Michael initially studied experimental psychology at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, then medicine at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge, where he was awarded the Ralph Noble prize for his MD thesis. He returned to Oxford to train in Psychiatry and became Clinical Tutor in the University Department. In 1997 he moved to Edinburgh where he was awarded a personal research chair in Psychological Medicine. He took up his current posts in Oxford in September 2011.
His research aims to understand the psychological aspects of medical conditions, to develop psychological treatments that can improve the lives of patients and to evaluate these in rigorous clinical trials. He was awarded “Psychiatric Academic of the Year” in 2009 and “Psychiatrist of the Year” in 2014 by the UK Royal College of Psychiatrists.