The Current Opinion journals were developed out of the recognition that it is increasingly difficult for specialists to keep up to date with the expanding volume of information published in their subject. Elsevier’s Current Opinion journals comprise of 26 leading titles in life sciences and adjacent fields.

Current Opinion in Psychology

Issues per year: 6 issues
Editorial Board

Current Opinion in Psychology

The Current Opinion journals were developed out of the recognition that it is increasingly difficult for specialists to keep up to date with the expanding volume of information published in their subject. In Current Opinion in Psychology, we help the reader by providing in a systematic manner:

  1. The views of experts on current advances in psychology in a clear and readable form.
  2. Evaluations of the most interesting papers, annotated by experts, from the great wealth of original publications.

Division of the subject into sections

The subject of psychology is divided into themed sections, some of which may be reviewed on an annual basis if appropriate. The amount of space devoted to each section is related to its importance.

The topics covered will include:

* Biological psychology
* Clinical psychology
* Cognitive psychology
* Community psychology
* Comparative psychology
* Developmental psychology
* Educational psychology
* Environmental psychology
* Evolutionary psychology
* Health psychology
* Neuropsychology
* Personality psychology
* Social psychology

Selection of topics to be reviewed

Section Editors, who are major authorities in the field, are appointed by the Editors of the journal. They divide their section into a number of topics, ensuring that the field is comprehensively covered and that all issues of current importance are emphasised. Section Editors commission reviews from authorities on each topic that they have selected.


Authors write short review articles in which they present recent developments in their subject, emphasising the aspects that, in their opinion, are most important. In addition, they provide short annotations to the papers that they consider to be most interesting from all those published in their topic over the previous year.

Review articles in Current Opinion in Psychology are by invitation only.

Editorial Overview

Section Editors write a short overview at the beginning of the section to introduce the reviews and to draw the reader's attention to any particularly interesting developments.

Benefits to authors

We also provide many author benefits, such as free PDFs, a liberal copyright policy, special discounts on Elsevier publications and much more. Please click here for more information on our author services.

For more information, please refer to:

Please contact us if you have ideas for the journal:

Best Cited over the last year.

Subscribe to RSS Sciverse Scopus

Respiratory sinus arrhythmia: A transdiagnostic biomarker of emotion dysregulation and psychopathology

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. In the past two decades, respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA)-an index of parasympathetic nervous system (PNS)-mediated cardiac control-has emerged as a reliable peripheral biomarker of emotion regulation (ER). Reduced RSA and excessive RSA reactivity (i.e., withdrawal) to emotional challenge are observed consistently among individuals with poor ER capabilities, including those with various forms of internalizing and externalizing psychopathology, and those with specific…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 43-47
Theodore P. Beauchaine

Integrating NIMH Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) into depression research

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. The NIMH Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) initiative grew out of the agency's goal to develop 'new ways of classifying mental disorders based on behavioral dimensions and neurobiological measures' [1]. In this article, we review how depression research can be meaningfully conducted within an RDoC framework, with a particular focus on the Negative Valence Systems construct of Loss. New efforts to understand depression within the context of RDoC must seek an integrative…

Volume 4, Issue , 01 August 2015, Pp 6-12
Mary L. Woody | Brandon E. Gibb

Cultural diffusion in humans and other animals

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Recent years have seen an enormous expansion and progress in studies of the cultural diffusion processes through which behaviour patterns, ideas and artifacts are transmitted within and between generations of humans and other animals. The first of two main approaches focuses on identifying, tracing and understanding cultural diffusion as it naturally occurs, an essential foundation to any science of culture. This endeavor has been enriched in recent years by sophisticated…

Volume 8, Issue , 01 April 2016, Pp 15-21
Andrew Whiten | Christine A. Caldwell | Alex Mesoudi

