PhD defence E. (Elisabet) Blok

With an Open Mind: Psychopathology and brain development throughout childhood and adolescence
Prof.dr. T.J.H. White
Prof.dr. M.H.J. Hillegers
Tuesday 3 Oct 2023, 15:30 - 17:00
PhD defence
Professor Andries Querido room
Erasmus Building
Campus Woudestein
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E. Blok will defend her PhD dissertation on Tuesday 3 October 2023, entitled: ’With an Open Mind: Psychopathology and brain development throughout childhood and adolescence‘.

Below is a brief summary of the dissertation:

Over the course of a lifetime, the majority of individuals suffer from psychopathology symptoms at one point. There is a myriad of types of psychopathology, but broadly these can be classified into internalizing symptoms (e.g., anxiety) and externalizing symptoms (e.g., aggression). Additionally, there is a group of children that has combined symptoms of anxiety, attention problems and aggressive behavior, who are labelled as having ‘emotion dysregulation’, which is a phenotype that has not been studied extensively. Given that all types of psychopathology are associated with reduced quality of life in childhood and adulthood, it is crucial to chart the emergence, course and associated factors of psychopathology symptoms in early development. The primary aim of this thesis was therefore to address the following questions:

  1. How does psychopathology develop across childhood and adolescence?
  2. How are cognitive performance and sleep related to psychopathology?
  3. Is brain development different in those with psychopathology symptoms from typical brain development?

These questions are addressed using two large epidemiological cohort studies, the Generation R and the Adolescent Brain and Cognitive Development (ABCD) studies. Approximately 10,000 families, derived from the population of Rotterdam, participate in Generation R. Further, the ABCD study included about 12,000 children living across the United States.

Besides empirical research, a secondary aim of this thesis was to shed light on opportunities for researchers to solidify scientific progression through the use of open research practices.

More information

The public defence will begin exactly at 15.30 hrs. The doors will be closed once the public defence starts, latecomers may be able to watch on the screen outside. There is no possibility of entrance during the first part of the ceremony. Due to the solemn nature of the ceremony, we recommend that you do not take children under the age of 6 to the first part of the ceremony.

A live stream link has been provided to the candidate.

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