Methodology and statistics are interdisciplinary fields, as they relate to all forms of behavioural, biomedical and social research. 

Methodology concentrates on central issues in research design and data collection, with the focus on improving the quality of empirical research. Statistics concentrates on data analysis. Complex theories and research designs that are currently used call for advanced analysis methods. In turn, those require mastery of the statistical foundations of these methods, and training in their skilled use.

Methodology and statistics are strongly intertwined. Modern social, biomedical and behavioural research uses highly advanced quantitative methods, while at the same time, no amount of statistics can compensate for fundamental flaws in a study's design or data collection. Thus, specific methodological choices lead to different statistical techniques, and new developments in statistics have implications for the design of research.

Please see the menu on the left for information on courses, timetables and career opportunities within this programme.

The structure of the curriculum of the Research Master's programmes is identical for all students. Students of a cohort enter the programme together in September. They follow all courses of the first year and the courses of the second year not aimed at their own thesis subject together. Within courses you have a choice of topics and you can choose the topic of your internship and Master's thesis.

The programme stimulates a lot of interaction and cooperation between your co-students and yourself. You will learn not only from teachers and supervisors but also from each other. This process is further stipulated by the fact that no more than fifteen to twenty students are admitted per programme per year. Selection is based on a strict selection procedure.

All teachers involved in the Research Master's programmes possess high-level teaching and research skills. They are members of Research Schools that have been (re-)accredited by the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW), or take part in national Research Networks in which researchers from this faculty cooperate with colleagues from other Dutch universities. This ensures a combination of excellent teaching and research in an intellectually stimulating environment.

After having successfully completed one of the Research Master's programmes you:
 

  • have an overview of important theoretical and methodological issues in your field of study. You have expertise and experience in the elaboration of a research project with a clearly formulated research problem that is innovative while building on the state of the art in the field and being well grounded in the literature in this field;
     
  • have an understanding of different research designs and methods of data collection. You have acquired the expertise and experience in the elaboration of research designs and methods of data collection that are adequate for answering an underlying research question. You are capable of choosing and applying them in your research;
  • will be trained in the research methods that are appropriate in your field of study. You have gained experience in the full process of social, medical or behavioural research and in reporting the results of research in a specific field of study. These qualifications are reflected in a Master’s thesis, which has the form of a publishable research paper;
     
  • are capable, based upon a research proposal, of independently carrying out research towards acquiring a PhD;
     
  • are able to formulate policy implications of scientific research in your own field. You are trained in academic writing, in presenting for various audiences, and in data documentation and archiving;
     
  • have acquired a general work orientation that is required for membership in a research team and in a research network in your own research domain.