Dr. Hayley Wright

After gaining a first class honours degree in Applied Psychology from Leeds Metropolitan University, Hayley went on to complete an MSc in Cognitive Neuroscience at University of York. Pursuing her interests in face and emotion recognition, she carried out a final project which investigated amygdala response to fearful facial expressions using fMRI (Asghar et al., 2008). Hayley then went on to study for a PhD at University of Birmingham, and investigated the reorienting of visual attention to socially relevant cues (eye gaze shifts and pointing gestures) following parietal lobe damage, under the supervision of Jane Riddoch and Glyn Humphreys.

As a postdoctoral researcher, Hayley spent two years working in hospitals and community care settings, recruiting stroke patients into clinical research trials. Following this, she worked at University on Warwick on a project investigating the association between sleep and cognitive function in a large population cohort of older adults (Miller et al., 2014a), and also co-authored a book chapter on sleep and cognition (Miller et al., 2014b).

Hayley has recently won internal funding from Coventry University to investigate the association between sexual activity and different domains of cognitive function in adults over the age of 50 years, using novel cognitive assessments.

  • Wright, H., and Jenks, R. Sex on the Brain: Associations between Cognitive Function and Sexual Activity in Community-Dwelling Older Adults in England. Oral presentation at Aging and Society: Fifth Interdisciplinary Conference, Washington D.C., USA. November 2015.
  • Wright, H., Cappuccio, F.P., and Miller, M.A. (under review) ‘Gender, cognition and cognitive lifestyle in the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing’. Age and Ageing. 
  • Wright, H., and Jenks, R. (2015) ‘Sex on the Brain: Associations between Cognitive Function and Sexual Activity in Community-Dwelling Older Adults in England’. Aging and Society: Fifth Interdisciplinary Conference. Held November 2015 in Washington D.C., USA. 
  • Wright, H., Cappuccio, F.P., and Miller, M.A. (2015) ‘Gender, cognition and cognitive lifestyle in the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing’. 44th Annual British Society of Gerontology Conference. Held July 2015 in Newcastle, UK. 
  • Wright, H., and Jenks, R. (2015) ‘Cross-sectional associations between sexual activity and cognitive function in the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing’. 44th Annual British Society of Gerontology Conference. Held July 2015 in Newcastle, UK. 
  • Miller, M.A., Wright, H., Ji, C., and Cappuccio, F.P. (2014a) ‘Cross-sectional study of sleep quantity and quality and amnestic and non-amnestic cognitive function in an ageing population: The English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA).’ PLOS ONE 9 (6), e100991. 
  • Miller, M.A., Wright, H., Hough, J., and Cappuccio, F.P. (2014b) ‘Sleep and cognition’.  In Sleep and its Disorders Affect Society ed. by Idzikowski, C. [Online] InTech. 
  • Dombrowe, I., Donk, M., Wright, H., Olivers, C.N.L., and Humphreys, G.W. (2012) ‘The contribution of stimulus-driven and goal-driven mechanisms to feature-based selection in patients with spatial attention deficits’.  Cognitive Neuropsychology 29 (3), 249-274. 
  • Asghar, A.U.R., Chiu, Y., Hallam, G., Liu, S., Mole, H., Wright, H. & Young, A.W. (2008) ‘An amygdala response to fearful faces with covered eyes’.  Neuropsychologia 46 (9), 2364-2370.
  • Exploring associations between sexual activity and cognitive domains in older adults: An empirical study which builds on epidemiological findings of an association between sexual activity and memory in older males (Wright and Jenks, in prep). A specialised battery of cognitive assessments (OCSd and ACE-III) will allow a more scientific and experimental investigation of whether specific cognitive domains are enhanced in sexually active older age individuals. This project is led by Dr Hayley Wright (PI) and Dr Rebecca Jenks (co-investigator), in collaboration with Prof. Glyn Humphreys and Dr Nele Demeyere at University of Oxford.
  • Sleep quality within age groups using objective and subjective measures. The disparity between objective and subjective measures of sleep quality is a well know phenomenon. This study aims to examine the nature of this disparity and the effects of mediating factors in different age groups (e.g. teenagers vs. older adults), as well as exploring potential influences on cognitive function. This study will allow us to explore this area in more depth, using a battery of validated cognitive and mood measures, and subjective measures of sleep, as well as objective measures of sleep quality (actigraphy) and daytime sleepiness (pupilometry).
Coventry University No.1 Modern University No.1 Modern University in the Midlands
Coventry University awarded TEF GOLD Teaching Excellence Framework
University of the year shortlisted
QS Five Star Rating 2020
Coventry City of Culture 2021