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Education Honours College Honours Master


The aims of 'Leadership: Making the difference' is to explore the theme of leadership, acquire insights on your strengths and weaknesses and develop skills that contribute to your personal leadership style.
Overview: Leadership making the difference
Overview: Leadership making the difference

The programme consists of six components: writing a personal development plan, a leadership session (more information about this will follow soon), following masterclasses, personal development workshops, leadership labs and finishing a master work. The programme offers a broad selection of modules from which students are expected to compose their personal Honours master programme, in line with their interests and needs. Here you can find the list of all courses.

Personal Development Plan (1 ECTS)

The Personal Development Plan (PDP) is both the start of the programme and key to your outcome of the programme. You set learning goals by focusing on the knowledge and/or skills you want to acquire. Focusing on your personal development (based on your own starting point) will help you compose the right honours modules i.e. your personal version of the programme. At the end of the year you reflect at your progress and what this means for your future, writing the final part of your PDP. Your faculty coordinator guides you through all the steps of writing your PDP.


"At the beginning it was quite hard to set specific learning goals for myself. The meetings with my faculty coordinator were really helpful. We ended up reflecting most of the time on my goal “how to take the lead in projects” ."

Leadership Sessions (1 ECTS)

During the Leadership Session, you learn in an informal way about leadership from experts in the field through lecturers, workshops, individual and/or group assignments, and meeting on different topics related to leadership.

Master Classes (3 ECTS)

During the Master Classes you follow courses to enrich your understanding of the context of leadership. In these courses a scientific approach is combined with personal stories of prominent lecturers and guest speakers. You will choose three Master Classes that suit your interests most. The courses have an interactive character: students engage in dialogue with the lecturers and each other.

Examples of Master Classes:

  • (Neuro)biology of Leadership
  • Leadership in Medical Ethics
  • Climate law and policy


"I discovered how leadership in a classroom is actually more similar to leadership within a business context than I thought beforehand."

Personal Development Workshop (1 ECTS)

In the next part you follow a workshop that is in line with your focus on personal development. Together with other students and a supervisor you will develop leadership skills (e.g. presenting), while exchanging valuable insights with each other regarding these skills.

Examples of Personal Development Workshops:

  • Sparkle when you speak
  • Intercultural Perspectives
  • Express yourself as a leader


"Within the workshop ‘Express yourself as a leader’ we practice with challenging situations. It makes me realize that I have never been fully aware of my  body language and facial expression. Knowing this, I can now express myself in a better way."

Leadership Lab (4 ECTS)

Practice what you preach! In the Leadership Lab you are challenged to experience, practice and observe several leadership skills. Together with a student team and guided by a supervisor, you will be working on an assignment for an organization of your interest (in the public, private or societal sector). In this way you will start building work experience based on your knowledge and skills about leadership.

Examples of Leadership Labs:

  • Critical care decision making
  • Podcasting Science
  • New Energy Coalition: Research assistent


"My team consists of students with a variety of skills and knowledge. Together we are organizing a great event!"

Master Work (5 ECTS)

Now it is your turn! With your Master Work you design and carry out your own project in which you put your newly acquired knowledge and skills into practice. The content can be geared to your plans for the future. Do you want to start your own business? Do you want to organize conferences, or would you prefer working on (writing a grant proposal for) a research project?


"I am thinking about working at a bigger company, specialized in health care consultancy. For this reason, I want to organize a network event for relevant companies. I notice that my former experiences (the workshop and lab) really helped me to perform this project."


During the masterclasses, workshops, and labs, you attend meetings with other Honours students in small groups (max. 20-25 students). This creates a stronger connection between you, other students and the lecturer/supervisor in which you can quickly learn from each other!

How to get the most out of ‘Leadership: Making a difference’

The focus of the programme changes from mainly theory in the beginning (masterclasses), to a combination of theory and practice (workshops and labs), finishing with an assignment similar to one in your future profession (masterwork). You are personally responsible for which modules you choose and how you want to conduct your master work. To guide you in this process, faculty coordinators and the staff of the Honours Faculty can and want to help you (e.g., time management regarding the combination of your regular master with this programme). But above all, it offers you an extra perspective to learn. This however is up to you and does require a bit of initiative. Do not hesitate, being coached helps you definitely to fulfil this programme at your best!

Partner organizations

The RUG Honours College collaborates with several organizations in the public, private and societal sector. This gives you and other Honours students the opportunity to gain experience and start building a network in a sector you may want to continue working after your studies.

Last modified:14 September 2022 2.46 p.m.