Rita Vuyk Lectures

Developmental Psychology

Since January 2009 the department of Developmental Psychology has been organizing the "Rita Vuyk Lectures".


These lectures are in honour of prof.dr. Margueritha Vuyk. She was the first full professor in Developmental Psychology at the University of Amsterdam. See the Album Academicum of the University of Amsterdam for more information.

These monthly lectures will have a diverse character with a wide range of eminent speakers and could be of interest to both students and employees from all departments. Here, the dates, speakers and topics for the Rita Vuyk lectures are listed.

For the most recent past lectures see below. For a full overview see the Archive.

October 3rd 2017, 16:00-17:00 in REC-JK 1.18. Dr. Peter Edelsbrunner (ETH Zürich, Switzerland)

Modeling Scientific Reasoning: Psychometric Issues and Developmental Heterogeneity

Scientific reasoning encompasses a multitude of psychological skills and abilities necessary for scientific inquiry. In Study 1 of this talk, I present a review of psychometric modeling practices in research on scientific reasoning. It turns out that researchers mostly follow a strict Raschian approach, applying exclusively the (unidimensional) Rasch model and approaching model fit from a lenient perspective. Based on simulations, it is discussed how these practices can lead to unwarranted statistical and theoretical inferences about scientific reasoning. In a discussion of the foundations of Rasch modeling, it is conjectured why a recent increase in similar Raschian approaches is conquering Europe, and what to do about this. In Study 2 of this talk, the long-going debate about whether children are able to understand the control-of-variables strategy (CVS) in experimental designs is tackled by assuming that there is both intra- and interindividual variance in this understanding, offering a more complex, yet supposedly more precise answer. Based on two cross-sectional datasets encompassing more than 5000 children, a multilevel mixture modeling approach reveals evidence of such heterogeneity. Both within and between school grades, children differ strongly in their understanding of (multiple choice-based) application tasks, and (open answer-based) explanation tasks of the CVS. This approach thus allows quantifying differing patterns of understanding the CVS, concluding with a discussion of developmental, educational, and methodological implications.

This lecture is hosted by Ingmar Visser.

Published by  PRI

8 September 2017