Social Anxiety and School Refusal in Adolescence

PoPPSaY! Lab

Principal Investigator: dr. Anne Miers (Assistant Professor) 


Current and previous (research) Master and Honors Bachelor students
Current: Sander Buuron; Niklas Schütter; Sanne Dijkstra; Yolinda Davidse; Sanne Peereboom; Sophie Sweijen; Florian Thomas-Odenthal
Previous: Tes Mijnders; Lisa Straetmans

Aim: The aim of PoPPSaY! is to investigate the influence of positive peer feedback on socially anxious youth’s negative social thoughts and self-perceptions, and to examine the impact of such cognition modification on socially anxious youth’s thoughts, feelings, and behavior in daily life.
Background: Research indicates that youth with high levels of social anxiety are caught in a vicious cycle of their own negative social perceptions and negative responses from their age peers. Breaking this vicious cycle by using peers to modify the negative social perceptions may be crucial to preventing the worsening of social anxiety.
Methods: PoPPSaY! employs different methods: self-report questionnaires, speech task, behavioral observation, neurophysiology, experience sampling collection via smartphones, and digital mediums for the provision of feedback (e.g., skype).

Societal Impact: To help socially anxious youth find their voice and approach social situations with confidence.