Social baseline theory: The social regulation of risk and effort

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. We describe Social Baseline Theory (SBT), a perspective that integrates the study of social relationships with principles of attachment, behavioral ecology, cognitive neuroscience, and perception science. SBT suggests the human brain expects access to social relationships that mitigate risk and diminish the level of effort needed to meet a variety of goals. This is accomplished in part by incorporating relational partners into neural representations of the self. By…

Volume 1, Issue , 01 February 2015, Pp 87-91
James A. Coan | David A. Sbarra

Cognition in harsh and unpredictable environments

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. In environments that are harsh and unpredictable, people are typically more vigilant, act more impulsively, and discount the future more. In this paper, we argue that these behaviors reflect a present-orientation produced by biological adaptations, despite potential harm to health and wellbeing. We review recent studies showing that people in stressful environments have a stronger preference for immediate over delayed rewards, have children at a younger age, and develop…

Volume 7, Issue , 01 February 2016, Pp 76-80
Willem E. Frankenhuis | Karthik Panchanathan | Daniel Nettle

Frontal EEG asymmetry as a promising marker of depression vulnerability: Summary and methodological considerations

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Frontal EEG asymmetry is a promising neurophysiological marker of depression risk. It predicts emotional response and negative affect hours to years later. Yet, inconsistencies in the literature may be due to differing methodological approaches between research groups. Within the past two years, a number of studies have shown this line of research may be strengthened by augmenting resting assessments with emotionally evocative tasks, utilizing optimal recording montages,…

Volume 4, Issue , 01 August 2015, Pp 93-97
John J B Allen | Samantha J. Reznik

Depression and event-related potentials: Emotional disengagement and reward insensitivity

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Event-related potentials (ERPs) provide economical neural indices of information-processing abnormalities in relation to depression and depression risk. Early ERP studies of depression focused on cognitive deficits, more recent studies have examined ERPs to emotionally and motivationally relevant stimuli. Both the late positive potential (LPP), a measure of sustained processing of motivationally salient stimuli, and the reward positivity (RewP), an index of reactivity to…

Volume 4, Issue , 01 August 2015, Pp 110-113
Greg Hajcak Proudfit | Jennifer N. Bress | Dan Foti | Autumn Kujawa | Daniel N. Klein

Explicating the role of emotion dysregulation in risky behaviors: A review and synthesis of the literature with directions for future research and clinical practice

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Extant literature provides support for emotion dysregulation as a transdiagnostic construct with relevance to the pathogenesis and treatment of numerous psychiatric difficulties and maladaptive behaviors, including risky, self-destructive, and health-compromising behaviors (e.g. substance use, risky sexual behavior). The aim of the present review is to synthesize theory and empirical research on the relationship between emotion dysregulation and risky behaviors. In…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 22-29
Nicole H. Weiss | Tami P. Sullivan | Matthew T. Tull

Dysfunctional reward processing in depression

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Anhedonia - diminished pleasure and/or decreased reactivity to pleasurable stimuli - is a core feature of depression that frequently persists after treatment. As a result, extensive effort has been directed toward characterizing the psychological and biological processes that mediate dysfunctional reward processing in depression. Reward processing can be parsed into sub-components that include motivation, reinforcement learning, and hedonic capacity, which, according to…

Volume 4, Issue , 01 August 2015, Pp 114-118
Roee Admon | Diego A. Pizzagalli

Mobile and wireless technologies in health behavior and the potential for intensively adaptive interventions

© 2015. Recent advances in mobile and wireless technologies have made real-time assessments of health behaviors and their influences possible with minimal respondent burden. These tech-enabled real-time assessments provide the basis for intensively adaptive interventions (IAIs). Evidence of such studies that adjust interventions based on real-time inputs is beginning to emerge. Although IAIs are promising, the development of intensively adaptive algorithms generate new research questions, and…

Volume 5, Issue , 01 October 2015, Pp 67-71
William T. Riley | Katrina J. Serrano | Wendy Nilsen | Audie A. Atienza

