Quick facts

    • Nijmegen
  • Full time
  • Recruitment


  • Psychology


  • Phd

Apply by: 2023-10-08

PhD Candidate in Experimental Psychopathology at the Behavioural Science Institute Graduate School

Published 2023-09-14


Interested in unravelling fundamental, cognitive and clinical mechanisms of psychopathology with cutting-edge experimental psychology methods? We are looking for a PhD candidate to join the Experimental Psychopathology and Treatment Programme. In this position you will determine the focus and shape of the research project together with your supervisors in a stimulating research environment.

You will be employed within the Experimental Psychopathology and Treatment (EPT) programme, embedded in the Behavioural Science Institute (BSI), part of the Faculty of Social Sciences at Radboud University. This research programme thrives on a unique combination of cutting-edge experimental psychology methods and clinical interest, expertise, applications and relevance.

As a PhD candidate, you will draft a research project together with your supervisory team, to better understand the cognitive, behavioural or neural mechanisms that underly psychopathology, vulnerability in healthy individuals, and treatment (selection, efficacy, outcomes). You will initiate, develop and execute several studies. You will write scientific papers, resulting in the completion of a PhD thesis at the end of your employment contract. As a participant in the BSI Graduate School PhD programme, you will be expected to complete several courses related to the basic scientific research skills such as presentation skills, scientific integrity, and data management. We also encourage you to attend and present your work at relevant workshops and conferences. You will have a 10% teaching load.

You will participate actively to the EPT community, where we host regular department events (scientific, support and social events).


  • You hold a Master's or Research Master's degree in Behavioural Science, Clinical Psychology, Experimental Psychology or Neuropsychology, Clinical or Cognitive Neuroscience, or a related field.
  • You have a keen interest in understanding the cognitive and behavioural mechanisms that underly psychopathology (onset, maintenance, treatment) or the vulnerability to psychopathology (prevention).
  • You are able to think mechanistically (i.e. about the underlying processes possibly altered in psychopathology), combining a fundamental research mindset with a keen clinical interest and orientation to clinical implications or applications.
  • You have good research, methodological and statistical skills.
  • You preferably have experience with neurobiological and experimental methods and techniques (programming, behavioural experiments, physiology, EEG, fMRI), or are willing to acquire these skills.
  • You are familiar with Open Science research practices that increase transparency in social science (e.g. pre-registration, data-sharing) and are willing to adopt this approach.
  • You have good social skills and are interested in learning and thinking across disciplines.
  • You are a team player but also able to work independently.
  • You have good written and spoken English language skills required for scientific publishing.


Fixed-term contract: an initial period of 18 months, after which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is positive, the contract will be extended by 2.5 years (4 year contract) or 3.5 years (5 year contract).

  • It concerns an employment for 0.8 (5 year contract) - 1.0 FTE (4 year contract).
  • The gross starting salary amounts to €2,770 per month based on a 38-hour working week, and will increase to €3,539 from the fourth year onwards (salary scale P).
  • You will receive 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus.
  • You will be employed for an initial period of 18 months, after which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is positive, the contract will be extended by 2.5 years (4 year contract) or 3.5 years (5 year contract).
  • You will be able to use our Dual Career and Family Care Services. Our Dual Career and Family Care Officer can assist you with family-related support, help your partner or spouse prepare for the local labour market, provide customized support in their search for employment and help your family settle in Nijmegen.
  • Working for us means getting extra days off. In case of full-time employment, you can choose between 30 or 41 days of annual leave instead of the legally allotted 20.

Work and science require good employment practices. This is reflected in Radboud University's primary and secondary employment conditions. You can make arrangements for the best possible work-life balance with flexible working hours, various leave arrangements and working from home. You are also able to compose part of your employment conditions yourself, for example, exchange income for extra leave days and receive a reimbursement for your sports subscription. And of course, we offer a good pension plan. You are given plenty of room and responsibility to develop your talents and realise your ambitions. Therefore, we provide various training and development schemes.


Experimental Psychopathology and Treatment Programme
We aim to acquire fundamental scientific and applied knowledge to better understand the cognitive, behavioural and neurobiological mechanisms of psychopathology and its treatment. We conduct empirical studies of clinically relevant processes such as biased information and affective processing, approach-avoidance tendencies, cognitive control, emotion regulation, and motivation. We study these processes in healthy and clinical populations (anxiety, depression, eating disorders, addiction) to assess the role of these processes in 1) the development and maintenance of psychopathology, 2) the change promoted by clinical and preventive interventions, 3) decision-making by patients and clinicians, and 4) the improvement of treatment selection and efficacy.

The combination of fundamental multi-modal research with the goal of improving treatment (selection, efficacy and prevention) is one of EPT's unique strengths. Our methods include behavioural measurements, eye-tracking, physiology, neuroimaging, neuromodulation and computational modelling. We collaborate intensively with local, national and international partners and societal partners (e.g. the Nijmegen Centre of Anxiety Research and Expertise, Dutch National Police).

Behavioural Science Institute
The Behavioural Science Institute (BSI) is a multidisciplinary research institute and one of the three research institutes of the Faculty of Social Sciences at Radboud University.
Our researchers collaborate across the boundaries of psychology, educational science, and communication science. Our mission is to strengthen people through understanding the foundations of human behaviour, by creating synergy between different paradigms, and by facilitating craftsmanship, curiosity and connection in academic research. 

BSI has seven research programmes covering three major research themes, namely human development, connection and health. BSI conducts fundamental as well as applied/translational research and  has excellent facilities and support for lab and field research. Moreover, BSI is known for its successful graduate school and strong commitment to open science.

Radboud University

We are keen to meet critical thinkers who want to look closer at what really matters. People who, from their expertise, wish to contribute to a healthy, free world with equal opportunities for all. This ambition unites more than 24,000 students and 5,600 employees at Radboud University and requires even more talent, collaboration and lifelong learning. You have a part to play!


For questions about the position, please contact Linda Kwakkenbos, Assistant Professor at linda.kwakkenbos@ru.nl.