Alison McFarland

Alison McFarland


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Personal profile

Research interests

Organisational psychology, VNPO management, Volunteerism 

Biographical details

Alison is a Chartered Occupational Psychologist, passionate about identifying and deploying the potential of people within the workplace through evidence-based research. Her ESRC-funded doctoral research focuses around the organisational behaviour and effective management of volunteers. Her interest in this topic emerged through her role as an L&D facilitator in the non-profit sector, in which she experienced firsthand the challenges faced in recruiting, developing and managing skilled voluntary staff. Following this, she spent several years working as a Consulting Psychologist for PeopleWise Ltd, through which she obtained her Qualification in Occupational Psychology with the British Psychological Society. Her role involved the design and delivery of end-to-end talent management solutions for a range of private, public and non-profit sector organisations, as well as the development of new psychometric and L&D products.

Alison holds an MA (Cantab) in English and MPhil in Psychology from the University of Cambridge, and an MSc in Organisational Psychology from City University London. Her MSc research on the psychological contracts of volunteers obtained her a Student Prize for Excellence from the British Psychological Society's Division of Occupational Psychology. Outside her studies, Alison is one of the facilitators on the BPS's Leadership Development Programme for early career occupational and counselling psychologists, having participated in the programme herself in 2014/15.

Education/Academic qualification

Master in Science, Organisational Psychology, City, University of London

Sept 2011Sept 2012

Award Date: 28 Nov 2012

Master of Philosophy, Psychology and Education, University of Cambridge

Sept 2010Jul 2011

Award Date: 22 Oct 2011

Master of Arts, English, University of Cambridge

Sept 2003Jul 2006

Award Date: 24 Apr 2010

External positions

Consulting Psychologist, PeopleWise

Oct 2012Sept 2015

Learning & Development Facilitator, OM International

Aug 2008Mar 2010


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