Study programme

Project-based learning


University College Twente and its English-taught BSc programme in Technology and Liberal Arts & Sciences (ATLAS) is distinctive for its project-based curriculum . These hands-on projects will form the core of your education and are key to the entire learning experience at University College Twente. They offer you a chance to apply in practice the knowledge you gain during the courses.

On this page you can find out more about the reasons why we have made projects central to the curriculum, the themes these projects cover, the type of external clients you will work with as a student, and what current students have to say about learning in a project-based setting.


The main reason we include project work in your Bachelor of Science degree programme is to help you learn more effectively and to develop skills that are essential for your future academic and/or professional career.  Part of that beauty of the ATLAS program is the range of diversities and the range of interests and ambitions. Students from Indonesia to Mexico and everywhere that might fall in between come together to create and learn from each other.  In doing so they are building the foundation of skills that will propel their future. These skills range from problem solving, communication and project planning, to project implementation, effective teamwork and presentation techniques. Each skill is defined in so-called learning lines. Each learning line has a coordinator(s) whose job is to provide you with enough training on a particular skill-set by organizing workshops, trainings or inspiring lectures. And from these project works the students learn to work with other students who come from different backgrounds and different interest. 


All projects in the ATLAS curriculum combine technical and societal aspects - whether you are dealing with future food or energy issues, the effects of social media on security, risks to water security from continuing urbanization or any other topic. We deliberately offer a broad range of so as to represent the full breadth of the Liberal Arts & Sciences education available at University College Twente. These interdisciplinary cover every aspect of the physical dimension (from nano to giga) and the social dimension (from individual to organization, from local community to global society). In this way each student can use the project to his or her own advantage and concentrate on the most appealing aspects. It means different students get to work on different sets of talents and specialize in different directions when they reach the Master’s phase.


You will also get to work with real-world external clients. Typically, such a client will present a problem to the class at the beginning of each semester. By semester’s end, you and your team are to provide the client with a meaningful solution. Depending on your assignment, the project deliverable might be a research proposal, a written report or an actual product design. In the past, ATLAS students have worked with Jamie Hyneman (co-host of the popular television series MythBusters and honorary doctor at the University of Twente), municipal authorities in the Netherlands, the EUROS rowing association, and the world-renowned Mars One Foundation.


What do students think project-based learning? Watch the video below, and you will hear the ATLAS students of Class 2016 (Anne, Nick) and Class 2017 (Nora, Valerie) sharing their experiences and describing how the project work at University College Twente has changed their perspective on studying and working together with other students.


The best way to discover whether project-based learning will work for you is to experience it for yourself at our In_Sight Day. The In_Sight Day is aimed at prospective students who want to experience the type of projects ATLAS students work on. Find out the date of the next In_Sight Day.

Find out more about the curriculum, how you can design your own programme and go beyond the curriculum.

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