Zara Godinovich

Doctor of Clinical Psychology, (Psychology)
Study Completed: 2017
College of Humanities & Social Sciences


Thesis Title
Emotion recognition and intellectual disability: Development of the kinetic emotion recognition assessment (KERA) and evaluation of the emotion specificity hypothesis

Read article at Massey Research Online: MRO icon

Deficits in social functioning are a defining criterion of Intellectual Disability (ID) and a key predictor of social inclusion and subsequent quality of life. Impairment in facial emotion recognition is often cited as the component skill responsible for the social difficulties observed. Ms Godinovich developed and piloted the Kinetic Emotion Recognition Assessment (KERA) to serve as a reliable and valid tool to investigate the emotion recognition abilities of people with ID. Her findings offered strong evidence of a relative impairment in emotion recognition abilities with individuals with ID benefiting from higher intensity emotional displays but not from the addition of movement cues. A positive relationship was observed between emotion recognition ability and social functioning for this group. Ms Godinovich’s research represents significant progress in both clarifying the nature of emotion recognition difficulties experienced by people with ID, and in improving the standards of experimental enquiry applied within ID research.

Associate Professor Richard Fletcher
Associate Professor Ian De Terte