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Broader Mind Course - for all bachelor's and master's students

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Last updated on 28 November 2023
At VU Amsterdam, you develop A Broader Mind. In every study you will be challenged to take a broader view of your academic discipline, of society and yourself. Take the course and help make a difference.

The Broader Mind Course is an extracurricular, interdisciplinary course which focuses on your personal development and involvement with societal issues like success & failure, poverty and sustainability. In a mixed group of students from all VU faculties, you will be involved in an innovative course that will challenge your perspective on different topics. The course runs from February till June in the year 2024 (P4 + P5); registration opens from December 11 2023.

Last years’ students share their 9 reasons to follow the Broader Mind Course in this video.

An overview of practical details and themes of Broader Mind Course can be found in the flyer.

Join or contribute to the Broader Mind Course

  • Who is the course for?

    The course is interdisciplinary, and therefore accessible to all VU bachelor’s students, regardless of your faculty or whether you are a first-, second- or third-year student.

  • What does the course entail?

    In the Study guide, you will find everything you need to know about the Broader Mind Course, Track A and Track B. You will choose one of these two tracks. Each track covers four themes, namely:

    Track A: Success & Failure, Poverty, Human Body and Rebellion.
    Track B: Health & Happiness, Digital World, Viewpoints & Worldview.

    Track A
    Track B

    Each theme takes three weeks to complete and involves blended learning, with online and on-campus activities. The language of instruction is English. The total study load is 40 hours, which breaks down into about three hours per week, spread over four months, except during exam periods. When you successfully complete the course, you will receive a certificate of participation and it will be mentioned on your diploma.

  • When is the course?

    The course runs from February till June (P4 + P5) in the year 2024, registration opens December 11 2023. 

    The course takes place in periods 4 and 5, except during exam weeks. There are 4 meetups on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, from 17.30–18.30. There are also 6 meetups on Tuesdays or Wednesdays, from 17.30–19.30. You will also do online assignments on your own time.

  • Want to register for the course?

    To register for Track A or Track B of the Broader Mind Course, go to your dashboard and enter the course code or the name of the course in the registration module (via Plan course > All courses > Search in extracurricular courses). 

    Registration opens December 11, 2023 and runs until January 15, 2024. 

  • Want to help develop the course?

    A unique feature of the Broader Mind Course is that the curriculum is not only developed by teachers but also by students. You, too, can be a co-creator of the Broader Mind Course!

    Help us develop the content of the course. You’ll work together with diverse teams of students as well as educators and professionals in relevant fields. You can be as involved as you like with no obligation necessary. You’re welcome to drop by just to give your opinion or share ideas - or if you’re feeling inspired you could even become part of the development team and meet once a week to work on continual improvements.

    Dates, Location, Room
    Vrije Universiteit, NU Building (Campus Map)

    • Tuesday 16.30 – 18.30: 03 October: NU-6A69
    • Tuesday 16.30 – 18.30: 17 October: NU-6A69
    • Tuesday 16.30 – 18.30: 31 October: NU-6A69
    • Tuesday 16.30 – 18.30: 14 November: NU-6A61
    • Tuesday 16.30 – 18.30: 28 November: NU-6A69

    Dates, Location, Room
    Vrije Universiteit, Main Building or NU Building

    • Wednesday 14.00 – 16.00:  11 October: HG-16A00-Kerkzaal (Main Building)
    • Wednesday 14.00 – 16.00:  25 October: NU-1A25
    • Wednesday 14.00 – 16.00:  08 November: Coffee Corner NU Atrium
    • Wednesday 14.00 – 16.00:  22 November: Tech Lab NU-01A25
    • Wednesday 14.00 – 16.00:  06 December: Coffee Corner NU Atrium

    On Tuesdays we provide food and drinks and on Wednesdays snacks and drinks!

    Drop by or sign up for one of the co-creation sessions via or this form. You do not need to have followed the Broader Mind Course to participate.

  • Want to become a student guide for the course?

    We are looking for enthusiastic senior bachelor's and master's students to act as a ‘student guide’ for a group of students during the Broader Mind Course. You will help the students with both on-campus and online activities, give feedback and assess the final assignment. We will make sure you are well-prepared by providing you with training and coaching both prior to and during the Broader Mind Course. So, you will also learn quite a bit!

    As a student guide, you will receive a volunteer's allowance.

    For more information, please keep an eye on VU Student Jobs, take a look at this flyer, or Job Listing: Become a Broader Mind Course Guide. You can also contact us at

  • Get inspired by these Broader Mind Course videos

  • Want to stay informed?

    Sign up for the Broader Mind Course newsletter.

  • Want to know more? Join the Information Webinar

    Discover how you can unlock your potential through the Broader Mind Course🌟

    Webinars / Info Sessions

    🔍 Uncover New Perspectives: 🧠 Join Professor Dr. Govert Buijs in exclusive webinars as he shares how the course delves into interdisciplinary insights on societal issues and personal growth.

    🗓️ Date: Wednesday, December 13, 2023 | Time: 16:00-17:00
    📍 Location: NU 1A-25 (New University Building: VU Education Lab)
    💻 Online

    Meeting ID: 949 1581 5747 
    Passcode: 434280

    🗓️ Date: Wednesday, January 10, 2024 | Time: 16:00-17:00
    📍 Location: NU 1A-25 (New University Building: VU Education Lab)

    💻 Online

    Meeting ID: 914 8325 9660 
    Passcode: 492965

    Networking Event
    🥂 Connect, Expand, Thrive: 🤝 Sip, mingle, embrace new connections, and learn all about the Broader Mind Course at our networking event open to all students.
    🗓️ Date: Wednesday, Dec 13, 2023 | Time: 17:00-18:00

    📍 Location: NU 1A-25 (New University Building: VU Education Lab)

A great opportunity

“You don't often get the opportunity to talk about social issues with people from other disciplines. It was a great opportunity to listen to others, to think about challenging issues and to try to find solutions to them.”

- Diana Lucía Gross, Social Psychology student

Broader Mind Course students share their experiences

At VU Amsterdam, you don't just become something, you become someone. Someone with academic expertise who is also mindful of society. Some of the students of the Broader Mind Course share their experiences.

Do you have questions about the Broader Mind Course?

Please feel free to contact us

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