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Zeynep’s Traineeship Experience

For those who are going to be exploring their options for the first traineeship or anyone just exploring our experiences in the IDA program, here is my Traineeship 1 topic and experience that I loved!

Essentially, the aim of this traineeship was to be able to expand our knowledge and skills in research into individual differences and assessment while developing as researchers in a professional setting. To meet these goals, we could choose between focusing on the acquisition of conceptual knowledge or of skills in a specific assessment method. Qualitative research methods had been close to my heart already, so I used this opportunity to learn more about the Grounded Theory methodology (GTM).

Shortly, the GTM offers a systematic and inductive approach to data collection and analysis. By means of gathering qualitative data (e.g., interview transcriptions), data can be systematically coded and theoretical relationships between the codes can be uncovered by taking certain methodological steps. Such a methodological approach enables us to answer questions concerning “why” a phenomenon exists or “how” it functions, in addition to looking at it from a descriptive account.

During my traineeship, I joined an ongoing research project and worked closely with 2 colleagues, including my supervisor, Dr. Djurre Holtrop. In this research project, GTM was used to understand authentic leadership. My role involved actively recruiting participants working at managerial levels, conducting and transcribing interviews, coding the transcriptions, and finding theoretical relationships between the codes together with the team to understand what authentic leadership is. As you can probably tell, I could go through all the steps involved in the GTM. The whole process was highly active and energizing for me since I got the chance to be immersed in the concept we were theorizing about. Especially being able to work closely and collaboratively within a team, I believe I could have a more realistic picture as to how things are done professionally in the academic setting.

Overall, my traineeship topic and experience were illuminating in the sense that I gained more confidence in my career path and the choices I had been making. In fact, now we are in the process of turning our research into a manuscript within a bigger research team. Thank you for all, who contributed to making this happen!

Oh before I forget, if you would like to learn more about my topic or experience, please reach out by leaving a comment below. 🙂



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