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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Lebenswissen­schaftliche Fakultät - Institut für Psychologie

Forschung

Warum leiden manche Kinder unter Ängsten, andere nicht? Wie entstehen psychische Störungen bei Kindern und Jugendlichen? Warum verschwinden sie nicht wieder von alleine? Und wie genau wirkt Psychotherapie?

                                  

In unserer Forschung konzentrieren wir uns auf den Beginn psychischer Störungen – das Kindes- und Jugendalter – sowie die erste Kernfrage, unter welchen Bedingungen sich subklinische Symptome zu psychischen Störungen entwickeln und welche Faktoren diese aufrechterhalten (Grundlagenforschung). Eine zweite Kernfrage betrifft die Erforschung von Wirkmechanismen der Psychotherapie (Interventionsforschung), um die langfristige Entwicklung einzelner Patient*innen positiv zu beeinflussen sowie die Behandlung zu verbessern. Unser Forschungsansatz ist experimentell, multimodal und multimethodal ausgerichtet, um alle Ebenen biopsychosozialer Ätiologiemodelle zu beschreiben. Methodisch arbeiten wir sowohl mit peripherphysiologischen Parametern (z.B. Herzrate, Hautleitfähigkeit, Stimme), hormonellen Faktoren (z.B. Cortisol), Selbstbericht sowie behavioralen Daten (z.B. Performanz, Interaktion). In der Regel werden in den Studien immer auch Bezugspersonen zentral mit einbezogen. Ein weiterer Teilbereich liegt in der ambulanten Feldforschung, um die ökologische Validität von Forschungsergebnissen und somit die Translation in die Anwendung zu fördern. In der Psychotherapieforschung untersuchen wir, welche zuvor als dysfunktional eingestuften Faktoren durch kognitive Verhaltenstherapie verändert werden können.

 

► Laufende Forschungsprojekte
Title: Changing cognitive processes based on internal and external cues in children with social anxiety disorder
Duration: 2019-2023

Contact: Nadine VietmeierJulia Asbrand

Models of social anxiety disorder (SAD) in adults have focused on cognitive biases before, during and after social situations, which might lead to a negative self-concept in patients with diagnosed SAD. It could be shown that patients with SAD report more anxiety and worries even before a social situation (anticipatory rumination). During a social situation, patients with SAD often focus more prominently on themselves (e.g., feelings, bodily perceptions, thoughts; self-focused attention). After the situation, rumination processes are found with a focus on negative aspects of the social situation (post-event processing). How these factors are influenced and how they interact – possibly a shift of attention towards internal signals – has not yet been fully clarified, especially in children. Furthermore, based on theoretical models it can be expected that buffer effects are possible (e.g., by social support or positive self-instructions) leading to less generation of negative thoughts. However, these effects have not yet been examined in children with SAD.

Based on current theoretical assumptions of maintenance of SAD (in adulthood), two experimental studies examine children’s reaction towards internal signals and the influence of social and self-support on cognitive processes during social stress.

The project will offer important insights into factors of maintaining SAD in childhood and add to considerations, if theoretical models of SAD in adulthood can provide explanations for SAD in childhood.

More information: here

 
Title: Stressfrei nach Corona: ein psychologisches Hilfsprogramm

Duration: 2020-2022

Contact: Ulrike LükenJulia Asbrand

Psychological distress in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic may be caused by many sources such as threat to physical health (i.e. the virus itself), restriced social interactions, restricted civil rights, long crisis duration and high economic uncertainty. Evidence from other traumatic and catastrophic events suggest that the "incubation time" of psychological problems and symptoms caused by the current crisis will expand to the post-pandemic time, i.e. months to years following the event. Information about the nature and amount of mental problems is urgently needed to inform health care providers about the need for psychological treatments targeting the sequelae of this pandemic. We aim to map the unique psychological signature of this novel event, its impact on individuals and societies from a clinical perspective and to apply a stepped-care approach with a scalable online treatment, followed by a group face-to-face intervention for individuals presenting with residual symptoms.

More information: www.corona-stressfrei.de

 

Title: Feelings in Balance - New methodological approaches in childhood and youth [Gefühle im Gleichgewicht - GIG]

Duration: 2021-2022

Contact: Selvi GercekJulia Asbrand

How we deal with feelings in the moment influences how we feel in the long term: Can we reduce or endure fear, for example? Or does it overwhelm us? Of course, this coping or regulation of emotions does not only affect adults, but also children and adolescents. However, the assessment of so-called emotion-regulation is still lacking in children and adolescents. Additionally, children and youths' emotion regulation is highly dependent on the social environment. Therefore, parents' influences on their offspring's emotion regulation is further examined. The study is conducted as an experimental online study using case vignettes with children and youth between 10 and 17 years.

More information: here

 


Title: Memorylane

Duration: 2021-2022

Contact: N.N. & Julia Asbrand

In addition to negative parenting behaviors such as overprotection, which seem to facilitate to anxiety (disorders), other behaviors are discussed as potential protective factors. One of these facets is challenging parenting behavior (CPB), which is defined as creating challenges for the child and adolescent, thus creating learning opportunities for new behavior. To date, CPB has been discussed primarily in relation to anxiety. It is questionable to what extent this behavior can also be protective for symptoms regarding other areas (sleep disorders, eating disorders, depressive symptoms, etc.). In an online study with young adults this question will be investigated.

 

 

Title: Emotionen erkennen - Recognizing emotions

Duration: 2021

Contact: Julia Asbrand

During the pandemic, covering part of the face (i.e., wearing a mask) has become the new normal in public places such as supermarkets, offices and schools. As the face is crucial in disovering another person's emotional state, an online study will be conducted to detect if it is more difficult to detect emotions in masked faces. This will be analyzed in both children and adults, dependent on psychopathological symptoms and attitudes.

 

► Kommende Studien (Start ab Sommer 2021)

 

Title: Mastermind

Duration: 2021-2022

Contact: N.N. & Julia Asbrand

Our voice is central in conveying information about the speaker's emotional state. However, little is known about the relation between vocal and emotional regulation, especially in relation to psychopathological symptoms. An experimental stress task will be conducted in young adults to assess potential effects of conscious regulation of vocal and emotional arousal in a social stress task.

 

► Informationen für Teilnehmer*innen

Weitere Informationen zur Teilnahme an unseren Forschungsprojekten und zu unserem Team finden Sie hier.

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► AKTUELL: Kindgerechte Informationen zu COVID-19 / Corona-Virus

Die Abteilung Klinische Kinder- und Jugendlichenpsychologie und -psychotherapie möchte hier Kinder, Jugendliche, Eltern und Therapeut*innen zur psychischen Seite von Corona zu informieren. Aktuelle Videos, Stellungnahmen und Ratgeber sollen Ihnen in dieser schwierigen Seite Unterstützung bieten.