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Education Minor and Crossing Borders

Education Minor

Information about the Education minor (Dutch minor Leren Lesgeven) is only available in Dutch. More about the education minor can be found here.  

Crossing Borders

Crossing Borders - International Grand Challenges and Strategies for Technology, Sustainability and Development (2*15 EC)


Website of the minor

Canvas page: Crossing Borders (2020-21)

Responsible Faculty


Coordination Team

Laura Franco-Garcia (CSTM)
Ben Jongbloed (CHEPS)
Renze Kolster (CHEPS)
Martin Stienstra (NIKOS)

Dear students,
as you know, due to the Corona virus, the minor-market scheduled for 24-03 has been cancelled. Because we still want to inform you about the Crossing Borders minor and also, to answer questions you might have, we will organize 2 online information sessions. In order to participate you need to enroll to the Crossing Borders Canvas site via where you will receive more information and the links to the sessions. This information will be available on Monday (23-03) afternoon. The sessions are scheduled for Tuesday 24-03. You can participate during 1 of 2 sessions: either from 11.00-12.00h or from 13.00-14.00h. 


  • Module 1 (15 EC) consists of three versions, of which you can choose one:
    - Version A: Virtual project
    - Version B: Study tour
    - Version C: Field study (part one)

  • Module 2 (15 EC) consists of three versions, of which you – depending on participation in Module 1 – can choose one:
    - Version C: Field study (part two): Students continue the field study started in Module 1
    - Version D: Short Field Study: For students that either took Version A or B.
    - Version E: Short Field Study. For students that did not take Module 1.

Students in Version C will go abroad for 15 weeks (from mid-October). Students in version D and E will go abroad for about 10, respectively 9 weeks, after having done the required preparation work in the first week(s) of Module 2.

Beware! This minor has a maximum number of participants for each version. A motivation letter is part of the intake procedure.

REGISTRATION Crossing borders 2020-2021

It's NOT necessary (and won't be possible) to register for the Crossing Borders minor via Osiris. Motivation letters can be uploaded via the Canvas site. Deadline mid-April 2020. The minor coordinators will inform you if you are accepted or not. Your registration in Osiris will be arranged for you around the end of May.
Due to the possibility of being rejected, it's advisable to register for a back up minor. You will need to de-register from this back-up minor once you are allowed to join the Crossing Borders minor.

More information can be obtained from the Canvas course "Crossing Borders (2020-21)" as well as from the Crossing Borders coordination team.

Learning objectives

This minor offers students opportunities to gain international experience by going abroad for a field study, a study tour, or by working from the Netherlands with international partners. Where possible, the students’ study background will be connected to the international project that they will carry out. Crossing Borders consists of two modules, each of 15 EC, which can be taken separately.

Students who wish to participate in an international study project will find a clear and challenging framework in this minor and will bring their knowledge and competences to a higher level. The design of the minor is framed around the world’s Grand Challenges. The educational goal of this minor is to contribute to the students’ international skills and orientation. Throughout the two modules students will learn about the Grand Challenges and are encouraged to become aware of the importance of differences between their own country and other countries - in terms of technology, socio-economic structures and culture. This will allow students to develop new insights into the world’s challenges related to Technology, Sustainability and Development.

The minor Crossing Borders is grounded on the belief that the most important issues for ensuring a sustainable future are cross-disciplinary. This will require knowledge, creativity, innovation, and thinking in terms of systems and cross-overs. Tomorrow’s professionals will have to be prepared to work and live in an international environment where they develop and implement innovations that will enhance their organization’s capacity to address the challenges of Technology, Sustainability and Development. In short: there is a need for flexible academics with an international outlook.

International Grand Challenges and Globalization

Our starting point in the minor is ‘International Grand Challenges’. These challenges include:

  • How to feed 9 billion people in 2050, on a planet that is heavily pressured by climate change, a lack of natural resources, acidified oceans, and a shortage of food and fresh water (to name a few)?
  • How to improve energy security that reduces both political tensions and environmental impacts?
  • How can firms raise productivity in an environmentally friendly and socially equitable way, while still being competitive?
  • What role is to be played in all of this by governments - on national, regional and international levels?

As part of the International Grand Challenges, globalization processes will be discussed. Cultural differences and internationalization of companies, universities and NGO’s are becoming increasingly important. However, what exactly do we mean when talking about globalization? Is the world getting smaller? Is the role of Western countries diminishing and are emerging countries, such as China and India, taking over the role of Western countries? What will be the role of Africa and Latin America in the future?  

Short explanation of the five versions

In version A, students work on an international project with a foreign partner organization. Students will be based at the University of Twente (UT), thus experiencing ‘internationalization at home’. To communicate with the international partner they will make use of Skype/email/phone (hence the term ‘virtual’). The project work requires students to solve a practical problem (linked to one of the International Grand Challenges) proposed by an organization located outside Europe. 

In version B, students will go on a study tour co-organized with one of the UT’s study associations. They will visit one or two countries during a period of 2-3 weeks. Based on their study tour experiences, students will carry out a small research project and deliver a report on their work.  

Students choosing version C will do an extended field study which will start in Module 1 and will continue into Module 2. Students choosing version D or E choose to complete a field study within one quartile. A large database, containing a broad range of host organizations from around the world, is available for students to choose from. After a field study preparation, students will go abroad to their host organization. 


Minor coordinators: Laura Franco Garcia and Martin Stienstra
Responsible Faculty: Behavioural, Management and Social-Sciences (BMS)

For more information, download the brochure.