Lab Members

Principal Investigator

hollyHolly Recchia obtained her PhD in Psychology at Concordia University. After completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Utah, she is now an Associate Professor in the Department of Education (Early Childhood and Elementary Education/Child Studies). She currently holds the Concordia University Research Chair in Moral Development and Education. Holly loves dancing with her kids, curling up with a good book, and long dinners with friends.


Doctoral Students

melaneMalene Bodington (co-supervised by Harriet Petrakos)

Malene completed a Master of Social Science from Lund University in Sweden in 2003 and, after arriving in Canada, completed an M.A. in Sociology from Concordia in 2010. In her Master’s thesis, under the supervision of Dr. Jean-Philippe Warren and Dr. Sylvia Kairouz, she explored in-group and out-group dynamics, intolerance, and social exclusion in the context of immigration and diversity in Denmark and Canada. Since completing her degree in 2010, she has worked on research projects surrounding access to education at Concordia’s Student Parents Centre and the UNESCO Institute for Statistics.

Malene is a strong proponent of mixed methods research and fascinated by questions surrounding methodological choices in the social sciences. Her research interests include peer relations and peer conflict; inclusion and exclusion; diversity; bullying and anti-bullying programs; resilience; and coping strategies.

She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, cooking a good meal and sharing it. Her downtime usually involves a good book, crocheting, logic puzzles, or strategy games. She also enjoys getting outside for a long walk, bicycle ride, or run.


alyssaAlyssa Scirocco

Alyssa completed a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from McGill University in 2012 and an M.A in Child Studies from Concordia University in 2014 under the supervision of Dr. Holly Recchia. Her Master’s thesis investigated the particular moral socialization strategies mothers employ in conversations about their young children’s perpetration of harm towards their siblings and friends.

Her research interests center on how interactions with parents contribute to children’s moral development but she is also interested in sibling, peer and family relationships across different contexts (e.g., peer provocation, mother-child conversations about harm, multi-party conflict) and their associations to children’s socio-emotional and moral development. Aside from research, she greatly enjoys traveling, cooking, dancing and hiking.



Nasim Tavassoli

Before coming to Concordia, Nasim studied clinical psychology at Tehran University. She is interested in prosociality in early childhood. Her MA thesis focuses on different types of prosociality in sibling interactions (e.g., helping, sharing, comforting). She likes to spend her spare time reading books, cooking and taking photographs.


Master’s Students

 Angelica Restrepo screen-shot-2016-11-25-at-11-23-40-pm

Angelica completed her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at McGill University. During the year following graduation, Angelica worked at the lab of Dr. Marco Leyton in the Faculty of Medicine at McGill University. There, she assisted with various projects exploring addiction and reward-seeking behaviours in adulthood. She is currently completing her Master’s in Child Studies at Concordia University and is interested in exploring the moral and social development of children who experience difficult life events, such as unstable family environments, parental drug abuse, and violent societies. Angelica is a big Friends fan, her favorite character is Chandler, but can be a bit of a clean freak, like Monica.


Alexandra Singer

Alexandra received a Bachelor of Arts in Education and Child Studies and American Studies from Smith College. In her undergrad, she worked on projects about respect and disrespect in the school context. She is interested in exploring how teachers interpret their role as moral educators. She enjoys cuddling with her cat and feeding her horse sour patch kids.



Mawuena Badasu

Mawuena completed University of Ghana in 2015 with a BA Psychology Undergraduate Degree. She studied the impact of child abuse on self-esteem which stimulated her interest in primary socialization – family life and parenting.
She seeks to explore parent-child conversations centered around children’s harmful and helpful behaviours. Her main focus is responses of shame-prone parents.
Mawuena can spend all day braiding hair. She loves toddlers, hence babysitting is never a chore.
Anna Saint-Martin
Anna graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She is currently completing her Master’s in Child Studies at Concordia University, and is interested in the effects of maternal coaching strategies on children’s attributions of blame in peer victimization scenarios, as well as how children make sense of their own morality in the context of behavioural transgressions. She enjoys spending time with her family and friends, working with children, playing fetch with her cat, drinking coffee and baking.
Teresa Pirro
Prior to attending Concordia University, Teresa received a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology (majoring in Psychology and double minoring in Behavioral Science and Education) at McGill University. She is interested in studying how children dissent with their parents based on the social domain theory of development, by examining parent-child interactions. Teresa enjoys volunteering at the Montreal Children’s Hospital, as well as swimming, collecting miniature crystals, and spending quality time with family and friends.
Miranda Reid
Miranda graduated from the University of Regina with a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in psychology. Her Honours project focused on the implementation of mindfulness interventions in YMCA of Regina youth programming. She has a strong interest in collaborative research with non-profit organizations and is currently interested in the
inquiry-based educational approach of Philosophy for Children. Miranda is an escape room enthusiast who enjoys daily meditation and cuddles with her cats.


