Iuliana gained her undergraduate degree in Psychology (2010) at Loughborough University, followed by a PhD in Behavioural Medicine (Loughborough University, 2014). Iuliana’s PhD work focused on the role of behavioural interventions for people with sleeping disorders (insomnia), and included a randomized controlled trial of physical activity and sleep quality of people with insomnia.

Following the completion of her PhD, Iuliana took up a Research Associate position with the Biomedical Research Unit (BRU) and, in 2016, she was appointed as a Lecturer in Psychology in the School, followed by Senior Lecturer in 2022. Iuliana contributes to teaching on the Psychology programme, leading the Clinical Psychology module and contributing on other undergraduate and postgraduate modules. Iuliana’s research activities are focused in the area of sleep behaviour and health, with a particular interest in insomnia disorder. 

Iuliana’s research interests in sleep behaviour and health are two-fold. First, investigating the association between insomnia symptoms, and health and performance outcomes in various populations; and then, using RCT methodology to investigate behavioural interventions to improve sleep and health outcomes in people with poor sleep quality. Current projects include the investigation of the role of insomnia processes in daytime performance and wellbeing in athletes; and associations between poor sleep quality, medication use and behavioural problems in secure mental health populations. 

  • Journal referee: International Journal of Behavioral Medicine, Chronobiology International, Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise
  • Professional membership: Sleep Research Society
  • Consultancy projects: British Athletics, Dreams

Featured publications

  • Hartescu, I., & Morgan, K. (2019). Regular physical activity and insomnia: An international perspective. Journal of sleep research28(2), e12745.
  • Hartescu, I., Morgan, K., & Stevinson, C. D. (2020). Psychomotor performance decrements following a successful physical activity intervention for insomnia. Behavioral sleep medicine18(3), 298-308.
  • Morgan, K., & Hartescu, I. (2019). Sleep duration and all-cause mortality: links to physical activity and prefrailty in a 27-year follow up of older adults in the UK. Sleep medicine54, 231-237.
  • Hartescu, I., Morgan, K., & Stevinson, C. D. (2015). Increased physical activity improves sleep and mood outcomes in inactive people with insomnia: a randomized controlled trial. Journal of sleep research, 24(5), 526-534. doi: 10.1111/jsr.12297
  • Hartescu, I., Morgan, K., & Stevinson, C. D. (2016). Sleep Quality and Recommended Levels of Physical Activity in Older People. Journal of Aging and Physical Activity, 24(2), 201-206. doi: 10.1123/japa.2014-0061
  • Benjamins, J., Migliorati, F., Dekker, K., Wassing, R., Moens, S., Van Someren, E., Hartescu, I., . . . Tesler, N. (2013). The sleep registry. An international online survey and cognitive test assessment tool and database for multivariate sleep and insomnia phenotyping. Sleep medicine, 14, e293-e294.