Psychoanalysis Unit


Work in Progress - Findings from the MOAM study, Presented by Karen Yirmiya

25 January 2024, 2:00 pm–3:30 pm

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A hybrid webinar: Located online via livestream, and at 1-19 Torrington Place, UCL

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1-19 Torrington Place
Torrington Place


In this lecture, Dr. Karen Yirmiya will share results from her recent publication, entitled “The mediating role of reflective functioning and general psychopathology in the relationship between childhood conduct disorder and adult aggression among offenders”. The lecture will also shed light on the Mentalization for Offending Adult Males (MOAM) study, which is a randomised controlled trial investigating whether Mentalization Based Therapy (MBT) adapted for individuals with antisocial personality disorder is an effective treatment for offenders in the community. Dr. Yirmiya will review existing literature on conduct disorder, tracing its developmental trajectory to later psychopathology. The lecture will introduce the Reflective Functioning Questionnaire as a tool to assess mentalizing abilities. Furthermore, Dr. Yirmiya will discuss evaluating general psychopathology, both theoretically and statistically, through a bi-factor model. The session will culminate with an in-depth analysis of how reflective functioning and general psychopathology serve as mediators between conduct disorders and aggressive behaviors in this high-risk populations of adults male who offended.


Dr. Yirmiya is a postdoctoral researcher at the Clinical, Educational and Health Psychology at University College London and the Anna Freud Centre. She received her Ph.D. from Bar-Ilan University, Israel, in 2022. Her doctoral research investigated the role of caregiving as well as stress- and affiliation-related hormones in mental health problems among adolescents who have experienced chronic war-related trauma. Currently, she takes a central role in two therapeutic intervention randomized clinical trials. One focuses on attachment-based intervention to improve perinatal mental health and enhance the quality of the parent-infant relationship, while the other explores mentalization-based intervention in a cohort of adult male offenders. Her work employs a longitudinal, multi-disciplinary approach, combining biomarkers and psychological measurements to gain a deeper understanding of the risk and resilience trajectories of developing psychopathologies. As a clinical psychologist, Dr. Yirmiya specializes in infancy and early childhood therapy.