Associate Professor Kerry O’Brien

kerry-obrien-profile2I joined Monash University in November 2010. I have taught across a range of subjects including Applied Social and Health Psychology,  Social Cognition, Health Promotion, Human Factors, and Social and health Policy. Prior to arriving at Monash University I was at the University of Manchester (UK) where I helped establish the Masters in Clinical and Health Psychology program, and taught courses in Health Psychology and Applied Social Psychology.  I conduct research in the areas of obesity and alcohol consumption and associated harms, social inequality, discrimination, social identity and intergroup conflict.  And have an editorial position with the journal Addiction; and I’m chair of the school research committee.


Google Scholar research profile:

Latest papers:

Ruffman , O’Brien et al., 2015 Toddlers bias average vs obese figures Journal of Experimental Child Psychology

Carr, O’Brien, et al 2015 Childrens exposure to alcohol advertising in AFL, Cricket, NRL             (This paper describes childrens exposure to alcohol advertising when watching free to air  AFL, NRL, and Cricket TV across 12 months of TV viewing)

O’Brien et al. 2015 Alcohol advertising in sport TV and childrens viewing PlosOne August       (This paper describes the extent of alcohol advertising in sport vs. non-sport TV across a year and children’s known viewing audience numbers when alcohol advertising during the daytime and night-time).


PhD (2004) University of Otago, New Zealand.

BA Hons (1st) University of Otago, New Zealand. Supervisor Professor Cliff Abraham) Topic: Stress and Long Term Depression (LTD) of Synaptic Transmission in the Dentate Gyrus of the Hippocampus (in vivo),

Academic Positions                                                                                            

November 2010-present, Monash University

2008-2010, University of Manchester, School of Psychological Sciences, Faculty of Medicine

2006-2008, University of Wollongong, Faculty of Health Sciences, Australia.

1999-2005, Teaching Fellow and Research Assistant, Public Health and Psychology, University of Otago, New Zealand.

Research Interests

My research interests including obesity, hazardous drinking, alcohol-related harms and aggression, body image, sport, stigma and health, prejudice, and alcohol advertising and sponsorship. The aim is to provide evidence for social and health policy debates, and to understand the antecedents of health and social behaviour for potential interventions.

I take a multidisciplinary and collaborative approach to research adopting methodologies that best suit a particular research question, and collaborating with researchers from various fields including social and health psychology, epidemiology, sociology, cognitive/developmental psychology, political science, and public health and medicine.


I have developed and taught a diverse range of courses at undergraduate and postgraduate levels including introductory psychology, health psychology, social psychology, behaviour change, social cognition, and public health, social and health policy.

I’ve supervised over 35 research students (PhD, Masters, and Honours), and currently supervise 3 PhD students.


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