I’m a Postdoctoral researcher in the Institute of Psychology at Jagiellonian University. I finished my graduate studies in India and completed my Phd at Cardiff University, UK.  My research focuses on the cognitive and motivational factors that influence information processing and self-regulatory mechanisms. I’m currently working on: i) Motivational and cognitive determinants of effort investment, ii) Control Motivation and iii) Multiple goal pursuit and individual differences. My other areas of interests include choking under pressure, mindsets and goals and embodied effects of status inequalities particularly in the context of Indian caste system.


Motivational and cognitive determinants of moral judgments: Implications for Inter-group relations. FUGA grant (2016/20/S/HS6/00317) awarded from the National Centre for Science (2016-2019)

Motivational, affective, and cognitive sources of knowledge formation process: Implications for intrapersonal, interpersonal and intergroup phenomena. MAESTRO Grant awarded to prof. Małgorzata Kossowska by the National Centre for Science.


  1. Sankaran, S. (in press). Learned helplessness in sports: The role of repetitive failure experience, anxiety and perfectionism. Polish Psychological Bulletin.
  2. Sankaran, S., Szumowska, E., Kossowska, M. (2017). When the going gets tough, the tough get going. Motivation towards closure and effort investment in the performance of cognitive tasks. Motivation & Emotion.​ Advanced online publication
  3. Sankaran, S., Sekerdej, M., & Von Hecker, U. (2017). The role of Indian caste identity and caste inconsistent norms on status representation. Frontiers in Psychology, 8 (487). doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00487 Advanced online publication
  4. Sankaran, S., Grzymala-Moszczynska, J., Strojny, A., Strojny, P. & Kossowska, M. (2017). Rising up to the ‘challenge’? The role of need for closure and situational appraisals in creative performance. Personality and Individual Differences, 106C, 136-145. doi: 10.1016/j.paid.2016.10.045. Full text available here.
  5. Kossowska, M., Bukowski, M., &  Sankaran, S. (2016)  “Ironic” effects of need for closure on closed-minded processing mode: The moderating role of perceived control over reducing uncertainty, in Current Issues in Social Psychology: Coping  With Lack of Control in a Social World , M. Bukowski, I. Fritsche, A. Guinote & M. Kofta (Eds.) Taylor & Francis Groups.
  6. Von Hecker, U., Klauer, C. K. & Sankaran, S. (2013). Embodiment of social status: verticality effects in multi-level rank-orders. Social Cognition, 31(3), 374-389.