PhD Candidate: Children’s Self-Assessment During Creative Problem Solving

PhD Candidate: Children’s Self-Assessment During Creative Problem Solving

Published Deadline Location
15 Mar 14 Apr Nijmegen

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Job description

Do you have a passion for research in primary education? Are you interested in promoting children’s creativity? And do you want to investigate how primary school teachers can be supported in improving children’s creativity? Then join the Behavioural Science Institute (BSI) as a PhD candidate!

As a PhD candidate, you will develop and conduct several studies. You will write scientific papers, resulting in the completion of a PhD thesis at the end of your employment contract. You will participate in supervision meetings as well as staff meetings of the Learning, Education and Development department and other relevant research meetings. As a participant of the BSI Graduate School PhD programme, you will be expected to complete several courses related to basic professional skills such as presentation skills, scientific integrity, and data management. As part of your PhD position, you will have a teaching load of 10% and the opportunity to make a start with or work on your teaching portfolio for a university teaching qualification. We will also encourage you to attend and present your work at relevant workshops and conferences.

Creativity revolves around generating ideas or products that are both original and useful. Teachers can nurture this capability by providing challenging problem-solving tasks within specific domains. During these assignments, children should assess whether their solutions are indeed creative. This self-assessment is important because it drives the decision to continue or abandon the search for alternative solutions.

Research on self-assessment shows that most children either overestimate or underestimate how creative their solutions to a problem actually are. Teachers have an important role here as they can help children improve their self-assessment accuracy. The goal of this project, therefore, is to investigate how teachers can effectively and adaptively support children in accurately assessing their creativity.

A more elaborate description of this project can be requested by email from Mare van Hooijdonk ( or Noortje Janssen (


Radboud University


  • You hold a Research Master's degree (or a Master's degree with research experience) in the social sciences (e.g., educational sciences, psychology).
  • You have experience with both quantitative and qualitative research methods.
  • You have an affinity with creative and metacognitive thinking skills.
  • You have a demonstratable interest in the primary school context.
  • You speak Dutch well enough to collaborate with teachers and collect data from young pupils in schools.
  • You have proficient written and spoken English language skills.

Conditions of employment

Fixed-term contract: We will give you a temporary employment contract of 1,5 years, after which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is positive, your contract will be extended by 2.5 years (4-year contract).

  • We will give you a temporary employment contract (1.0 FTE) of 1,5 years, after which your performance will be evaluated. If the evaluation is positive, your contract will be extended by 2.5 years (4-year contract).
  • You will receive a starting salary of €2,770 gross per month based on a 38-hour working week, which will increase to €3,539 in the fourth year (salary scale P).
  • You will receive an 8% holiday allowance and an 8,3% end-of-year bonus.
  • You will be able to use our Dual Career and Family Support Service. The Dual Career Programme assists your partner via support, tools, and resources to improve their chances of independently finding employment in the Netherlands. Our Family Support Service helps you and your partner feel welcome and at home by providing customised assistance in navigating local facilities, schools, and amenities. Also take a look at our support for international staff page to discover all our services for international employees.
  • You will receive extra days off. With full-time employment, you can choose between 30 or 41 days of annual leave instead of the statutory 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.


You will be employed in the Learning, Education and Development research programme, which forms part of the Behavioural Science Institute (BSI). In this programme, researchers conduct fundamental and applied research on individual differences in the learning and development of children, teenagers and adolescents.

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, pedagogical sciences and educational sciences, 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, the institute is known for its successful graduate school and strong commitment to open science.


  • PhD
  • Behaviour and society
  • max. 38 hours per week
  • €2770—€3539 per month
  • University graduate
  • 24.021.24



Houtlaan 4, 6525XZ, Nijmegen

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