Image of Dr Kirsty Alderson

Dr Kirsty Alderson

School of Psychology

Faculty of Health

Kirsty is a Chartered and Registered Forensic Psychologist and a BPS stage 2 supervisor (RAPPS approved). Her career began in the Prison Service, where she was involved in delivering drug treatment and sex offender interventions, as well as conducting forensic risk assessments and attending Parole Board Hearings. She has worked in a mental health rehabilitation hospital for women and a therapeutic organisation for adolescents and adults with a range of forensic issues, including aggression and harmful sexual behaviour. Many of her clients have experienced childhood adversity and present with trauma. Kirsty is trained in Eye Movement, Desensitisation and Reprocessing (EMDR) therapy. She also has level 2 accreditation in Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT). Currently, Kirsty works for an organisation that supports people with addiction to substances and alcohol. Her role involves delivering a range of interventions to support service users in their recovery. She also assists the staff team through providing psychological consultation, reflective practice and training.

Kirsty completed her PhD in 2020, on the topic of risk and vulnerability factors for child sexual exploitation and poly-victimisation. Her research interests relate to childhood adversity, resilience, and wellbeing, with the aim of improving outcomes for survivors of adversity. She is also interested in conducting research that relates to addiction recovery. Kirsty co-leads and delivers on the MSc in Forensic and Investigative Psychology, which is a BPS accredited Stage 1 course.


University of Liverpool, United Kingdom, BSc in Psychology & Neuroscience
Manchester Metropolitan University, United Kingdom, MSc in Forensic Psychology
University of Central Lancashire, United Kingdom, PhD


British Psychological Society, United Kingdom, CPsychol

Academic appointments

Lecturer in Forensic Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, 2021 - present

Journal article

Alderson K, Ireland CA, Khan R, Ireland JL, Lewis M. 2022. Child sexual exploitation, poly-victimisation and resilience Journal of Criminological Research, Policy and Practice, 8 :53-74 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Alderson K, Ireland CA. 2020. Child Sexual Exploitation: Definition and the importance of language Abuse: An International Impact Journal, 1 DOI Publisher Url Public Url

Alderson KA. 2016. Child sexual exploitation Journal of Forensic Practice, 18 :292-295 DOI Publisher Url

Ireland CA, Alderson K, Ireland JL. 2015. Sexual Exploitation in Children: Nature, Prevalence, and Distinguishing Characteristics Reported in Young Adulthood Journal of Aggression, Maltreatment & Trauma, 24 :603-622 DOI Publisher Url