The Newsletter of the Institute of Psychology

Many people within and outside our university have no idea what (other) psychologists do which may have consequences for the appreciation that we get, and maybe also for potential funding of our work. It is therefore our intention this newsletter to focus on all forms of impact of our research: scientific impact, social impact (initiatives that bring psychologists, students or staff, together), and societal impact (initiatives that can be useful to promote our discipline).

Effects of Self-Monitoring on Outcome: How can we support hypertensive Chronic Kidney Patients and improve their health and autonomy?

In October 2009, Yvette Meuleman started her PhD research project at the Medical Psychology department of the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC), under supervision of Prof. dr. Stan Maes and dr. Sandra van Dijk. The ESMO project is a cooperation between the LUMC, Hans Mak Instituut, Nier­patiënten Vereniging Nederland (Dutch Renal Patient Association ), Nierstichting Nederland (Dutch Kidney Foundation) and Medimate. The goal of the ESMO project is to develop, test and evaluate a self-manage­­ment program directed at hypertension control and supporting hypertensive Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients.

Morality and Identity: How shared norms and values determine the way we see ourselves and interact with others.

Naomi Ellemers studied at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of Groningen, where she completed her PhD on ‘identity management strategies’ in 1991. She was assistant professor and associate professor in social psychology at the Free University in Amsterdam until 1999, when she was appointed full professor of social and organizational psychology at the University of Leiden.

Brains on the rise

Eveline Crone (1975) was appointed as professor in neurocognitive developmental psychology at Leiden University in March 2009. She started the Brain and Development Laboratory at the section Developmental Psychology in 2005. Before Crone joined Leiden University, she received her PhD at the University of Amsterdam in 2003 and she had a post doc position at the Center for Mind and Brain and the University of California in Davis for 2 years. But it was much earlier that her interest in brain function started. For her master degree, she spent one year at the University of Pittsburgh where the first neuroimaging studies were performed that included young children. This is where and when her fascination for brain research started.

Exploiting the human potential

Professor Bernhard Hommel doesn't believe in destiny. After having failed to succeed in becoming an experimental rock singer and a stage actor, he worked as a truck driver for several years before he took up his studies of psychology, literature, and linguistics in Bielefeld, Germany.

Value conflict: How differences in values affect conflict escalation and the effectiveness of interventions

Due to ethnic diversity and globalization, conflicts between individuals are increasingly characterized by differences in core values between parties with different socio-cultural identities. Value conflicts can create interpersonal and intergroup tension at different levels of society. Fieke Harinck recently received an NWO conflict and safety grant, and with this grant she is planning to investigate how value conflict develop, when they escalate, and how they can be resolved

A Self-Regulation Intervention for Maintenance of Lifestyle Change following Cardiac Rehabilitation: Moving beyond (New Year’s) Resolutions?

Cardiovascular disease is the leading fatal illness worldwide, claiming more deaths and disability than any other disease. The modification of risk factors and related lifestyle behaviors lies at the very core of cardiac rehabilitation programs. However, research on the maintenance of lifestyle changes shows that many cardiac patients slip back into old habits. Clearly, mere will alone is not sufficient to sustain behavior change.

Advances in multidimensional unfolding

On the 21st of April 2010, Frank Busing defended his PhD Thesis on Advances in Multidimensional Unfolding. Busing was born in Amsterdam, graduated in 1983 from the Fioretti College in Lisse and studied Child and Education Studies (propedeuse 1987) and Psychology (degree in 1993) at Leiden University. In 2000 he received his qualification to teach at primary schools from the Hogeschool IPABO in Amsterdam

Happy Meal? The role of omega-3 fatty acids (fish-oil) in mood and cognition.

Omega-3 fatty acids have received a lot of attention lately. Scientific studies show beneficial effects for cardiovascular problems and several psychiatric disorders, including depression. Advertisement agencies have been trying to reap from that by portraying Omega-3 supplements as a cure to everything. Even the animal food industry tries to benefit from the increasing popularity of omega-3 fatty acids as you can now even buy cat food that is rich in omega-3 fatty acids. However, how much do you benefit from omega-3 supplementation when you are healthy and young?

Development of the Leiden Public Speaking Task

Anxiety and fear are suitable topics for a clinical psychologist with a keen interest in development. Fears are part and parcel of normal development. All of us have been afraid of monsters and feared separation from our caretakers. Humans would not survive without anxiety signals. At the same time, fears may grow out of hand and become maladaptive. Michiel Westenberg and colleagues wondered how and why that happens and started the SAND-study.