The role of emotion dysregulation in suicide as considered through the ideation to action framework

© 2015 Published by Elsevier Ltd. Research supports a model in which emotionally dysregulated individuals are more likely to think about suicide and experience proximal risk factors for suicidal ideation (e.g., thwarted belongingness, perceived burdensomeness). The drive to escape aversive affective sensations inherent in emotion dysregulation, however, serves as an obstacle to the capability for suicide. As such, although emotionally dysregulated individuals die by suicide at an elevated rate,…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 30-35
Keyne C. Law | Lauren R. Khazem | Michael D. Anestis

Examining emotion regulation as an outcome, mechanism, or target of psychological treatments

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. This paper reviews the extant literature on emotion regulation (ER) in psychological interventions. First, we review current conceptualizations of ER, highlighting a model with established clinical utility (particularly with regard to the development of new interventions and modification of existing interventions). Next, we review the literature on the effects of psychological interventions on ER, from traditional cognitive-behavioral and acceptance-based behavioral…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 85-90
Kim L. Gratz | Nicole H. Weiss | Matthew T. Tull

Human sexual selection

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Sexual selection favors traits that aid in competition over mates. Widespread monogamous mating, biparental care, moderate body size sexual dimorphism, and low canine tooth dimorphism suggest modest sexual selection operating over human evolution, but other evidence indicates that sexual selection has actually been comparatively strong. Ancestral men probably competed for mates mainly by excluding competitors by force or threat, and women probably competed primarily by…

Volume 7, Issue , 01 February 2015, Pp 28-32
David Puts

Advancing acculturation theory and research: The acculturation process in its ecological context

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Continued intercultural contact leads to challenges and changes. As part of this process, the acculturating individual deals with acculturative stressors whose negative effects on well-being can be buffered or exacerbated by coping reactions. A second component of the acculturation process involves the acquisition, maintenance, and change of cultural behaviors, values and identities associated with heritage and settlement cultures. Both acculturative stress and…

Volume 8, Issue , 01 April 2016, Pp 98-104
Colleen Ward | Nicolas Geeraert

Culture and emotion regulation

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. While anthropological research has long emphasized cultural differences in whether emotions are viewed as beneficial versus harmful, psychological science has only recently begun to systematically examine those differences and their implications for emotion regulation and well-being. Underscoring the pervasive role of culture in people's emotions, we summarize research that has examined links between culture, emotion regulation, and well-being. Specifically, we focus on two…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 1-5
Brett Q. Ford | Iris B. Mauss

The role of digital and social media marketing in consumer behavior

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. This article reviews recently published research about consumers in digital and social media marketing settings. Five themes are identified: (i) consumer digital culture, (ii) responses to digital advertising, (iii) effects of digital environments on consumer behavior, (iv) mobile environments, and (v) online word of mouth (WOM). Collectively these articles shed light from many different angles on how consumers experience, influence, and are influenced by the digital…

Volume 10, Issue , 01 August 2016, Pp 17-21
Andrew T. Stephen

The interplay between Facebook use, social comparison, envy, and depression

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. In their Facebook profiles, users communicate abundant social comparison information conveying mainly positive self-portrayals. Thereby, social networking sites like Facebook provide a fertile ground for envy. This has been proposed as a mechanism for the potential negative effects of Facebook use on well-being and depression. This article reviews research on this process. Studies show that (especially passive) Facebook use indeed predicts different measures of social…

Volume 9, Issue , 01 June 2016, Pp 44-49
Helmut Appel | Alexander L. Gerlach | Jan Crusius

Mindfulness and emotion regulation

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. One proposed pathway for the documented psychological effects of mindfulness (cultivating awareness and acceptance of the present moment) has been through its facilitation of adaptive emotion regulation (ER). Although conceptual overlap between the two constructs complicates interpretation of correlational findings, an emerging body of laboratory, experimental, and treatment outcome studies provides preliminary support of proposed conceptual models. These findings indicate…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 June 2015, Pp 52-57
Lizabeth Roemer | Sarah Krill Williston | Laura Grace Rollins

