research interests

what are the neuronal and behavioural correlates of stress resilience? My PhD focuses on the role of self-efficacy and controllability of stress as potential resilience factors

how the immune system interacts with social stressors (e.g. childhood adversity) in the emergence of depression and other “mental” disorders.

how we can have better social interactions and properly integrate emotions in our everyday life. This field of research got me during my MSc studies and has fascinated me ever since.

method interests

There is a huge set of research and data analysis methods that is automatically an integrative part of a PhD in psychology and neuroscience. These are for example the standard statistics in psychology such as linear models or dimensionality reduction tools such as PCA, the design of behaviour and fMRI experimental protocols and data collection, the programming of experimental tasks, analysing data using R, Matlab, or Python, the development of questionnaires and  many more (see research skills). Apart from that, I have special interest in the following methodologies:

how we can use different graph theoretical approaches to model resilience and stress (or other psychological variables) in networks of behaviour and the brain

how we can view research as actual projects and use agile development tools to work efficiently and transparently in these 

how we can better work together and profit from the diversity of different backgrounds rather than hamper each other

how we can quantify human thoughts, feelings, and behaviour in an objective way. These methods often inspire my work as freelance psychological test developer

education & research experience

  • 10/2018-03/2019: Visiting Scholarship in the Risk & Resilience Group, Psychiatry Department, Cambridge University, United Kingdom (Lucy Cavendish College)
  •  10/2016 – summer 2020: PhD in Translational Biomedicine: “Computational Approaches to Stress Resilience”, Clinical and Neuropsychology Group, University of Mainz; funded by the CRC1193, German Resilience Center & Johannes Gutenberg-University Mainz
  •  2015 / 2016: Psychological Test Consultant, Pearson Assessment GmbH, Frankfurt, Germany
  •  2015: Clinical Neuropsychologist, Asklepios Clinic for neurorehabilitation, Bad König
  • 2015: MSc Psychology, University of Technology (TU) Darmstadt, master-thesis: MSc thesis in collaboration with HR Diagnostics AG: A new way of measuring emotional intelligence? Validation of a vocational ability test
  •  2013/2014: research student, differential psychology and diagnostics group, institute for psychology, TU Darmstadt
  •  2013: mentor for psychology & IT students, TU Darmstadt
  •  2012/2013: internship psychological test development, Research & Development, HR Diagnostics AG, Stuttgart
  •  2012: BSc Psychology, TU Darmstadt, BSc thesis in collaboration with Fraunhofer Insitute for Industrial Engineering IAO, Stuttgart: Learning by Gaming – Evaluation of a game-based soft skills training
  •  2012/2013: research internship, service and HR management group, Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO, Stuttgart
  •  2011: research student, user tests for resource-based e-learning systems, lab for multimedia communication, TU Darmstadt 

research skills

  • data analysis and experiment programming in R, Python, and Matlab 
  • graph theoretical  approaches to psychological and biomedical data
  • study protocols and  experiment design
  • collection of behavioural, physiological, and neuronal data  
  • development of psychological tests and questionnaires
  • neuropsychological and clinical assessments 
  • agile project management using Kanban and Trello
  • supervision of research students, interns, and MSc & BSc students (thesis)

workshops & trainings

  • 2019 AI for everyone, Coursera course by Prof Andrew Ng and
  • 2019 Oxbridge Brainhack, Cambridge University, UK
  • 2019 Design Thinking, GRADE, Goethe-University Frankfurt
  • 2018 Machine learning for scientific computing, JGU, Nierstein (GER)
  • 2018 Psychological network analysis, VU Amsterdam 
  • 2018 SCRUM workshop in agile project management, moguru gmbH, Darmstadt
  • 2017 Programming experiments in Python: beginner’s and advanced workshop, Nottingham
  • 2017 SPM course, designing and analyzing human MRI studies, Neuroimaging Center, university medical center Mainz
  • 2016 Matlab programming course, Neuroimaging Center, JGU Mainz
  • 2015 Spring School Interdisciplinary College IK2015, Günne (GER)
  • 2014 Introduction to Cognitive Neuroscience, Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen
  • 2014 Spring School Interdisciplinary College IK2014, Günne (GER)
  • 2013 Clinical training in systemic counselling „Systemisch Kompakt“ 


Workshop organizer and lecturer: „A Gentle Introduction to Python“ – Beginner’s course in Python for non-programmers, in great collaboration with MSc Martina Thiele (Neuroimaging Center, Mainz)

Workshop material available on OSF.

