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Vaardigheidsmodule: Designing Your Life


Dit vak wordt alleen in het Engels aangeboden.

Admission requirements

This course is an (extracurricular) Skills Module, open to students from all faculties and open to third-year bachelor’s and master’s students. If there are vacant places, second-year bachelor’s students are welcome as well. Students will be selected based on their motivation.

Please note that the Skills Module, being an extracurricular course, cannot be used in the elective space of your regular programme.


Life design, Design Thinking, Job market preparation, Career development, Creativity, Networking


Psychology, Career development, Design


Oral communication, Written communication, Societal awareness, Reflecting, Resilience


Have you known since childhood what you wanted to be when you would grow up? Congratulations, you are a lucky individual and this class is probably not for you.

For everyone else, this Skills Module will teach you how to apply the method of Design Thinking to design the most challenging and interesting project you will face: your life.

You will first learn how to identify energy patterns and build a compass to give you direction in your life design. Subsequently, you will brainstorm about multiple futures for yourself and prototype them through experiences and network conversations. Learning how to adopt the mindset of a designer is just as important, though, as designers know that perfection is unattainable, failure is a normal part of the process and that they can rely on their creativity to come up with new solutions.

This course uses literature from the domains of design, psychology and career development, and relies on smaller sub-groups within class - guided by a peer mentor - to stimulate discussions on a personal level. Through various (journaling) exercises and network conversations, you will expand your comfort zone and gain more clarity and confidence on how you can design your future.

Course objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the basics of Design Thinking

  • Identify what gives and drains energy, and formulate implications for your future based on these insights

  • Formulate where you currently stand in terms of work/study, love, health and play

  • Articulate which values are most vital for you in work as well as in life in general

  • Articulate your personal strengths, partially by using insights from outsiders

  • Envision three different life paths for the coming five years

  • Invite people for network conversations and conduct those in a mutually agreeable manner

Programme and timetable

The sessions of this class will take place on the following Fridays from 15.00-17.00):

Session 1: 29 September (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Designing Thinking intro & Life Design Dashboard

Session 2: 13 October (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Odyssey Visions and Living LinkedIn

Session 3: 20 October (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Practising informational interviews & introduction to energy mapping

Session 4: 3 November (15.00-17.00) (Matthias de Vrieshof 4, room 0.08a)
Energy mapping and reframing dysfunctional beliefs

Session 5: 17 November (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Strengths and LinkedIn 2.0

Session 6: 1 December (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Dealing with obstacles (imposter syndrome, failure, perfectionism)

Session 7: 8 December (15.00-17.00) (Lipsius building room 1.23)
Sharing informational interview insights & next steps

Attendance is mandatory.


Lipsius building room 1.23 and Matthias de Vrieshof 4

Reading list

The book Designing Your Life by Bill Burnett and Dave Evans will be mandatory reading.
Additional literature will be announced via Brightspace

Course load and teaching method

This course is worth 3 EC in extracurricular credit, which means the course load equals 84 hours:

  • Class sessions: 7 x 2 hours = 12 hours

  • Preparation exercises: 6 x 4 = 24 hours

  • Networking conversations (incl. preparation): 3 x 4 = 12 hours

  • Preparatory readings/videos: 5 x 4: 20 hours

  • Writing final reflection portfolio: 11 hours

Assessment methods

As life design is not something to grade quantitatively, this course will have a pass/fail grade based on your final reflection portfolio.


Brightspace will be used in this course. Students will be enrolled to the Brightspace module by the organisation of the course.

Application process

Applying for this course is possible through this link: Submitting an application for this course is possible from Monday 21 August 2023 up to and including Sunday 10 September 2023 23:59 through this link.

Please note: students are not required to register through uSis for this course. Your registration will be done centrally.


Katja Jaronski: