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In any case, thanks for visiting my webpage! It contains information about me, my job, and my research interests. You can find more personal stuff on my Facebook page.
In contrast to what my profile picture suggests, my job does not involve the study of the dynamical behavior of liquids. I do study the behavior of other dynamical systems, called humans.
My primary research interests lie in:
I work mainly as a data analyst, but because of my education and specialization in research methods, I also provide statistical and methodological advice to others, so that they can carry out analyses themselves. I consider lecturing statistics to students part of that.
Currently, I'm employed as a postdoctoral researcher at the department of Biological Psychology of the VU University in Amsterdam. There I'm investigating environmental and genetic effects on psychopathology throughout the full course of human development. Environmental and genetic effects are often confounded with informant and other methodological effects, which I try to account for in the statistical models I use. One can say that 'confounding' is my terrain. The data I currently work with concern Norwegian twin data, which were collected by the Psykologisk institutt in Oslo.
Previously, I worked at the Department of Psychiatry of the University of Vermont, where I investigated genetic influences on developmental differences in both brain and behavior. There I had the opportunity to use the IMAGEN data set and to learn techniques like Genome Wide Association (GWA) and Genome-wide Complex Trait Analysis (GCTA). IMAGEN is a pretty cool European consortium that aims to investigating mental health and risk taking behavior in teenagers.
I've been employed by the VU's department of Biological Psychology before, when I was investigating - through twin and family studies - the development of individual differences in Attention Problems (and other problem behaviors) as a function of genetic and environmental influences. These data were collected by the Netherlands Twin Register, which is one of the most influential twin registries in the world, thanks to professor Dorret Boomsma and her colleagues. Next to this research, I was hired by the VU (department of Methods) in order teach Structural Equation Modeling (to 3rd year bachelors) and to give statistical and methodological advice to fellow researchers working at other departments, e.g., the department of Educational Neuroscience.
I obtained my PhD at the department of Psychological Methods of the University of Amsterdam, where I investigated the development of (general, fluid and crystallized) intelligence (also as a function of genetic and environmental influences). This research was considerably more of (measurement) theoretical and scientific philosophical nature than my later postdoctoral work. My thesis, which was supervised by Professor Han van der Maas, Conor Colan and Jelte Wicherts, has been described by others as a "wide-ranging, sophisticated critique of biological g-theory". It is called:
Jenny van Beek
Michelle van Fulpen
Eco de Geus
Janneke de Kort
Hilko van Rooijen
Eveline de Zeeuw
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