Top QMU student Marta is honoured

Marta Isibor is recognised as top psychology graduate
Marta Isibor is recognised as top psychology graduate
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A new graduate from Edinburgh has been recognised by Queen Margaret University for her excellent performance during her psychology degree.

Marta Isibor, who is is originally from Poland, graduated from QMU with a BSc (Hons) Psychology. Her efforts throughout her degree were recognised by the British Psychological Society when she was presented with the Society’s Undergraduate Award 2017 for achieving the highest overall scores on her degree programme.

This special commendation is awarded once a year to QMU’s top performing final year psychology student.

Marta, 32, who has lived in Scotland for ten years, has juggled significant family responsibilities while studying for her degree. She is a busy mother of two young boys.

In addition to the British Psychological Society award, Marta also gained first prize in the Edinburgh University Neurological Society National Conference essay competition for her work on the contribution of psychology to present understanding of schizophrenia. The article has since been published in the Cambridge Medicine Journal.

She has also won first prize poster presentation award at the Queen Margaret University first undergraduate psychology and sociology conference. The poster illustrated her dissertation research study.

Discussing her work, she said: “I used my dissertation to study skin picking disorder, which is a condition affecting 1.5% – 5.4% of the population. Compulsive skin picking, known as CSP, is characterised by the repetitive picking of the skin which ultimately causes damage and distress.

“CSP is classified under obsessive-compulsive and related disorders and is often repetitive and ritualistic. I was really interested in studying this area as the condition is so under researched and the people who are affected are really struggling.”

Marta, who lives in Niddrie, added: “I’m now really enthusiastic about further developing this research at master’s level.”

The abstract of the work has been published in the Frontiers of Psychiatry journal, landing Marta her second academic publication as an undergraduate.

Marta is currently working in the Royal Edinburgh Hospital as an honorary assistant psychologist but is keen to return to QMU to do a masters in research.

Stephen Darling, senior lecturer in psychology, was Marta’s personal academic tutor. He said: “Marta’s success deserves celebration - she has overcome many obstacles to emerge with a highly impressive final degree.

“I am delighted she intends to stay within the area of psychology, and in a world where we have so many crucial issues with regard to mental health, I believe she will go on to make a real difference.”