Teaching Philosophy


Relevance and Depth

In my teaching, I strive for both relevance and depth. For example, by starting my lectures with introducing topics that are currently relevant in society (such as radicalization and terrorism), I aim to target societal relevance. I approach these topics in depth by zooming in on psychological processes that underlie these social phenomena (such as perceived injustice, uncertainty, and insufficient self-control). I indicate how the phenomena and processes that are discussed in my lectures can be investigated in precise empirical research (for example, in lab and field experiments, survey studies, and interview research) and how the insights gained from such research can be translated into policy measures and other societal implications.


T-shaped Scientist

In my teaching, I aim to facilitate students in their development into what sometimes is called a "T-shaped scientist." That is, I teach students the essence and basics of their profession (this represents the root or vertical bar of the "T"). At the same time, I indicate how students can spread their wings to other scientific disciplines and societal fields to collaborate with experts in other areas (this represents the horizontal bar in the "T"). I hope to lead by example by combining my expertise in social psychology with empirical legal research. For instance, I teach Psychology students about topics related to social and societal conflicts and how the law looks at these conflicts. I also teach Law students and Law faculty about empirical research from the behavioral and social sciences and how this can complement normative insights in the domain of law.



I aim for high-quality teaching. In doing so, I try to ensure that students discover what drives them and what they find fascinating. It is my goal to make students enthusiastic about those aspects of their studies so that they work toward reaching their full potential (which is often at a higher level than they initially think). Experience indicates that even so-called 'average' students can pass the (often tough) exam questions we confront them with. Students that are coached by me tend to be on their way to asatisfying and successful career within or outside academia.


I try to ensure that I am visible as a professor at various parts in our curriculum and in particular at the start (lectures to large groups of first-year students) and at the end of our study programs (coaching research projects). In this respect, I combine humor with serious matters, and I take the time to explain things clearly with various appealing examples so that the information thus conveyed is remembered vividly. I incorporate study advice and tips about successful learning habits in my lectures, and have integrated methodological criticism of psychological research into my course materials.


Being a first-generation student myself, I have faced challenges and concurred difficulties before, during, and after graduating at university. For this reason, I try to create an open atmosphere during lectures and other study meetings. As a result, students usually dare to ask many different questions to me (also about personal issues and delicate issues related to content). I find it very important that each student feels included in our educational system. This also includes students from a so-called non-WEIRD (non-Western Educated Industrialized Rich Democratic) background. Students can contact me for study advice (or other related matters) at any time. Also after their graduation, I have regular contact with students about concrete job opportunities. This has already led to various jobs that really fit the graduates' abilities and needs.


Currently I am teaching:


Involved in the following course(s)