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Dr Fiorentina Sterkaj

Senior Lecturer

Cognitive and Neuroscience and Drugs and Addictive Behaviours research groups

Department of Psychological Sciences , School of Psychology

Dr Fiorentina Sterkaj is Director of Education and Experience. 

Areas Of Interest

  • Pedagogical research with a focus on making a difference to student learning and improving student experience in HE
  • Problem-based learning and student engagement
  • Improving mood and student wellbeing and reducing study-related stress
  • Mental Health and Well-being, Mindfulness, Memory and Forgetting with a particular focus on Retrieval Induced Forgetting and Mood.
  • Cognitive neuropsychology and psychopharmacology of memory in clinical populations: executive functioning, cognitive deficits associated with depression and schizophrenia.
On This Page


Dr. Fiorentina Sterkaj joined UEL in October 2019 with extensive experience in teaching at higher education, seven years at the University of Suffolk and five years at University of Westminster. Fiorentina is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy and a chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society. Student-centred learning and positive student experience is at the core of her practice with an ethos to 'encourage and empower' students to succeed.

In her previous role, Fiorentina founded and directed the Suffolk Psychology Society, was a member of School Leadership Executive as the Learning and Teaching Lead, playing a pivotal role in the management of the School and contributing to the wider University leadership team. Fiorentina was also an admissions tutor, sat on the extenuating circumstance panel and led the School entertainment committee.

At UEL, Fiorentina teaches on Undergraduate and Postgraduate programmes whilst acting as Director of Education and Experience alongside Ian Wells, contributing to the School Management Team in ensuring the smooth running of learning and teaching and overall student experience.

Fiorentina's area of expertise is in Biological and Cognitive Psychology with a focus on Mental Health and clinical disorders. Fiorentina's research explores memory and neuropsychological functioning of individuals with depression and those with schizophrenia, aiming to enhance the knowledge of how different memory mechanisms could be underpinning these disorders.


Retrieval-induced forgetting in major depression: relationship with executive function, ruminating and smoking status.