Internship Major Science in Society


Course Objective

The aim of the internship as part of the Major Science in Society is to
apply the competences acquired
during the previous courses in a research project in order to ground the
knowledge, attitudes and skills of interdisciplinary research. More
specifically, the aims of the internships are:
• The student conducts scientific research under supervision.
• The student is able to find scientific information and to
evaluate this for the benefit of his or her own research question under
• The student is able to apply scientific methods and knowledge, to
answer research questions and to generate evidence‐based knowledge under
• The student is able to formulate a research question, to choose,
to implement and to evaluate the (appropriate) research method, and to
phrase the obtained results in report under supervision.
• The student learns to cooperate with researchers of various
• The student is able to orally present the research results and to
discuss the findings.
• The student obtains a good impression of a potential future field
of career.

Course Content

The internship is a compulsory part of the Major Science in Society. The
duration of
the internship is 5 months (30 EC). An internship placement must provide
the student with the opportunity to learn how to conduct research under
supervision. The onsite supervisor of the internship is linked to an
academic or research institution.

Internships can be conducted at various locations such as the Ministry
of Health, Welfare and Sports, the Nederlandse Mededingingsautoriteit,
the Health Council, medical organizations such as the municipality
health service (GGD), hospitals, consultancies, the (pharmaceutical)
industry and several research institutes, such as universities or e.g.
the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).
Consultancy companies, hospital staff departments and ICT firms / start
ups are equally interested in you.

An internship typically has three phases:

• In the first phase, you write your research proposal consisting of an
introduction, background, theoretical/conceptual framework, research
questions and your research methodology.
• In the second phase, you collect your (qualitative and/or
quantitative) data.
• In the third phase, you do your final analysis and present your
findings both orally and in a report. The presentation seminar is a
compulsory part of this third phase.

Teaching Methods

Research internship

Method of Assessment

Report (55%), Oral presentation (15%), Execution (30%) and Attitude

Within six weeks after the start of the master internship, an interim
evaluation will take place to assess whether there is a reasonable
chance of the placement being brought to a successful completion.

The internship is supervised and assessed by two lecturers. Both
lecturers are members of the academic staff at VU University Amsterdam.
The onsite supervision can be carried out by a trainee research
assistant (AIO), postdoc or researcher.

Entry Requirements

To ensure that students do have enough background knowledge, it is
required that you have passed the three compulsory courses: ‘Research
Methods for Analyzing Complex Problems’, ‘Communication Organization and
Management’, and ‘Analysis of Governmental Policy’ (grade at least 6).


Verschuren, P. and Doorewaards, H. (2010) Designing a research project
(2nd edition) Eleven International Publishing, The Hague.

Gray, D.E. (2014) Doing Research in the Real World (3rd edition)Sage
Publications Ltd, Los Angeles.

Substantial additional reading on both research methodology and the
topic of the research, to be searched for by student.

Target Audience

Students MSc Major SiS / Societal Specialisation

Additional Information

Information on internships is made available on Canvas.

Custom Course Registration

Internships can only start when the draft research proposal is approved and signed by the specialization coördinator

General Information

Course Code AM_1185
Credits 30 EC
Period Ac. Year (sept)
Course Level 500
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Science
Course Coordinator dr. T.J. Schuitmaker-Warnaar MSc
Teaching Staff

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Target audiences

This course is also available as: