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Journal of Social Sciences

Mission Statement: To promote high-quality research for social sciences researchers at any stage of their careers through a supportive process.

Journal of Social Sciences banner image

About the Journal

The Arden Journal of Social Sciences (AJSS) is a cross conceptual interdisciplinary endeavour to promote high quality research from social sciences researchers from around the world. Its format is online-only and open access, promoting access for people from all walks of life. The journal welcomes papers from early career academics and students.

As part of supporting and encouraging early career researchers to publish their findings, our Arden Journal of Social Sciences team hosts several online sessions covering various stages of research development, such as, [but not limited to] Writing for publication, The peer review process and responding to the reviewer feedback. Ethics in manuscript preparation, Writing for research practice, Engaging in advocacy and impacting on public policy. AJSS is a vital resource for academics, students, professionals and researchers in the areas of Psychology, Criminology, Policing and Law. Its interdisciplinary focus means it is also relevant to other disciplines, such as Sociology. The Journal welcomes submissions on a variety of social sciences topics.

The Arden Journal of Social Sciences strives to be as inclusive as possible in its content, with the goal of publishing the best work currently being done in the social sciences. The two key criteria used to appraise articles submitted for publication are: the extent to which the article adds new knowledge to our understanding of the subject area; and the overall quality of the argument and its presentation.

The double-blinded peer review structure benefits f rom a network of experienced national and international researchers. We understand that publishing high quality research can, at times, feel daunting and competitive. Therefore, we strive to always provide kind feedback, regardless of the outcome of the peer review process. We also welcome suggestions on how we can become more progressive, accessible, resourceful and kinder at every stage of your journey with us.

We will welcome submissions from students of any level, and the journal editors encourage work that pushes the boundaries of critical and creative modes.

Our key values

The Arden Journal of Social sciences will be underpinned by a set of guiding values. These include an emphasis on open scholarship. Thus, knowledge gained from academic research will be made openly available as soon as possible.

The broader aim is to break down barriers to knowledge and make access as inclusive as possible. Specific benefits of our open scholarship approach include:

  • Authors will enjoy more visibility for their work as outputs are not restricted by paywalls and other barriers.
  • Students will face no barriers to accessing materials that help them.
  • Enhancement of career opportunities.
  • Wider research impact as more people will be able read and utilise research e.g., practitioners and policy makers

Quality & scope

This journal will publish high quality research within each discipline represented in the faculty of social sciences. To enhance quality and scope, we will pursue editorial leadership, authorship and, readership from around the world.

  • Dr Mvikeli Ncube
  • Dr Dean Marshall
  • Dr Cristiana Cardoso
  • Rach Strzelecki
  • Dr Elena Gualco
  • Dr Penny Hyams
  • Marie Chellingsworth
  • Dr Nikky Ezerioha
Dr Ncube

Dr Mvikeli Ncube

Senior Lecturer


I am a Chartered Psychologist, Researcher, Author and Senior lecturer based at Arden University in the UK.

I serve in the editorial boards of two UK based international journals; the Annual Review of Critical Psychology and the Journal for Gender Studies.

I undertake research that seeks to transform psychology into an emancipatory, radical, social-justice seeking and status-quo-resisting approach that understands psychological issues as taking place in specific political-economic or culturalhistorical contexts.

My work alerts to the limitations of mainstream research in the discipline and draws extensively on critical theory.

I received my PhD from the University of East London. My expertise, research and teaching interests are in: [Critical] social psychology, Qualitative Research methods, cultural psychology and Decoloniality.

Salima Murji

Dr Salima Murji

Currently employed as a Lecturer in the School of Criminal Justice at Arden University, I am responsible for delivering modules across Sociology and Criminology undergraduate degree programmes through distance learning and blended learning delivery modes. I am Module leader for several core modules taken by students on campus and online. Additionally serve in a line management capacity overseeing Associate Lecturers based at the Birmingham study centre. I am an experienced lecturer of Social Science, teaching this from GSCE to degree. I initiated and orchestrated an annual Undergraduate Dissertation Conference at University Centre Peterborough for final-year students across multiple disciplines, including Criminology, Psychosocial, Sociology, Public Services, and English Literature. The conference aimed to foster peer support, feedback, and interdisciplinary insight by providing a platform for students to present their dissertation ideas and progress. Additionally, the event focused on enhancing presentation and communication skills, preparing participants for postgraduate studies and professional careers.


Dr Cristiana Cardoso

Senior Lecturer


Cristiana Cardoso is a Senior Lecturer in Criminology and Programme Caretaker at Arden University. She holds a PhD in Criminology and her current research focus on ways to enhance community-based services for people who have a sexual attraction to minors, as well as those who are at risk of and/or have perpetrated sexual abuse against children.

Cristiana has also conducted research on public perceptions of people who commit crimes, the assessment of women who committed sexual offences, the role of vehicle repair workshops in car insurance fraud, and evaluated services aimed at reducing the impact of imprisonment and improving reintegration in the community.

Cristiana is an editor for the Arden Journal of Social Sciences and has accrued vast experience in the higher education industry through designing and leading several criminology-related modules and programmes.

She currently manages various projects and liaises closely with external organisations to develop applied learning opportunities for students and help organisations achieve their research aims.

Rach Strzelecki

Rach Strzelecki

Head of School - Investigation, Security and Defence


Rach Strzelecki started her career as a crime and intelligence analyst for Cleveland Police working on several major investigations including human trafficking, vulnerable missing persons, drugs, and suspicious deaths.

