PULSE Network members offer a broad range of courses at universities around the country and participate in an interdisciplinary master’s program in Medical and Health Humanities at the VU University, Amsterdam.

This programme combines the history of health and medicine with a wide array of arts and humanities approaches. Classes explore the different ways that bodies and minds have been investigated and understood, and how these various ways of knowing shape everyday life, medical practice, and public health policy. Participants learn to contextualise medical ideas in the time and culture, and to analyse a diverse range of sources, including historical artefacts, comics and films, medical texts and health journalism. Drawing on methods from across the disciplines, students will broaden their tools of investigation beyond the written word to also consider the sounds, smells, and the look and feel of the past and its lessons and legacies in the present day.

The course is most interesting and the sessions are very interactive. News topics, such as coronavirus, are part of discussions and related to historical perspectives. I noticed the ongoing impact of a lesson during my workweek – I was more focused on issues from classes and talked with my colleagues about it. They were curious too…

Walter Verwegen, Educator for professionals nurses and social workers, Mental Health institute Eindhoven, GGzE

The four specialised courses in the programme are also open to interested MA or MSc students registered at Dutch universities. This includes those enrolled in medical school, or specializing in related health or humanities disciplines, such as psychology, art history, nursing, social work, communications, media studies, anthropology, or museum studies. You can follow just one, two or three courses, or follow the full programme. Download the programme booklet here.

“The in-depth and open discussions of articles were always related to contemporary developments and debates in medicine and society in general, and made this course highly relevant for students coming either from the ‘humanities’, the social sciences or the medical disciplines. Indeed, the discussions were all the more enriching as the students in class came from very different disciplines and backgrounds.” 

Marie, Research Master History, Radboud University Nijmegen

Not a student?
People who are not enrolled in a Dutch university, but who would like to register for this programme, are welcome to participate. The course fee is €600 per course, or €2400 total for all four courses. Payment is due in January of the year of study, but please contact the coordinators in advance to discuss: Ab Flipse (a.c.flipse@vu.nl) and Manon Parry (m.s.parry@vu.nl) .

More information available at: https://masters.vu.nl/en/programmes/history-medical-and-health-humanities/index.aspx