PhD position Clinical Psychology

Updated: 30 days ago

Are you interested to perform high quality scientific research on psychological interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic? Would you like to work in an international academic research team at the VU Department of Clinical, Neuro- and Developmental Psychology? Please apply at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

FTE: 1 - 1

Job description

As PhD student within the Department of Clinical Psychology you will conduct research within the EU H2020 RESPOND project leading to a PhD thesis. You will conduct a randomized controlled trial on the effectiveness of a stepped care psychological interventions developed by WHO within vulnerable individuals in the Netherlands with COVID-19 related psychological distress. This program will be further adapted during the course of the project, and will be delivered remotely (e.g., digitally and through teleconferencing).

You will be a team member within the Cross-cultural and Global Mental Health Research Group, which is led by Dr. Marit Sijbrandij. Our research group hosts a number of research projects on evaluating brief psychological interventions for mental health problems following trauma and adversities. Our projects have specific focus on refugees and populations at high risk for trauma and adversities.

Your duties

  • You will be responsible for the day-to-day running of the RESPOND project in the Netherlands, including writing the study protocol, obtaining ethics approvals, recruitment of participants and planning of assessments
  • You will analyse data, write scientific papers for international peer-reviewed journals, that contribute to your PhD thesis
  • You will contribute to education in the Section of Clinical Psychology, for instance by supervising master theses and contributing to courses

  • You have completed a 2-years (Research) Master programme in the area of Clinical Psychology, or a related relevant discipline with excellent results
  • You have knowledge of and experience with clinical, experimental or public health research
  • You have excellent writing and data analysis skills
  • You are a good team player with a structured and organized way of working
  • Non-Dutch speaking candidates are invited to apply, however, fluency in the Dutch language would be an asset

What are we offering?

A challenging position in a socially involved organization. The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel and amounts €2,395 (PhD) per month during the first year and increases to €3,061 (PhD) per month during the fourth year, based on a full-time employment. The job profile: is based on the university job ranking system and is vacant for at least 1 FTE.

The appointment will initially be for 1 year. After a satisfactory evaluation of the initial appointment, the contract will be extended with approx. 3 years until December 1, 2023.

Additionally, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers excellent fringe benefits and various schemes and regulations to promote a good work/life balance, such as:

  • 8% holiday allowance and 8.3% end-of-year bonus
  • solid pension scheme (ABP)
  • contribution to commuting expenses
  • optional model for designing a personalized benefits package

About Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

The ambition of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is clear: to contribute to a better world through outstanding education and ground-breaking research. We strive to be a university where personal development and commitment to society play a leading role. A university where people from different disciplines and backgrounds collaborate to achieve innovations and to generate new knowledge. Our teaching and research encompass the entire spectrum of academic endeavour – from the humanities, the social sciences and the natural sciences through to the life sciences and the medical sciences.

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is home to more than 26,000 students. We employ over 4,600 individuals. The VU campus is easily accessible and located in the heart of Amsterdam’s Zuidas district, a truly inspiring environment for teaching and research.

We are an inclusive university community. Diversity is one of our most important values. We believe that engaging in international activities and welcoming students and staff from a wide variety of backgrounds enhances the quality of our education and research. We are always looking for people who can enrich our world with their own unique perspectives and experiences.

Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences
The Faculty of Behavioural and Movement Sciences focuses on the broad domain of behaviour and health. Our teaching and research programmes are devoted to current developments in society, from healthy aging to e-health, from juvenile crime to dealing with depression, from training for top athletes to social media as a teaching tool. We are unique in that we combine three academic disciplines: psychology, movement sciences and education.

Working at Behavioural and Movement Sciences means working in an ambitious organization that is characterized by an informal atmosphere and short lines of communication. Our faculty offers tremendous scope for personal development. We employ more than 600 staff members, and we are home to around 3,400 students.

About the RESPOND project
Starting December 2020, the Department of Clinical, Neuro- and Developmental Psychology at the Vrije Universiteit (VU) Amsterdam will coordinate the recently awarded EU Horizon2020 project "Improving the Preparedness of Health Systems to Reduce Mental Health and Psychosocial Concerns resulting from the COVID-19 Pandemic (RESPOND). RESPOND investigates the long-term behavioral and health effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the project, fourteen academic partners from France, Italy, Spain, Belgium, Germany, Sweden and Australia work together with the VU in the lead. The VU team will study the effects of remotely delivered stepped care programs developed by the World Health Organization (WHO) to improve the psychosocial functioning and resilience of individuals affected by mental health problems as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Are you interested in this position? Please apply via the application button and upload your curriculum vitae and cover letter until

October 30, 2020. 

Applications received by e-mail will not be processed.

Vacancy questions
If you have any questions regarding this vacancy, you may contact:

Name: dr.Marit Sijbrandij
Position: associate professor and Director of the WHO Collaborating Center of Reserach and Dissemination of Psychological Interventions
Telephone: +31 205988360

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