Why should I help?  

If your child is between the ages of 12-16, we are seeking their involvement in an important study that will help us to understand more about how young people spend their free time. This will help us to identify which activities affect young people’s health and wellbeing.  

Will my child’s answers to these questionnaires be kept private?  

All data will be kept confidential. No personal information (name or identification number) will be recorded in this research and no information about individuals will be given to the schools that participate. All data will be processed anonymously. The results of this study might be presented online or in a scientific journal, but the data is not traceable to an individual.

What does participation involve?  

Children will be asked to fill out an online questionnaire every evening for a week in which they will answer questions about how they spent their leisure time during that day. This will take around 15 minutes to complete. Before the children start, we will ask them once a series of questions about other aspects of their lives such as their friendships, mood, and bullying. This will take about 30 minutes to complete.  

Your child’s participation in this survey is voluntary. If you agree to them participating in this study, you or your child can indicate at any time that you wish to withdraw, without having to give an explanation.  

How can I help?  

If your child’s school has been invited to participate in the research, a letter with a consent form will have been given to you by your child’s teacher, or you can download it here from the website. Depending on the age of you child, we may also need your consent for your child to take part in this study. Please refer to the consent form for more information.    

What if I have more questions?

If you need more information about the study, you could send an email to this address: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..      


Project lead: Prof. Carolien Rieffe This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

The Nordic Conference on hearing loss

March 14th, 2019

Denmark Mar2019 Carolien Brenda 5 

On March 13th, Carolien and Brenda gave presentations at the Nordic Conference in Denmark. The conference was organized bi-annually by the Center for Hearing Loss, the regional center for children and adolescents with a hearing loss in Southern Denmark. Researchers and professionals from all over the world were invited to talk about hearing impairment from social, educational, therapeutic, or technical perspectives. 


The acoustic qualities of an inclusive school environment

March 7th, 2019

Adva Alexander Mar2019 1

On March 7th, Adva visited a school in Amsterdam with Dr. Alexander Koutamanis (Architecture, TU Delft). They checked the acoustic qualities of the school building, including playground, corridors and other places where children play and socialize. This visit is part of a project on creating inclusive school environment, for the well-being of children and school workers.


A cross-cultural perspective on emotion development

February 26th, 2019

Wang feb2019

On the invitation of our lab, our Chinese collaborator Prof. Yifang Wang from Capital Normal University, Beijing, China, visited our lab on February 21st.

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Bachelor project on children with Developmental Language Disorder

February 28th, 2019

NSDSK feb2019

Carolien and Özge are coordinating a bachelor project on social-emotional functioning in children with Developmental Language Disorder (DLD) in the Spring semester 2019.

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Adva's talk on play in children with disabilities

February 25th, 2019 

Adva HebrewUniv Dec2018

On December 26th 2018, Adva participated in a research seminar at the Center for Disability Studies in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In her lecture "Play and Toys for All", Adva talked about barriers for play and playfulness in children with disabilities, with a special focus on children with a hearing loss, and referred to the emotional, social and methodological aspects of play.

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Evelien Broekhof submitted her PhD thesis!

December 21st, 2018

EvelienB ThesisSubmit Dec2018

On Thursday December 20th, just before the start of the Christmas holiday, Evelien Broekhof submitted her thesis entitled "Reflect, (re)act and interaction; the roles of shame, guilt, and social access in adolescent aggression", supervised by Carolien and Marieke Bos. Great job, Evelien!


Who are we?

Group picture 2016 crop2

Our team is located at the department of Developmental Psychology of Leiden University in the Netherlands. We work in close collaboration with the Dutch Foundation for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Child (NSDSK), the ENT department of the Leiden University Medical Centre (LUMC), and the Centre for Autism. Our group is dedicated to examining the emotional development of children and adolescents of all walks of life. We have a strong focus on the functionality of emotions, and its impact on children's social development. Besides typically developing children and adolescents, we are interested in the development of those with hearing impairments, with autism spectrum disorders, or with specific language impairments.

On this site we regularly post news items about new publications, events, and so on. You can also read more about our ongoing projects, read about and download questionnaires we have developed, see an overview of our publications per topic, or read about opportunities for students to join our team.