Doctor James Collison

Doctor James Collison

ACA, Clinical and Professional Psychology,
Clinical Psychology (SSAP)


I joined Western Sydney University as a full-time lecturer in 2015, after completing my B. Psych (Hons), M. Psych (Clin), and PhD. My primary role sees me contribute to teaching and unit coordination in the Master of Professional Psychology and Master of Clinical Psychology, although I have also enjoyed a long history of sessional tutoring and lecturing in the Bachelor of Psychology program before that, stretching back to my very first class as a nervous tutor in 2007. I'm currently the Academic Course Advisor for Clinical and Professional Psychology and I teach three units - Psychological Interventions 1, Core Therapeutic Modalities, and Clinical Research Methods. If you’re interested in further study, email or There’s a lot of information out there, but there will always be questions and I’m here to help answer them.   

My research interests are diverse. It's probably most accurate to say I'm more interested in the process of research design, assessment, and measurement, than I am in any particular disorder of phenomenon. I find things like Body Dysmorphic Disorder and body image interesting, but I’ve also been lucky enough to be involved in projects that range from therapy dogs for student exam stress, the experience of eating disorders, burnout in emergency room nurses, social skills deficits in autism, and the relationship between sleep and mental health. A narrower focus is probably better in many regards, but there’s no satisfaction in chasing an interest that isn’t your own. Happiness is doing what you enjoy and I enjoy all kinds of stuff.

I currently practice at Headspace (Campbelltown), where I work with highly anxious and depressed teens, focusing on things like OCD, phobias, body image, and well, just the general difficulties of being a teenager. Whether your navigating schoolyard cliques, bullying, your sense of self or perhaps sexual orientation – it can all be tough when your young, so everyone can use support at times. We’re a bulk-billed service and the work is far from glamorous, but it is extremely rewarding. The great irony of our profession is that the people who needs help the most are those who are seriously unwell, and so can generally least afford to pay their therapist. It’s therefore an extreme privilege to be remunerated well enough in one job that making money in a second one is not a priority.

I also do some limited consultancy work psychologists and non-psychology professionals alike. I’ve previously given seminars on things like assessing body dysmorphic disorder, managing stress and burnout, and cognitive-behavioural formulation. Most recently I gave a four-part series of seminars to general practitioners (GP’s) on strategies for improving help-seeking and engagement among young people with mental health issues. If you’d like to discuss training or a school visit, please feel free to get in touch.

This information has been contributed by Doctor Collison.


  • MPsych University of Western Sydney
  • BPsych University of Western Sydney

Professional Memberships

  • Registered Psychologist with AHPRA (2010)
  • Endorsed Clinical Psychologist (2015)


  • Body Dysmorphic Disorder
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
  • Psychometrics and Clinical Research Methods (Quantitative and Qualitative)

Organisational Unit (School / Division)

  • Clinical Psychology (SSAP)


Phone: (02) 9772 6239
Location: 24.1.04

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Current Teaching Areas

  • 101814 Clinical Research Methods
  • B7637 Psychological Interventions 1
  • 102360 Core Therapeutic Modalities

Previous Teaching Areas

  • 101811 Psychological Assessment, 2015
  • 101420 Theory and Practice of Psychological Assessment and Intervention, 2015
  • 101681 Abnormal Psychology, 2015
  • 101814 Clinical Research Methods, 2015
  • 101681 Abnormal Psychology, 2016
  • 101814 Clinical Research Methods, 2016
  • 102359 Assessment: Psychological Practice, 2016
  • 102400 Assessment: Cognitive Functions, 2016
  • 102359 Assessment: Psychological Practice, 2017
  • 101814 Clinical Research Methods, 2017
  • 102360 Core Therapeutic Modalities, 2017
  • 101814 Clinical Research Methods, 2018
  • 102360 Core Therapeutic Modalities, 2018
  • 101213 Psychological Interventions 1, 2018


Journal Articles

  • Collison, J. and Mahlberg, J. (2019), 'Psychometric evaluation of the Body Image Concern Inventory in an undergraduate sample', Clinical Psychologist, vol 23, no 2 , pp 112 - 123.
  • Lewis, P., Feighan, S., Whitehead, L., Howie, V., Collison, J., O'Reilly, K., Wiese, M., Jaques, H., Robinson, S., Rogers, I. and Wilson, N. (2019), 'Demographic profile of nurses who work with people with intellectual and developmental disability in Australia', Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, vol 63, no 7 , pp 714 - 715.
  • Wilson, N., Feighan, S., Howie, V., Whitehead, L., Collison, J., O'Reilly, K., Wiese, M., Jaques, H., Robinson, S., Rogers, I. and Lewis, P. (2019), 'A review of the roles and practice domains of Australian nurses who work with people with intellectual and developmental disability', Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, vol 63, no 7 , pp 715 - 715.
  • Barnier, E. and Collison, J. (2019), 'Experimental induction of self-focused attention via mirror gazing : effects on body image, appraisals, body-focused shame, and self-esteem', Body Image, vol 30 , pp 150 - 158.
  • Collison, J. and Mahlberg, J. (2018), 'Factor analysis and psychometric validation of the Body Image Disturbance Questionnaire in an Australian undergraduate sample', Australian Psychologist, vol 53, no 3 , pp 195 - 202.
  • Oakes, A., Collison, J. and Milne-Home, J. (2016), 'Repetitive, safe, and automatic : the experience of appearance-related behaviours in body dysmorphic disorder', Australian Psychologist, vol 52, no 6 , pp 433 - 441.

I am an earler career researcher with interests in a broad range of research areas, including Body Dysmorphic Disorder and the Obsessive-Compulsive disorders, body image, and psychometric testing and scale development.


2016 - Office of Teaching and Learning Grant (Western Sydney University - $5,000)

2015 - Early Career Researcher grant (Western Sydney University - $6,500).

This information has been contributed by Doctor Collison.

Previous Projects

Title: A National Survey of Australian Nurses who Work with People With Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • Professional Association of Nurses in Developmental Disability, Australia
Western Researchers: Nathan Wilson, Peter Lewis, Michele Wiese, James Collison and Kate O'Reilly
Years: 2018-08-01 - 2019-07-31
ID: P00025154


Current Supervision

Thesis Title: The Effectiveness of a Short-term Psychosocial Therapy Intervention (PETA) for Patients with a Severe Mental Illness.
Field of Research:
Thesis Title: Stressors and Coping Strategies for Emergency Department Nurses in New South Wales of Australia
Field of Research:

Previous Supervision

Thesis Title: Investigating the Experience of Anger on an Obese Sample
Field of Research:

Western Sydney University

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Penrith NSW 2751

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