Dr Rita F. de Oliveira

Rita F De Oliviera

Senior Lecturer in Sport and Exercise Science

  • Email:
  • Telephone:
    020 7815 7959
  • School/Division:
    Applied Sciences / Human Sciences

Dr Rita F. de Oliveira's background is in human movement science and psychology. She studied sport sciences as an undergraduate and sport psychology as a graduate. After that, her doctoral thesis was on the visual perception in basketball shooting and her post-doctoral work focused on developmental disorders of coordination, embodied cognition, driving, and performance optimisation.

She has experience in the supervision of undergraduate and postgraduate students, collaborative work in papers and grants, and engagement with external partners.

Rita's teaching philosophy includes being at the leading edge when it comes to knowledge, as well as trying to bring students into contact with the most recent findings in the field.

Her teaching is about entertaining with substance. By this, she means that effective learning occurs when students are engaged, and therefore one of her main responsibilities is to inspire students to go in search for more. Students who engage with lectures and assignments are on their way to becoming knowledgeable and confident professionals.

Dr de Oliveira's areas of teaching are:

  • Sport and Exercise Science
  • Sport Coaching and Analysis
  • Visual perception and action
  • Motor learning and development
  • Sport and exercise psychology
  • Writing in English for publication

Rita's areas of research are:

  • Visual perception and action
  • Motor learning and development
  • Sport and exercise psychology

Her approach to scientific inquiry is based on grounded empirical investigation with the use of neurophysiological evidence across species and systems. The focus of her research is on the functional link between human visual perception and the action systems. Specifically, she investigates the temporal and spatial aspects of the information sources that guide the learning and control of complex perceptual-motor skills. This work has been conducted with people with developmental coordination disorder (DCD), typical populations, and professional athletes.


Selected highlights

  • de Oliveira, R.F., Oudejans, R.R.D. & Beek, P.J. (2009). Experts appear to use angle of elevation information in basketball shooting. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance. 35, 3, 750-761. DoI: 10.1037/a0013709.
  • de Oliveira, R.F. & Wann, J.P. (2010). Integration of dynamic information for visuomotor control in young adults with developmental coordination disorder. Experimental Brain Research. 205, 3, 387-394. DoI: 10.1007/s00221-010-2373-5.
  • de Oliveira, R.F. & Wann, J.P. (2011). Driving skills of young adults with developmental coordination disorder: Regulating speed and coping with distraction. Research in Developmental Disabilities. 32, 4, 1301-1308. DoI: 10.1016/j.ridd.2010.12.021.
  • Raab M., de Oliveira, R.F., Schorer, J. & Hegele, M. (2013). Adaptation of motor control strategies to environmental cues in a pursuit-tracking task. Experimental Brain Research. 174, Online. DoI: 10.1007/S00221-013-3546-9.
  • British Psychological Society (BPS)
  • European Federation of Sport and Exercise Psychology (FEPSAC)
  • Portuguese Association of Researchers and Students in the UK (PARSUK)
  • European Network of Young Specialists in Sport psychology (ENYSSP)
  • European College of Sport Sciences (ECSS)

Dr Oliveira is a sport and exercise psychology consultant with experience in:

  • Sport athletes and coaches
  • Sport industry media (eg Men's Health)
  • App development (eg MyType series)
  • Personal coaching for public academic presentations
  • Continuous professional development short courses
  • Volunteer with PARSUK's "schools project"
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