Researcher biography

Dr. Sarah Grainger completed her PhD at the University of Queensland in November 2017. She was employed as a postdoctoral research fellow in the School of Psychology at UQ for several years before securing an ARC DECRA Fellowship in 2022. Her research to date has focused primarily on how social cognitive function– which broadly refers to our ability to detect and respond appropriately to social and emotional cues– changes across the lifespan, with a particular focus on normal adult ageing. In addition to using traditional behavioural measures to assess social cognition, Sarah also has experience with sophisticated experimental techniques including eye-tracking, facial electromyography, psychopharmacological interventions, and hormonal assessments. Much of her research to date has focused on using more ecologically valid socio-emotional tasks and she is now developing paradigms for testing social cognitive abilities outside the research laboratory in real social interactions (i.e., using wearable technologies). In 2024, Sarah was recognised as a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science (APS) for her innovative work on social cognitive ageing.