MAPrc has approximately 50 local and international students completing Ph.D., Masters, Honours and undergraduate degrees in areas including cognitive psychology and neuroscience.   

A wide variety of research projects are available including: psychosis in traumatic brain injury, female hormones in schizophrenia symptom alleviation, mirror neurons and their role in social understanding, and additionally, correlates between cognitive dysfunction and specific symptoms in schizophrenia.  




MAPrc provides a friendly and nurturing environment where students are encouraged to interact with senior staff on issues surrounding research design and analysis. Further, students are given the unique opportunity to be treated like staff members. This includes attending staff meetings, sharing ideas about research, and attending conferences both locally and internationally. This unique student environment is an ideal gateway between being a university student and joining the research workforce. 











Costa Vakalopoulos - PhD

Costa is a PhD student in the Brain Stimulation team. 

Grant Rutherford - PhD

Grant is a PhD student currently studying under the supervision of Dr. Zahra Moussavi and Dr Brian Lithgow at the University of Manitoba, in Canada, He is helping the MAPrc group with a simulation study of the brain stimulation coil.

Hannah Coyle - PhD

Hannah Coyle
Hannah is a PhD student and Research Assistant Psychiatric Neurotechnology Team

Jacqui Riddiford - D.Psych (Neuropsych)

Jacqui completed a Bachelor of Psychology (with Honours) from Monash University 
in 2012. She is currently a Doctor of Psychology (Clinical Neuropsychology) candidate at Monash University under the supervision of Dr Joanne Fielding, Associate Professor Peter Enticott and Dr Caroline Gurvich. Jacqui's doctoral research is examining the relationship between visual processing and the mirror neuron system in autism spectrum disorder.



Karyn Richardson - D.Psych (Neuropsych)

Karyn Richardson BSc(Hons)

Karyn Richardson completed her undergraduate studies in psychology at Monash University in 2009, and is currently completing her Doctorate in Psychology (Clinical Neuropsychology), also at Monash University. Karyn’s doctoral research is based in the Brain Stimulation and Neurosciences stream of MAPrc, and is exploring cortical inhibition and cognition in people with schizophrenia and their healthy relatives.
Research Project
Brain activity and cognition
A study investigating brain activity and cognition among schizophrenia patients and their relatives. For further information, please contact Karyn Richardson on (03) 9076 6564 or email

Lizzie Thomas - PhD

Lizzie completed her Bachelor of Biomedical Science (Honours)/Bachelor of Science double degree at Monash University in 2014. She completed her Honours at MAPrc, looking at the association of Neuregulin-1 with cognitive deficits related to schizophrenia and schizotypy.

She is currently completing her PhD in the Cognitive Neuropsychiatry team under the supervision of Dr Caroline Gurvich, Professor Susan Rossell (Swinburne University) and Dr Kiymet Bozaoglu (Murdoch Children's Research Institute). Lizzie's doctoral research is investigating the influence of genes in the glutamatergic pathway on cognitive deficits in schizophrenia.

Phillip Law - PhD

Phillip Law
B.PsychSci (Hons), University of Queensland
PhD student, Monash University
Phillip’s primary research interest and interdisciplinary specialisation is in visual perception and bipolar disorder. With a background in programming (e.g., MATLAB), he is currently completing his postgraduate research under the supervision of Dr Steven Miller, Dr Trung Ngo and Dr Caroline Gurvich.
His research project is examining the individual differences in perceptual rivalry - an phenomenon characterised by alternations in the awareness of different interpretations to fixed visual input - and eye movement profiles in people with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and depression. His project is investigating endophenotypes and is currently developing a standard system for the objective classification of bipolar disorder. 

Rodney Anderson - PhD

Rodney recently completed Honours in Psychology at Deakin University where his research focused on the neurobiological mechanisms underlying deep brain stimulation for treatment resistant depression. This research explored the effects of deep brain stimulation on long-term neuroplasticity in the mesolimbic dopamine system.
Rodney is currently a Monash University PhD candidate based at the MAPrc, under the supervision of Professor Paul Fitzgerald. Rodney’s current research involves an investigation of the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects of transcranial magnetic stimulation for treatment resistant depression.

Tanya Gilmartin - PhD

Tanya is a PhD candidate at the Monash Alfred Psychiatry The Centre. She holds a Bachelor of Psychology (Honours) and a Master of Psychology (Clinical) from Australian Catholic University. Her past research focused on alcohol consumption and eating disorders and has been presented at conferences both nationally and internationally.

Tanya has worked as as a registered Psychologist since 2010, gaining endorsement as a Clinical Psychologist in 2011 and recognition as a Clinical Supervisor in 2013. Her Clinical career has been based in Melbourne, focusing on treating personality disorders and eating disorders using Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). In 2015 Tanya became the first person in Australia to be trained in Radically Open-DBT (RO-DBT), and has focused on using this treatment approach with clients presenting with personality disorders and eating disorders characterised by overcontrol. She has a wide experience in integrating research and theory in treatment, supervision and program development, as well as training other clinicians in evidence-based approaches. Tanya's proposed PhD protest is designed to extend on her clinical background and training, exploring the relationship between personality pathology and eating pathology among young women to contribute to the understanding of the development of these disorders.

Ting ting Cao - PhD

Ting ting Cao obtained her Bachelor of Behavioral Neuroscience degree at Monash University majoring in Psychology and Neuroscience. During her undergraduate, she studied at University of Bergen (Norway) as an exchange student, studying medical health psychology and preventative health psychology. The following year, she completed her honours year in behavioral neuroscience with a focus in the area of blood oxygenation changes resulting from transcranial magnetic stimulation at MAPrc.
She is currently completing her PhD degree under the supervision of Professor Paul Fitzgerald and Dr Richard Thomson based at MAPrc. For her PhD research project, she is investigating functional connectivity in the brain by using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS).