Sabancı University MLT Lab

Led by the principal investigator Dr. Junko Kanero, Sabancı University Mind, Language, & Technology Lab conducts many scientific studies to advance the theoretical understanding of cognitive processes to provide practical implications of the research. We believe in an interdisciplinary approach, and the topics integrate several research areas including psychology, education, linguistics, and human-computer interaction. 

Our Team

Dr. Junko Kanero

Principle Investigator of the MLT Lab
Assistant Professor of Psychology

Junko is the Principal Investigator (PI) of the MLT Lab. As a cognitive and developmental psychologist, Junko examines language as a window into human cognition. In 2016, she received her PhD in Developmental Psychology and Neuroscience from Temple University in the US. She then moved to Istanbul to work as a postdoctoral researcher at Koç University. In January 2019, she was appointed as an Assistant Professor at Sabancı University. Together with the wonderful members of the MLT Lab, Junko explores language development in infancy and childhood, the use of technology in language education, and how language and non-linguistic cognition interact. She speaks English, Japanese, and Arabic... and some Turkish too. She is also passionate about humanitarian works and volunteers in the local NGO Istanbul&I where she served as the head manager until last December.

Curriculum vitae:


Ayşe Doğan

Ayşe is a second-year master’s student interested in studying human-robot interactions as well as studying second language acquisition via technology and robots. She enjoys traveling and watching sitcoms in her free time


Ali Özen

Ali is a second-year Master’s student in the psychology program at Sabancı. He is mainly interested in infant social and emotional development, as well as developmental psychology as a whole. He is a music enthusiast, and plays the classical and electric guitar. He also loves reading about science and philosophy.


Pelin Öztürk

Pelin is a first-year Master’s student. She graduated from Boğaziçi University. Her research focuses on the relationship between language and non-linguistic human cognition. She is also doing a research internship at the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics. Apart from academia, she is a photographer. She also enjoys swimming, traveling, and knitting her own clothes!


Selen Akay

Selen is a first-year Master’s student in psychology. She graduated from Bilkent University, Turkey.  Her research interests include but are not limited to – intergroup relations, close relationships, adult attachment, human-robot interaction, and mind attribution. She enjoys learning about and experiencing different cultures. She also loves playing video games and board games with her friends.


Berkay Arslan

Berkay is a fourth-year psychology student, who has a strong interest on comparative and developmental psychology. He loves reading about animal behaviors with a preference for primate behaviors. In his free time, he likes to travel, listen to podcasts, and do woodworking (especially wooden spoons)!


Gülce Fidan

Gülce is a fourth-year psychology student. She is interested in social psychology and developmental psychology. She also enjoys forensic psychology. She assists in studies of human-robot interaction and a study about the effect of music on the social interaction of children and chimpanzees at the MLT Lab. In her spare time, she likes watching sitcoms, taking analog photos, and traveling.


Elif Nur Keskinkılıç

Coming soon…


Duru İmamoğlu

Duru is a third-year psychology undergraduate student, and she is also minoring in Gender Studies. She is interested in language development in infancy, and hopes to work in the field of developmental psychology. She likes to read about minorities, gender roles, and oppression and to watch volleyball matches and festival movies!


Begüm Kayaalp

Begüm is a third-year psychology undergraduate student. Also, she is doing a minor in Decision and Behavior. She is interested in developmental psychology and social psychology. She also works as an intern at an online therapy center. She likes to read about history, philosophy and mythology. She likes to cook. She hopes to work in the field of clinical psychology focusing on development.


Lara Mercan Şahin

Lara is a fourth-year psychology and management student. She is especially interested in social and developmental psychology. She is also in the theatre club. She enjoys both watching theatre and acting in them. In her spare times, she enjoys participating in art related activities and binging sitcoms.

Lab Alumni

Lab Alumni

Elif Tutku Tunalı

Ayşenaz Akbay

Aslıhan Niksarlı

Ceren Boynuk

İrem Gözelekli

Serap Özlü

Helin Erden

Devrim Öztürk

Ece Karaosmanoğlu

Eren Akbaba

Nazlı Şevval Tezel

Zeynep Zontur

Fatma İlayda Ünal

Ege Kalecik

Aslı Aydınlar

Aysun Öğüt

Berna Yıldıran

Göktuğ Gençkaya

Berkay Arslan

Selen Akay

Ahmad Alhasan

Berkay Arslan

Elif Gödüş

Eren Çavuş

Ezgi Bostancı

İdil Akdemir

İlayda Kaytaran

Serhat Varolan

Yaren Zengin

Yiğit Kemal Keskin

Cansu Özden

Ekin Su Gümüş

Esin Aydın

Ezgi Bostancı

Göksu Gamlı

İrem Aras

Larissa Tatyosoğlu