PhD Candidate: The Development of Self-Regulated Learning Skills of Secondary School Students in the Age of AI

PhD Candidate: The Development of Self-Regulated Learning Skills of Secondary School Students in the Age of AI

Published Deadline Location
9 Jun 16 Jun Nijmegen

You cannot apply for this job anymore (deadline was 16 Jun 2022).

Browse the current job offers or choose an item in the top navigation above.

Job description

You are a talented and enthusiastic prospective researcher with an affinity for developing AI-driven educational innovations. As a PhD candidate, you will be a project leader at Radboud University and become part of the Center for Learning and Living with AI (CELLA), an international collaborative research centre funded by the Jacobs Foundation. You will conduct research at the highest scientific level in a pleasant and open environment. Do you want to contribute to the development of self-regulated learning skills in young learners, so they can learn and live successfully with AI throughout their lives? Then don’t hesitate to apply!

For the recently awarded Jacobs Foundation grant to CELLA, we are looking for a PhD candidate to strengthen this team for a period of four years. AI-driven learning technology is increasingly being used in the daily lives of children at school. For example, intelligent learning technologies (ILTs) where the learning environment is adapted to the level of the individual student are increasingly applied. This change causes children to interact more with different forms of AI. An important aspect while learning with an ILT is how students control and monitor their own learning process, also known as self-regulated learning (SRL). SRL skills are important for better learning and lifelong learning. Although good self-regulated learning is known to be essential for a student's future, these skills are still little supported by digital learning tools. In fact, the question is whether AI does not control and automate too much in the learning process, which may limit SRL development. This project therefore combines technical and pedagogical innovation to develop SRL skills in students in a positive way. This aim is to be achieved in co-creation with schools, the EdTech industry and researchers.

The project is part of the international research centre CELLA, which is a global leader in education and brings together educational sciences, learning analytics and artificial intelligence. The aim is to conduct research that contributes to the development of AI-driven learning technologies with a focus on the well-being of children. In addition to Radboud University, there are four other partners, led by Dr Sanna Järvelä, University of Oulu, Finland; Dr Maria Bannert of Munich Technical University, Germany; Dr Dragan Gasevic, University of Melbourne, Australia; and Dr Roger Azevedo, University of Central Florida, USA.

The project team in Nijmegen consists of Dr Inge Molenaar (RU) and Dr Susanne de Mooij. During your PhD you will work together with four other PhD candidates in an international team assisted by two postdoctoral researchers and led by the five partners. Your first study will be a validation study for detecting SRL. You will conduct this study together with the other PhD students at secondary schools around the world to contribute to reproducible and robust research. Subsequent studies will focus on supporting SRL in various educational scenarios and the long-term development of SRL.

The aim of the project is to investigate how we can use new AI applications to support secondary school students to improve their self-regulated learning. Developing SRL skills and the motivation to learn to self-regulate is essential for a lifelong, healthy career in the age of AI.

We offer a PhD position with 10% teaching duties. During your PhD research, you will have the opportunity to obtain a university teaching qualification (BKO).

A full project description is available on request.


Radboud University


  • You hold a Master's degree/Research Master's degree in educational sciences, educational psychology, behavioural sciences, artificial intelligence or another relevant field.
  • You have affinity with and experience in creating educational interventions.
  • You have extensive knowledge of self-regulated learning in the context of technology-enhanced learning and a basic understanding of artificial intelligence and machine learning.
  • You have excellent methodological and analytical skills, and experience with collecting and analysing complex data.
  • You can adequately set up and carry out practical studies with students at schools.
  • You have the will to learn Dutch and an excellent command of English, both spoken and written.
  • You have very good writing skills, as demonstrated by a writing sample, such as your Master's thesis or (ideally) a forthcoming or published article.
  • You are proactive, enthusiastic and have good collaboration skills.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: 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).

  • It concerns an employment for 1.0 FTE.
  • The gross monthly salary amounts to a minimum of €2,443 per month on a 38-hour working week, and will increase to €3,122 from the fourth year (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).
  • 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 29 or 41 days of annual leave instead of the legally allotted 20.


The Faculty of Social Sciences is one of the largest faculties of Radboud University (Nijmegen, the Netherlands). The faculty currently employs about 650 staff. The Faculty has the ambition to become one of the top social science institutes in Europe, with high-quality research and study programmes that rank among the best in the Netherlands. The Behavioural Science Institute (BSI) is a multidisciplinary research institute and one of the three research institutes within the Faculty of Social Sciences at Radboud University. Our researchers work together within psychology, education and communication sciences. Our mission is to empower people by understanding human behaviour, to create synergy between different paradigms, and to facilitate professionalism, curiosity and connection in scientific research. BSI has seven research programmes that together represent three major research themes: 1) development and learning, 2) mental and physical health, and 3) social processes and communication. BSI carries out both fundamental and applied/translational research and has excellent facilities and support for laboratory and field research. You will be working within the Learning & Plasticity group at BSI. This programme is concerned with the micro-analysis of learning processes. The project is part of the Adaptive Learning Lab (ALL), a technology-intensive research lab that is considered a frontrunner in the development of intelligent learning technologies in which data, learning analytics and artificial intelligence play an important role. ALL currently consists of seven PhD candidates, three postdoctoral researchers and two junior researchers, and is led by Associate Professor Inge Molenaar. ALL conducts research in various educational contexts with projects in primary education, secondary education and higher education. We offer a PhD position in a highly innovative context at a progressive research university, with ample opportunities to travel, publish and develop yourself.


  • PhD; Research, development, innovation
  • Engineering
  • €2443—€3122 per month
  • University graduate
  • 1191619



Houtlaan 4, 6525 XZ, Nijmegen

View on Google Maps

Interesting for you