In 2006, she started guest lecturing for Teesside University in crime analytics, intelligence, and forensic investigation before securing a permanent role as a lecturer in policing. Rach has also worked at University of Wolverhampton, Interactive Pro, and more recently Buckinghamshire College Group as an advanced practitioner leading on protective services and forensic and criminal investigation programmes.

Her research has predominantly related to sexual offences and paedophilia; however, her publications have been within the field of terrorism, police and forensic investigations and online teaching and learning.


Dr Elena Gualco

Senior Lecturer


Dr Elena Gualco is Senior Lecturer and Programme Team Leader in Law at Arden University. 

Prior to joining Arden, Elena worked at the University of Bedfordshire (UK) as Lecturer and then Senior Lecturer in Law, and at the University of Genoa (Italy) as Teaching and Research Fellow.

Since the start of her PhD, Elena has been researching into International and European Union law, particularly focusing on the protection and enforcement of human rights within the EU and ECHR legal systems. Among Elena’s further roles, she is currently member of the Editorial Committee of Arden Journal of Social Sciences, as well as of BlogDUE (Blog of the Italian Association of European Union Law Scholars).

Elena's current research themes include: i) the effectiveness of equality within the European Union; ii) the viability of the EU and UK asylum systems in light of human rights protection; iii)- The promotion of human rights protections via the enhancement of the EU citizenship.


Dr Penny Hyams

I am a Lecturer, Author and Researcher based at Arden University in the United Kingdom.

I received my PhD in Psychology from Surrey University in 2007.  I have also been awarded a University of London Masters’ Degree in Sociology with Qualitative Research Methods, and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Digital Pedagogies, so I bring multi-disciplinary perspectives to this role.

My doctoral and post-doctoral research explored the vocal and non-vocal organisation of social interaction involving Autistic children using Conversation Analysis, identifying the resources they bought to managing social interactions with familiar adults.

I am committed to promoting Equality, Diversity & Inclusion in research and teaching. I seek to promote social justice and inclusion via positive representations of often-marginalised populations, such as those with severe learning difficulties or other neurodivergent cognition.

My teaching specialisms centre upon Developmental Psychology, Social Psychology, Educational Psychology, Neurodiversity and Qualitative Research Methods.


Marie Chellingsworth

Marie Chellingsworth is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology and Cognitive Behavioural Therapist. She has worked in a range of national and international roles in mental health and the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme and CBT, both in clinical and academic leadership positions. She has developed a large range of national curricula used in the IAPT programme and authored a wide range of digital health and CBT programmes, self-help books and educational materials for people with anxiety disorders, depression, insomnia, IBS and other health conditions.  Prior to Arden Marie was Clinical Director of a large national mental health and therapy provider and Executive Director of Evidence Based Programmes at UEA. Her research interests include CBT training, Low Intensity CBT and guided self-help interventions, readability and health literacy, digital health and internet interventions and behavioural competence skills transfer from training into workplace behaviours and patient outcomes.  


Dr Nikky Ezerioha

Dr Nikky joined Arden University in September 2017 as one of the pioneer blended learning Law Lecturers. She began her teaching career at Staffordshire University.

She is a Barrister (non-practising) and a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. She has particular interest in Family Law. Her main research interests are in the areas of unregistered Muslim marriages, marriages of convenience, forced marriages, prenuptial agreements, and cohabitation in the UK. She is also interested in socio-legal research, legal pluralism, multiculturalism, and critical race theory.

Nikky holds a PhD in Family Law, a PGCert in Research Methods, an LLM in International Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation & a Bachelor of Laws LLB (Hons) degree. She is a Progression Tutor, helping students with their progression and providing support across the LLB programme. She is also a Module Leader and designed the materials in relation to Contract Law.

Nikky has taught and continues to teach a wide range of subjects including Family Law, Equity, Trust and Wills, Contract Law, Tort Law, Property Law, Criminal Law, Law of Evidence, Civil Liberties in Practice, Constitutional & Administrative Law and EU Law. She is happy to supervise research dissertations in the areas of Family, Child, and Contract Law.

Author Submission instructions

Early career academics, researchers, post and undergraduate students on any programme in the Faculty of Social Sciences [School of Psychology, Criminal Justice, Law and Investigation, Security and Defence] are invited to submit their research, provided it fulfils all criteria below.

While we are very happy to publish papers produced by students as part of their programme of study, a consideration to submit to the Journal should be taken as an opportunity to revise and
develop the work.

This could be a final year dissertation, a topic that particularly took your interest in one of the modules or even a piece of work that you did not quite get a good mark for, a paper that was rejected by another journal, this could be an opportunity to implement the feedback given and submit for publication.

Please ensure your submission meets the Journal’s strict
guidelines for accepting scholarly Abstracts and papers.


Your abstract should include:

  • Title of the paper
  • An introductory statement that outlines the background and significance of the study.
  • A succinct description of the basic methodology, methods and philosophy of the research.
  • A clear indication of the major findings and implications of the study.
  • A concluding statement
  • Five key words given in alphabetical order.
  • Do not include any references or figures.
  • The abstract must be written in third person.
  • Do not exceed 250 words

Length: 2000- 4000 words, excluding the abstract and
reference list.


Microsoft Word. 1.5 line spacing written in Geogia font 12


Harvard & APA referencing style, ending with a complete list of references cited.