Maria Montessorigebouw in het voorjaar
Maria Montessorigebouw in het voorjaar


The Behavioural Science Institute is a multidisciplinary research institute. Our research crosses the boundaries of psychology, pedagogical sciences, educational sciences, and communication science. The BSI has seven research programmes covering three key themes: human development, connection, and health. We conduct fundamental and applied/translational research and have excellent facilities and support for lab and field research.

Childs hand placing coloured blocks

Research themes


In this research theme, we focus primarily on the development and learning of infants, children, and adolescents. We study (1) social development in social contexts, (2) individual differences in learning and education, and (3) health behaviours. We aim to uncover the processes underlying social-cognitive, motor, and health development as well as the difference between and within individuals over time. Using these insights, we develop and tailor preventive interventions for infants, children and adolescents.

hands on a table


Within this theme, we seek to understand how and why relationships flourish or worsen. We also study how the characteristics and attributes of social relationships impact behaviour, health, and overall well-being. We focus on several connection types, ranging from close relationships in everyday life to those in formal settings and human-technology relationships.

Person jogging on stairs


In this theme, we study psychopathology, mental well-being, and health behaviours,  such as physical exercise, sedentary behaviour, healthy eating, smoking or alcohol abuse. In doing so, we aim to uncover the underlying mechanisms of mental health and health-related behaviours and to develop evidence-based preventive and treatment interventions.

Research projects

Biertjes naast elkaar

Exposure to Alcohol-Free Drink Advertisements

This project investigates the exposure and impact of alcohol-free drink advertisements on young people's alcohol consumption, aiming to develop policy and guidelines for responsible alcohol-free advertising.

Jongen met armen over elkaar. Achter hem staan sterke armen achter de muur getekend.

Mind the Gap

The 'Mind the Gap' research project contributes to increasing insights around recognising and aligning with the educational and support needs of (presumably) twice-exceptional students.

Onderzoeksproject icoon

The what and how of self-regulated learning strategies in education and sports

In this project, we offer a value-based choice perspective on self-regulated learning (SRL) in which choices are assigned a subjective value that leads to an SRL decision.