Dr Mani Das Gupta

Senior Lecturer (Tef)

School of Life Sciences and Education

I have been a senior Lecturer in the Psychology department at Staffordshire University since 1997. Having obtained a D.Phil from Oxford, I worked as a researcher for the Child Development Unit (Research Scientist, MRC Cognitive Development Unit, London 1987-1991) of the Medical Research Council, before moving on to The Open University (Lecturer, Centre for Human Learning and Development, Open University:1991-1995). My main area of research at the time was the development of causal reasoning in pre-school children. At the OU I was involved in course design and development of developmental psychology courses, as well as teaching at summer schools. Over the years I have supervised doctorates in the development of drawing, post-natal depression, attachment, the development of art in the school context, and the importance of self-efficacy in learning. Current research interests include the effects attachment on cognitive and social development, effects of context on the development of different skills and learning and teaching.

Professional memberships and activities

Chartered Psychologist, British Psychological Society (member of Developmental and Cognitive Sections)

Media Relations Officer, British Psychological Society (1991-1994) – writing Press Releases and manning Press Office at Developmental Conferences

Researcher and Academic Consultant for the BBC (Open University)

  • Television: Play and Quality Care – a television documentary on child-care, (for Open University)

  • Audio: Bullying; Images of Childhood; and, Fatherhood in the 90’s.

Academic qualifications

Post-Graduate Certificate in Higher and Professional Education (2003) Staffordshire University (ILT and SEDA accredited)

D.Phil, Oxford University (1987)

M.A. (Educational Psychology) University of Zambia (1983)

B.A. Psychology (with Education minor) University of Zambia (1980)


Teaching and Learning; course design and development; Research on aspects of development. As well as learning and teaching and research informed teaching

Research interests

Understanding of cause and effect in infants and pre-school children; attachment and cognitive development; post-natal depression and child development; Self-esteem and academic ability; development of ethnic identity; bullying

1997 - 1999 ESRC project - Maternal Mindedness and Cognitive Development with Dr. E. Meins and Dr. C. Fernyhough (University of Durham)

2003- 2004 City of Stoke-on-Trent Local Education Authority. (£52,400) Consultant on self-esteem and development for - Evaluations of the Pacific Institute interventions to promote educational aspirations, educational attainment and continuation in education of pupils (with David Galbraith and Mark Torrance)

2006-7 Staffordshire General Hospital - Consultant on Child Development DVD


Books/Book Chapters

Das Gupta, P.M. and Frake C. (2010) The Child and the Family. In N. Dogra and S. Leighton (Ed) “Nursing in Child and Adolescent Mental Health”. Open University Press.

Dogra, N., Das Gupta P. M., Leighton, S. (2010) The Aetiology of Child Mental Health Problems. In N. Dogra and S. Leighton (Ed) “Nursing in Child and Adolescent Mental Health . Open University Press.

Das Gupta, P. (1997) The Family as Educator, in Exploring Educational Issues; Family and School, Open University.

Lee, V. and Das Gupta, P. (Ed) (1995) Children’s Cognitive and Language Development. Oxford, Blackwell

Das Gupta, P. (1995) Growing up in Families, in P.Barnes (Ed). Personal, Social and Emotional Development. Oxford, Blackwell.

Das Gupta, P. (1995) Theories of Development, in V.Lee and P.Das Gupta (Ed.) Children’s Cognitive and Language Development. Oxford, Blackwell.

Das Gupta, P. (1994) Images of Childhood and Theories of Development in J. Oates (Ed) The Foundations of Child Development. Oxford, Blackwell.

Journal Articles

Hallam, J., Das Gupta, M., & Lee, H. (2008) An Exploration of Primary School Teachers’ Understanding of Art and the Place of Art in the Primary School Curriculum. Curriculum Journal. Vol 19(4).

Hallam, J., Lee, H., Das Gupta, M. (2007) An analysis of the presentation of Art in the British Primary School Curriculum and its implications for teaching. JADE, 26, 206-214.

Meins, E. Fernyhough, C., Wainwright, R. Clark-Carter, D., Das Gupta, M., Fradley, E. & Tuckey, M. (2003) Pathways to understanding Mind: Construct validity and Predictive validity of maternal mindedness. Child Development, 74(4):1-18.

Meins, E., Fernyhough, C., Wainwright, R., Das Gupta, M., Fradley, E., & Tuckey, M. (2002). Maternal mind-mindedness and attachment security as predictors of theory of mind understanding. Child Development, 73, 1715-1726

Das Gupta, P. and Bryant, P.E. (1989) Young children’s causal inferences, Child Development 60: 1138-1146

Staples, P.A., Ford, S. and Das Gupta P. (1999) Interference in Children’s Visual Working Memory. The Proceedings of the 7th European Workshop on Imagery and Cognition.

Das Gupta, P. and Leslie, A. (1998) Infants understanding of a hidden mechanism. The Proceedings of the MRC Cognitive Development Unit Conference, London

Conference Papers

Hallam, J., Lee, H. Das Gupta, M. (2009)“The art of teaching Art: Enhancing the artistic creative process” paper in Symposium on Knowledge Acquisition and Expertise in Specific Domains, EARLI Conference, Amsterdam, 2009

Hallam, J., Das Gupta, M., & Lee, H. (2008) ‘An Investigation into the ways in which Teachers and Children co-create Artwork in an English Primary School Context’. Paper Presented at BPS Psychology of Education Section Annual Conference, Milton Keynes, 31st October – 1st November 2008.

Hallam, J., Lee, H., & Das Gupta, M., (2008) Exploring the Co-creation of Child Art in an Educational Context. Paper Presented at BPS Developmental Psychology Section Annual Conference, Oxford Brookes University, 1-3 September.

Top 250 Young University

Times Higher Education Young University Rankings 2020

Top 15 for Teaching Quality

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

Top 15 for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

Midlands University of the Year

Midlands Business Awards 2020