For more information about CRC1193 activities, please visit this website.

memberships and extra-curricular activities

  • since 2020: member of Cradle to Cradle NGO
  • since 2019: member of the Thure von Uexkuell Academy of Integrative Medicine (AIM)
  • since 2016: doctoral candidate of the Mainz Research School of Translational Biomedicine (TransMed)
  • since 2016: member of the Goethe Graduate Academy, Goethe-University Frankfurt (GRADE)
  • 2018 – 2019: elected PhD students and post doc representative, CRC1193, Mainz & Frankfurt
  • 2017 – 2018: Ada Lovelace mentee, mentoring program for women in STEM


publications and pre-registrations

  •  Schueler, K., Fritz, J., Dorfschmidt, L., Strömer, E., van Harmelen, A.L., Wessa, M., Open Science Research Project: Self-efficacy networks in high versus low resilient adults., (Link to OSF project) .
  •  Moreno-Lopez, L.*, Ioannidis, K.*, Askelund, A.J., Smith, A., Schueler, K., & van Harmelen A-L. The resilient emotional brain; a review of limbic and mPFC structure and function in adults with a history of child maltreatment. 2019. Biological Psychiatry CNNI Biological Psychiatry: Cognitive Neuroscience and Neuroimaging. 10.1016/j.bpsc.2019.12.008,  *contributed equally (Link)  
  •  Erdt nee Anjorin, Mojisola & Jomrich, Florian & Schueler, Katja & Rensing, Christoph. (2013). Investigating Crowdsourcing as an Evaluation Method for TEL Recommenders. Proceedings of ECTEL meets ECSCW 2013, the Workshop on Collaborative Technologies for Working and Learning. 1047. 25-29. (PDF)

scientific talks

  • 2019:Young expert and speaker at the 7th Science Pub “Stress, oder was?” about stress resilience in Wiesbaden, Germany. (public outreach event)
  • 2019: “Self-Efficacy Networks in High. vs Low Resilient Adults” Invited Young Investigator Short Talk at the International Resilience Symposium 2019, Mainz, Germany. 
  • 2019: Chair of the symposium “Biological and Modeling Approaches to Resilience”, Psychology and the Brain PuG2019 Conference, Dresden, Germany.
  • 2019: “Network Approaches to Resilience.” Talk at the Psychology and the Brain PuG Conference, Dresden, Germany. Click here for Slides; and for the Conference OSF page
  • 2019: “Introduction to Agile Project Management”, Brain Mapping Unit methods meeting, Cambridge University, UK
  • 2018: “Our Novel Translational Stress Paradigm – A Basis for Human Research on Stress Immunization.” Talk at the 1st CRC1193 Science Day, Leinsweiler, Germany.
  • 2017: “Studying the Effects of Stressor Controllability in Humans Using a Novel Paradigm Adapted from Animal Research”. Selected Young Investigator Talk at the 3rd international resilience symposium and Poster, Mainz, Germany, together with Laura Meine

selected posters

  • Schueler, K., Fritz, J., Dorfschmidt, L., Strömer, E., van Harmelen, A.L., Wessa, M. (2019). “Self-Efficacy Networks in High vs Low Resilient Adults”, Poster at the International Resilience Symposium, Mainz, Germany
  • Schueler, K. & Meine, L., Wessa, M. (2018, September). “It’s All About Control: A Translational Study of Two Resilience Mechanisms”. Poster at the 4th international resilience symposium, Mainz, Germany.
  • Schueler, K. & Meine, L., Scholz, V., Wessa, M. (2018). Translating the Learned Helplessness Paradigm to Study Potential Resilience Mechanisms in Humans”. Poster at the annual conference of the International Society of Psychoneuroendocrinology, ISPNE, Los Angeles, California, USA.
  • Meine, L. & Schueler, K. Scholz, V., Wessa, M. (2018). “Interindividual Differences Promoting Stress Resilience”. Poster at the annual conference of the International Society of Psychoneuroendocrinology, ISPNE, Los Angeles, California, USA.
  • Schueler, K. & Meine, L., Scholz, V., Wessa, M. (2018). “Will They Fail to Escape? Translating the Shuttlebox Paradigm to Humans”. Poster at the FENS forum of the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies, Berlin, Germany.
  • Meine, L. & Schueler, K. Scholz, V., Wessa, M. (2018). “Making Lemonade out of Lemons: Interindividual Differences Promoting Stress Resilience”. Poster at the FENS forum of the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies, Berlin, Germany.