Our Experts

Dr John McMullen

General Information

Teaching Responsibilities

  • M.Ed module: Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties (SEBD)
  • B.Ed modules:
    Year 1 – Professional Studies and Placement
    Year 1 – Education Studies
    Year 2 – Learning & Assessment in Diverse Classrooms
    Year 3 – Children with Special & Additional Needs
    Year 3 – Education Research
    Year 4 – Dissertation
  • International/Erasmus+ module:
    Northern Ireland Culture and Education
    Aspects of Northern Ireland Culture and Education 

External Interests / Community Service

  • HCPC Registered Educational and Child Psychologist (PYL28408)
  • BPS Chartered Educational Psychologist (173663)
  • Senior Fellow of The Higher Education Academy (PR155588)
  • Director/Trustee of Fields of Life (www.fieldsoflife.org)
  • Chair of Fields of Life Education Committee
  • Director/Trustee of Links Counselling Service Board (www.linkscounselling.com)

Research Interests

  • Trauma interventions for child soldiers and other war-affected children.
  • School-based life skills and mental health interventions in east Africa.
  • Mental health and well-being of ‘newcomer’ pupils.

Background & Qualifications

  • BSc Psychology (QUB): 1999-2002
  • Autism Initiatives : 2003-2004
  • PGCE (Stranmillis): 2004-2005
  • Year 6 and 7 Teacher: 2005-2009
  • Doctorate in Educational, Child and Adolescent Psychology (DECAP), QUB: 2009-2012
  • Praxis Care Research Award 2013
  • Educational Psychologist: 2012-2015
  • Honorary Lecturer at QUB School of Psychology: 2013 – 2017
  • Chartered Member of British Psychological Society: awarded 2016
  • Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy: awarded 2019

Research & Scholarship

Journal Articles

McMullen, J.D. & McMullen, N. (2018). Evaluation of a teacher-led, life-skills intervention for secondary school students in Uganda. Social Science and Medicine. 217: 10-17.

Jones, S., McMullen, J., Campbell, R., McLaughlin, J., McDade, B., O’Lynn, P. and Glen, C. (2018). Multilingual minds: the mental health and wellbeing of newcomer children and young people in Northern Ireland and the role of the education authority youth service. Belfast: tranmillis University College.

O’Callaghan, P., McMullen, J., Shannon, C., Rafferty, H., & Black A. (2015). Comparing a trauma focused and non trauma focused intervention with war affected Congolese youth: a preliminary randomised trial. Intervention. 13(1): 28-44.

O’Callaghan, P., Branham, L., Shannon, C., Betancourt, T., Dempster, M. & McMullen, J. (2014). A Family-Focused, Psychosocial Intervention with Young People at Risk of Attack & Abduction in North-Eastern DR Congo: A Randomised Controlled Trial. Child Abuse and Neglect. 38 (7): 1197-1207

McMullen, J., O’Callaghan, P., Shannon, C., Black, A., & Eakin, J. (2013). Group trauma-focused cognitive-behavioral therapy with former child soldiers and other war-affected boys in the DR Congo: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 54(11): 1231-41.

O’Callaghan, P., McMullen, J. & Shannon, C. (2013). Hamlet or Omelette? Debates in the Field of Interventions for War-Affected Children. Clinical Psychology Forum, 258(June): 23-27.

O’Callaghan, P., McMullen, J., Shannon, C., Rafferty, H., & Black, A. (2013). A randomized controlled trial of Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for sexually exploited, war-affected, Congolese Girls. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 52(4): 359-369.

McMullen, J., O’Callaghan, P., Richards, J., Eakin, J. & Rafferty, H. (2012). Screening for Traumatic Exposure and Psychological Distress among War-Affected Adolescents in Post-Conflict northern Uganda. Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, 47(9), 1489-98.

Practitioner Journals

McMullen, J. (2017). Delivering and evaluating interventions in war-affected, low-income countries. Research Intelligence (BERA). Issue 133, 8-10

McMullen, J. (2016). ADHD- From Understanding to Support. Special (NASEN). March issue, 34-35.

Conference Proceedings and Papers

‘Children and Young People’s Mental Health’. Keynote address at the Education and Training Inspectorate- Annual Staff Development Day. December 2018.

‘Attachment, Schools and Learning’. Presentation and panel contribution on the World Mental Health Day event at Queens University, Belfast, October 2018.

‘Evaluation of a Teacher-led, Life Skills Intervention for Secondary School Students in Uganda’. Oral presentation at the British Psychological Society (BPS) Annual Conference, Nottingham, April 2018.

‘Complex Trauma and Child Soldiers’. Keynote address to open the British Association of Counsellors and Psychotherapists (BACP) Annual Conference, Marble Arch, London, November 2016.

‘Providing Mental Health and Psychosocial Support to War-affected Children’. ‘A Flavour of Psychology’ conference, Whitla Hall, QUB, October 2016.

‘Methodologies for Researching With the Most Disadvantaged In Situations of Conflict’. BERA President’s Roundtable seminar, Riddel Hall, QUB, May 2016.

‘ADHD- From Understanding to Support’. Keynote address at Nasen NI Study Day, Stranmillis UC, April 2016.

‘Providing mental health and psychosocial support for war-affected children- A reflection on interventions in Uganda and the DR Congo’. NIBPS Annual Conference, March 2016

‘Living Well- A Teacher-led Life Skills Programme’. Presentation at the Fields of Life Annual Conference, Ibanda, western Uganda, January 2016.

‘Group-based Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioural Therapy with War-affected Children in the DR Congo’. Treating the Trauma of the Troubles Conference, Riddel Hall, QUB, November 2015.