The Master’s programme in Educational Science and Technology is all about the design and evaluation of learning scenarios in schools and organisations.

The scope is wide: from educating primary school children and young people in secondary and vocational education to in-service or on-the-job training for adult employees, such as nurses, teachers, civil servants, managers and leaders. You will learn all about theories of learning and assessment, learning technologies – for example, serious games – effective training approaches and learning interventions. You will also discover how to design and evaluate different learning scenarios, progressing to producing recommendations and solutions for practical problems. 

Core course: Trending topics

In the first semester, all of our students take a mandatory course called Trending Topics in Educational Science and Technology. Trending Topics offers you a sampling of the current issues we are addressing in our research programme. It is an excellent way for you to get a taste of the wide range of possibilities offered within the programme, while also allowing you to connect with relevant research in the early stages of your studies. The topics are refreshed regularly and none of them is fixed, but recent ones include:

  • Talent development & management
  • Big data analytics
  • Differentiation in learning and instruction
  • Evidence use in education
  • Designing for collaborative learning
  • The role of technology in 21st-century learning
  • The use of sensor technology for capturing human interaction

In addition to this mandatory course, you can choose elective courses throughout the entire first semester, depending on your own preferences and on the focal area you choose.

Check the detailed course overview.

Fields of focus

The EST programme prepares graduates to work in the contexts of formal schooling or continuing professional growth in businesses and other organisations. Most courses draw on examples from one of these fields, while though some offer opportunities for both. Thanks to the freedom of choice within the programme, you can get your feet wet in both domains, or even take courses in other related fields.

For those interested in the context of formal education

Our courses situated in the field of formal education (EDU) focus mainly on teacher and school development, school effectiveness, educational technology, and instructional design. They offer learning opportunities related to primary, secondary or tertiary education. With these courses, you will gain expertise in planning, developing, and implementing innovative learning scenarios.

From this perspective, you can choose from the following elective courses:

  • Designing learning & performance support
  • Learning and instruction
  • Innovative technology-based learning environments
  • Assessing, monitoring and improving student and school performance
  • Teacher learning and development
  • Educational Measurement

For those interested in the context of human resource development

Human Resource Development (HRD) focuses on how adults learn and develop professionally. Leadership, talent development, and lifelong learning are among the focal points in this track. While this area overlaps with the professional development of teachers, it also includes the learning of adults in businesses and other organisations.

From this perspective, you can choose from the following elective courses:

  • Team learning at work
  • HRD & technology in a live context
  • Regulation and facilitation of workplace learning
  • Leadership and organisational change

Other elective courses

As an Educational Science and Technology student, you can also choose elective courses connected with our Master’s programme Business Administration and its specialisation Human Resource Management. You can choose from the following other elective courses:

  • Global talent management
  • HRM and innovation
  • HRM and technology design


Research Proposal

Before you start working on your Master’s thesis, you will complete a mandatory course called Research Proposal EST, in which you write your research proposal and design your research project. In lectures and seminars, you will learn about research quality as well as how to deal with information and privacy, ethics, and publication. You will work side by side with fellow students whose research themes are related to yours. In deciding on your graduation project, you can follow your ambition as a researcher, designer or advisor. 

Completing your thesis

The second semester revolves around your research project and the completion of your thesis. Some of our students choose a thesis topic related to ongoing research at the UT, thereby taking part in one of our departmental research programmes. Others prefer to identify their own contexts for conducting thesis work. Either way, some students conduct needs and context analyses, and yield research-informed advisory reports. Some design education- or training-related interventions, and evaluate them in the context of a school or workplace environment. Yet another option is to perform an empirical study using an existing design.

Two of our staff members will be on hand to supervise you throughout this phase. If applicable, we will also connect you with an external supervisor. 

Examples of Master’s theses

As you can imagine, the range of topics chosen for graduation research is almost limitless. Here are a few examples of topics covered by earlier students:

  • Lessons for gifted school children
  • Promoting intrinsic motivation among students
  • Stimulating self-directed learning among employees in health care
  • Knowledge transfer in an ageing high-tech organisation
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