PhD Student

Last application date
Nov 14, 2021 00:00
PP05 - Department of Experimental Clinical and Health Psychology
Limited duration
Master’s degree in Psychology (Clinical or Experimental), Master’s degree in Educational Sciences, or equivalent.
Occupancy rate
Vacancy type
Research staff

Job description

We are seeking a highly motivated full-time PhD-student for a project investigating preschool predictors of learning (and learning problems) in preterm born children. The research will be conducted under the supervision of prof. dr. Petra Warreyn, embedded within the Research in Developmental Disorders Lab (RiDDL), Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Ghent University.
Project: In Flanders, 7-8% of children is born preterm. Preterm birth holds severe risks for health and development, and these risks increase with decreasing gestational age. In addition to an increased chance of severe problems such as cerebral palsy, visual or auditory impairments, children born very preterm also frequently experience motor, cognitive, and/or language impairments. Follow-up of these children is typically done in the first years of life, but when they reach preschool age without major developmental concerns, the alertness often decreases. In elementary school however, many of these children struggle with one or more academic skills, ranging from mild to meeting criteria for a learning disorder.
Within this project, two groups of preterm children will be studied. The first group has already been followed from birth in the TIARA study (, and will be invited back at the faculty at age 5. The second group will be a newly recruited sample of 5-year-old preterm children. Both domain-general (such as executive functions) and domain-specific predictors (such as phonology or number sense) of learning and learning disorders will be investigated, as well as contextual factors (such as parent-child interaction).
Scholarship: PhD position for four years. Starting approx. €2000,- per month after taxes. The position will preferably start January 1st, 2022.

Job profile

  • The successful candidate must have a Master’s degree in Psychology (Clinical or Experimental), a Master’s degree in Educational Sciences, or equivalent.
  • As the candidate will be working with children and their parents, previous (clinical) experience in working with children is a plus. Good clinical and interpersonal skills are required.
  • Active knowledge of Dutch is required (working with children and parents in Flanders).
  • As some of the parents may prefer their children to be tested at home, a driver’s licence is a plus.
  • The candidate will have to work both independently and in team. The candidate will be responsible for the planning and organisation of the study. Good organisational skills, punctuality and responsibility are beneficial to the study.
  • The candidate will review scientific literature and write papers and a PhD thesis which requires good English reading and writing skills.

How to apply

Required application materials to be sent electronically (preferably PDF):

  • Cover letter
  • CV
  • Copy of diploma and academic grades
  • Contact details of 2 referents.

Informal enquiries and applications can be addressed to Petra Warreyn via email: When applying for the position by e-mail, please make sure that the combined size of the attachments does not exceed 10 MB.

Review of applications will start immediately and continue until the position is filled.