Vakgroep Psychologie, Gezondheid & Technologie


Title of internship assignment

UT: Peer support in a web-based self-help intervention for partners of cancer patients - What experiences and tips do partners of cancer patients share with their peers?


University of Twente, department Psychology, Health & Technology



Desired period of internship

April-July 2018

The assignment

The University of Twente - with the support of KWF Kankerbestrijding / Stichting Alpe d'HuZes and in close cooperation with a number of partners - developed the web-based self-help intervention 'Hold on for each other' for partners of cancer patients. This intervention is aimed at providing support in dealing with the demanding situation and in preventing and reducing distress and psychological or physical complaints.


One important component of this intervention is the possibility to get in touch with peers. To facilitate peer-to-peer contact, the intervention offers the possibility to (1) share answers on some of the included psychological exercises with other participants (and to read those of others), (2) add tips and advices and to read tips of others, and (3) to get in contact with other participants in a private e-mail conversation. 203 partners of cancer patients already used this intervention in the context of a randomized controlled trial.


In this internship, you are going to analyze the shared answers/experiences and the tips of the participants. The results of this analysis will serve as new input for the intervention. For example, we can add new tips regarding interesting and helpful books or tips for better communication with children.


During your internship you can also help with the following tasks:

1.      In the English and Dutch language we use the term ‘informal caregiver’ or ‘mantelzorger’ to refer to family members, friends or other relatives who provide a broad range of assistance for an older person or an adult with a chronic disease. During our research in this topic we realized that the terms ‘informal caregiver’ or ‘mantelzorger’ don’t exist (or at least we couldn’t find them) in countries such as Germany. In this internship, you try to find an answer to the question: Do German’s or other nationalities have a word for ‘informal caregiver’? We are interested in this aspect because more and more people take on the role of an informal caregiver due to a shift in our health care system and we would like to know what countries do to support this group. But first we need to know how they refer to these informal caregivers.

2.      A growing number of German students choose our master Health Psychology & Technology. Due to our location, we know a lot of Dutch organization in which our students can work ones they have completed our Master’s program. However, we do not know what the equivalent organizations in Germany are. In this internship, you try to make an overview of German (health) organizations in which a health psychologist can work after his/her study.


Concluding: Do you always wanted to know what it’s like to work at a university? Are you interested in research? Are you German? (because some of the internship tasks will be conducted in Germany). Then this is the right internship for you!


Contact person information:

Name: Nadine Köhle

Telephone: 053 489 2092