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Personal profile


Jellie Sierksma is an Assistant Professor at the Department of Experimental and Applied Psychology at the VU Amsterdam. Her research focuses on children’s prosocial behavior and the development of prejudice, stereotypes and discrimination. She studies these topics taking an interdisciplinary approach, combining insights from developmental, social, and educational psychology and by using experimental- and survey-methods.

Jellie obtained her Master degree in social psychology in 2010 (UVA; cum laude) and a PhD in social development in 2015 (University of Utrecht). She then obtained a grant to work as a post-doc at the Radboud University Nijmegen for 2 years, followed by a 2-year Rubicon-fellowship at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the USA. In 2019 she was awarded a Veni-grant by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (NWO).

Ancillary activities

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Prizes and Awards

-Audience Award ‘article of the year’, for my opinion article ‘Doctor is not necessarily a good teacher’ (published in Volskrant, awarded by elinea.nl).

-Best psychology master thesis, University of Amsterdam (2009)



-Ammodo Science Award for groundbreaking research Awarded to SENSA-group (1.2 million, 2020)

-Veni-grant, NWO (€250.000, 2019-2023)

-Rubicon-grant, NWO (€130.000, 2017-2019)

-British Acadamy/Leverhulme Small Research Grant (€10.000, 2016)

-Postdoctoral fellowship grant BSI, Radboud University (€130.000, 2015)



- Scientific Writing (Research master course, 2020)

- Applied Social Psychology (Research master course, 2019-2020)



  • BF Psychology

User created Keywords

  • social development
  • discrimination
  • prosocial behavior
  • moral development
  • stereotypes
  • prejudice
  • intergroup relations
  • social cogniton

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Research Output

When Helping Hurts: Children Think Groups That Receive Help Are Less Smart

Sierksma, J. & Shutts, K., 3 Jan 2020, In : Child Development. 91, 3, p. 715-723

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Open Access
  • Children tell more prosocial lies in favor of in-group than out-group peers

    Sierksma, J., Spaltman, M. & Lansu, T. A. M., Jul 2019, In : Developmental Psychology. 55, 7, p. 1428-1439 12 p.

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

  • Majority group children expect that ethnic out-group peers feel fewer positive but more negative emotions than in-group peers

    Sierksma, J. & Bijlstra, G., Sep 2019, In : Cognition and Emotion. 33, 6, p. 1210-1223 14 p.

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Open Access
  • 15 Downloads (Pure)

    Children's helping behavior in an ethnic intergroup context: Evidence for outgroup helping

    Sierksma, J., Lansu, T. A. M., Karremans, J. C. & Bijlstra, G., May 2018, In : Developmental Psychology. 54, 5, p. 916-928 13 p.

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

  • Costs of helping only influence children's intention to help ethnic out-group peers

    Sierksma, J., Sep 2018, In : Journal of Experimental Child Psychology. 173, p. 85-99 15 p.

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review