A Day on High Performance 2019-07-28T16:34:28+03:00
A Day on High Performance- The Weekend University

A full day of talks exploring how to maximise your brain’s potential using cutting-edge insights from neuroscience and psychology. 

It’s no exaggeration to say that the human brain is an incredible organ.

With 86 billion neurons, and enough synaptic wiring to wrap around planet earth four times, it’s the most complex structure in the known universe. 

But are you using yours to its full potential?

Or could increasing your understanding of it, and how it functions, help you operate at a much higher level?

In this series of talks, leading neuroscientists and psychologists, will share evidence based insights you can use to rewire your brain to work in a higher gear.

You’ll learn:

  • The Neuroscience of High Performance; proven strategies from psychology and neuroscience to reach elite levels of performance in your chosen field
  • The Psychology of Motivation; the latest research on how to harness, cultivate and sustain motivation to achieve what you really want in life, and realise more of your potential
  • The Neuroscience of Productivity; how to overcome procrastination, boost memory, increase your attention span, and get more done in less time

You’ll learn how these insights can help you maximise the potential of your own mind, and also how to help others do the same.

Event Schedule:

  • 10:00am – 12:00pm: The Neuroscience of High Performance – Prof Vincent Walsh, PhD 
  • 12:00 – 1:00pm: Lunch break
  • 1:00pm – 3:00pm: The Neuroscience of Productivity- Dr Gabija Toleikyte, PhD
  • 3:00pm – 3:15pm: Afternoon break
  • 3:15pm – 5:00pm: The Psychology of Motivation – Dr Raj Persaud
  • 5:20pm – 7:00pm: Attendee Social & Networking (Optional)

Full Day Pass: £46.75 + booking fee

Student Pass: £24.75 + booking fee


Sun 28 July 2019
09:30 – 17:00 BST

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28/07/2019 09:30 AM
28/07/2019 5:00 PM
Birkbeck, University of London, London
The Weekend University – A Day On High Performance

Birkbeck, University of London,
Malet Street, Bloomsbury,
London, WC1E 7HX

Lectures & Speakers

The Neuroscience of High Performance – Professor Vincent Walsh, PhD

Everybody wants to get better at something. Some even aspire to elite level performance. Here’s the good news: psychology and neuroscience have worked out proven ways you can improve and reach elite levels of performance in your chosen field. Once you have a skill, the next thing to worry about is being able to do it under pressure. More good news: there’s also a science of how to perform optimally under pressure. 

Now the bad news: there is no ‘neuro-magic pill’ to high level performance. The science will be useful to you, but only if you’re willing to apply what you learn.

Reading Recommendations:

Vincent Walsh - The Weekend University

Vincent Walsh is Professor of Human Brain Research at University College London. He leads the Applied Cognitive Neuroscience (ACN) research group which aims to use neuroscience to improve high performance in sport, high pressure decision making and advancing human brain stimulation in cognition and health.

For the past decade he has focused on applying his knowledge to the real world. In particular, he has taken a special interest in elite performance (working with football clubs, international rugby and Team GB squads, as well as businesses and the military), creativity (working with concert musicians, artists and business professionals), and sleep (working with sleepdeep, and focusing on sleep and learning, sleep and the menopause, and the role of sleep in learning and creativity). You can follow him on twitter @vinwalsh.

The Neuroscience of Productivity – Dr Gabija Toleikyte, PhD

Your brain is constantly changing. Did you have much better memory as a child? Were you able to concentrate on reading a book for a long period of time whereas now you can barely finish a full article on the Internet? Do you tend to procrastinate and feel unable to stop no matter how hard you try? Were you once a much more optimistic person, but now you struggle to feel happy about your life?

These are just a few examples of how your brain changes based on what it experiences most often (scientists call this “activity-dependent brain plasticity”). In this talk, neuroscientist Dr. Gabija Toleikyte will explain the mechanisms underlying high performance, memory formation, attention and productivity. You’ll learn how you can use these insights to be more efficient and effective at work, boost your memory, overcome procrastination, and optimise your cognitive functioning to get more done with less effort and in less time.

Reading Recommendations:

Dr Gabija Toleikyte - The Weekend University

Dr Gabija Toleikyte is a neuroscientist and business coach. She completed her PhD at the University College London on the neuronal basis of memory and navigation. During her PhD, Gabija acquired a business coach qualification and worked as an internal coach at UCL for senior academics and administrative staff.

Combining coaching experience with neuroscience insights allows Gabija to develop unique seminars, where solid neuroscience research is presented in the context of the topics relevant for individuals and organisations. You can keep up to date with Gabija’s work on her website: www.mybrainduringtheday.com

The Psychology of Motivation – Dr Raj Persaud

Strong motivation has to be part of any formula for achieving what you want in life. In this talk, Dr Raj Persaud will reveal the surprising science at the heart of motivation that can take you across the finishing line – no matter where that might be. To be compelled by a forceful drive is vital for a life worth living. It’s the key tool you need for achieving your goals. But beyond that, above all its material benefits, motivation is advantageous because at a spiritual or transcendent level, it brings real meaning to our lives.

However, motivation also has a dark side that can drive us to the deepest despair in the face of disappointment. The clinically depressed and suicidal are often the casualties of failed aspiration. Dr Persaud will examine this issue in the talk, and suggest ways of avoiding the pitfalls associated with a strong sense of being impelled forward. The key is to be in charge of your motivation, rather than for it to be in control of you.

