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Responsible Research in Practice


Admission requirements

MSc Psychology (research) students with an almost completed thesis; more specifically, the ‘methods’ and ‘results’ section of the Master thesis should be ready (or in ‘mock results’ form) at the start of the course.


This module takes place at the end of the two-year master program. The course aims at enabling students to evaluate research in psychology from an ethical, integrity point of view. As a way of applying this knowledge, the student’s thesis process is examined in the assignments. In the course we will discuss responsible and irresponsible practices within empirical research throughout the research lifecycle: Generating and specifying hypotheses (integrity of existing research, reproducibility & replicability, specifying hypotheses), designing the study (sampling from a population, determining sample size, preregistration), conducting study & collecting data (measurement, researcher decisions, open data), analysing data & testing hypotheses (data quality check, testing hypotheses, beyond standard practices), interpreting data (estimation & validation, preventing mistakes in conclusions, evaluating a collection of studies), publishing or conducting next experiment (writing scientific reports, bias in publishing, team science, the future is Open). A meta perspective on these topics within the research life cycle will provide students with a rich and transferable knowledge base needed to become the researchers of the future.

Putting knowledge into practice, students write a report about the thesis of another student with a detailed, critical scrutiny of the thesis process and practices. In order to write this report the students will interview each other about the various aspects of empirical research and how these were operationalized in the thesis project.

Course objectives

At the end of the course, the student can:

  • critically assess their own research practices and those of others

  • analyse strengths and weaknesses in the stages of the research lifecycle from a research integrity perspective

  • identify and explain methodological, meta-scientific, and statistical practices that go beyond standard practices in psychology.


For the timetable of this course please refer to MyTimetable



Students must register themselves for all course components (lectures, tutorials and practicals) they wish to follow. You can register up to 5 days prior to the start of the course.


It is mandatory for all students to register for each exam and to confirm registration for each exam in My Studymap. This is possible up to and including 10 calendar days prior to the examination. You cannot take an exam without a valid pre-registration and confirmation in My Studymap. Carefully read all information about the procedures and deadlines for registering for courses and exams.

Exchange students and external guest students will be informed by the education administration about the current registration procedure.

Mode of instruction

6 2-hour lectures.

Assessment method

The assessment is based on a two written reports and an exam (with essay questions). For the exam and the first written report a grade from 1 to 10 is obtained. The second report is graded by a pass/no pass.
The final grade is the average of the two grades, provided that the second report is graded a 'pass'. The exam covers both the reading list and topics discussed during the lectures. Students are entitled to individually view their marked examination within a period of 30 days following the publication of the results of a written examination. The entire course is in English.

The Institute of Psychology follows the policy of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences to systematically check student papers for plagiarism with the help of software. All students are required to take and pass the Scientific Integrity Test with a score of 100% in order to learn about the practice of integrity in scientific writing. Students are given access to the quiz via a module on Brightspace. Disciplinary measures will be taken when fraud is detected. Students are expected to be familiar with and understand the implications of this fraud policy.

Reading list

Course syllabus includes two readings each week (i.e., papers, blogs, news items that are Open Access/freely available). The syllabus is available on Brightspace.

Contact information

Dr. Anna van 't Veer