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Matt Watts


Accepting PhD Students

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Personal profile


Having completed his BSc (Hons) in Sport and Exercise Science at LJMU in 2014, Matt took the opportunity to continue his interest in applied sport psychology research at PhD level in mid-2015. The project titled 'The Effects of Attentional Load and Anxiety on Aiming Task Performance in Sport' was supervised by Dr Joe Causer and completed in early 2019.

The aim of the project was to examine how increases in attentional load and anxiety affect perfromance and perceptual-cognitive skill in sport. Superior visual search behaviours had previously been shown to be an indicator of increased performance, however, the mechanisms underpinning these processes, such as attention were yet to be investigated in depth. Therefore it was our aim to also investigate how robust these mechanisms are under different conditions. Perceptual-cognitive skills were also be examined during a training programme to investigate whether a novel Quiet Eye training programme under different attentional loads, would enhance skill acquisition and performance during high attention and anxiety conditions.

In addition, Matt currently has projects running in association with West Bromwich Albion FC and another with the English Cricket Board. He has also previously worked closely with the Sport Scotland Institute of Sport. Outside of his studies Matt is a keen sportsman himself, playing cricket, football and golf.

PhD Project

The Effects of Attentional Load and Anxiety on Aiming Task Performance in Sport

Research Interests

Perceptual-Cognitive Skill. Quiet Eye. Decision Making. Expert Performance. Skill Acquisition. Attentional Control. Attention Training. Motor Competency.

Education/Academic qualification

Sport Psychology, Doctorate, Liverpool John Moores University

Sport and Exercise Science, Degree, Liverpool John Moores University

1 Sep 20111 Jul 2014

External positions

PhD Student, Liverpool John Moores University

1 Jun 201511 Jun 2019

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  • 1 Participation in conference
  • 1 Consultancy

Decision Making of Academy Soccer Players

Matt Watts (Consultant)
2019 → …

Activity: Consultancy

Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science

Matt Watts (Speaker)
4 Jul 201810 Jul 2018

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference