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Lotte Lemmens

Assistant Professor



  • - Binge Eating Disorder
  • - Boulimia nervosa
  • - Interventions, treatment
  • - Obesity

Investigating the effects and mechanisms of psychotherapy

Let me introduce myself: my name is Lotte Lemmens and I’m working as a post-doctoral research fellow at the department of Clinical Psychological Science at Maastricht University. My research focuses on the effects and mechanisms of psychotherapy. The treatment that I’m particularly interested in is Cognitive Therapy (CT). In my work, I examine clinical effects (short-term and long-term), the shape of change, processes that are responsible for symptom change, and variables associated with therapy success.

During my PhD, I examined these questions in the context of a large RCT comparing CT with Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) for Depression. I am currently working on an RCT in which we study CT vs. CT + Cue Exposure in patients with Eating Disorders.

I believe that a full understanding of why, how long and for whom psychological interventions work, is the best short- and long-term investment for improving everyday clinical practice and patient care.

Specific research topics: Eating Disorders; Depression; Research conducted in clinical settings; Cognitive Therapy; Cue exposure; Effects of Psychotherapy; Shape of change; Mediators of treatment effects; Optimal treatment selection;; Sudden Gains; Dynamic Relations between symptoms;.


I’m a tutor, skills trainer, practicum coordinator, and lecturer in various psychopathology-related courses in the bachelor and master of Mental Health Sciences (FHML) and Psychology (FPN), and a mentor of FPN bachelor students. Furthermore, I have supervised several students in the process of writing their Bachelor’s and Master’s thesis.  In addition, I am a member of the FPN Educational Section and of the course planning group of the ‘Mood Disorders’ course of the bachelor Mental Health (FHML). In 2012, I was nominated for the FHML teaching award.

I would be happy to be an advisor for students who are interested in writing their thesis on topics related to psychotherapy for eating disorders or depression. Furthermore, master students interested in the topics of my research are more than welcome for a research internship to gain practical research experience in the context of one of my ongoing projects.

Clinical work

Besides my scientific activities I work as a therapist at Virenze-RIAGG Maastricht, where I conduct intake interviews and assessments, and provide CT for patients diagnosed with eating disorders and depression. In this connection I participate in weekly supervision sessions.

Honours and Awards

2016: Article Prize Dutch-Flemish Postgraduate School for Experimental Psychopathology (EPP)
2015: Nomination for Wim Trijsburg Prize for Junior Scientists, Dutch association for Psychotherapy (NVP).
2014: Beck Institute Graduate Student Scholarship, Beck Institute, Philadelphia (VS).
2013: Grant by University Fund Limburg /SWOL: for organizing Depression Symposium.
2012: Fulbright Award & Scholarship, Fulbright Center Amsterdam.
2012: Nomination FHML Educational Prize 2012, Universiteit Maastricht.
2011:Grant by University Fund Limburg /SWOL: Sudden Gains project.


Spanakis, G., Weiss, G., Boh, B., Lemmens, L. H. J. M., & Roefs, A. (in press). Machine learning techniques in eating behavior e-coaching: balancing between generalization and personalization. Personal and Ubiquitous Computing.

Meesters, C., Muris, P., Dibbets, P., Cima, M., & Lemmens, L. H. J. M. (in press). Feeling loved or rejected: On the link between perceived parental rearing behaviors and self-conscious emotions in adolescents. Journal of Child and Family Studies.

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Müller, V. N. L. S., Arntz, A., & Huibers, M. J. H. (2016). Mechanisms of Change in Psychotherapy for Depression: An empirical update and evaluation of research aimed at identifying psychological mediators. Clinical Psychology Review, 50, 95-107. [Download PDF]

Boh, B., Jansen, A., Clijsters, I., Nederkoorn, C., Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Spanakis, G., & Roefs, A. (in press). Indulgent thinking. Ecological Momentary Assessment of Overweight and Healthy-weight Participants’ Cognitions and Emotions. Behaviour Research and Therapy.

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., & DeRubeis, R. J. (in press). Sudden Gains. In Wenzel, A. (Editor in Chief), Encyclopedia of Abnormal and Clinical Psychology (pp XX – XX). Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications.

Boh, B., Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Jansen, A., Nederkoorn, C., Kerkhofs, V., Spanakis, G., Weiss, G., & Roefs, A. (2016). An ecological momentary intervention via smartphone and internet: Study protocol for a randomised controlled trial for weight loss and healthy eating. Trials, 17, 154-166. [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., DeRubeis, R. J., Arntz. A., Peeters, F., Huibers, & M. J. H. (2016). Sudden Gains in Cognitive Therapy and Interpersonal Psychotherapy for adult Depression. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 77, 170-176. [Download PDF]

Huibers, M. J. H., Cohen, Z. D., Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Arntz, A., Peeters, F. P. M. L., Cuijpers, P., & DeRubeis, R. J (2015). Predicting Optimal Outcomes in Cognitive Therapy or Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Individuals Using the Personalized Advantage Index Approach. PLoS ONE, 10; e0140771. [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Arntz, A., Peeters, F. Hollon, S. D., Roefs, A. & Huibers, M. J. H. (2015). Clinical Effectiveness of Cognitive Therapy vs. Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depression: Results of a Randomised Controlled Trial. Psychological Medicine, E-Pub ahead of print.  [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Renner, F., & Peeters, F. (in press). Persisterende Depressieve Stoornis. In I. Franken, P. Muris & D. Denys (Eds.), Basisboek Psychopathologie. Utrecht: de Tijdstroom.

Bringmann, L. F., Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Huibers, M. J. H., Borsboom, D., & Tuerlinckx, F. (2015). Revealing the dynamic network structure of the Beck Depression Inventory-II. Psychological Medicine, 45 , 747-757.  [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Roefs, A., Arntz, A., van Teeseling, H. C., Peeters, F., & Huibers, M. J. H. (2014). The value of an implicit self-associative measure specific to core beliefs of depression. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 45(1), 196-202.  [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., Arntz, A., Peeters, F. P. M. L., Hollon, S. D., Roefs, A., & Huibers, M. J. H. (2011). Effectiveness, relapse prevention and mechanisms of change of cognitive therapy vs. interpersonal therapy for depression: study protocol for a randomised controlled trial. Trials, 12, 150-162.  [Download PDF]

Lemmens, L. H. J. M., & Huibers, M. J. H. (2011). Psychotherapie voor depressie werkt! Maar Hoe? Stand van zaken van onderzoek naar werkingsmechanismen. GZ-Psychologie, 8, 10-16.  [Download PDF]