Student Internship position (unpaid)

Language Development

A student internship position is available at the Language Development Department. This is an unpaid position for a student who needs to complete a research project or lab rotation as part of the requirements of their Masters or Bachelors course.

Job description

You will work on a project looking at how 2- to 4-year-old children learn the meaning of action verbs from everyday toy-play interactions. You will assist with recruiting and testing children, with preparing stimuli, and with coding language and communicative behaviour. You will be supervised by Prof. Caroline Rowland and Dr. Yayun Zhang



  • Creating and pre-testing stimulus materials
  • Scheduling participants and running lab-based studies with children
  • Coding and transcribing observational and experimental data
  • Data processing and data analyses

Requirements for the post


  • Good written and verbal English and Dutch. Dutch is essential as the intern will be working with 2-4 year old Dutch speaking children.
  • Currently studying Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, Linguistics, Psychology or a related discipline
  • An interest in child development
  • Excellent attention to detail and organizational skills
  • Strong interpersonal communication skills
  • Capable of working independently



  • Experience running experimental studies
  • Flexible availability (e.g. willingness to work some Saturdays)


Time investment

  • Position available immediately
  • Flexible hours per week, depending on the requirements of your study program
  • Full training and all resources will be provided
  • Unfortunately, we cannot contribute to living expenses or travel to/from MPI

Application procedure

There is no deadline for applications. We will consider applications on a case by case basis until the position is filled. Please submit your application directly via this link on our recruitment portal.


Applications should include

1. A cover letter outlining:

a. a motivation to apply

b. how you fit the requirements above

c. the internship requirements of your programme of study (e.g. what activities you are expected to complet, how many hours/weeks etc.) 

2. A current CV that includes details of education, relevant work and/or voluntary experience and language(s) proficiency in English and Dutch (to faciliate a bias-free hiring process, please do not include a photo or details of gender, age or marital status)

3. A summary of courses and grades achieved from relevant Bacherlor's and/or Master's degrees to date

To find out more about the work we do, see For further information or questions about the position, please contact the secretary of the Language Development Department, Ilse van den Dobbelsteen (Ilse.vandenDobbelsteen [at]

The employer

The Max Planck Institute (MPI) for Psycholinguistics is entirely devoted to psycholinguistics – the study of how we produce and understand language, and how we acquire these skills as first or second language learners. Our goal is to understand how our minds and brains process language, how language interacts with other aspects of mind and with other agents, how multiple modalities (as in speech, gesture and sign) shape language and its use in diverse languages, and how we can learn languages of quite different types. We are situated on the campus of the Radboud University and have close collaborative links with the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour and the Centre for Language Studies at Radboud University.  We also work closely with other child development researchers as part of the Baby & Child Research Center.

Staff and students at the MPI have access to state-of-the art research and training facilities (including audio-visual equipment, EEG, fMRI, eye tracking, virtual reality labs, molecular biology labs and a child-friendly child development lab).

The Institute is part of the Max Planck Society, an independent non-governmental association of German-funded research institutes dedicated to fundamental research in the natural sciences, life sciences, social sciences, and the humanities.

The MPI for Psycholinguistics recognises the positive value of diversity, promotes equality and challenges discrimination. We are committed to redressing systemic problems with diversity in science, and therefore welcome applications from individuals from minority groups and from groups that are otherwise under-represented.


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