Search form

Prof. Dr. Arvid Kappas
Prof. Dr. Arvid Kappas
Prof. Dr.
Professor of Psychology
Psychology & Methods

Constructor University Bremen gGmbH
Campus Ring 1 | 28759 Bremen | Germany

+49 421 200-3303
akappas [at]
Reimar Lüst Hall, 257 | Res. IV, 116
Research Interests: 

At the heart of the science of emotion is empirical research. Theory building and empirical investigations are mutually dependent - one cannot progress without the other. As I have mentioned elsewhere, emotion research can take many forms.

My own research focuses on (1) the information processing that causes the (2) subjective changes, (3) physiological reactions, and (4) expressive behaviors that we associate with emotion. However, each of these response domains presentes complexities in their own right. For example, facial expressions are not only determined by emotions, but also by social and cultural processes. Hence, it is necessary to go beyond emotional processes in the case of each of these domains - in this example questions can be as simple as what happens to facial expressions when others are present. What if they are friends, or what if they are strangers. Knowing more about this will help to understand how behaviors change when we are emotional. If we do not know enough about the general case, we will not know whether emotional facial expressions in social context are a special case, due to the emotion, or follow other expressions, even some that we might not consider emotional.


University Education: 

1989-1992 First Swiss Graduate College in Psychology (Emotion psychology) 1989-1992 Approches expérimentales dans l'étude de la parole, post-graduate seminar, coordination romande en psychologie, Suisse 1

1989-1992First Swiss Graduate College in Psychology (Emotion psychology)
1989-1992Approches expérimentales dans l'étude de la parole, post-graduate seminar, coordination romande en psychologie, Suisse
1986-1989Ph.D., Department of Psychology, Dartmouth College, Hanover NH, USA (first year funded by a fellowship of the DAAD)
1980-1986Dipl. Psychology, Fachbereich Psychologie, Justus-Liebig-Universität Giessen, Germany
1984Research internship, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, (funded by Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes)
1983Research internship, University of California, Berkeley (funded by DAAD and CIEE)


Research and Teaching Positions: 

2003-presentFull Professor of Psychology, School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Jacobs University Bremen, Germany
2001-2003Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology, University of Hull, UK
1999Visiting Professor, Department of Psychology, University of Salzburg, Austria
1999Visiting Professor, Department of Psychology, University "La Sapienza", Rome, Italy
1997-2001Associate Professor, École de psychologie, Université Laval, Québec, Canada
1992-1997Assistant Professor, École de psychologie, Université Laval, Québec, Canada
1990-1992Visiting Lecturer, Department of Psychology, Université de Fribourg, Suisse
1989-1992Assistant/Maître Assistant, FPSE, Université de Genève, Suisse


