Medical Sciences

Translation of research to health care and back

Medical Sciences

Ever wondered how and why diseases develop? How medicine work or how novel drugs are discovered? What the underlying mechanisms are? Then join the exchange semester (24/30 ECTS) of VUmc in which we will address all these questions. The International minor VUmc Medical Sciences will give you insights in the translation of research to health care (clinic) and back. As a result, you're better prepared for the current developments in health care. 

The minor (24 or 30 EC) consist of two components: 
  • The general course 'Translational sciences in medicine' (6 EC) followed by
  • One of the 13 minor-modules (8 EC) of your choice, which consist of three consecutive courses of each 4 weeks.
Tracks of 30 EC will be completed with a literature essay (6 EC).

Translational sciences in medicine (4 weeks)

This course where topics such as underlying mechanisms of pathogenesis of diseases, drug development, scientific integrity, critically read and interpret research data, scientific writing are discussed.

The minor-modules: 

  • Internal Medicine
    The module will give broadening, deepening and stimulates your critical appraisal of relevant issues in the research field of Internal medicine. The department of internal medicine collaborates and is part of a large number of research institutes, such as ICAR-VU, Cancer Centre, EMGO and LEARN.
  • Cardiovascular Research Challenges
    Selected topics on cardiovascular diseases, their origin and development, diagnoses and treatments are presented and discussed. The students will design a research proposal for future research based in past research within the Cardiovascular Research field.
  • Immunology-Infection-Cancer-Connected
    This module combines an in depth education in immunology, ranging from research defining basic molecular principles to translational testing and clinical application, combined with two important related research fields, i.e. oncology, immunology, and infection biology.
  • Clinical Neuroscience - Life of Brain
    Relatively mild damage to the human brain can have large and lasting impact on the daily lives of patients. You will be guided through the brain as we age, focusing on common (and uncommon) neurological disorders in each stage of life. 
  • Hot Topics in Psychiatry
    Topics: child- and adolescent psychiatry, forensic psychiatry, schizophrenia, autism, depression, and comorbid somatic and neurological conditions.
  • Global Health, Diversity & Conflict
    This module builds on recent developments and practices within the fields of Global Health, Gender and Diversity and Health Care in Conflict Areas and places them in a broader perspective (e.g. psychological, societal, managerial, political and economic).
  • Global Health Indonesia
    This module is only available for medical students VUmc.
  • Death and Dying
    Clinical scientific and moral challenges surrounding quality of life and patient participation in “end of life decisions are hot topics in present day healthcare. These aspects will be investigated from a multidisciplinary perspective.  
  • Peri-operative Patient Care and Anatomy
    The module "multidisciplinary perioperative patient management and integrated surgical anatomy" offers a comprehensive program for students with interest in perioperative care and management of surgical emergencies.
  • Child Healthcare
    It comprises current research topics in pediatrics and the challenges and differences in health care from babies to adolescents when compared to adult medical and psychiatric care.
  • Personalized Medicine
    Personalized medicine is a treatment that accounts for individual variability, including the genetic profile. This module will teach advanced methods, from theory as well as in many practical site visits in the VUmc. 
  • The Moving Body... in Health and Disease
    Musculoskeletal disorders and neurological movement disorders are among the leading chronic diseases in the Netherlands. This minor pays attention on prevention, etiology, diagnostics, and surgical and non-surgical treatment of musculoskeletal disorders and neurological movement disorders. 
  • Research Minor: Science in Medicine
    During this research minor, the students learn and discuss the theoretical background of medical research, which also includes the pitfalls and limitations of science in medicine. Besides the theory, students can also perform a study in one of the research institutes of the VU medical center. 

For more information about each course, please visit the study guide.

Admission and registration

The international minor VUmc is open to:

  • Medical bachelor students VU. You need to have completed the first bachelor year and acquire at least 30 EC in the second year (= at least 90 EC), where 18 EC is acquired in the first semester of the second year.
  • Foreign students of partner institutions of VU and VUmc. Exchange students who wish to apply for one of these tracks need to have completed the first bachelor year and acquire at least 30 EC in the second year (= at least 90 EC) in a relevant academic (university) program like for example: medicine, biomedicine, psychobiology, technical medicine, medical biology, liberal arts & sciences or biopharmaceutical sciences. In addition, it is vital that you know the English language (at least on VWO level).
  • Third year BSc VU students in Biomedical Sciences, Health and Life Sciences (major clinical sciences or major biomedical sciences), Medical Natural Sciences and the beta track Amsterdam University College can also enroll. You need to have completed the first bachelor year and acquire at least 30 EC in the second year (= at least 90 EC). In addition, it is vital that you know the English language (at least on VWO level).

To register, send an e-mail to Please make your choice for three minor-modules and select first, second and third choice. International exchange students should be selected and proposed by the international offices of the partner universities.

Questions about the programme

If you have detailed questions about the contents of the programme, please contact

Maybritt Stal |

Samenvatting Medical Sciences




1 semester (24/30 EC)


3 september 2018


Gezondheid en Beweging


Geneeskunde (VUmc)