Kadri Arumäe, MA, supervisors Uku Vainik and René Mõttus. Kadri's thesis focuses on personality traits' associations with body mass index and body composition. Although earlier research has mainly described personality traits' associations with BMI, Kadri also explores their links with other indicators of body composition and adiposity (overweight). To clarify the associations between personality and body composition, data from molecular genetic and genetically informative twin studies as well as longitudinal studies are used.
Kristiina Averin, MA, supervisors Jüri Allik and Aire Raidvee. Kristiina is studying mechanisms underlying the estimation of statistical features in human visual system. Her main research interests are mean and summed size estimation. She is also interested in mathematical statistics and philosophy of perception.
Merle Havik, MA, supervisors Kairi Kreegipuu and Jüri Allik. Merle is writing her PhD thesis on the following topic: "Relationship between different impulsivity measures, their relationship to Big Five, and factors that mediate impulsive behaviour".
Liina Juuse, MA, supervisors Kairi Kreegipuu and Jüri Allik. Liina’s doctoral research focuses on the bioelectrical correlates of emotion perception and expression and the comparison of emotional expression between human assessment and machine learning solutions. Important problems in the field include the psychological validity of databases used for machine learning, the transferability of posed emotional expression into real life, the presence of mixed emotion and the relation to one’s own perceived emotional experience. The research is carried out in collaboration with the Intelligent Computer Vision Research Laboratory (iCV) of the University of Tartu, led by Professor Gholamreza Anbarjafari.
Annika Kask, MA, supervisors Kairi Kreegipuu and Nele Põldver. Her thesis topic is ''Automatic processing of visual information: relations with depressiveness, anxiousness, impulsivity and fatigue''. Annika focuses on visual mismatch negativity and studies different states and traits to which it is sensitive to. During 2018/2019 Annika was a visiting PhD student at Dalian Technological University (China) at professor Fengyu Cong's research group.
Liis Kask, MA. Supervisors Kairi Kreegipuu and Nele Põldver. Liis does research on auditory perception and language acquisition with a focus on the Estonian language. Her thesis topic is “Auditory perception, language acquisition and factors affecting language processing”. Her research mostly includes experiments with EEG (concentrating on auditory mismatch negativity, MMN) and different other auditory instruments (e.g. EWIN – Estonian words in noise test). She is interested in how different language characteristics may influence language acquisition and second language learning, creating a bridge between experimental psychology and linguistics.
Martin Kolnes, MA. Supervisors Andero Uusberg and Jüri Allik. Martin’s PhD project focuses on the emotional modulation of the scope of attention. He is especially interested in what role appraisal dimensions might have in this process. He combines computerized cognitive tasks and psychophysiological methods, such as EEG and pupillometry, in order to gain insight into the relationship between emotion and attention. His other research interests include but are not restricted to: emotion-cognition interaction, the structure of affect and appraisal theory, implicit and explicit personality assessment During the 2019 spring semester Martin was visiting Sander Nieuwenhuis's research group at the Leiden University (Netherlands).
Richard Naar, MA. Supervisors Andero Uusberg and Jüri Allik. During his studies at the University of Tartu, Richard has been interested in a broad range of topics starting from neuropsychiatric animal models (e.g. Lsamp-deficient mice) to affective time perception. In recent years, he has considerably pruned his interests and started focusing his attention on vision. He is currently interested in how visual system, and brain more broadly, is reducing uncertainties about the sensory inputs. He has attempted to test his theorizing against experimental data collected in simple forced-choice cuing tasks combined with SSVEP (steady-state visual evoked potentials) and pupillary measurements.
Annegrete Palu, MA. Supervisors Kristjan Kask (Tallinn University) and Kairi Kreegipuu. Annegrete’s main research interests are in legal psychology topics. During her postgraduate studies she did research on eyewitness testimonies. She examined whether the provision of pictorial aids during interviews could improve children’s accuracy of memory for people and events. During her PhD studies she continues research on eyewitness memory, focusing on eyewitness identifications. The purpose of her research is to explore whether eye movements of the witness could distinguish if faces in the line-up have been seen or not by the witness before.
Heidi Reinson. Supervisor Andero Uusberg.
Hedvig Sultson, MA, supervisors Kirsti Akkermann and Kairi Kreegipuu. The main focus of Hedvig's doctoral thesis is on emotional eating and its relation to emotion regulation difficulties. Of specific interest is why do people (over)eat when they feel positive emotions. Self-report questionnaires and experience sampling method are among the main methods used in her research. With experience sampling method, a participant is required to fill in a short questionnaire regarding his/her emotional state and concurrent eating behaviour several times a day for multiple days in a row. During her Master's studies, Hedvig studied the bioelectrical correlates of participants who were shown food images in hungry and fed conditions.
Gerly Tamm, MA, supervisors Kairi Kreegipuu, Jaanus Harro and Nelson Cowan. Gerly is interested in how emotional meaning of visual stimuli affects working memory, and which factors underlie the individual differences of working memory. When studying individual differences, Gerly focuses on genetic and neurobiological factors mostly. She has studied the effects of genetic variants of noradrenaline and dopamine systems on processing of facial expressions; she has also studied the effects of single features vs emotional content in facial emotional expressions on working memory. Gerly uses signal detection theory, and statistical modelling in her work. In 2014-2015, she visited the University of Missouri (USA) prof.Nelson Cowan's working memory lab as an international research scholar.
Alan Voodla, MA, supervisor Andero Uusberg. Alan studies affective mechanisms of reasoning using conceptual as well as experimental approaches. His work focuses on processes that give rise to the feeling of confidence, as well as thinking about regulation of reasoning processes more generally from an affective perspective. The working title of his thesis is “Metacognitive functions of confidence in the predictive mind paradigm”. He is also interested in theoretical and methodological problems in psychology as well as scientific applications of computational statistics.