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About City

Andrew White

Department of Psychology

E: andrew.white.1@city.ac.uk

Thesis title: Men's perceptions of therapy: Working towards best practice

Supervisors: Paula Corcoran and Jessica Jones Nielsen

Overview and research interests

Statistical indicators show that men are more likely to complete suicide, be substance-dependent or to behave anti-socially than women. Conversely, men appear to be less likely to seek or engage with psychological services.

With respect to the National Health Service provision, the issue of gender has gained greater importance as 'The Equality Act' (2010) compels service-providers to ensure that treatment is equally accessible and outcomes comparable for both sexes. However, little differentiation in provision appears to be event as current provision is often targeted at specific age groups (CAMHS, Adult, Older adult), rather than at one sex or the other.

Previous commentators have sought to investigate men's preferences by extrapolating from ideas expounded in the literature or by predicting attitudes towards therapy using various measures of masculinity.

This study aims to directly interrogate men's therapeutic preferences (with respect to the degree of satisfaction of treatments) along with prospective changes that may enhance future psychological service-provision for men.

A positivist stance is adopted to investigate the range and weightings of potential factors contributing to client satisfaction. To explore the fullest breadth of factors, a qualitative phase will aim to collect retrospective opinion from ex-service-users along with opinions about potential modifications to enhance therapy for men. From the date collected, a questionnaire will be constructed to survey anonymous opinion from a larger sample of service users. Analysis of the survey should enable weightings to be calculated for the factors identified in the qualitative phase. If a large sample can be obtained, then the analysis may give an indication of the preferences of certain subgroups of men - specific age groups, ethnic groups, etc. It is hoped that, by gaining an insight into how men prefer to receive treatment, more engaging and effective provision can be offered in the future.

Research interests

  • Men's mental health
  • Psychological assessment
  • Masculinity and its effect on society.


  • White, A. (2009). Big Boys Really Don't Cry: Considering Men's Reluctance to Engage in Counselling. Counselling Psychology Review , 24, No.3 & 4, p. 2-8.