Tanja Gerlach


  • David Keir Building

    United Kingdom

Accepting PhD Students

PhD projects

I am open to PhD applications in the following areas:
(1) personality and social relationships;
(2) non-normative life and relationship choices and communication around those choices;
(3) psychological assessment.

Prospective PhD candidates looking for specific research opportunities with me are advised to consult my QUB supervisor profile. To do so, please click on the globe underneath my profile picture. On the supervisor profile, check out "Current Research Opportunities".


Research activity per year

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Personal profile


I am a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in the School of Psychology at Queen’s University Belfast. I completed my PhD in 2013 at Humboldt University Berlin and as a fellow of the International Max Planck Research School on the Life Course (IMPRS LIFE), where I worked on forgiveness, revenge and justice following transgressions in interpersonal relationships. Prior to joining QUB in April 2022, I was a Senior Researcher within the Biological Personality Psychology group at the University of Göttingen.

Research Interests

As a psychological scientist, I am fascinated by the complex interplay of personality and social relationships. I study how people navigate these relationships in everyday life and in relation to how they see themselves and others. As such, my research programme cuts across the psychology of interpersonal relationships, personality psychology, and psychological assessment/psychometrics.

I have worked on the conceptualization and measurement of narcissism as a personality trait and its consequences in interpersonal relationships, and the effects of steroid hormones on motivation and behavior, in particular in the context of ovulatory cycle effects and hormonal contraception. Employing prospective longitudinal designs and multi-national survey data, my latest work has centred on ideal partner preferences and the role of these preferences for relationship development and wellbeing. I also have an emerging programme of research centring on non-normative life and relationship choices and I currently study how people navigate communication around those choices. 

On the methodological side, I put an emphasis on research that is robust, transparent, and highly collaborative in nature. Employing state-of-the-art study frameworks such as the open source software formr, I am particularly passionate about the dissemination of research designs for the study of close relationships.  


Prospective PhD candidates looking for specific research opportunities with me are advised to consult my QUB supervisor profile and check out the section "Current Research Opportunities". 

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 4 - Quality Education
  • SDG 13 - Climate Action


Dive into the research topics where Tanja Gerlach is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
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Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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