Humanities Research Career Preparation


Course Objective

Students choosing option 1 will learn how to write a research proposal
according to the format of NWO or other international research
organisations. This will prepare them for a possible PhD-application
after graduation. Students choosing option 2 will learn how to write a
project plan or a business plan taking into account the feasibility of
the project and the benefits to a larger audience of users or customers.
This will prepare them for a career in the industry, companies,
governments or non-governmental organisations.

After finishing this course, the students will:
• Be able to write a convincing scientific or applied research proposal
for both peers and an
interested lay audience;
• Be able to present a research proposal convincingly in a short time
• Be able to convincingly reply to critical questions about the research

Students choosing option 1 will also:
• Understand the procedures and assessments for grant applications, and
apply this knowledge when writing a research proposal;
• Be able to evaluate research proposals, even when they are not from
their own discipline, and to give a reasoned judgement about the

Students choosing option 2 will also:
- enhance their networking skills (outside academia and outside your own
- learn about time management and about the financial aspects of project

Course Content

In the Humanities RMA courses Essentials of Humanities Research and
Humanities Research Career Preparation students learn about the
culture of application and research practice in the scientific world, in
particular in the field of Humanities. Students are also trained to
design scientific research proposals that meet the highest standards. In
the Humanities Research Career Preparation
course students can prepare for their career by choosing one of two
1) write an individual research proposal that can be developed into an
academic grant application;
2) write an applied research proposal that can be developed into a
business plan.

For students choosing option 1, the course focuses on the various
aspects of the writing process, and on the procedures for grant
application followed at NWO and other scientific bodies. This includes
the dynamics of selection committees and the role of knowledge

The course is designed to start from the basics, by first developing a
research idea into a short abstract that will be discussed with fellow
students. Emphasis will be on defining the scientific impact of the
research proposal, and on explaining this to non-experts. Following
this, a final research proposal will be written that will be presented
in a ‘mock interview’ setting, where the students will comment on one
another’s proposals.

For students choosing option 2, the course focuses on either the
societal relevance (2a) or the business opportunities (2b) of your
2a: Societal relevance will be further explored through participating in
an interdisciplinary Community Service Learning project
Emphasis will be on defining societal challenges together with
stakeholders and addressing those challenges in an interdisciplinary
research project. Following this, you will share and discuss the results
with researchers and community partners, giving back to all parties.
2b: Business opportunities will be further explored with the help of
business developers at IXA (Innovation Exchange Amsterdam) and the
Demonstrator Lab
( Emphasis
will be on the practical application and innovative character of your
research plan, and on the question which current problem is addressed by
your idea. Following this, you will write a business plan that you will
present in a pitch session.

Teaching Methods


Method of Assessment

For students choosing option 1, grading will be based on four written
assignments, including the final version of the proposal and a ‘mock
interview’ in which the proposal will be presented and defended.

Assignment weights are as follows:
evaluation of 2 research proposals 5%
CV + knowledge utilisation paragraph 10%
proposal abstract 15%
proposal presentation 20%
‘mock interview’ 10%
final proposal 40%

For students choosing option 2, grading will be based on four
assignments: written concept/abstract of your plan (20%), a written
reflection on the process (20%), pitch/oral presentation (20%), final
version of the business plan or CSL report (40%).

Grades 0-10, attendance obligatory. Final grades below 6.0 are
insufficient. Grades between 5.5 and 6.0 will however be rounded to 6.0.
Grading for the assignments will be done on the basis of rubrics. These
rubrics will be made available through Canvas.

Entry Requirements

Seminar Research Design 1 (L_AAMPALG001; 2016-2017) or Humanities in
Society (L_AAMPALG005; 2017-2018) or Essentials of Humanities Research
(L_AAMPALG013; 2018-2019).

Target Audience

This course is compulsory for all students of the Research Master
Humanities. Due to the entry requirements of the programme, the core
courses of the Research Master Humanities are only available for
students registered for the Research Master Humanities or the Research
Master Classics and Ancient Civilizations. Students of other Research
Master programmes or PhD students should seek approval from the
programme director.

General Information

Course Code L_AAMPALG006
Credits 6 EC
Period P2+3
Course Level 600
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator dr. J.W.H.P. Verhagen
Examiner dr. J.W.H.P. Verhagen
Teaching Staff dr. J.W.H.P. Verhagen
dr. P.H. Moser

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Seminar