PhD projects


Re-LOAD project

J. Barnhoorn, MSc.

The growing population of older adults has an increasing impact on society. The Re-LOAD project investigates how aging influences the basic capacity to develop new motor skills and how we can stimulate motor learning with brain stimulation techniques.

Surprisingly, companies that sell commercial brain stimulation devices are already out there. At least one of them advertised their gear as being able to transform an elderly man into a highly proficient gamer, wouldn’t that be great! However, the current body of scientific knowledge on brain stimulation and motor learning, and particularly those combined with the factor of aging, is actually rather small and inconsistent. And it’s this area that we aim to contribute to, so that in the future our findings might be the foundation of new methods that help elderly learn and re-learn motor skills more efficiently. Providing opportunities, for example, for faster rehabilitation and who knows, maybe even for a better gaming experience.


W. Siegel, MSc., Prof. Dr. J. M. C. Schraagen

The RAILROAD program with the subject-title: "HMI-R enabling resilience to improve the capability to cope with calamities and disruptions" is a joint research program by University of Twente (project coordinator: Prof. dr. Jan Maarten Schraagen) and Delft University of Technology, sponsored by NWO and ProRail. The aim is to develop resilient human-machine interfaces to cope with disturbances in rail transport. PhD student Willy Siegel develops ecological interfaces drawing on work domain analyses and operating state boundaries (

Decision making in Airline Operations Control

Floors Richters, MSc., Prof. Dr. J. M. C. Schraagen

PhD project of Floor Richters in which she studies how experts make resilient decisions during atypical situations that require replanning at an airport. This project draws heavily on Naturalistic Decision Making, Macrocognition, and resilience engineering.