Lab Coordinator

Melissa Commisso

Melissa completed her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at Concordia University. She wrote her honours thesis under the supervision of Dr. Bukowski. Her work focused on the moderating effects of children’s self-perceptions on the relationship between peer victimization and internalizing and externalizing outcomes. Currently, she is working as a research coordinator, mainly overseeing the Conversation about Peers Study. Melissa is a huge fan of classic rock and enjoys spending her free time with friends and family.


Research Assistants

Rodrigo Ahumada-Alarcon

Ariana Borjian

Julie Guindon

Fatima Inigo

Shannon Maingot

Caroline Pawelczyk

Julia Renauld

Sandra Silva

Erika Infantino

Alessia Fratolillo

Amanda Marlandis

Jade Elysia Pare

Ergie Marie Evans

Claudia Toriz


Lab Alumni

Cristina Casola – Completing an MA in Counselling Psychology at McGill University in Montreal, QC.

Shirline Vecchiarelli – completing an undergraduate degree in Psychology.

Melina Babin-Molina – Working in Human Resources in Montreal after completing her MA at the HEC.

Fina Murphy-Gelderman – Completing an MA in Child Studies at Concordia University in Montreal, QC.

Monique Riedel – Completing an MA in Counselling Psychology at McGill University in Montreal, QC.

Daysi Zentner – Compleing a PhD in Counselling Psychology at McGill University in Montreal, QC.

Olivia Faulconbridge – Completing a PhD in School and Applied Psychology at Western University in London, ON.

Ma-ab Witwit – Working at the KipMcGrath Educaation Centre in Kuwait.

Brian Florez – Completing a Master’s degree in organizational psychology at University of Valencia.

Amandeep Rajput – Working as an elementary school teacher in the UK.

Stephanie Peccia – Working as an advisor at the Access Centre for Students with Disabilities at Concordia and completing her PhD in Education at Concordia University.

Sarah Leddin – After graduating from a Master’s degree in Education at the University of Ottawa, now working as an autism therapist/educator for Emerging Minds.

Matteo Peretti – Recently completed a Master’s degree in Family Medicine at McGill University.

Gifty Asare – Completing a Master’s degree in Psychiatry at McGill University.

Heather Franz – Recently completed a Master’s degree in occupational therapy at UBC.

Cassandra Monette –Coordinating a participatory action research project examining resilience in children exposed to bullying; supervising students in Gulu, Uganda, as part of the Concordia Volunteer Abroad Program.

Vanesa Sarmiento –Working in Human Resources in Bogota, Colombia.

Monica Crosetta

Melissa Lazo

Luis Carlos Consuegra

Eliza Latein – Completing a graduate psychotherapy program in Germany.

Nina Geringhoff

Chanel West

Julia Adams-Whittaker

Amanda Mangione – Working in Human Resources in Montreal, QC.

Stephanie Wells



Hanging out with some friends from the Bukowski and Santo Labs at SRA, 2016


A sunny day at JPS, Chicago, 2016


Holiday party, 2015

labSurprise Baby Shower for Dr. Recchia, 2013


Amandeep presenting her poster at JPS, 2013 (Chicago, IL)


Farewell Dinner for Nina, 2011


Selfies at Development, 2014 (Ottawa, ON)


Sarah, Matteo, and Dr. Recchia at JPS, 2012 (Toronto, ON)

Ladies who Lunch (in between conference presentations)