Vakgroep Psychologie, Gezondheid & Technologie

Which specific positive emotions are associated with flourishing?


Msc assignment


4 students

Existing data 

Type of research: quantitative empirical

10 EC



The University of Twente conducted several large-scale intervention trials and measured specific positive emotions in each of those trials. Positive emotions can be categorized into low and high arousal emotions and some of these emotions might be more important to improve than others in light of mental health promotion. However, it is not yet known (1) which specific positive emotions are enhanced through different types of positive psychological exercises, and (2) which of these emotions are associated with (improvement to) flourishing. There are three large datasets available about different single and multi-component interventions which can be used to analyse these main research questions, although it is also possible to add other research questions to fit with your own interests. The datasets consists of:

  1. (1)        A large trial of 450 participants in the general Dutch population about the efficacy of different happiness exercises (5  conditions: 2 acts of kindness conditions, 1 self-kindness condition, 1 gratitude condition and 1 waitlist control condition)
  2. (2)        A large trial of 150 participants in a first-year psychology students sample about the efficacy of three variants of the acts of kindness condition
  3. (3)        A large trial of 280 participants about the efficacy of a multi-component positive psychology intervention (This is Your Life) in the general Dutch population.


The mDES questionnaire was used in each of these trials, at pretest, posttest and follow-up and in the first trial also as mediation process measure (during the intervention). The advantage of the mDES questionnaire is that each question consists of 3 types of similar emotions, with a total of 7 groups of positive emotions that represent most of the positive emotions described by Barbara Fredrickson. Each student can choose one dataset for the analyses.


Who are we looking for?

Students who are interested in conducting quantitative research and conducting novel research with a focus on specific positive emotions, using a large-scale trial. We also look for dedicated students who are curious and conscientious.



Dr. Marijke Schotanus-Dijkstra

Jannis Kraiss