What is Europe and how do we define it? How has history shaped our current understanding of the continent? How has European integration changed Europe? In the bachelor's programme in European Studies, you will work with your fellow students to develop answers to these complex questions. You will explore Europe and European integration using insights and methods from history, political science, international relations, law, economics, philosophy, and sociology. This programme trains you to become a critical thinker who can understand, analyse and explain complex current problems at the European level from various disciplinary perspectives. You can use this expertise to work in European institutions, public administration, management and consultancy.
The bachelor's programme in European Studies originated from one core idea: It is impossible to understand modern-day Europe and European integration from the perspective of only one discipline. Take the ongoing economic crisis as an example. This crisis can never be fully understood from an economic or financial perspective alone. In order to understand what is happening and to grasp how the European Union responds to this crisis, we also need to analyse the historical developments and different political and cultural backgrounds of European countries that are cooperating to manage the crisis.
Societal and political challenges can only be understood in the broader socio-cultural contexts. Politics, law or economics alone are not enough to solve the European 'puzzle'. Therefore, European Studies adopts an interdisciplinary approach, combining insights and methods from political science, history, international relations, law, economics, philosophy, and sociology.
In the first year of the BA European Studies, the main focus is on European diversity, emphasizing historical, social and cultural issues. You will be introduced to the disciplines of economics, history, international relations, philosophy and political science.
In the second year our focus shifts to European unity. While deepening your knowledge of European integration, you will also encounter your first law course. In addition, you are given the opportunity to specialise in a particular policy domain or country.
The scope broadens in the third year, with courses that cover cultural and political issues associated with Europe's place in the wider world. In the first semester students are able to participate in an academic exchange at 100 partner universities in 27 countries all around the world. In the past, our students have also undertaken a wide range of internships in, for instance, NGO's, art institutions, Government (local, national), political parties, consultancy firms, and research institutes. If you decide to stay in Maastricht, you can choose from between different Minors offered by the faculty.
The second semester consists of elective units and the Bachelor thesis. The top 20% of students can participate in a research based programme, called MARBLE.
As with many Maastricht University programmes, European Studies is taught using Problem-Based Learning. You will do a lot of your work in small tutorial groups of no more than 15 students. Together you will work on abstract and concrete ‘problems’ taken from real-world situations. Learning takes place in an active, constructive and collaborative manner. Though intensive and much more interactive than traditional lessons, the benefits of this kind of interaction with fellow students are evident, as it has one of the highest knowledge retention rates of any educational method. The questions that you'll be discussing in your tutorial group are often complex and the answers to them may be too. However, by exploring these types of questions in close consultation with the academic staff and other students, you'll develop an understanding of Europe that goes far beyond what you would learn by attending a series of traditional lectures.
As a graduate of the bachelor’ s programme in European Studies, you will be in high demand in a wide variety of places, from government and NGO’s to international institutes and corporations. Our European Studies programme has one of the best reputations in Brussels. That is because you learn not only facts and concepts but also the professional skills you will need in your career. Along with a research-oriented attitude and critical reflection, you will learn skills such as: problem-solving, professional communication, result- and quality-orientated behaviour, the ability to prioritise and organise your own working/learning process, working with others in multicultural teams, and, perhaps most importantly: you will learn how to learn. These skills are highly valued by employers, which is why over 95% of our graduates are either employed or go on to do a graduate study or internship.
Tonita Perera y Monsuwe
Advisor Students Recruitment FAsoS
Phone: +31 43 388 4779