I am a social cognition researcher interested in how thoughts (memories, forecasts, values) shape current and expected emotions. I am interested in what makes future forecasts useful for motivating people and when they, instead, become intrusive and detrimental to performance. I currently investigate why and when mindfulness can equip one with a set of skills that help regulate emotions. I am also keen to understand what helps us act more in line with our internal norms of good or optimal behaviour: what helps us align our motivation and performance with our emotional states, our goals, or our values, and what consequences we are facing when that does not happen.

  • BSc (Hons), Clinical Psychology, Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca (Romania)               
  • MSc, Experimental Cognitive and Social Psychology, Université Grenoble Alpes (France)
  • PhD, Experimental Social Psychology, Université Grenoble Alpes (France)

Areas of Expertise

  • social psychology
  • social cognition
  • judgment and decision making
  • values
  • health behaviour change

Publications

  1. & Prefrontal Electrical Stimulation in Non-depressed Reduces Levels of Reported Negative Affects from Daily Stressors. Frontiers in Psychology 7
  2. & Development and Preliminary Evaluation of an Internet-Based Healthy Eating Program: Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Medical Internet Research 16(10), e231
  3. & Sensitivity to reward and punishment: Associations with diet, alcohol consumption, and smoking. Personality and Individual Differences 72
  4. & Work More, Then Feel More: The Influence of Effort on Affective Predictions. PLoS ONE 9(7), e101512
  5. & Values and behaviour. In Tobias Brosch and David Sander (Ed.), Handbook of Value:
 The Affective Sciences of Values and Valuation.. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

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Teaching

  • PS-M80 Generic Research Skills – Research Methods in Psychology

    The lectures included in this module give students the foundation skills necessary to practice research in psychology. It involves issues regarding designing and executing a research programme, and regarding interpretation and reporting of research results. The philosophical approach of this class is a focus on research practices that improve transparency and reproducibility. The class is built around the development of a research proposal that will cover the rationale and method of the MSc dissertation. Students¿ skills are assessed by the application of said research methods in a research proposal that will contain the rationale and the methods sections for the students¿ MSc dissertation.

  • PS-M81 Generic Research Skills – Cognitive Neuroscience

    The lectures included in this module give students the foundation skills necessary to practice research in psychology. It involves issues regarding designing and executing a research programme, and regarding interpretation and reporting of research results. The philosophical approach of this class is a focus on research practices that improve transparency and reproducibility. The class is built around the development of a research proposal that will cover the rationale and method of the MSc dissertation. Students¿ skills are assessed by the application of said research methods in a research proposal that will contain the rationale and the methods sections for the students¿ MSc dissertation.

  • PS-M82 Generic Research Skills – Abnormal and Clinical Psychology

    The lectures included in this module give students the foundation skills necessary to practice research in psychology. It involves issues regarding designing and executing a research programme, and the interpretation and reporting of research results. The philosophical approach of this class is a focus on research practices that improve transparency and reproducibility. The class is built around the development of a research proposal that will cover the rationale and method of the MSc dissertation.

  • PSY214 From Individuals to Society

    This module explores major theories and empirical issue in the areas of social psychology and individual differences. It focuses on the study of how individuals differ from each other (such as personality traits) and how individual and social factors affect behaviour (such as ethnocentrism, group performance and pro-social behaviour). Classical and contemporary theory and research relevant to a range of social psychological and individual difference issues are explored such as group behaviour, attitudes, and personality. Social psychology content is structured under the broad thematic umbrellas of intra-personal (individual-level) and inter-personal (group-level) processes. In exploring individual differences, the module looks at issues such as behavioural genetics, personality and intelligence. In examining the person in the social context, the module also explores individual motivation in the form of emotions and its function. The module addresses key questions such as `How do attitudes influence our behaviour?¿, `What is the contribution of nature vs. nurture to individual differences?¿, and `When are negative emotions beneficial?¿

  • PSY319 Final Year Independent Research Project

    Students conduct an independent research project under the supervision of a member of staff. The research topic is decided in conjunction with supervisors and Research topics. Students must obtain ethical approval, design, conduct, analyse and write up a piece of research in order to achieve Graduate Basis for Chartership with the British Psychological Society (BPS).

