Matthias Hofer

Matthias Hofer, Dr.

Senior Research and Teaching Associate

Phone: +41 (0)44 635 20 63


Dr. Matthias Hofer studied from 2002 to 2008 communication science, computational linguistics, and German linguistics. Since 2014 he is a senior research and teaching associate at the Institute of Mass Communication and Media Research, University of Zurich (IPMZ), Section "Media Psychology & Effects". 

Research interests

Experiences and effects of mediated environments

  • Presence and embodiment in mediated environments
  • Effects of computer games and virtual realities on emotional and cognitive processes

Media use and well-being

  • Effects of entertainment media on younger and older adults’ mental health and well-being
  • Effects of online media on users’ social capital
  • Media effects on moral intuitions and moral behavior

Entertainment research

  • Entertainment media as a source of meaning
  • Benefits of entertainment media in coping with mortality
  • Entertainment motivations in different cultures

Methods and statistics

  • Experimental methods
  • Operationalization of theoretical concepts in communication research (e.g., eudaimonic entertainment experiences, emotion regulation, emotional involvement)
  • Psychophysiological, implicit, and behavioral measurement
  • Measurement invariance tests between different cultures and different age groups

Curriculum vitae

Current position

Senior Research and Teaching Associate



Chair of the “Media Reception and Effects” division of the German Communication Association (GCA)

Co-editor of the “Reihe Rezeptionsforschung” [Edition Media Reception Research] (Nomos)

Chair of the “Audience, Media Reception, and Effects” division of the Swiss Association of Communication and Media Research (SACM)

Co-founder of the working group „Beobachtung“ [Observation] in cooperation with Prof. Dr. Andreas Fahr (University of Fribourg)