Lecturer

BA(Hons) GradDipPsychSci (PhD and GradCertHigherEd Candidate)

Sasha Davies is a lecturer in the Graduate Diploma of Psychology Sciences program and is the unit co-ordinator for PSC401 and PSC404. She is also a final-year PhD candidate in the field of cognitive psychology.

Sasha’s current research applies a mixed-method approach using both psychophysiological and behavioural cognitive tasks to investigate if and when pregnancy causes subtle changes in the neural indices of executive functioning. In 2018, Sasha was the lead author of a key meta-analysis examining the relationship between pregnancy and cognitive decline (i.e., "baby brain”). Her research was viewed by an estimated audience of 14.4 million people and earned approximately $2.25 million in equivalent advertising space in the Australian and New Zealand regions alone. Sasha’s research was also shortlisted for the Medical Journal of Australia’s 2018 MDA National Prize for Excellence in Medical Research and continues to be globally recognised. Sasha’s broader research interests include using neurocognitive techniques to examine the role executive functions may play in health outcomes amongst women, mothers, fathers, and their babies. More information about her current research can be found at www.babybrainresearch.com.

Sasha is also a deeply passionate educator. She has taught at all undergraduate and graduate psychology levels since 2015 and strives to apply social constructivist pedagogical approaches to design inclusive, collaborative, and innovative programs of study. Sasha is currently studying the Graduate Certificate of Higher Educating (Teaching and Learning) and will be eligible for membership into Fellow of the Higher Education Academy upon completion.

Expertise

Cognitive psychology, neuroscience, health behaviour, perinatal cognition.

Research Interests

  • Sasha Davies is primarily interested in exploring the impact of pregnancy on cognitive performance and the brain.
  • Sasha’s secondary research interests include understanding the role of executive functions in health outcomes including weight management and addiction.

Recent Publications and Presentations 

  • Rachele, J. N., Sugiyama, T., Davies, S. J., Loh, V. H., Turrell, G., Carver, A., & Cerin, E. (2019). Neighbourhood built environment and physical function among mid-to-older aged adults: a systematic review. Health & Place58, 102137.
  • Davies, S. J., Lum, J. A., Skouteris, H., Byrne, L. K., & Hayden, M. J. (2018). Cognitive impairment during pregnancy: a meta‐Medical Journal of Australia208(1), 35-40.