Associate Professor Ryan Balzan

Associate Professor

College of Education, Psychology and Social Work

place Social Sciences North (379)
GPO Box 2100, Adelaide 5001, South Australia

I am Director of the Cognitive Neuropsychiatry Laboratory, a thriving research collective within the Flinders Institute for Mental Health and Wellbeing. My lab is dedicated to improving our understanding of the psychological processes that underlie mental illness (e.g., how biased thinking styles contribute to the formation and maintenance of psychosis, eating disorders, depression). We investigate the cognitive factors responsible for problematic beliefs characteristic of mental disorders (e.g., persecutory delusions in schizophrenia, overvalued ideas in anorexia nervosa), and, more recently, conspiracy and pseudoscience beliefs.

We are also actively engaged in the development and evaluation of novel psychological interventions to assist people with these conditions (e.g., metacognitive training). We focus on brief, online digital psychological interventions that aim to (i) reduce the symptoms and severity of mental illness and (ii) prevent their onset within `at-risk' populations. We have also developed online modules designed to educate the public about harmful misinformation that fuels conspiracy beliefs (e.g., “vaccination is harmful”).


BPsych (Hons), MPsych (Clin), PhD

Clinical Psychologist (PSY0001891984)

Honours, awards and grants
  • Academic Award for Integrity and Excellence (Flinders)
  • Innovation in Learning and Teaching Award (Flinders)
  • South Australian Young Tall Poppy Award
  • Australian Psychological Society Early Career Research Award
  • Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy Student Scholarship
  • Vice-Chancellor's Award for Early Career Researchers (Flinders)
  • Frank Dalziel Prize for Best PhD, School of Psychology (University of Adelaide)
  • University of Adelaide Medal
  • Australian Psychological Society (APS) Prize in Honours Psychology
  • Max and Bette Mendelson Foundation Scholarship
Key responsibilities
Teaching interests

- Belief formation

- Clinical psychology

- Counselling

- Human development

- Delusions

- Psychosis

- Eating disorders

- Pseudoscience

Topic coordinator
PSYC3012 Interviewing and Counselling
PSYC9200A Research Project
PSYC9009 Psychological Disorders and Psychopharmacology
PSYC9211 Applied Research for Practitioners
Topic lecturer
PSYC9005 Advanced Applications of Evidence-Based Therapies
Supervisory interests
Clinical psychology
Cognitive biases