The sense of effort

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Exerting 'effort' or 'self-control' is experienced as aversive. From an evolutionary point of view, this is something of a mystery insofar as aversive phenomenology is usually associated with fitness costs or threats, whereas exerting self-control seems to be associated with positive outcomes. Recent theorizing surrounding the sense of effort suggests that there are costs to exerting effort, and these costs explain the accompanying unpleasant sensations. Debate remains,…

Volume 7, Issue , 01 February 2016, Pp 67-70
Robert Kurzban

From Relational Frame Theory to implicit attitudes and back again: Clarifying the link between RFT and IRAP research

© 2014 Elsevier Ltd. Relational Frame Theory (RFT) is a functional-analytic account of human language and cognition, including human psychopathology. The core premise of the theory is that language and cognition is composed of relational acts. Over the past 10 years, the theory has served to generate the development of a measure, known as the Implicit Relational Assessment Procedure, which was designed initially to provide a metric of the strength or persistence of relational responding.…

Volume 2, Issue , 01 April 2015, Pp 11-15
Ian Hussey | Dermot Barnes-Holmes | Yvonne Barnes-Holmes

Editorial overview: New directions in the science of emotion regulation

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Emotion regulation is one of the fastest growing areas of research within psychology. Yet, despite the rapid growth of this research, there are still many questions to answer. This issue of Current Opinion in Psychology represents the current state of the field for theory and research on emotion regulation and highlights directions for future research. Each article describes groundbreaking research and theory in a particular area: first, emerging topics in emotion…

Volume 3, Issue , 01 January 2015, Pp iv-x
Matthew T. Tull | Amelia Aldao

Biological markets and the effects of partner choice on cooperation and friendship

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd Cooperation is crucial to our survival and social success. People typically choose their social partners (e.g., friends, allies, mates), which allows us to avoid bad partners and preferentially interact with better ones. This creates a biological market where people prefer to associate with others who are willing and able to confer benefits upon partners. In such a market, it pays to compete to be (or appear to be) more willing and able to help than competitors are, causing…

Volume 7, Issue , 01 February 2016, Pp 33-38
Pat Barclay

Depression from childhood through adolescence: Risk mechanisms across multiple systems and levels of analysis

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. This paper selectively reviews recent research, especially in the last two years (2012-2014) in preschool, child, and adolescent depression. In particular, attention is paid to developmental epidemiology as well as risk factors and processes that contribute to depression trajectories over time. Emphasis is placed on a developmental psychopathology perspective in which risks are instantiated across multiple systems and levels of analysis, including genetics, stress contexts…

Volume 4, Issue , 01 August 2015, Pp 13-20
Benjamin L. Hankin

Deconstructing intent to reconstruct morality

© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Mental state representations are a crucial input to human moral judgment. This fact is often summarized by saying that we restrict moral condemnation to 'intentional' harms. This simple description is the beginning of a theory, however, not the end of one. There is rich internal structure to the folk concept of intentional action, which comprises a series of causal relations between mental states, actions and states of affairs in the world. Moral judgment shows nuanced…

Volume 6, Issue , 01 December 2015, Pp 97-103
Fiery Cushman

Using theory to develop and test interventions to promote changes in health behaviour: Evidence, issues, and recommendations

© 2015 . Using theory to develop health behaviour interventions provides a useful framework to accumulate evidence and has been associated with larger changes in health behaviour. The present review suggests, however, that the evidence that using theory in this way produces greater health behaviour change is mixed. Furthermore, evaluating such evidence is difficult because: first, a significant proportion of interventions are not based on theory; second, those that are, tend not to apply the…

Volume 5, Issue , 01 October 2015, Pp 1-5
Andrew Prestwich | Thomas L. Webb | Mark Conner