Research centre
Autonomy and Participation for Persons with a Chronic Illness

Autonomy and Participation for Persons with a Chronic Illness

The Research Centre for Autonomy and Participation for Persons with a Chronic Illness performs activities which help to ensure that chronically ill people or frail elderly can live the life they would like.

Our research group is formed by scientific doers. Research is conducted precisely by the rules of the trade, but only if the professional practice needs it.

Our research topics are both interesting as relevant for healthcare professionals. Lecturers of Zuyd University of Applied Sciences conduct research together with healthcare professionals out of the workplace. Clients are also involved as much as possible. The research results are used immediately in the daily healthcare practice and healthcare education at Zuyd University: Speech Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, Biometrics and Nursing. 

(Associate) professors

  • Sandra Beurskens

    Sandra Beurskens

    Since 2006 I’ve been working with great delight as an (Associate) Professor of the Research Centre for Autonomy and Participation of the Chronically ill. Together with a group of lecturers we perform research on various topics that are interesting and relevant for the professional field and education.

    My background is physical therapy, health science and epidemiology. From an early stage on I was seized by research, especially to determine what works and why. During my PhD research (low back pain and traction) I learned the theory and practice of research, especially in the field of RCT (Randomized Clinical Trial) and clinometric. After my PhD I worked on the design and implementation of a large cohort of employees for the study on mental exhaustion at the workplace. After nine years at the University I wanted to get closer to the professional field again. The implementing of gained knowledge and assisting of students and teachers were of my special interest. In 2002 this became possible at the Zuyd University, first as a lecturer and later as an (Associate) Professor. 

    My special areas of interest are: the use of measuring instruments in daily practice, evidence based practice and goal setting/assistance clarification. Using measuring instruments will provide information to the healthcare professional and patient/client information. On which basis they can jointly discuss the purpose and course of the treatment and at the end evaluate it. The challenge is to eventually integrate the use of measuring instruments in the methodical actions of the professionals. 

    Since September 2013 I combine this position with my appointment as a Professor at the new endowed Chair ‘Focussed measuring in the daily healthcare practice’ at Maastricht University. The ultimate goal of this Chair is a more efficient and patient-centred care. Which can be done by improving and better aiming numerous available measuring instruments and tests. The Chair perfectly fits the main focus of the research group Innovative Technology in Care of Zuyd University. 


  • Asiong Jie

    Asiong Jie

    Since 1 April 2013 I am (Associate) Professor at Zuyd University associated with the Research Centre for Autonomy and Participation of the Chronically Ill. My field of expertise is ‘Integrative Patient Centered Healthcare in the oncology.