People

Lab Director

Tomer Shechner Associate Professor

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Prof. Shechner completed his M.A .and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology at Tel-Aviv University. He completed his first post-doctoral training at the Adler Developmental Psychopathology Institute and second post-doctoral training at the Section of Developmental Affective Neuroscience at the National Institute of Mental Health under the supervision of Dr. Danny Pine. He completed his clinical internship at Schneider Children’s Medical Center and is a licensed clinical psychologist. Tomer joined the Psychology Department at the University of Haifa as a senior lecturer in March 2013. His major line of research focuses on understanding the interaction between biological, cognitive, behavioral and environmental factors in the development of anxiety disorders.

If you would like to view Prof. Shechners’ full C.V Click Here!

Post-Docs

Dr. Omer Horovitz

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Dr. Horovitz received his M.A. in Psychobiology and Ph.D. in Behavioral Neuroscience from the University of Haifa. His M.A research involved studying sex differences, depressive symptoms and profiling of behavioral psycho-pathological profiles in rat models of PTSD. His Ph.D. research focused on factors that affect plasticity of control-ability and positive/negative affect-related aspects of higher limbic regions. Dr. Horovitz has been teaching various Psychology classes at different institutions across the country and continues to do so today. His research interests are affective disorders, emotional brain networks, modulation of brain networks, animal models of psychopathologies, characterization of individual profiles and in-vivo electrophysiology.

Ph.D. Students

Shani Danon

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Shani received her B.A. in Psychology from Ben Gurion University of the Negev and has recently completed her M.A. in Psychobiology at the University of Haifa. Her research involved searching for anxiety and depression patterns in ERP’s of adults diagnosed with PTSD. Shani’s experience includes managing the EEG Human laboratory of The Institute for Study of Affective Neuroscience. Her current research focuses on differences in electro- physiological recording of the pre-frontal lobes during fear conditioning and extinction in children with and without anxiety disorders.

Einav Gafni

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Einav received her B.A. in Psychology and Education from Ben Gurion University of The Negev and is currently  pursuing her Ph.D. in Child-Clinical Psychology at the University of Haifa. Her research interests include identifying neuro-cognitive abnormalities of fear conditioning and extinction in anxious youth. Using fMRI in a clinical trial, her research focuses on the relationship between brain abnormalities and pediatric anxiety treatment outcomes.

Rivkah Ginat-Frolich

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Rivkah received her B.A. in Psychology and English  from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), and is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Child-Clinical Psychology at the University of Haifa.  While a senior at UIC, she was a research assistant in a lab exploring sub-chance perception in anxiety, depression and unconscious cognition. Later, Rivkah joined The Cognition and Emotion Lab at the Hebrew University as a research assistant in a study that examined higher-level cognition in depression.  Since October of 2011, Rivkah has been working at The Israel Center for the Treatment of Psychotrauma, where she is involved in multiple projects. Rivkah’s current research focuses on flexible attention deployment in anxious children.

Polina Zozulinsky

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Polina Zozulinsky received her B.A. in Psychology and Linguistics from Tel Aviv University. She then received her M.Sc. from the department of Neurobiology at the Hebrew University School of Medicine. While a graduate student at Hebrew University she joined the Biological Psychiatry Lab. Polina’s thesis project involved working with animal models of depression and anxiety like behaviors. In addition she gained experience in several molecular techniques and became involved in multiple projects in the field of psychiatric genetics. Polina is currently beginning the third year of her Ph.D. in the Clinical Neuropsychology program at the University of Haifa. During the first year at the program she also served as a T.A. in the Principals of Learning and Behavior course for B.A. students. Polina’s current research focuses on neural and behavioral correlates that may account for individual differences in resilience to stress. Her Ph.D. project is co-supervised by Prof. Rachel Tomer.

Ben Mernick

Ben Mernick

Ben completed his B.A. in the History of Ideas at Brandeis University and is currently a PhD student in Clinical Neuropsychology at the University of Haifa. At Brandeis, Ben researched the theory behind an ongoing debate within disability studies through the lens of Jean Paul Sartre’s existential philosophy. Subsequently, Ben completed additional coursework at the Hebrew University Department of Psychology. He also joined the Biological Psychiatry Laboratory at the Hadassah University Medical Center, where he investigated the neural underpinnings of Late-Life Depression in a translational rodent model. For his doctoral research, Ben is developing a method of predicting pediatric anxiety before its onset using Electroencephalography (EEG) recordings.

Andres Konichezky

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Andres is a Clinical and Health Psychologist. He received his MA in clinical psychology from Tel Aviv University. After completing his clinical internship he established a cognitive behavioral unit at the psychological services of Tel Aviv University, and then founded the psychosomatic clinic at Schneider Medical Center. For the past three years Andres has served as the head of the psychological services at the Edmond and Lily Safra Children’s Hospital at Sheba Medical center. He has been involved in various research projects conducted in pediatric anxiety and has published papers on biofeedback, CBT and Hypnosis. His current research focuses on Mindfulness and Self-Compassion in children and adolescents. Specifically, the development of group protocol aimed to enhance self-compassion in youth that will be implemented and tested in school environments.

Tal Eden

Tal received his B.A in psychology and mathematics (computer science track) and his M.A. in clinical psychology from Tel-Aviv University. He completed his clinical internship in Haemek Medical Center and is a licensed clinical psychologist. In the past several years, Tal worked as a senior staff member in the therapeutic foster care unit at Orr-Shalom for children and youth at risk and led the formulation of an employee support unit at Physicians for Human Rights. Parallel to his therapeutic work, he worked in several start-up companies as an algorithms designer and as a data scientist. His current research focuses on testing the connection between smartphone usage and psychopathology.

Zohar Klein

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Zohar received his B.A. in Psychology from the University of Haifa and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Clinical Neuropsychology at the University of Haifa. During his B.A., he was a research assistant in the Developmental Psychopathology lab and conducted psychophysiological and behavioral research relating to anxiety disorders. Zohar’s current research focuses on improving perceptual distinction abilities through a cognitive training task designed to aid individuals with anxiety related disorders ability to distinguish between threat and safety cues in their environment.

M.A. Students

May Keinan

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May completed her B.A in Psychology and Journalism at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. During her undergraduate studies she worked for the Laboratory of Psychopathology, Personality and Cognition, mainly with Mindfulness based treatments. In addition, May gained experience in the Psychiatric Department for Adolescents at Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital. Today, May is pursuing an M.A in clinical psychology (life span) , and is employed as a teaching assistant course in personality. May’s current study aims to develop a computerized intervention for reducing anxiety symptoms in adults.

Morag Pitaro

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Morag completed her B.A. in Psychology and Education at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. During her undergraduate studies she worked as a research assistant in the the “Charming Lab,” where she studied decision making, and in the “Human Learning Lab,” where she researched learning processes in conceptual change. In addition, Morag gained experience in rehabilitation and worked with foster families through the Summit Institute. Morag is currently pursuing her M.A. in child clinical psychology, and is a teaching assistant for a course in Correlational Research Methods. Morag’s M.A. thesis focuses on self-compassion in children and adolescents and the relationship between the development of self-compassion with abilities relating to emotional clarity and regulation.

Lab Administrator

Tamar Gendler

Tamar Gendler

Research Assistants

Irit Lindenfeld

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Omer Katz

Omer Katz

Yuval Tsuk

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Dan Marzan

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Alumni

Michael Partas

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Maor Dvir

Maor Dvir

Brachali Roitbord

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Maya Melamed

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