"If I have seen further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants" ~ Isaac Newton



Below you'll find an overview of the research done in the context of my Human Technology Interaction masters degree. My research interests lie in areas of development, children and Human Computer Interactions.

MSc. Graduation thesis

What is the Influence of Achievement Goal Activation on Enjoyment in PE Classes?

In the passing years declining levels of physical activity have been found amongst children and adolescents. One of the breeding grounds for a positive attitude towards a healthy amount of physical activity is the PE class provided at (high) schools (Stegeman, 2007). There is clear evidence that children who were thought a basis for movement skills during their childhood lead a more active life as adolescents (Bailey, 2000) as well as adults (Malina, 1996). PE classes are based on two main goals: 1) providing students with basic knowledge on how to move, 2) creating an environment that makes moving as enjoyable as possible. One of the frameworks that attempts to predict enjoyment in an achievement setting is the achievement goal framework by Elliot and McGregor (2001). Results however vary in predictions of enjoyment. Therefore we propose a study to further investigate whether achievement goal activation can influence enjoyment in PE classes.

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MSc. Research Proposal

Using Virtual Reality to Decrease Anxiety in Pediatric Patients during MRI Procedures

Pediatric MRI procedures are often troublesome. The environmental stressors, such as the confined space and loud noises cause for extra anxiety, next to anxiety associated with the disease and hospital environment. Researchers have successfully used virtual reality to distract pediatric patients during other medical procedures, such as IV placements resulting in decreased anxiety. By decreasing the anxiety levels, pediatric patients have a smaller chance of developing a phobia towards MRI procedures and have shorter treatment times. To investigate the research question: “What is the Effect of Virtual Reality during a MRI Procedure on Pediatric Patients’ Anxiety?” a study is proposed.

Photo courtesy Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

MSc. Research Project

Does Agent Type and Intentionality Influence Rationality Measured by the Ultimatum Game?

In order for robots to assist humans in their daily tasks, research should focus on how social roles can be fulfilled. But what happens when a robot fails to act in line with social standards? Will a robot be held morally accountable? The Ultimatum Game is used to test if different agents are held accountable for their actions by looking at whether a player responded rationally or emotionally. Previous studies used the Ultimatum Game in order to investigate retaliatory tendencies toward an opponent. Several studies (Sanfey et al., 2003; Torta et al., 2013; Ruijten et al., 2016) found contrary results on whether the type of opponent (human, robot, or computer) elicit different responses. The current study investigates whether these contradicting results can be attributed to either an agent's embodiment or level of intentionality.