What makes our research unique is that it focuses on the healthy child development from baby to young adults the problems that can arise during development and the main risk factors. The parents' parenting skills are of key importance to the healthy development of the child. The child's relationships with people in its immediate environment, such as siblings, classmates and friends, also play a part. Children who are born prematurely, who have a difficult temperament, who are faced with negative parental divorce, who experience serious illness or a loss in the family, or are bullied by their peers (e.g. on social media) are exposed to risk factors that can lead to psychosocial problems such as anxiety and depression. Or, on the other hand, it can make them more aggressive. We also investigate the effects of interventions (treatment programmes) to stimulate child development and to support parents to improve their parenting skills. In order to assess development and parenting skills, we use a range of instruments, some of which we design and develop ourselves.
Dynamics of Youth
Much of the research carried out by the Department of Clinical Child & Family Studies comes within the scope of the university research theme 'Dynamics of Youth'.
Researchers from sections throughout Utrecht University work together and apply best practices from their disciplines in response to challenges.
The department's research programme is part of the Utrecht Centre for Child and Adolescent Studies (CAS).