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Research Focus

The primary focus of my research programme is on MENTAL HEALTH in those who have experienced stress, adversity, and trauma. I focus on a range of psychological disorders including, but not limited to, PTSD, Depression, Anxiety and Dissociation. I am also focused on exploring the concept of post adversity psychological resilience. I work across child, adolescent, and adult populations and I focus on a range of trauma types including childhood maltreatment, interpersonal, sexual, and domestic violence, and occupational related traumas (experienced by healthcare workers, emergency services and armed forces). In addition, I look at the impact of secondary trauma in families.

I explore what biological, psychological, and social factors might differentiate between those who experience post-adversity psychological illness vs those who experience post-adversity psychological wellness. In particular, I am interested in social relationships and support, emotion regulation, maladaptive cognitive schema development, sleep and loneliness. 


Cherie Armour is a Professor of Psychological Trauma and Mental Health in the School of Psychology at Queens University Belfast. Professor Armour is the Director of the Research Centre for Stress Trauma and Related Conditions (STARC). Cherie is a trauma psychologist who received her first degree from Ulster University achieving a first class honours in Psychology in 2007. Cherie transitioned straight into a D.Phil at Ulster University, completing her PhD in 2010. In 2010 Cherie commenced an MSc in Forensic Psychology at Coventry University on a part-time basis whilst also commencing a postdoctoral research position at the University of Southern Denmark. In 2012, Cherie commenced her first lectureship position at Ulster University. In 2015 Cherie was promoted to Reader in Psychology, and in 2016 Cherie was promoted to Chair. In 2016, Cherie commenced a new role as Associate Dean for Research & Impact and Director of the Institute of Mental Health Sciences in the Faculty of Life & Health Sciences. In 2019, Cherie moved to the role of Professor of Psychological Trauma and Mental Health at Queens University Belfast.


Cherie has published extensively (>150) in the field of Psychotraumatology and Mental Health. Cherie has a particular interest in occupational groups that are at increased risk of experiencing trauma and traumatic stress outcomes due to their occupational roles, for example, military, police, and emergency service workers, such as those in the fire and ambulance services. Cherie is also particularly interested in the psychological impact of experiencing childhood maltreatment. Cherie has also published on the nosology, comorbidity, and longitudinal course of disorders such as PTSD, dissociation, anxiety, and depression. Recently Professor Armour has focused on research that investigates the mechanisms that explain risk and resilience as it relates to a wide variety of mental health outcomes. A new and exciting line of research enquiry relates to the underpinning mechanisms explaining the relationship between sleep and mental health outcomes such as PTSD. Professor Armour also has a research interest in trauma and mental health in offender populations; previously supervising two PhD students working with the Probation Board Northern Ireland (PBNI). Cherie has also conducted a number of research papers and reports on domestic violence and child maltreatment. From a methodological perspective, Cherie has particular expertise in the application of advanced quantitative statistical modelling to population representative data and has completed several research projects utilising qualitative interviewing methodology in addition to conducting pilot and full RCTs. 

Currently Cherie is leading 8 funded research projects including:

  • A Medical Research Council project looking at longitudinal outcomes in children exposed to trauma in South Africa,
  • An Economic and Social Research Council funded UK & ROI network project called Mood Movement focused on new and emerging technologies to support young peoples mental health, 
  • A project funded by the Royal British Legion focused on mental health help seeking in military veterans,
  • A project focused on PTSD in Colombia funded by UKRI aiming to develop a biopsychosocial model of PTSD for those exposed to Armed conflict,
  • A number of projects funded by Forces in Mind Trust including a NI Veterans Mental Health and Wellbeing project,
  • The UK Veteran Family Project,
  • The Veterans Gambling Participation project,  
  • An RCT called the PTSD Experimental Treatment Trial Study.

Cherie is also the scientific lead for mental health on two prestigious UKRI funded research projects which focus on COVID19 recovery in the UK:

  • The COVID19 Clinical Neuroscience project 
  • The PHOSP COVID19 Study 

Further to this Cherie is the prinical investigator on the COVID19 Psychological Wellbeing Study which has been conducted with over 2000 residents of the UK during the first months of COVID19 lockdown in 2020. Several academic outputs have been published and many more are in preperation. 

Research Awards:

Professor Armour is a past recipient for several research award including the Ulster University Distinguished Research Fellowship, The Youngs Minds in Psychotraumatology research excellence award for the European Society of Traumatic Stress Studies, and the Chaim Danieli Young Professional Award for excellence in research in traumatic stress studies, the Lord Ashcroft Research Award for innovation in the conduct of research and the potential for future impact.

Discipline and Research Leadership Positions: 

Cherie holds several leadership positions in the field of traumatic stress studies. Cherie is the immediate past President of the UK Psychological Trauma Society and remains on the board as the Chair of the European Society for Traumatic Stress Studies conference. Cherie is also on the board of Directors of the International Society of Traumatic Stress Studies. Cherie also holds a number of editorial positions on prestigious journals such as the Journal of Traumatic Stress Studies and Trauma, Research, Practice and Policy. Cherie is also a long-standing Associate Editor of the European Journal of Psychotraumatolgy.

Cherie is also a member of the NI Victims Comissioners Sexaul Abuse Advisory panel, The NI Royal British Legions Advisory Panel, The CONTACT research subgroup of COBSEO, and Forces in Mind Trust Mental Health Research prioritisation comittee. 


Cherie is the module convenor of PSY7093 ‘Real World Applications of Psychology’ on the MSc in Applied Psychological Sciences (BPS Conversion Course) and on an extremely popular UG final year options module, PSY3131 ‘Forensic Psychology & Crime’. She also teaches a series of 8 lectures focused on Psychological Trauma and Forensic Psychology on PSY1010 ‘The Psychology of Everyday Life’.

Research Supervision:

Cherie also supervises MSc research dissertation students on the Applied Psychological Sciences (BPS Conversion) Course, Doctorial students on the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Course and UG students on the BSC Psychology course.

Cherie has an extensive track record of sucessful supervisoon of PhD researcher and currently supervises the following students:

Current PHD students:

  • Rian Delaney 
  • Micheala McIlvenna
  • Katie McGaughey 
  • Megan Reynolds
  • Rian Delaney

Recently graduated PHD students:

  • Kenneth Ross
  • Catherine Hitch
  • Chandril Gosh
  • Martin Robinson
  • Susan Lagdon
  • Shelly Fletcher
  • Jana Ross
  • Rhonda Burns

Administrative Roles:

Professor Armour hold a number of administraitve roles at QUB as follows;

  • Director of Research - School of Psychology (Oct 2021- present)
  • Psychology Research Excellence Framework Champion (2021-REF submission)
  • Elected member of Academic Council (Oct 2021-Sept 2025)
  • Director of the Research Centre for Stress Trauma and Related Conditions (STARC)
  • Northern Ireland / QUB Lead for the NIHR Mental Health Translational Research Collaboration (MH-TRC -  (https://www.nihr.ac.uk/explore-nihr/support/mental-health-trc.htm)  

Upcoming International Meeting:

Professor Armour will host the European Society for Traumatic Stress Studies conference in Belfast in June 2023 which is a bi-annual, multi-disciplinary, internationally recognised, conference of around 850 delegates from across the globe. Delegates come together to speak about the most recent innovations in research and practice in the psychotraumatology field.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 10 - Reduced Inequalities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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