Dr Monique Botha

Leverhulme Early Career Fellow

Psychology Stirling

Dr Monique Botha

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About me

About me

I am currently a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at the University of Stirling for a project entitled "Fragile Knowledge: Dehumanisation and Interpretation Bias in Autism Research". In this project I will use computational textual analysis to examine the overall field of autism research, what topics are published about, and how autistic peope are constructed within the literature. This adds to my increasing body of work on the theoretical and ethical implications of how autistic people are shaped in knowledge production and the incluence of societal and research-based ableism.

Aside from, and prior to this, my research tends to revolve around minority stress, mental health, and community connectedness in the autistic community. I also am particularly interested in the social determinents of wellbeing and quality of life for autistic people, including at the intersections of also being minority genders or sexualities.

I did my PhD in Psychology at the University of Surrey (2016-2020) on the role of autistic community connectedness in buffering against the effects of minority stress on mental health in the autsitic community. This was a multi-method research project involving both qualitative (interviewing) and quantitative methods (scale development, cross-sectional, and longituindal surveys). I also completed my MSc in Psychology (conversion) at the University of Surrey (2015-2016). My dissertation investigated the utility of the minority stress model for understanding the high prevelance of mental health problems in the autistic community.

Research

The majority of my research is based in autism. I have an interest in autism, identity, mental health and wellbeing, community connectedness, minority stress, and stigma. I also have an interest in LGBT+ psychology, and the theoretical psychology. In terms of theoretical psychology, I am particularly interested meta-theory of psychology and how constructions of concepts shape more practical elements of psychology research.

Outputs (9)

Outputs

Commentary

Botha M, Hanlon J & Williams GL (2021) Does Language Matter? Identity-First Versus Person-First Language Use in Autism Research: A Response to Vivanti. Commentary on: Vivanti, G. (2020). Ask the editor: What is the most appropriate way to talk about individuals with a diagnosis of autism? Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 50(2), 691–693. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-019-04280-x.. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-020-04858-w

Teaching

Teaching

My current role is primarily research-based, but I also provide teaching through lectures and seminars to the psychology MSc students on the Research Methods module on Community Psychology, as well as to Autism Research MSc students on intersectional considerations for autism research.