I am an Assistant Professor at the Department of Social Psychology at Tilburg University.  My research approach follows the paradigm of Social Cognition, seeking to understand social phenomena by investigating the cognitive processes involved in them.

I study how we understand others and develop empathy for them, particularly by means of perspective-taking. I seek to understand the mechanisms underlying these processes, and what their consequences are, for example, for social and economic decision-making, for organizational behaviors, or for mental health & well-being.

I also investigate emoji as a means to non-verbally communicate in digital text-based communication from the vantage point of social theories of emotion, both in low-stakes social interactions, as well as in work and organizational (e.g., workplace communication), and economic contexts (e.g., online customer-brand interactions).


I mainly conduct experimental research using behavioral and psychophysiological methods to uncover the mechanisms underlying social cognitions, behaviors, and decisions.

My research has been funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), the European Association for Social Psychology (EASP), and Prolific Academic. I am also a member of a research network sponsored by the DFG that investigates processes involved in understanding others. To follow our activities, visit us here:


At Tilburg University, I have taught courses in the Work Group Psychology, Experimental Research Design, and Social Cognition.

At my previous institutions, I have taught courses on Implicit Social Cognition, Attitudes and Persuasion, Research Methods, Empathy & Perspective-Taking, Intercultural Competence, and Communication & Rhetoric.

At all institutions, I have also supervised theses at all levels (Bachelor, Master, Research Master). I am currently also the master thesis coordinator at our department, so feel free to direct questions about the completion of your master thesis to me.



I am also the lab manager at our department. If you have a lab request (lab space, equipment, etc.), contact me or my lab team at: 

Finally, I am the coordinator of the Social Cognition Track at the Kurt Lewin Instituut (KLI, Should you have questions about the KLI or its social cognition track, you can contact me, too.

Recent publications

  1. Serious games for intercultural skills - Harnessing horizontal and ve…

    Bender, M., & Erle, T. (2023). Serious games for intercultural skills: Harnessing horizontal and vertical asymmetries in expertise and diversity across the curriculum. In S. Bax, G. van der Laan, & T. Leesen (Eds.), Breaking barriers: Innovation through collaboration (pp. 67-79). (Tilburg Series in Academic Education: Knowledge, Skills, Character). Tilburg University.
  2. "Understanding others in moments of crisis” - A special issue of Soci…

    Schneider, D., Burgmer, P., Erle, T. M., & Ferguson, H. (2023). "Understanding others in moments of crisis”: A special issue of Social Psychology. Social Psychology, 54(1-2), 1-3.
  3. Strength‐is‐weakness - The (ir)relevant relation between resources an…

    Wissink, J., Cantiani, A., Ven, N. V. D., Pronk, T., Erle, T. M., & Beest, I. V. (2023). Strength‐is‐weakness: The (ir)relevant relation between resources and payoffs in coalition formation. European Journal of Social Psychology, 53(2), 307-322.
  4. Motivations underlying self-infliction of pain during thinking for pl…

    Eder, A. B., Maas, F., Schubmann, A., Krishna, A., & Erle, T. M. (2022). Motivations underlying self-infliction of pain during thinking for pleasure. Scientific Reports, 12(1), Article 11247.
  5. Emojis as social information in digital communication

    Erle, T. M., Schmid, K., Goslar, S. H., & Martin, J. D. (2022). Emojis as social information in digital communication. Emotion, 22(7), 1529-1543.

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