Centre for Behaviour and Evolution

Staff Profile

Dr Gareth Richards



Gareth is a Lecturer in the School of Psychology, and a member of the Centre for Behaviour and Evolution (CBE) at Newcastle University.  He completed a BSc in Psychology and MSc in Research Methods in Psychology at Swansea University, and a PhD in Psychology at Cardiff University.  After this, he held two postdoctoral positions at the University of Cambridge, firstly working under the guidance of Prof Simon Baron-Cohen at the Autism Research Centre, and subsequently as a Research Associate at the Centre for Research on Play in Education, Development & Learning.  Gareth retains a Visiting Researcher status at the Autism Research Centre, and is an alumnus of the Trinity College Cambridge Postdoctoral Society.


  • BSc Psychology (First Class Honours), Swansea University (2008-2011)

  • MSc Research Methods in Psychology (Distinction), Swansea University (2011-2012)

  • PhD Psychology, Cardiff University (2012-2017)


  • Centre for Behaviour and Evolution, Newcastle University

    European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association (Full Member)

  • Higher Education Academy (Fellow)


Gareth’s main research interests lie within Developmental and Evolutionary Psychology.  In particular, he is interested in how prenatal testosterone exposure can predict variations in subsequent developmental and behavioural outcomes.  Gareth is currently investigating how foetal androgens may relate to left-handedness and traits associated with autism spectrum conditions.  He is using a range of research methods including analysis of hormones present in amniotic fluid and umbilical cord blood, as well as the proxy indicator of second to fourth digit length ratio (2D:4D).

Funding and Grants

  • 2019: British Academy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant (£3,079)

  • 2018: Autistica Travel Grant to attend INSAR Annual Meeting (£1,000)

  • 2017: Birmingham City University (BCU) Small Development Grant (PI: Dr John Galvin) (£1,000)

  • 2017: Autism Research Trust (ART) Travel Grant (£1,700)

  • 2017: Guarantors of Brain Travel Award (£800)

  • 2017: Experimental Psychology Society (EPS) Grindley Grant for Conference Attendance (£500)

  • 2016: NIHR CLAHRC-EoE Grant Extension (PI: Prof Simon Baron-Cohen) (£10,000)

  • 2016: BPS Welsh Branch Bursary to attend the Public Health Science Conference (£200)

  • 2016: European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association Student Research Grant (€140)

  • 2016: Student Bursary for European Human Behaviour and Evolution Association Conference (€100)

  • 2013: Postgraduate Bursary for the BPS Psychobiology Annual Scientific Meeting (£150)

  • 2012: Swansea University Academic Development Bursary (£400)

  • 2011: Swansea University Master’s Scholarship (£2,700)


Gareth teaches on the Psychology BSc (Honours) programme, and supervises undergraduate and Masters projects. He is always happy to hear from students who are interested in working with him.

Module Lead:

  • PSY3042: Sex Differences and the Brain
  • PSY8061: Advanced Research Methods for Applied Psychology A

Deputy Module Lead:

  • PSY2004: Individual Differences
  • PSY3001: Evolution & Behaviour


  • PSY1001: Psychological Enquiry 1
  • PSY1006: Instinct, Learning and Motivation
  • PSY1011: Research Methods and Skills 2
  • PSY2007: Biological Psychology: Sex, Drugs, Rhythms and Blues
  • PSY2008: Psychological Enquiry 2: Principles of Psychology
  • PSY2016: Abnormal Psychology and Psychiatry

Previous Teaching Roles / Modules Taught

  • Supervisor: Department of Psychology, University of Cambridge (2018) (Module: Gender Development)

  • Graduate Teaching Assistant: School of Psychology, Cardiff University (2016) (Modules: Biological Psychology, Language & Memory, Social Psychology)

  • Postgraduate Tutor: School of Psychology, Cardiff University (2012-2016) (Module: Research Methods in Psychology)