  • PSY324 From Individuals to Society

    This module explores major theories and empirical issue in the areas of social psychology and individual differences. It focuses on the study of how individuals differ from each other (such as personality traits) and how individual and social factors affect behaviour (such as ethnocentrism, group performance and pro-social behaviour). Classical and contemporary theory and research relevant to a range of social psychological and individual difference issues are explored such as group behaviour, attitudes and personality. Social psychology content is structured under the broad thematic umbrellas of intra-personal (individual-level) and inter-personal (group-level) processes. In exploring individual differences, the module looks at issues such as behavioural genetics, personality and intelligence. In examining the person in the social context, the module also explores individual motivation in the form of emotion and its function. The module addresses key questions such as `How do attitudes influence our behaviour?¿, `What is the contribution of nature vs. nurture to individual differences?¿, and `When are negative emotions beneficial?¿

  • PSY354 Behaviour Change: Health, Organisations and Advertising

    In recent years, commercial (businesses, advertising companies) and public sector organizations (healthcare providers, governments) have embraced various psychological techniques known as `behavioural insights¿ to implement behaviour change at various levels. But what makes behaviour change effective? How easy or hard is it to change behaviour within a population or an organization? And how does media portray causes of good and bad behaviour and solutions to change what needs to be changed? This class will discuss how theories of behaviour change have evolved: what differentiates models that have stood the test of empirical evidence and those that were `out-data-ed¿. It will examine what it means to achieve effective behaviour change in the domains of public health, organizational culture change, and consumer behaviour (advertising). The class will include practical exercises and case studies on how to design effective behaviour change interventions regarding public health issues or behaviour change interventions in the organizational domain.

Supervision

  • Understanding Speedy Driving Behaviour (current)

    Student name:
    MPhil
    Other supervisor: Dr Charles Musselwhite
  • Mindful Future Thinking: how mindfulness affects emotions and behaviours linked to thinking about the future (current)

    Student name:
    PhD
    Other supervisor: Prof Paul Bennett

Career History

Start Date End Date Position Held Location
2009 2012 Postdoctoral Research Associate Swansea University, Department of Psychology, UK
January 2009 July 2009 Research Assistant School of Psychology, Cardiff University, UK
February 2007 July 2007 Visiting Researcher Psychology Department, VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2007 2008 Teaching assistant Laboratoire InterUniversitaire de Psychologie, Université Grenoble Alpes, France
2005 2008 PhD student Laboratoire InterUniversitaire de Psychologie, Université Grenoble Alpes, France
2005 2006 Research Assistant Grenoble School of Management, France

External Responsibilities

  • Full member, European Association of Social Psychology (EASP)

    2008 - Present

  • Postgraduate member, European Association of Social Psychology (EASP)

    2007 - 2008

  • Postgraduate member, Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP)

    2005 - 2009

Key Grants and Projects

  • A healthy body is a healthy mind? 2015

    ESRC Festival of Social Sciences, £650

  • Placement at ABMU Health Board 2014

    Strategic Insights Programme (SIP), £2,500

  • The allure of good plans: How mobile phone – based feedback can boost the positive effect of concrete plans on health behaviour change 2011

    EPSRC Bridging the Gaps, Swansea University, £3,950

  • Travel Grant “Construal level and reproductive decision making” 2009

    ESRC, £600

Administrative Responsibilities

  • Member - Psychology Department Research Ethics Committee

    2012 - Present

  • CHHS Champion - Swansea Science Festival ’17

    2017 - Present

  • Champion and Member - Athena SWAN ‘Organization and Culture’ group

    2013 - 2016

  • Disability link - Department Of Psychology, Swansea University

    2013 - Present

  • Postgraduate Careers Liaison - Department Of Psychology, Swansea University

    2014 - Present

  • Student engagement - Department Of Psychology, Swansea University

    2014 - 2016