IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


IOE Undergraduate students win national awards for their work

25 August 2021

Congratulations to three of our students who have received prizes for their work on their Undergraduate programmes.

UCL Institute of Education Newsam Library

Bella (Psychology with Education BSc) won the British Psychological Society Undergraduate Award, which is awarded to the student who achieves the highest overall score in an accredited degree programme across 100 institutions accredited by the society. In addition to this, Bella won the IOE Faculty medal, which is given annually to the best final year undergraduate student in the faculty.

Meanwhile, Oluwanifemi and Haohao (both Social Sciences with Quantitative Methods BSc) received the Dissertation Prize 2021, which is open to undergraduates from social science disciplines at UK universities. The award celebrates outstanding undergraduate dissertations based on excellent reuse of data available through the UK Data Service.

Oluwanifemi’s project aimed to discover how fast-food density affects the likelihood of obesity, using data from the 1970 British Cohort Study (BCS70).

The findings suggest that individuals in areas with a high proportion of fast-food outlets have a much higher chance of experiencing obesity - even after adjusting for socioeconomic variables. Also, Oluwanifemi’s study suggested that the association became stronger during the period of lockdown restrictions. This study offers evidence that the environment plays a role in the rise of obesity and the disproportionate impact it has on poorer communities, suggesting effective solutions should centre on planning and regulation rather than individual choice campaigns.

Haohao’s dissertation was called ‘Family formation trajectory and its correlation with later-life health in England: A sequence analysis approach’. Using data from the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA), the findings suggest that individuals with different family formation trajectories have different later-life health. Those who married early, had two or three children, and then divorced appear to have poorer later-life health compared to those married with children. However, when examining the interaction between family formation trajectory and sex, Haohao’s study suggested divorced women who married late and did not have children fair better in their health outcomes than married women.

Evi Katsapi, Head of Undergraduate Provision at the IOE, said: “I would like to congratulate Bella, Oluwanifemi and Haohao on their achievements. We are all very proud of them and wish them all the best for their future endeavours. I would also like to thank their supervisors Dr Nicola Abbott, Professor George Ploubidis and Dr Maria Sironi for inspiring their students. These awards are testament of the quality of research and teaching taking place at UCL Institute of Education but also evidence of the successful partnership relationships between students and staff.”