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Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology


Entry requirements

All 60 ec of the first-year in Psychology obtained.


In this specialisation course we will study the development of emotional competence and its links with psychopathology.

In the first 4 lectures, the functionality of emotions and the process of emotion socialization are central themes. What do children need to learn to become emotionally competent, how do they learn this, and what is the role of the social environment in this process? Special attention will be given to groups with communicative impairments, i.e. an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), a Specific Language Impairment (SLI), or children who are deaf or hard of hearing (DHH). Studying emotion socialization in these groups as compared to normally developing peers can increase our understanding of the necessity for learning about all aspects of emotions in a social context. Aspects of emotional competence that will be dealt with are

  • Emotion expression and communication

  • Emotion awareness and regulation

  • Empathy

In the second part, there are 3 lectures, in which different aspects of emotional competence will be applied to positive social and interpersonal adjustment and psychopathology in children and adolescents. A central question is, what happens when the process of emotion socialization goes awry, what are the consequences for children and adolescents? The lectures will consider how deficits in emotional competence contribute to psychopathology, both internalizing and externalizing problems. Example aspects that may be dealt with are

  • Socialization agents, development of emotional competence, and adaptive adjustment

  • Emotion socialization and internalizing psychopathology

  • Emotion competence and externalizing psychopathology

Course objectives

  • Students will be able to critically read and discuss the recent developmental literature based on scientific articles. These articles cover 1. current emotion theories, especially those which focus on development during infancy, childhood and adolescence; 2. the influence of various interpersonal and intrapersonal factors on emotion-socialisation( e.g., different groups with communicative impairments); 3. developmental psychopathology in relation to emotional competence deficits. This provides students with tools to keep up to date with the newest insights in their field once they’ve entered the workplace.

  • Students will be able to explore a given topic in-depth and critically think about the operationalization of the topics discussed into an assessment tool. This prepares the students for conducting research in the workplace.

  • Students will gain relevant experience for the workplace through conducting assessments of children, data analysis, preparation and presentation of results in a professional manner during the workgroup sessions.


For the timetable of this course please refer to MyTimetable

This course is offered twice a year.



Students must register themselves for all course components (lectures, tutorials and practicals) they wish to follow. You can register up to 5 days prior to the start of the course. The exception here is that first-year bachelor students are assigned and registered for all components in the first semester or academic year by the administration of their bachelor programme. The programme will communicate to these students for which course components and for which period the registration applies.


You must register for each exam in My Studymap at least 10 days before the exam date. Don’t forget! For more information, see the enrolment procedure.
You cannot take an exam without a valid registration in My Studymap.

Carefully read all information about the procedures and deadlines for registering for courses and exams.

Students who take this course as part of a LDE minor or a premaster programme, exchange students and external guest students will be informed by the education administration about the current registration procedure.

Mode of instruction

The course comprises 7 lectures and 7 work group sessions. Lectures are given in English. Workgroup sessions are offered in English and Dutch.

For the work group sessions students will be asked to explore a topic from the lectures in more detail, to consider how youth with different forms of psychopathology might differ from typically developing youth in their development of emotional competence, and to formulate predictions based on emotional theories and literature review. Students will be also asked to design a coding scheme for an assessment tool aiming to measure a specific aspect of emotional competence in children and adolescents. Students will code these behavioral indicators, analyze the results in SPSS, discuss the validity of the assessment tool, and present their findings in a workgroup session.

Lectures and work group sessions will take up to a total of 84 hours, including the research and preparation of the assignments. In addition, students are expected to spend 196 hours preparing for the examination.

Weblectures will be available.

Assessment method

Participation to all work groups is mandatory. The final grade for CCAP will be based on:
1. Grade for the exam (60%). The exam consists of 2 open-ended essay questions. Exam questions are in English. Answers can be written in English or Dutch. Assigned articles, lectures, and lectures slides are included as exam material.

  1. Grade for assignments (40%) during working groups (active participation during group discussion; coding and analysing behavioural indicators; final presentation of assignment).

