The Social Influences on Digital Media’s Effect on Mental Health

The Faculty of Social and Behavioral Sciences, University of Amsterdam, is seeking highly motivated PhD students who want to explore the role of social influences in the impact of social and mobile media on mental health outcomes.

The candidates will work on three related studies during this PhD project. The project is currently planned to include (1) a representative survey study, (2) a diary study, and (3) an experience sampling study.  In the first study, they will develop a questionnaire to investigate how different social influence mechanisms, such as direct communication or media reporting, impact users’ perceptions of their social media use (e.g., problematic or not?) and who is most susceptible to social influence.

The later studies are planned to focus on the most susceptible user group. In the daily diary study, they will investigate how social influence impacts users’ perceptions of their social and mobile media use in everyday life. Finally, in the experience sampling study, they will compare the influence of users’ perceptions of social and mobile media use to the influence of users’ objectively measured social and mobile media use duration and frequency on mental health.

Tasks

  • Create, field, and analyze a representative survey study to assess the role of social influence on social media perceptions
  • Review and synthesize the literature surrounding the impact of perceived social and mobile media use on mental health outcomes
  • Design, conduct, and analyze intensive longitudinal data studies assessing social influence processes directly in everyday life using daily diaries, experience sampling, and data donation methods
  • Write up findings for publications in high-impact scientific journals and present them at international conferences.
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Starting Date: February 1, 2024.

Salary

  • The position is in granted in PhD scale according with corresponding salary ranging from € €2770 gross per month in the first year and will increase to €3539 in the final year.
  • an extensive package of secondary benefits, including 8% holiday allowance and a year-end bonus of 8.3%.
  • a position in which initiative and input are highly valued
  • an enthusiastic and warm team that is open to new colleagues
  • an inspiring academic and international working environment in the heart of Amsterdam.

Job Requirements

  • a (research) master’s degree in communication science or a related social-science field (e.g., psychology, sociology, etc.), or expect to obtain it soon;
  • an interest in topics associated with the digital society or communication technology (or a related field);
  • a demonstrated interest in quantitative methods; experience with data donations, experience sampling methodology (ESM) and/or longitudinal analyses is a plus;
  • skills to handle complex datasets;
  • evidence of English language proficiency (for example, in the form of thesis work or presentations).
  • Adept in quantitative data analysis with a demonstrated ability to learn new techniques
  • Eager to learn new digital data collection methods
  • Resilient in the face of challenges that come with new methodological approaches
  • Able to balance the demands of several tasks (e.g., combining research and teaching) successfully.

Application Process

Applications in a bundled .pdf should include:

  • a curriculum vitae;
  • a letter of motivation that outlines your preparation and interest in pursuing this PhD project (maximum 2 pages).
  • (unofficial) undergraduate and graduate transcripts;
  • an academic writing sample in English (e.g., journal article, master’s or bachelorelor’s thesis).
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To apply for The Social Influences of Digital Media’s Effect on Mental Healthclick here.

Deadline: November 23, 2023.

For more information on The Social Influences of Digital Media’s Effect on Mental Health, visit the official site.

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