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University Medical Center Groningen

Minor More Healthy Years

Minor More Healthy Years

Minor More Healthy Years






Semester 1, block a and block b



Entry requirement

Propaedeutic degree

Student capacity




Due to the nature of this minor, a maximum will be set at 35 students.


The university Minor More Healthy Years offers students a multidisciplinary introduction to contemporary issues in the field of public health. Students will learn about the public health challenges our society faces, public health systems, stakeholders and the different angles for intervention. T he focus is on project-based learning. Students will learn to work interdisciplinary on real-world problems, derived from a number of healthcare organisations. Design thinking will be used as a systematic method to arrive at solutions that meet the needs of the people involved. The skills learned during this minor will be highly beneficial for the student’s future careers.

The minor More Healthy Years is only offered as one package of 30 ECTS.

In this university minor you will learn to….

  1. explain the concept of public health and its determinants and stakeholders from different perspectives  
  2. identify and evaluate (theoretical approaches to) (cost) effective public health interventions at different levels (from individual to societal)
  3. collaborate effectively with peers, clients and stakeholders in a collective interdisciplinary project 
  4. effectively communicate ideas, visions, and project results, and discuss and examine them openly with peers, clients, and stakeholders 
  5. formulate a problem definition and methodically develop a solution to the problem that meets the needs of the stakeholders
  6. apply basic research skills  
  7. show willingness to adopt an open, non-judgmental, ethical, empathic and learning attitude 

Seven Faculties are involved (University College Groningen, Faculty of Economics and Business, Faculty of Medical Sciences, Faculty of Law, Faculty of Behavioral and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Faculty of Theology and Religious studies)

Coordinator: Dr. Marlieke Wilders, Department of Humanities, University College Groningen.
E-mail: m.l.wilders

visual more healthy years


The phases of the minor teaching schedule are coupled to the different phases in the design thinking process.

1. Kick-off week . In the first week, the students will be presented with the challenges by the participating organisations (e.g. the role of food in prevention of health problems, the future role of hospitals in keeping society healthy, how to design a future proof youth health care system). Students will select a challenge and form interdisciplinary teams in which they complement each other’s knowledge and skills to collectively start their journey to solve the challenges they are presented with. Each group will be guided by a mentor.

2. Phase 1: discover . Students create a thorough understanding of the challenge, using desk and field research. They will learn about the audience(s) for whom they are solving problems. In addition, they will reflect upon their challenge in light of different scientific perspectives on public health (e.g. medical, economic, psychological, humanities and legal).

3. Phase 2: define . Students collate data from the discover phase to define the design problems and challenges. They create ‘personas’ (i.e. rich descriptions of ‘typical’ end users). In addition, the 'customer journey' (the problem with all its facets from the end user perspective) is explored. Finally, a problem definition is defined, so the groups decide which exact (part of the) challenge they will try to tackle.

4. Phase 3: ideate . In time-boxed brainstorm (sprint) sessions guided by design thinking experts, groups will come up with creative and suitable solutions. A test plan for the next phase is created.

5. Phase 4: prototyping and testing . In this phase, the goal is to experiment with solutions and test them with the end users in order to come up with the best possible solution to the problem.

6. This minor will conclude with two final weeks in which a presentation of the solutions to peers and clients will be scheduled. In addition, groups present an action plan outlining what needs to happen to implement the solution into practice.

During the whole process, the end users and clients will be invited to participate, to ensure that the needs of all stakeholders are being considered.

Enrolment procedure

It is advised to enrol early, given the limited number of places available for the Minor. We do keep a waiting list, so if the Minor is fully booked you can email the coordinator (m.l.wilders to put yourself on the waiting list.

For information regarding the date of registration, please refer to the general minorpage.


Our programme is delivered on-site. However, given the uncertainties regarding COVID-19, we are prepared to turn to a blended or online format when necessary.

Last modified:01 June 2022 11.21 a.m.