PhD candidate in mixed methods research

PhD candidate in mixed methods research

Published Deadline Location
7 Mar 22 Apr Tilburg

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Tilburg University - Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences is looking for a PhD candidate in mixed methods research for the Department of Methodology and Statistics, location Tilburg. Full-time equivalent: 1.0 FTE (40 hours per week).

Job description

Project Description
We are looking for a talented and ambitious PhD candidate in mixed methods research to develop a novel mixed methods design for experience sampling (ESM) research in the context of clinical youth assessment and psychotherapy.
Experience sampling methods (ESM), a technique to study mood and emotions in daily life (e.g., via smartphones), is gaining popularity among researchers and clinicians, especially in working with youth. ESM allows for intensive longitudinal measurement in daily life, offering extensive data per individual at a micro-scale. This means a game-changer for clinical assessment and research into complex mechanisms in psychotherapy. However, today there are no clear guidelines on how to select the most suited ESM measures, which leaves researchers with a myriad of arbitrary choices without quality control. Also, ESM aims to collect real-life experiences in daily life, but current – purely quantitative – ESM designs cannot capture peoples’ subjective meaning-making processes and contexts that shape responses. These qualitative dimensions are, however, crucial to interpret and use an individual’s results in a meaningful way.

This NWO-funded project aims to develop a novel mixed methods ESM design, to enrich (standard) quantitative ESM measurement with qualitative analyses of youths’ personal perspectives, contexts, and experiences. We aim for active engagement of adolescents, via participatory research to provide a youth-informed selection of ESM questions. We plan to conduct interviews with youth as a starting point to develop a new mixed methods ESM design, which will be implemented in a clinical youth sample (Dutch GGZ) to identify potential mechanisms in youth psychotherapy. This research will contribute to meaningful idiographic assessment in research and practice for youth. 

Your position  
The project is supervised by dr. De Smet (main supervisor) and dr. Kleinberg. You will be a member of the Tilburg Experience Sampling Center, a renowned research group involved with ESM research, and will join lab meetings concerning ESM and mixed methods research.

Your responsibilities  

  • Your research work includes literature reviews, open science preregistration, conducting interviews, developing and extending experience sampling methods, analyzing qualitative and quantitative data, and writing methodological tutorials.
  • You will prepare scientific articles to be published in international journals, present key findings at national and international scientific conferences, and write a dissertation.
  • You will actively participate in the Department of Methodology and Statistics.
  • You will contribute to Open Science and Team Science. 
  • You will contribute to education and supervision (e.g. teaching working groups of qualitative research methods course or supervision of bachelor theses; not more than 20% of your time will be devoted)


Tilburg University


Your background 
We are looking for a strong PhD candidate with a background in qualitative and/or quantitative research in psychology (e.g., relevant research master, research internship or thesis research), and a strong interest to contribute to mixed methods research, experience sampling (ESM) methods and intensive longitudinal analyses. Candidates with a social science background with very strong qualitative and/or quantitative research skills can also apply. Experience working with Atlas ti, Nvivo, R, mplus or other software is a plus; a willingness to learn this within a short timeframe is a must. Good social and communication skills and willing to work with other team members is very important. 

Other requirements include:

  • Commitment to write a PhD thesis
  • Interest in conducting high-quality methodological research
  • Interest in conducting qualitative and mixed methods research
  • An affinity with adolescents and young adults in clinical settings (Dutch GGZ)
  • A commitment to improving psychological care through meaningful measurement
  • Strong background in methodology and statistics as reflected by grades
  • Interest in open science and team science
  • Interest in providing small-scale education, such as teaching working groups or bachelor thesis supervision
  • Proficiency in English at an academic level
  • Proficiency in Dutch or willingness to learn Dutch for the purpose of conducting qualitative interviews and analyses

Increasing your value
With us, you will find everything you need to maximize your potential and development. We offer excellent facilities and support for research, education, and making societal impact. In all three of these areas, we “recognize and reward” you in line with national university aspirations. With great opportunities such as collaborating in an academic collaborative center, or participating in our Connected Leading program. We attach great importance to team spirit and have a clear, shared vision of (personal) leadership (Connected Leading). Read more about careers at Tilburg University and personal development here.  

Conditions of employment

Your valuable contribution will be rewarded with attractive benefits and sufficient attention to work-life balance. Our offer includes:

  • One position based on 1.0 FTE (40 hours per week)
  • This is a vacancy for a temporary position in accordance with Article 2.3, paragraph 5 of the CLA for Dutch Universities. You will be given a temporary employment contract for the duration of 12 months. After this period, in case of proven suitability and continuation in the same position, you will receive a subsequent employment contract that can be extended to a maximum duration of 48 months. 
  • A salary ranging from a minimum of € 2.770 to a maximum of € 3.539 gross per month for full time employment, based on UFO profile PhD and salary scale PR of the Collective Labour Agreement for Dutch Universities. 

In addition to your monthly salary, you will receive 41 vacation days (for a 40-hour work week), a holiday allowance (8%), and a year-end bonus (8.3%). We reimburse the full cost of sustainable commuting: walking, cycling, or public transportation. We have a moving expenses scheme that makes it attractive to live close to the university. You will be enrolled in the ABP pension fund through us. Our Options Model allows you to choose from a variety of facilities at a tax advantage. You can work in a hybrid manner: on campus and, for a reimbursement, from home. Researchers from outside the Netherlands may qualify for a tax-free allowance of 30% of their taxable salary if they meet the relevant conditions. The university applies for this allowance on their behalf.
Your work environment
You will work in a pleasant working environment; a green campus with plenty of facilities. At a leading, entrepreneurial, and innovative university in the humanities and social sciences. The university employs 2,400 staff members and hosts 20,000 students of some 100 different nationalities. For nearly a century, this organization has worked together with a tradition aimed at contributing to society. We strive to be a community where differences in age, gender, orientation, and cultural and religious backgrounds are valued, with equal opportunities for colleagues and students and where, moreover, all decisions take into account the importance of preserving the Earth for future generations. 
Read more about the university here.


Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences

Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences (TSB) is one of the five faculties of Tilburg University. The teaching and research of the Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences are organized around the themes of “Adaptive societies, organizations, and workers”, “Healthy life span”, and “Personalized prevention and care”. The School’s inspiring working environment challenges its workers to realize their ambitions, involvement and cooperation are essential to achieve this.   
Tilburg School of Social and Behavioral Sciences | Tilburg University.


For more information about the department of Methodology and Statistics, see: 


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 40 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 22177



Warandelaan 2, 5037 AB, Tilburg

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