The spring 2015 has been busy and productive for the Mind the Gap and FinEdu research groups. You can read some news below regarding, for example, funding and upcoming doctoral defenses. We wish you a wonderful, sunny summer!

M.Soc.Sc. Mette Ranta will defend her doctoral dissertation in Psychology entitled ”Pathways to adulthood: Developmental tasks, financial resources and agency”, on the 16th of June, 2015, at the University of Jyväskylä. Professor Marlis Buchmann (University of Zurich) will serve as the opponent, and Professor Katariina Salmela-Aro as the custos.

M.Ed. Lauri Hietajärvi was appointed for a funded four-year doctoral student position in the Doctoral Programme of School, Education, Society and Culture (SEDUCE) in University of Helsinki (Doctoral School in Humanities and Social Sciences, HYMY).

M.A. (Cognitive Science) Mona Moisala received 1-year personal grants from both the Jenny and Antti Wihuri Foundation and the Emil Aaltonen Foundation to support her PhD research in the Mind the Gap -project. In her research, Moisala uses brain imaging to study how extensive exposure to modern technology affects the functioning and structure of adolescent brains.

Professor Katariina Salmela-Aro has been appointed as a Visiting Professor in the University College London, Institute of Education, Department of Quantitative Science, from 1 April 2015 to 31 March 2019. Professor Salmela-Aro was also a Visiting Professor in the UCIrvine, School of Education, from 1 January to 31 March 2015.

The Academy of Finland’s Research Council for Culture and Society has granted funding to new Academy Research Fellows and Postdoctoral Researchers. PhD (Education) Heta Tuominen-Soini received the Postdoctoral Researcher funding for her project “Will I learn? Will I succeed? Will I cope? Young people’s diverse motivational trajectories and their relations to educational paths and well-being” (funding period: September 2015 – August 2018). This study examines individual differences in and developmental trajectories of motivation among adolescents and young adults and their associations with socio-emotional well-being and educational outcomes. Three extensive longitudinal data sets (e.g., FinEdu and Mind the Gap), which cover all the major educational transitions of Finnish youth, will be used supplemented with interview data.