What is the TEM (Twents Educational Model)?

The TEM (in Dutch: Twents Onderwijsmodel or TOM) is characterised by the integration of Project Based Learning (PBL) and other teaching methods in thematic fulltime study units – i.e. modules. A project is at the centre of each module. By programming the other module components around these projects, an integrated whole is created. Students are driven in their learning needs by the project in which they are also able to apply what they learned from the other module components.

In a module various components are logically clustered round a binding subject or theme. Different disciplines can come together, for example, in one theme. This occurs by giving a group of students a realistic assignment the execution of which presupposes some knowledge of these disciplines. The group acquires this knowledge as independently as possible, albeit under a tutor’s supervision. Certain knowledge may also be offered in direct instruction, but only if there is a specific reason for this. This might be the case if the ‘threshold of understanding’ appears to be (quite) high because it is regarded as inspirational, or because a wider context is called for.

Discovering strengths
The UT holds the view that its alumni should have developed themselves in three professional roles: that of researcher, designer and organiser (in Dutch: the 3 Os). These roles complement one another. During projects in the bachelor’s programme, students lay the academic foundations for each of these roles. Further specialization in one of the ‘three Os’ is reserved for the master phase.

Developing one or more roles is at the heart of each project. By following various modules
and by assuming different roles in project groups, students can find out where their talents and preferences lie.