The Institute of Psychology uses fixed rules for grade calculation and compulsory attendance. It also follows the policy of the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences to systematically check student papers for plagiarism with the help of software. All students are required to take and pass the Scientific Integrity Test with a score of 100% in order to learn about the practice of integrity in scientific writing. Students are given access to the quiz via a module on Brightspace. Disciplinary measures will be taken when fraud is detected. Students are expected to be familiar with and understand the implications of these three policies.

Reading list

The following reading list is provisional and subject to change according to the most recent and relevant literature:

Lecture 1: Emotion Theories

  • Scherer, K.R. (2000). Emotion. In M. Hewstone & W. Stroebe (Eds.). Introduction to Social Psychology: A European perspective (3rd. ed., pp. 151-191). Oxford: Blackwell.

Lecture 2: Emotion Expression

  • Novin, S., Rieffe, C., Banerjee, R., Miers, A. C., & Cheung, J. (2011). Anger response styles in Chinese and Dutch children: a sociocultural perspective on anger regulation. British Journal of Developmental Psychology, 29, 806-822.

  • Buss, KA & Kiel, E.J. (2004). Comparison of sadness, anger, and fear facial expressions when toddlers look at their mothers. Child Development, 75 (6) , pp.1761-1773

  • Wice, M., Matsui, T., Tsudaka, G., Karasawa, M., & Miller, J. G. (2019). Verbal display rule knowledge: A cultural and developmental perspective. Cognitive Development, 52, 100801.

Lecture 3: Emotion Regulation

  • Eichengreen, A., Broekhof, E., Tsou, Y.T., & Rieffe, C. (in press). Longitudinal effects of emotion awareness and regulation on mental health symptoms in adolescents with and without hearing loss. European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

  • Rieffe, C., Meerum Terwogt, M., & Kotronopoulou, K. (2007). Awareness of single and multiple emotions in high-functioning children with autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 37, 455-465.

  • Lambie, J. A., Lambie, H. J., & Sadek, S. (2020). “My child will actually say ‘I am upset’ … Before all they would do was scream”: Teaching parents emotion validation in a social care setting. Child : Care, Health & Development, 46(5), 627–636.

Lecture 4: Empathy and psychopathology

  • Davidov, M., Paz, Y., Roth-Hanania, R., Uzefovsky, F., Orlitsky, T., Mankuta, D., & Zahn-Waxler, C. (2021). Caring babies: Concern for others in distress during infancy. Developmental Science, 24(2)

  • Pouw, L. B., Rieffe, C., Oosterveld, P., Huskens, B., & Stockmann, L. (2013). Reactive/proactive aggression and affective/cognitive empathy in children with ASD. Research in developmental disabilities, 34(4), 1256-1266.

  • Tsou, Y. T., Li, B., Wiefferink, C. H., Frijns, J. H., & Rieffe, C. (2021). The developmental trajectory of empathy and its association with early symptoms of psychopathology in children with and without hearing loss. Research on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology, 49(9), 1151-1164.

Lecture 5: Social emotions, culture, and aggression

  • Broekhof, E., Bos, M. G. N., & Rieffe, C. (2021). The roles of shame and guilt in the development of aggression in adolescents with and without hearing loss. Research on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology, 49, 891-904. doi: 10.1007/s10802-021-00769-1.

  • Tangney, J. P., Stuewig, J., & Mashek, D. J. (2007). Moral emotions and moral behavior. Annual Review of Psychology, 58, 345-372.

Lecture 6: Emotional Competence and Antisocial Behaviors

  • van Zonneveld, L., Platje, E., de Sonneville, L., Van Goozen, S., & Swaab, H. (2017). Affective empathy, cognitive empathy and social attention in children at high risk of criminal behaviour. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 58(8), 913-921.

  • Glenn, A. L., & McCauley, K. E. (2019). How biosocial research can improve interventions for antisocial behavior. Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice, 35(1), 103-119.

Lecture 7: Emotion socialization and communication difficulties

  • Von Salisch (2001). Children's emotional development: Challenges in their relationships to parents, peers, and friends. International Journal of Behavioral Development, 25, 310-319.

  • Xie, Y.H., Potměšil, M., & Peters, B. (2014). Children who are deaf or hard of hearing in inclusive educational settings: A literature review on interactions with peers. The Journal of Deaf Studies and Deaf Education, 19(4), 423–437.

Contact information



Work groups: