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Georgina Aisbitt


Computational Psychopatholgy Lab (Murphy Lab)

  • Graduate Research Assistant - Associative Learning Laboratory
  • Co-Founder of Psychology and Neuroscience Applications Society

Research Summary


My research focuses on assessment of impulsivity in individuals with psychopathy. Previously demonstrations of impulsivity in psychopathic individuals, for example response perseveration, have been attributed to punishment insensitivity. However, psychopathic individuals' selective deficits on response reversal tasks suggest this explanation is too simplistic. As such, my research focuses on developing assessments of impulsivity and the mechanisms underlying observed differences in psychopathic individuals. 

More specifically, my research looks at the impact of cue associability on how psychopathic individuals learn. I am interested in whether the affect of this is symmetrical across excitatory and inhibitory processes and whether it effects both behavioural and cognitive processes. In addition, my research covers instances of cue reversal learning, as well as tests of transfer of learning in order to assess whether shared mechanisms underly psychopathic individuals altered ability on these tasks.



I studied Experimental Psychology (BA) at Oxford University (2012). I was awarded an Exhibition by my college (Brasenose) following prelims. During my undergraduate degree I received a Wellcome Trust Vacation Scholarship and spent eight weeks working as a research assistant to Dr Marko Nardini. 

I am now working on a DPhil project entitled 'Impulsivity in Psychopathy: Exploration of the Underlying Mechanisms' with Professor Robin Murphy. I was awarded an eight week Summer Research Fellowship by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (2013). During my time in Japan I was supervised by Professor Sadahiko Nakajima at Kwansei Gakuin University. In my first year, I received training in administration of Hare's Psychopathy Check List (Revised) from Professor David Cooke.

My teaching experience includes tutoring second-year undergraduates on a behavioural neuroscience course, assisting in third-year undergraduate group practicals (including marking the reports), providing workshops to third-year undergraduates taking a learning theory advanced option, and lecturing at summer schools. I have also assisted with the undergraduate admissions interviews. 

For two years I held the voluntary position of Group Co-Ordinator of Oxford Student Minds, a branch of the UK's student mental health charity. I am also a trained eating disorder support group facilitator and ran weekly support groups during term time. I am now a member of the Student Minds Executive Committee and am the Supervisor and Regional Co-Ordinator for the Oxford groups (Oxford Student Minds and Mind Your Head). In addition, I spend weekly sessions working on speech rehabilitation with a stroke patient in the Oxford Cognitive Neuropsychology Centre. I am also a weekly volunteer at The Gatehouse, a shelter for the homeless and poorly housed of Oxford. 

In July 2014 I co-founded the Psychology and Neuroscience Applications Society (PsyNAppS). PsyNAppS's aim is to raise awareness of the breadth of applications of psychology and neuroscience research to the fields of marketing, policy, education, health and technology.

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Aisbitt GM, Murphy RA. Identifying the Underlying Mechanisms of Impulsivity in Psychopaths. Oral and poster presentation, Cheryl Wynne Hare Award Winner, Society for the Scientific Study of Psychopathy Biennial Conference; 25th-27th June 2015, Chicago.

Aisbitt GM, Seemungal FV, Murphy RA. Understanding Psychopathy: Implications for Interventions. Oral presentation at: National Conference on Juvenile Justice, 21st-23rd April 2015, Department of Home Affairs, Barbados. 

Aisbitt GM, Murphy RA. Atypical Retardation in Psychopaths: The role of Cue Predictiveness and Salience. Oral presentation at: Associative Learning Symposium (XIX); 31st March-2nd April 2015, University of Cardiff, Wales. 

Aisbitt GM, Murphy RA. Psychopathy and Control: Roles for Internal and External Control. Poster session presented at: Psychopathy and Violence Risk Management: Empirical and Practical Challenges, 7-8th May 2014, Berlin, Germany. 

Aisbitt GM, Murphy RA. Associative Assessment of Inhibition: Implications for tests of Psychopathy. Oral presentation at: Associative Learning Symposium (XVIII); 15th-17th April 2014; University of Cardiff, Wales. 

Aisbitt GM, Seemungal FV & Murphy RA. Behavioural Control in Criminal and Analogue Psychopathic Samples: An Associative Analysis. Poster session presented at: Rome Workshop on Experimental Psychopathology; 28th February 2014; Association of Cognitive Psychology and School of Cognitive Psychotheraphy; Rome, Italy. 

Aisbitt GM, Saito M, Nakajima S & Murphy RA. Developing an Associative Analysis of Behavioural Control. Poster session presented at: Conference on Intentional Inhibition: From Motor Suppression to Self-Control; 25th September 2013; University College London, England. 

Aisbitt GM, Nakajima S & Murphy RA. Impulsivity and Statistical Contingency Sensitivity as Markers of Psychopathy: A cross-cultural perspective. Poster session presented at: Japanese Society for the Promotion of Science Summer Fellows Meeting; 14th June 2013; Sokendai University, Japan.