[Selected recent publications]
Charlton, J. P., Kappas, A. & Swiderska, A. (2015). Does computing anger have social elements? A comparison with driving anger. In Behavior & Information Technology, 34, 294-303. doi:10.1080/0144929X.2014.895421
Calvo, R. A., D'Mello, S. K., Gratch, J. & Kappas, A. (Eds.) (2015). The Oxford Handbook of Affective Computing, New York: Oxford University Press
Krumhuber, E., Kaiser, S., Kappas, A., & Scherer, K.R. (2013). Body and speech as expression of inner states. In C. Müller, A. Cienki, E. Fricke, Ladewig, S., D. McNeill, & S. Tessendorf (Eds.) Body – Language – Communication: An International Handbook on Multimodality in Human Interaction (Handbooks of Linguistics and Communication Science (HSK) 38/1 (pp. 551-564). Berlin & New York: de Gruyter/Mouton. DOI: 10.1515/9783110261318.551
Skowron, M., Theunis, M., Rank, S., & Kappas, A. (2013). Affect and social processes in online communication - Experiments with an affective dialog system. IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, 4, 267-279. DOI: 10.1109/T-AFFC.2013.16
Paltoglou, G., Theunis, M., Kappas, A., & Thelwall, M. (2013). Predicting emotional responses to long informal text, IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing. 4, 107-115.
Thelwall, M., Buckley, K., Paltoglou, G., Skowron, M., Garcia, D., Gobron, S., Ahn, J., Kappas, A., Küster, D., & Holyst, J.A. (2013). Damping sentiment analysis in online communication: Discussions, monologs and dialogs. Computational Linguistics and Intelligent Text Processing / Lecture Notes in Computer Science, 7817, 1-12.
Tsankova, E., Aubrey, A.J., Krumhuber, E., Möllering, G., Kappas, A., Marshall, D., & Rosin, P.L. (2013). Facial and vocal cues in perceptions of trustworthiness, In J.I. Park & J. Kim (eds.), ACCV Workshops, Part II, LNCS 7729 (pp. 308-319). Berlin: Springer.
Kappas A (2013) Social regulation of emotion: messy layers. Frontiers in Psychology, 4, 51. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00051.
Kappas, A., Krumhuber, E., & Küster, D. (2013). Facial behavior. In J. A. Hall, & M. L. Knapp (Eds.) Nonverbal Communication (pp. 131-166). Berlin & New York: de Gruyter/Mouton.
Müller, M. G., Kappas, A., & Olk, B. (2012). Perceiving press photography: A new integrative model, combining iconology with psychophysiological and eye-tracking methods. Visual Communication, 11, 307-328. doi: 10.1177/1470357212446410
Küster, D., & Kappas, A. (2011). Peripher-physiologische Verfahren während und nach der Bildbetrachtung. Physiologische Messungen: Herzrate, Hautleitfähigkeit und verwandte Verfahren. In T. Petersen & C. Schwender (Eds.). Die Entschlüsselung der Bilder: Methoden zur Erforschung visueller Kommunikation. Ein Handbuch (pp. 372-383). Köln: Von Halem Verlag.
Kappas, A., & Krämer, N.C. (2011). Introduction: Electronically mediated face-to-face communication: Issues, questions, and challenges. In A. Kappas & N.C. Krämer (Eds.) Face-to-face communication over the Internet: Emotions in a web of culture, language and technology (pp. 1-13). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Kappas, A., & Krämer, N.C. (Eds.) (2011). Face-to-face communication over the Internet: Emotions in a web of culture, language and technology. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Müller, M.G., & Kappas, A. (2011). Visual emotions – emotional visuals: Emotions, pathos formulae, and their relevance for communication research. In K. Döveling, C. von Scheve, & E.A. Konijn (Eds.) The Routledge Handbook of Emotions and the Mass Media (pp. 310-331). Abingdon, OX; UK: Routledge.
Olk, B. & Kappas, A. (2011). Eye tracking technology as a tool for visual research. In E. Margolis & L. Pauwels (Eds.) The SAGE Handbook of Visual Research Methods (pp. 433-451). London: SAGE Publications.
Chmiel, A., Sienkiewicz, J., Thelwall, M. Paltoglou, G., Buckley, K., Kappas, A., & Holyst, J.A. (2011). Collective Emotions Online and Their Influence on Community Life. PLoS ONE, 6 (7), e22207. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0022207
Kappas, A. (2011). Emotion is not just an alarm bell—it's the whole tootin' fire truck Cognition and Emotion, doi:10.1080/02699931.2011.587641
Kappas, A. (2011). Emotion and regulation are one! Emotion Review, 3, 17–25. doi:10.1177/1754073910380971
Thelwall, M., Buckley, K., Paltoglou, G., Cai, D. & Kappas, A. (2010). Sentiment in short strength detection informal text. Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology, 61, 2544-2558.
Kappas, A. (2010). Smile when you read this, whether you like it or not: Conceptual challenges to affect detection. IEEE Transactions on Affective Computing, 1 (1), 38-41, Jan.-June 2010, doi:10.1109/T-AFFC.2010.6
Kappas, A. (2009). Ausdruck: Kommunikations- und Regulationsmedium. In G. Stemmler (Ed.) Enzyklopädie der Psychologie: Psychologie der Emotionen (pp.387-443). Göttingen: Hogrefe.
Hess, U., & Kappas, A. (2009). Appraisaltheorien: Komplexe Reizbewertung und Reaktionsselektion In G. Stemmler (Ed.) Enzyklopädie der Psychologie: Psychologie der Emotionen (pp. 247-290). Göttingen: Hogrefe.
Kappas, A. (2009). Mysterious tears. The phenomenon of crying from the perspective of social neuroscience. In: Thorsten Fögen (ed.), Tears in the Graeco-Roman World (pp. 419-438) , Berlin & New York,: DeGruyter.
Kappas, A., & Olk, B. (2008). The concept of visual competence as seen from the perspective of the psychological and brain sciences. Visual Studies, 23, 162-173.
Kappas, A. (2008). Psssst! Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde are actually the same person! A tale of regulation and emotion. In M. Vandekerckhove, C. von Scheve, S. Ismer, S. Jung, & S. Kronast (Eds.) Regulating emotions: Social necessity and biological inheritance (pp. 15-38). Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing.
Kappas, A., & Poliakova, N. (2008). Judgments of the affective valence of spontaneous vocalizations: The influence of situational context. In K. Izdebski (Ed.) Emotions in the human voice, Volume 1 (pp. 109-122). San Diego, CA: Plural Publishing.
Küster, D. & Kappas, A. (2007). Implicit sociality overrides explicit relationship goals in a task involving conscious control of corrugator supercilii: Diverging paths of automaticity and control towards friends vs. strangers. In Psychophysiology 44, (p. 46).
Krumhuber, E., Manstead, A.S. R., Cosker, D., Marshall, D., Rosin, P.L., & Kappas, A. (2007).
Krumhuber, E. , Manstead, A. S. R. & Kappas, A. (2007).
Kappas, A. (2007). What is an emotion? Many-splendored things. Emotion Researcher. 22 (1-2), 7.
Kappas, A. (2006). Geheimnisvolle Tränen: Das Phänomen des Weinens aus der Sicht der Neurosemiotik. Zeitschrift für Semiotik, 28, 295-309.
Kappas, A. (2006). Appraisals are direct, immediate, intuitive, and unwitting ... and some are reflective ... Cognition and Emotion, 20, 952-975.
Shields, S.A., & Kappas, A. (2006). Magda B. Arnold's contributions to emotions research. Cognition and Emotion, 20, 898-901.
Kappas, A., & Müller, M.G. (2006). Bild und Emotion - Ein neues Forschungsfeld. Publizistik, 51, 3-23.
Nouwen, A., Cloutier, C., Kappas, A., Warbrick, T., & Sheffield, D. (2006). The effects of focusing and distraction on cold-pressor induced pain in chronic back pain patients and controls. Journal of Pain, 7, 62-71.
Krumhuber, E. & Kappas, A. (2005). Moving smiles: The role of dynamic components for the perception of the genuineness of smiles. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 29, 3-24.