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Pietra Bruni

Graduate Student
Research Area: Clinical Science

emotion; social-emotional expertise; interpersonal perception; empathy; emotion regulation; interoception; social-interaction

I am interested in the analysis of non-verbal and interpersonal behavior, especially in studies examining the etiology and treatment of depression, anxiety and related stress disorders. Another research focus centers on the influence emotional regulation techniques have on facilitating and maintaining meaningful social interactions.

Currently, I am working on a project examining whether interoceptive awareness (the sense of the physiological condition of the body) mediates the associations between social-emotional expertise and interpersonal perception. 

Representative Publications

Conference Posters --

[1]   Wulf, T.M., Girard, J.M., Bruni, P. & Cohn, J.F. (November 9-11, 2017).  Nonverbal indicators of acute distress in women with PTSD. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies, Chicago, IL.

[2]   Bruni, P., Girard, J., Wulf, T., Cohn, J. & Benight, C. (April 17-18, 2017).  Analysis of Traumatic Stress and Depression Self-Report Measures in a Civilian Population Sample. Poster presented at the 12th Annual Amygdala, Stress and PTSD Conference: Understanding Stress, Bethesda, MD.

[3]   Bruni, P. & Cohn, J. (October 14-15, 2016).  Perceived Emotion and Contextual Framing. Poster presented at the Annual Meeting of the New England Psychological Association, Worcester, MA.

[4]   Bruni, P. & Cohn, J. (May 16, 2015).  Re-Examining the Kuleshov Effect. Poster presented at the 15th Annual Stanford Undergraduate Psychology Conference, Stanford, CA.

[5]   Bruni, P. & Cohn, J. (April 14, 2015).  Gender Trait Theory and the Kuleshov Effect. Poster presented at the Department of Psychology Diversity Committee Annual Poster Session, Pittsburgh, PA.

Conference Oral Presentations --

[1]   Bruni, P. (April 10-12, 2015).  Images and Understanding. Paper presented at the 10th Annual Atlantic Coast Conference Meeting of the Minds, Raleigh, NC.

[2]   Bruni, P. & Cohn, J. (April 4, 2015).  The Influence of Emotional Context Effects: Re-Examining the Kuleshov Effect. Paper presented at the 18th Annual Laurel Highlands Undergraduate Psychology Conference, Greensburg, PA.


Phi Beta Kappa Society, Xi chapter of Pennsylvania (2015)

University Honors College Academic Scholarship, University of Pittsburgh (2014, 2015)

DeVito-Lipner Family Student Fund Research Award, Department of Psychology, University of Pittsburgh (2015)

The Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Consortium (ACC AC) Fellows Program in Creativity and Innovation

Grant: Summer (2015); $4,583.20

Role: Principal Investigator