliefs more generally, e.g. beliefs about religion and science. My work relating to the role of the internet in teaching, learning and research methodology has focused on exploring the scope and validity of various emerging new approaches in this area; for example I have carried out work to explore relationships between computer-related attitudes and preferences and performance when using online assessment methods. I have co-authored a book on internet research methods (Sage, 2nd edition 2016), and published several articles on this topic, including a set of ethics guidelines for internet-mediated research for the British Psychological Society (2013).

A selection of my research publications can be viewed at The Open University's Open Research Online.

Recent selected publications:

Hewson, C., Vogel, C. & Laurent, D. (2016). Internet Research Methods (2nd edition). Sage: London.

Hewson, C. (2015). Ethics Issues in Digital Methods Research. In H. Snee, C. Hine, Y. Morey, S. Roberts & H. Watson (Eds.) Digital Methods for Social Science: An interdisciplinary guide to research innovation, pp 206-221. Palgrave Macmillan.

Hewson, C. (2015). Research Methods on the Internet. In L. Cantoni & J.A. Danowski (Eds.) Communication and Technology. Handbooks of Communication Science Series (5). Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.

Hewson, C. (2014). Conducting Research on the Internet – A New Era. The Psychologist, 27, 946-951.

Hewson, C. (2014). Qualitative Approaches in Internet Research: Opportunities, Issues, Possibilities. In P. Leavy (Ed.) The Oxford Handbook of Qualitative Research Methods (Oxford Library of Psychology Series). Oxford University Press: New York.

Hewson, C. & Buchanan, T. (2013) (Eds.) Ethics Guidelines for Internet-mediated Research. The British Psychological Society. INF206/.2013. Available: http://www.bps.org.uk/system/files/Public%20files/inf206-guidelines-for-internet-mediated-research.pdf.

Hewson, C. & Laurent, D. (2012). Research Design and Tools for Internet Research (re-print). In J. Hughes (Ed.) Sage Internet Research Methods: Volume 1. Sage: London.

Hewson, C. (2012). Can online course-based assessment methods be fair and equitable? Relationships between students' preferences and performance within online and offline assessments. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(5), 488-498

Recent selected conference presentations:

Hewson, C. (2013). What Can Measuring Folk Intuitions Really Tell Us? Presented at The 4th Conference of the Experimental Philosophy Group, UK. Bristol, UK. September, 2013.

Hewson, C. (2013). Ethics Issues in Internet-mediated Research. Presented at the Annual Conference of the Association of Research Ethics Committees. London, UK, November, 2013.

Hewson (2012). Review and Evaluation of Existing Online Survey Software Packages for Implementing Surveys and Simple Experiments. Presented at the General Online Research conference. Mannheim, Germany, March, 2012.

A repository of research publications and other research outputs can be viewed at The Open University's Open Research Online.

Teaching interests

Current Modules

Production team member for DD803, Evaluating psychology: Research and practice (MSc psychology module)

Module Results Panel Chair for DD210, Living psychology: From the everyday to the extraordinary (Level 2 psychology module)

Previous Modules

Production Chair for DD210, Living psychology: From the everyday to the extraordinary (Level 2 psychology module)

Examination Award Board Chair for Exploring psychology (DSE212)

Production team member for DE300, level 3 psychology core module

Production team member for Introduction to Quantitative and Qualitative Research Methods (D849)

Presentation team member for Applying Psychology (DSE232)

Production team member for Understanding Children's Development and Learning (ED841)

Course Director for Exploring Psychology On-line Project (DZX222)

Course team Chair for Research Methods Dissertation in Social Sciences (D845)

External collaborations

British Psychological Society (BPS) working party convenor and editor for BPS guidelines on Ethics in Internet-mediated research (published November, 2013, 2017).

Member of the Society for Philosophy and Psychology (SPP), European Society for Philosophy and Psychology (ESPP), History and Philosophy of Psychology Section of the BPS.

Chartered Member of the British Psychological Society.

Member of reviewer panels for the British Journal of Technology (BJET), Journal of Computer Assisted Learning (JCAL), and Computers in Human Behavior (CiHB).

Research Activity

Research groups

NameTypeParent Unit
Applied Cognitive Psychology Research GroupGroupFaculty of Social Sciences

