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Tina Malti

Professor Psychology
Office Location:
DH 4030
3359 Mississauga Road N.
Mississauga , Ontario

Area of Research

Why do so many children become aggressive? Why do others show high levels of concern for others at very early ages? And can one do something so children do not become aggressive and support them to become empathic and caring? 

The primary goal of Dr. Malti's research is to answer these very difficult questions. It is urgent that we advance the understanding of why children engage or refrain from behaviours that are harmful to others and to themselves. Her research focuses on emotions, such as sympathy and anger, and children’s capacity to regulate emotions and arousal in social conflict contexts. To date, relatively little work has been done to understand the role of these emotions, including their biological underpinnings and their regulation in children’s aggression.

Tina Malti’s research is steeped in developmental psychology and developmental psychopathology to better understand how emotions and aggressive behaviour develop, how to predict their occurrence from biological markers and social processes, and ultimately how to intervene aggression and promote prosocial behaviour and kindness.


Tina Malti received her B.A. and M.A. from Free University of Berlin. She, then, earned her Ph. D. in Developmental Science from the Max Planck Institute for Human Development and Free University of Berlin and received a postgraduate M.A. in Clinical Child Psychology from the University of Fribourg. She is licensed as a clinical child psychologist. After completing her Ph. D., Dr. Malti completed Postdoctoral Fellowships at the Jacobs Center for Productive Youth Development in Switzerland and at Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital.

Dr. Malti is a professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, director of the Laboratory for Social-Emotional Development and Intervention, and founding director of the Centre of Child Development, Mental Health, and Policy at the University of Toronto Mississauga.

She is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Division 7: Developmental Psychology and Division 53: Society of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology), as well as a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science.

Dr. Malti has won several awards for her work, including the Desmond Morton Research Excellence Award from the University of Toronto Mississauga, the New Investigator Award from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), the Early Researcher Award from the Ontario Ministry of Economic Development and Innovation, the Young Investigator Award from the Society for Research in Adolescence (SRA), and the New Investigator Award from the International Society for Research on Aggression (ISRA).

Tina Malti is president-elect of the International Society for the Study of Behavioural Development. She is an Associate Editor of the journal Child Development.


Click here to read Dr. Malti’s publications.


M.A. (Psychology, Free University of Berlin)
Ph. D. (Developmental Science, Max Planck Institute for Human Development and Free University of Berlin)
Postgraduate M.A. (Clinical Child Psychology, University of Fribourg)
Habilitation (Psychology, Free University of Berlin)