Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


Sara Tofiq

My PhD Title: Is there an association between childhood exposure to green space and adolescent mental wellbeing? A mixed methods study

Supervisor: Professor Yvonne Kelly, Dr Rebecca Lacey, Dr Anne Peasey, Professor Nick Tyler

Lay summary:

My research will be exploring the relationship between green spaces and mental wellbeing in children and adolescents. I am interested in looking at the longitudinal association between childhood green space and mental wellbeing measures in adolescence. A life course approach to this question adds a unique dimension and I will attempt to explore the cumulative exposure of green space over time as well as potential sensitive periods. A second part of my research will explore why children/adolescents may or may not use green spaces such as parks and whether there are any features of green spaces that may encourage them to visit green spaces. 

My Background

Living in an ethnically diverse city such as London, I became interested in studying people and behaviour which led me to completing a bachelors in Psychology. I was interested in exploring the social determinants of health in society so I furthered my interests by a masters in Social Epidemiology where I explored the social determinants to health and disease, looking at dimensions of inequality, global health, and taking extensive statistics modules to aid my research skills. I am interested in leading research projects on public health, ethnic differences in health and mental health, inequalities in health. I like to use mixed methods approach using both quantitative research methods as well as qualitative methods allowing me to ask ‘why’ questions in addition to collecting and using empirical data.   


BSc Psychology – University College London (2017)

MSc Social Epidemiology: Health and Society – University College London (2019) 

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