Publications

An investigation of the validity of course-based online assessment methods: The role of computer-related attitudes and assessment mode preferences (2019-02-28)
Hewson, Claire and Charlton, John P.
Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 35(1) (pp. 51-60)
Conducting research on the internet - a new era (2014-12)
Hewson, Claire
The Psychologist, 27 (pp. 946-951)
Can online course-based assessment methods be fair and equitable? Relationships between students' preferences and performance within online and offline assessments (2012-10)
Hewson, C.
Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 28(5) (pp. 488-498)
Web-MCQ: A set of methods and freely available open source code for administering online multiple choice question assessments (2007-08)
Hewson, Claire
Behavior Research Methods, 39(3) (pp. 471-481)
Comparing online and offline administration of multiple choice question assessments to psychology undergraduates: Do assessment modality or computer attitudes influence performance? (2007)
Hewson, Claire; Charlton, John and Brosnan, Mark
Psychology Learning and Teaching, 6(1) (pp. 37-46)
Measuring health beliefs on the internet: A comparison of paper and internet administrations of the multidimensional health beliefs scale (2005-11)
Hewson, Claire and Charlton, John P.
Behavior Research Methods, 37(4) (pp. 691-702)
Conducting research on the internet (2003-06)
Hewson, Claire
The Psychologist, 16(6) (pp. 290-293)
Proper methodologies for psychological and sociological studies conducted via the Internet (1996-06)
Hewson, Claire M.; Laurent, Dianna and Vogel, Carl M.
Behavior Research Methods, Instruments, & Computers, 28(2) (pp. 186-191)
Training needs associated with statistical process control (1996)
Hewson, Claire; O’Sullivan, Peter and Stenning, Keith
Training for Quality, 4(4) (pp. 32-36)
Internet Research Methods (2nd ed) (2016-01-09)
Hewson, Claire; Vogel, Carl and Laurent, Dianna
ISBN : 9781446208564 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Internet research methods: a practical guide for the social and behavioural sciences (2003)
Hewson, Claire; Yule, Peter; Laurent, Dianna and Vogel, Carl
New technologies for social research
ISBN : 761959203 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London, UK
Research design and tools for internet research (2017)
Hewson, Claire
In: Fielding, Nigel G.; Lee, Raymond M. and Blank, Grant eds. The Sage Handbook of Online Research Methods (2nd Ed.) (pp. 57-75)
ISBN : 978-1-4739-1878-8 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Internet Research Methods (2016)
Hewson, Claire and Stewart, David W.
In: Brandimarte, Paolo; Davidian, Marie; Everitt, Brian; Molenberghs, Geert; Piegorsch, Walter and Ruggeri, Fabrizio eds. Wiley StatsRef: Statistics Reference Online (pp. 1-6)
ISBN : 9781118445112 | Publisher : Wiley
Ethics issues in digital methods research (2015-10)
Hewson, Claire
In: Snee, Helen; Hine, Christine; Morey, Yvette; Roberts, Steven and Watson, Hayley eds. Digital Methods for Social Science: An Interdisciplinary Guide to Research Innovation. (pp. 206-221)
ISBN : 9781137453655 | Publisher : Palgrave Macmillan | Published : Basingstoke
Research methods on the Internet (2015-09-01)
Hewson, Claire
In: Cantoni, Lorenzo and Danowski, James A. eds. Communication and Technology. Handbooks of Communication Science Series (5) (pp. 277-302)
ISBN : 978-3-11-027135-5 | Publisher : De Gruyter Mouton | Published : Berlin
Qualitative approaches in internet-mediated research: opportunities, issues, possibilities (2014)
Hewson, Claire
In: Leavy, Patricia ed. The Oxford Handbook of Qualitative Research Methods.. Oxford Library of Psychology Series. (pp. 423-452)
ISBN : 978-0-19-981175-5 | Publisher : Oxford University Press USA | Published : New York, NY
Research design and tools for Internet research (2008)
Hewson, Claire and Laurent, Dianna
In: Fielding, Nigel; Lee, Raymond and Blank, Grant eds. The Handbook of Online Research Methods (pp. 58-78)
ISBN : 9781412922937 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London, UK
Internet-mediated research as an emergent method and its potential role in facilitating mixed methods research (2008)
Hewson, Claire
In: Hesse-Biber, Sharlene Nagy and Leavy, Patricia eds. Handbook of Emergent Methods (pp. 543-570)
ISBN : 9781593851477 | Publisher : Guilford Press | Published : New York
Gathering data on the internet: qualitative approaches and possibilities for mixed methods research (2007-04-12)
Hewson, Claire
In: Joinson, Adam; McKenna, Katelyn; Postmes, Tom and Reips, Ulf-Dietrich eds. Oxford Handbook of Internet Psychology (pp. 405-428)
ISBN : 9780198568001 | Publisher : Oxford University Press | Published : New York
Internet Research (2006)
Hewson, Claire
In: Jupp, Victor ed. The Sage Dictionary of Social Research Methods
ISBN : 9780761962984 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Primary Research (2006)
Hewson, Claire
In: Jupp, Victor ed. The Sage Dictionary of Social Research Methods
ISBN : 9780761962984 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Secondary Analysis (2006)
Hewson, Claire
In: Jupp, Victor ed. The Sage Dictionary of Social Research Methods
ISBN : 9780761962984 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Mixed Methods (2006)
Hewson, Claire
In: Jupp, Victor ed. The Sage Dictionary of Social Research Methods
ISBN : 9780761962984 | Publisher : Sage | Published : London
Empirical evidence regarding the folk psychological concept of belief (1994-08)
Hewson, Claire
In : 16th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (13-16 Aug 1994, Atlanta, Georgia, USA) (pp. 403-408)
A Physicalist Theory of Ideas (1994-07)
Hewson, Claire and Vogel, Carl
In : 3rd International Conference on Music Perception and Cognition (23-27 Jul 1994, Université de Liège, Belgium.) (pp. 167-168)
Psychological evidence for assumptions of path-based inheritance reasoning (1994)
Hewson, Claire and Vogel, Carl
In : Sixteenth Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society (13-16 Aug 1994, Atlanta, Georgia (USA)) (pp. 409-414)
Why the folk psychology debate matters to psychology and cognitive science (1993)
Hewson, Claire
In : 16th International Wittgenstein Symposium (15-22 Aug 1993, Kirchberg am Wechsel, Austria) (pp. 213-217)
Ethics Guidelines for Internet-mediated Research (2013)
Hewson, Claire and Buchanan, Tom
The British Psychological Society, Leicester.