Vacancy: PostDoc The Myth of Null-hypothesis Significance Testing in Scientific Research

Last modified: May 29, 2017

The vacancy described below is also available in Dutch on Academic Tranfer.
Application deadline: March 30th, 2017
Job title: Postdoc The Myth of Null-hypothesis Significance Testing in Scientific Research
Fte: 0.8
VU Unit: FALW, Health Sciences
Vacancie number: 17080
Publication date: 16 March 2017
Closing date: 30 March 2017

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is a leading, innovative and growing university that is at the heart of society and actively contributes to new developments in teaching and research. Our university has ten faculties, which span a wide range of disciplines, as well as several institutes, foundations, research centers, and support services. Its campus is located in the fastest-growing economic region in the Netherlands (the Zuidas district of Amsterdam), and provides work for over 4,500 staff and scientific education for more than 23,000 students.

This project will be executed by a multidisciplinary team from the VU, the University of Utrecht and the New Mexico State University.

The Project

We are looking for a postdoc within the section of Methodology and Applied Statistics of the Department of Health Sciences. He/she will work on a challenging and exciting project about the use of null-hypothesis significance testing (NHST) within the Health and Life Sciences. This 2-year project is funded by the ZonMw program ‘Responsible Research Practices’. The vast majority of empirical researchers base their conclusions on the results from NHST. However, methodologists and statisticians have shown repeatedly over previous decades that NHST is an invalid method for drawing conclusions based on empirical data. This is caused by the fact that NHST is an indirect form of inference. In this project we will study why the majority of researchers still holds on to the NHST paradigm.

Furthermore, we will develop a strategy to shift this paradigm. Methods consist of interviews, focus groups and work conferences with different stakeholders from the science system: editors from scientific journals, researchers, funding agencies and lecturers. As a postdoc, you will be responsible for the planning and execution of the project. You will work on a very timely but also controversial subject.


You are:

Further particulars

The appointment will be for two years. You can find information about our excellent fringe benefits of employment at like:


The salary will be in accordance with university regulations for academic personnel, and depending on experience and qualifications, range from a minimum of € 3.193 up to a maximum of € 3.555 gross per month (salary scale 10-5 to 10-8), based on fulltime employment.


For more information, please contact Dr. Michiel de Boer, project leader.


Applications in writing, including a motivation letter and resume can be mailed to Dr. Michiel de Boer via before the 30th of March.

Any other correspondence in response to this advertisement will not be dealt with.

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