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Elisabeth Von Dem Hagen

Dr Elisabeth Von Dem Hagen

Senior Lecturer

School of Psychology

+44 29208 70151
Cardiff University Brain Research Imaging Centre, Maindy Road, Cardiff, CF24 4HQ
Available for postgraduate supervision


Research summary

My research interests involve studying the neural mechanisms behind emotion processing and social cognition more generally. I am also interested in how the processing of social signals, like faces and eye gaze, changes with development, and may differ in Autism Spectrum Disorders. To address these questions, I use a combination of behavioural and neuroimaging approaches, including various structural and functional MRI techniques.

Teaching summary

At the UG level, I teach on and am module coordinator for the Year 2 Thinking, Emotion and Consciousness (PS2023) module. I also teach on and am module coordinator for the Final Year module Social Perception (PS3215). I also give Year 2 academic tutorials, supervise Final Year projects, and act as a personal tutor.

At the PG level, I teach on the MSc Children’s Psychological Disorders course, as well as supervising dissertation projects.




















Research topics and related papers

My research is broadly concerned with social information processing, and particularly the brain systems underlying the processing of social signals, like faces and eye gaze. Specifically, current projects are investigating how context affects the processing of social signals, and how the brain combines information from these different signals (e.g. Teufel et al, 2019; Ward et al, 2023). I'm particularly interested in how emotion information from the face and body are integrated, and what this can tell us about principles governing social information processing in the brain.

I am also interested in how social information processing changes during development (e.g. Ward et al, 2023), and how it might differ in people with  Autism (e.g. von dem Hagen et al, Cerebral Cortex, 2014; von dem Hagen et al, Soc Cogn Affect Neurosci, 2013). Current projects include exploring social synchrony (e.g. Bowsher-Murray et al, 2022) and emotion recognition difficulties in children, and investigating the use of humanoid robots in social interactions with autistic children.

My research involves a combination of behavioural and neuroimaging approaches, including psychophysics, eyetracking, functional MRI, and diffusion MRI.

Research Funding

2020-2021 - Wellcome Trust ISSF Cross-Disciplinary Award, £48,069

2012-2013 - MRC Centenary Award, £52,530

Research collaborators

Wales Autism Research Centre

GW4 Neurodevelopmental Neurodiversity Network

Neurodevelopment Assessment Unit (NDAU)

Christoph Teufel (School of Psychology/CUBRIC, Cardiff University)
Catherine Jones (School of Psychology/CUCHDS/WARC, Cardiff University)
Stephanie van Goozen (School of Psychology/CUCHDS, Cardiff University)

Punit Shah (University of Bath)

Stephan de la Rosa (MPI, Tuebingen)



  • PS2023 Thinking, Emotion and Consciousness
  • PS3215 Social Perception
  • PST704 Neurodevelopmental Disorders I: Neurobiology
  • PST706 Child Assessment Methods II: Developmental Neuroimaging Workshop

Project/Dissertation Supervision:

  • Final Year Project supervision
  • MSc Children's Psychological Disorders dissertation supervision

Personal & Academic tutor for UG and MSc students


Undergraduate education

BSc in Physics and Physiology, McGill University, Canada

Postgraduate education

MSc in Medical Physics, University of Toronto, Canada
Thesis: High angular resolution diffusion Magnetic Resonance for the determination of fibre structure

PhD in Psychology, Royal Holloway University of London, UK
Thesis: Magnetic Resonance Imaging of the visual system in humans with albinism


  • 2020-Present - Senior Lecturer, Cardiff University
  • 2015-2020 - Lecturer, Cardiff University
  • 2006-2014 - Investigator Scientist, then Senior Investigator Scientist, MRC Cognition & Brain Sciences Unit, Cambridge
  • 2010-2014 - Guest Lecturer, Dept of Physiology, Development & Neuroscience, University of  Cambridge
  • 2007-2014 - Associate Lecturer, Open University
  • 2006 - Postdoctoral Researcher, Dept of Psychology, University of York


Postgraduate research interests

If you are interested in applying for a PhD, or for further information regarding my postgraduate research, please contact me directly (contact details available on the 'Overview' page), or submit a formal application.

Current students

Özge Gezer (start date October 2020; jointly supervised with S. van Goozen)

Carly McGregor (start date October 2021; jointly supervised with C. Jones, C. Wallbridge)

Laura Dixon (start date October 2022; jointly supervised with C. Teufel)

Current supervision

Carly McGregor

Carly McGregor

Research student

Past projects

  • Dr Abigail Finn, PhD 2024. 'Integration of Emotion from Face and Body in the Human Brain.'
  • Dr Claire Bowsher-Murray, PhD 2023. 'Interpersonal Synchrony and Affiliation in Typically Developing Children
    and Children with Emerging Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties.'
  • Dr Isobel Ward, PhD 2021. 'Information Processing in the Social Brain.'
  • Dr Marek Pedzwiatr, PhD 2021. 'Investigating the role of image meaning and prior knowledge in human eye movement control.'