Department Cognitive Neuropsychology

Department of Cognitive Neuropsychology

Cognitive neuropsychology is concerned with the relationship between brain and behavior. It operates at the crossroads of different psychological disciplines, such as clinical neuropsychology, cognitive neuroscience and applied neuroscience. Cognitive neuropsychology aims to understand how the structure and function of the brain relates to specific psychological processes, such as the ability to store and produce new memories, produce language, recognize people and objects, and the ability to reason and solve problems. It places a particular emphasis on studying the cognitive effects of brain injury or neurological illness with a view to inferring models of normal cognitive functioning.

Clinical neuropsychology is dedicated to the diagnosis of brain disorder, assessment of cognitive and behavioral functioning, and the design of effective treatment. It serves people across the entire age and developmental span whenever there are concerns about brain function. This can range from developmental concerns in infants, learning disabilities in childhood and adolescence, difficulties with work and social challenges in adulthood, and concerns about declining functioning in old age. Some of the conditions neuropsychologists routinely deal with include developmental disorders such as autism, learning and attention disorders, concussion and traumatic brain injury, epilepsy, brain cancer, stroke and dementia.

Research on brain functioning

The research of the CNP department is strongly multidisciplinary and focuses on high-quality publications and societal impact. Our research methods include both behavioral measures and neuroimaging techniques, including  electroencephalography (EEG) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Healthy subjects are tested as well as patients in all age categories.

Several long-term studies are running across our three main lines of research (see overview below). Within these themes, several research projects add to the assimilation of knowledge and tools in society and work on diverse individual and societal challenges in order to advance society.

More about the impact of our research

Educational programmes

In the bachelor's phase (year 1-3) of the Psychology program, students can choose the major Cognitive Neuropsychology from the second year. This program consists of 4 specialization courses (Clinical Neuropsychology, Cognitive Neuropsychology, Neuropsychological Assessment, Social Neuroscience). The bachelor phase is concluded with a thesis written in the field of cognitive neuroscience.

There are 2 variants in the subsequent master's program: The 1-year master's Cognitive Neuropsychology (in English), which is a track within the master's Psychology and Mental Health (PGG). The other option is to specialize in clinical neuropsychology within the 2-year Master's in Medical Psychology (in Dutch). Both variants are concluded with an internship and research.

As a graduated neuropsychologist you can find work in the broad domain of (mental) health care, schools and companies.

More about education