So, motivation is clearly a psychological conundrum because on the one hand it can take us towards what is most meaningful to us in life, but on the other, it can plunge us into the abyss of hopelessness when we encounter setbacks. 

I contend in this talk that the answer to the conundrum won’t come from motivational gurus, but instead lies firmly in the scientific study of the psyche.

Reading Recommendations:

Dr Raj Persaud - The Weekend University

Dr Raj Persaud is a Consultant Psychiatrist who has worked at some of the leading teaching, research and clinical institutions in psychiatry in Europe and the USA, including; the Bethlem Royal and Maudsley NHS Hospitals in London, and the Institute of Psychiatry, University of London. He is a fellow of The University College London, and has been a Research Fellow at Johns Hopkins Hospital in the USA and the Institute of Neurology at Queens Square. 

Unusually for a psychiatrist, Dr Persaud also holds a degree in psychology has been awarded over 8 degrees and diplomas including a Masters in Statistics. He has been awarded the Royal College of Psychiatrists Research Medal, The Maudsley Hospital’s  Denis Hill Prize and the Osler Medal. 

He is the author of several bestselling books, including ‘The Mind: A User’s Guide’, ‘Staying Sane’, and ‘The Motivated Mind’.You can keep up to date with Dr Persaud’s work on his website: www.drrajpersaud.com 

What TWU attendees are saying:

  • 4 star review  Great initiative! For people that like myself are passionate about psychology but wouldn't commit to long term course or training it's a wonderful opportunity to listen to qualified professionals in the area in a relaxed atmosphere.

    thumb Carolina Abicair

    5 star review  Just attended my second Weekend University day of lectures at Birkbeck, this time on Memories, Dreams and Existentialism. A great mix of speakers, styles and content which left me wanting to go home and find out more about two out of the three subjects. Fantastic to see Emmy Van Deurzen in action - she's a bit of a heroine of mine! One tip would be to ask the audience to fill up the rows of seats before the start as inevitably some people arrive late (like I did) and it was all a bit chaotic at the back of the auditorium. There were empty seats near the walls but no way to get to them without having four or five people stand up.

    thumb Melanie Skeet

    4 star review  Great initiative. Eminent speakers, fascinating talks.

    thumb Jan Erik Paulden
  • 5 star review  Another amazing day of learning! Thank you Niall.

    thumb Myriam Hierons

    5 star review  I just wanted to say what a fabulous day it was on Sunday. The presenters were all highly engaging and the material fascinating. I am ever so grateful to have been able to attend and look forward to any future similar events with 'zest'!

    thumb Caroline Glasner

    5 star review  I thoroughly enjoyed the day. It was a well organized event with fantastic informative talks by knowledgeable and charismatic speakers. Looking forward to future events.

    thumb Glendale Leon
  • 5 star review  Great event, 3 fantastic lectures presented

    thumb Greg Cornthwaite

    5 star review  I found the 3 speakers to be extremely well prepared, professional, charismatic, authentic in their delivery of there content. They all had something to share. They were very clear on the "takeaways" which I found in important for such a long day. They all 3 were also very generious in spending time after their talk, to answer more 1-2-1 questions on the side of the room. Very generious. I look forward to future weekend university days.

    thumb Anthony Lee

    5 star review  Just to say that I was so impressed with the quality of the lectures today. It is rare to find that kind of substance, and I imagine you looked long and hard to choose. You are doing a great job. I will definitely come again and tell those I know who would be very interested.

    thumb Joan Hunt
  • 5 star review  I have attended lots of psychology workshops and would rate this organisation very highly. Interesting, engaging speakers and well run course at an affordable price. Well done Niall. You deserve to do very well

    thumb Joyce Kleinman

    5 star review  What an intense and heartening day, Jan 28th at Birkbeck U venue. Despite being crowded (testiment to the desire for these events and the calibre) we were comfortable enough to be riveted by the material for hours. I appreciated the free coffee, because the day was long for those like me who come from outside the city. I look forward to the slides being sent to fill out my notes. Fellow audients were warm and attending for a variety of reasons, and are the second fab reason to be there for the day.

    thumb Anne Perry

    5 star review  Just attended Scientific Behaviour Change - Ancient Wisdom & Modern Psychology and had the most fantastic, enlightening and inspiring day. All three speakers were at a tremendously high level and (to echo the reviewer below) the variety of approaches and theories around a single topic gave great insight. I've already booked for next month.

    thumb Kate Le Versha
  • 5 star review  Today's event was so good, I immediately booked for next one in February!?

    thumb Maya Kosova

    5 star review  The day of Psychology was really insightful, it has inspired me to start researching into all spectrums of mental health & psychology. Something I particularly liked about the day, was the contrast and variety of theories and approaches by each of the three speakers

    thumb Naomi Si An

    5 star review  Interesting lectures on a variety of areas of Psychology and well organised.

    thumb Daniel Drake
  • 5 star review  A really good mix of topics. I was engaged all day and i'm looking forward to the next one!

    thumb Suz Williams
TWU 100% Money Back Guarantee

The Weekend University seeks to guarantee an excellent learning experience. If you are not fully satisfied with the day, you will receive 100% of your money back, and we will cover the cost of your travel to and from the venue.


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