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Welcome to the Department of Educational Sciences Web Space

The Department of Educational Sciences at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel is part of the larger (and overarching), Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences.

More information regarding the staff, the ongoing research strands and various programmes offered by the department can be found on the following pages (see menu bar above).

Currently all pages are available in English, and redirect respectively to Dutch and/or English where available/provided by the respective content providers. Dutch alternatives for the main EDWE landing pages will be made available in the months to come.  

Departmental objectives fall under three overarching research pillars: Educational Change and Innovation, Community Development & Arts and Cultural Education.

EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES

The Department is both rooted and founded on scientific research, as well as maintaining a strong link with and impact upon practice. The Department commits to these objectives following several developments within society, including but not limited to the fields of: educational change and innovation, community development, arts and cultural education. 

1. Educational Change and Innovation

Research within this focal area seeks to identify leverage mechanisms for change in educational settings and subsequent implementation strategies for innovative learning environments. Today, change is the rule rather than the exception in society. This is even more the case for education, because of the changing nature of learning itself. The search for educational change leverages is situated at various levels of the educational system micro, meso, and macro (elaborated briefly below). 

Overall, multidisciplinary expertise on self-regulated and personalized learning; inclusive education; professional development of teachers and educators; learning technologies; socio-affective aspects of learning; and teaching and leadership are combined to gain insights into the change dynamics in education.

Micro Level


Processes of change and innovations in learning communities, conditions and interventions that impact the learning of learners and educators

Meso Level


The role of strategic policies and organizational cultures of organizations and institutions in educational change processes.

Macro Level


Effects of educational policy and large-scale education reforms.

2. Community Development

This focal area focuses on community building and the quality of living. The key question is how one can form a community in a (post) modern society. In a society based on pluralism and diversity, it is essential that community development aims at enriching perspectives, providing open and continuous learning and learns to deal with differences.

On the one hand, our research explores and examines the role of the environment in community development. Environment encompasses: (1) social environment (e.g. social relationships, social cohesion); (2) cultural environment (e.g. diversity, migration); (3) physical environment (e.g. housing, urban planning); and (4) institutional environments (e.g. prisons, care institutions, municipalities). 

On the other hand, this focal area focuses on the relationship between the individual and the community. Research topics encompasses two clusters: (1) innovative ways of participation (e.g. new types of care volunteers, peer support), and (2) transitions in participation (e.g., motives, barriers, start and dropout).

Role of the environment in community development


analysis of levers for community development and change situated on micro, meso and macro level in order to adjust environments, contexts, systems and situations to the needs of people

Relationship between the individual and the community


The (actual) relationship between the two takes precedence over the individual (abstract) terms. Goal is to strengthen and empower individuals and groups, with specific attention for those in vulnerable and disadvantaged positions

3. Arts and Cultural Education

Cultural education is a broad concept. Within this research line, it refers to various learning and mediation strategies and resources available in formal, non-formal and informal educational settings, that focus on cultural ways of meaning-making. This ranges from particular ways of life (i.e., the social-anthropological dimension of culture) to art (i.e., the aesthetic dimension of culture). Both dimensions provide necessary elements to interpret the socio-cultural nature of education.

The symbolic repertoires of various art forms can be seen as socially situated and often critical ways of making meaning. They provide an indispensable context for understanding a society.  This research line critically examines aspects such as the participatory role of the spectator, the position of the artist, the mediating role of policy and institutions, the educational role of arts, the value and functions of art participation. The research is informed by explorations of actual art practices, innovative theories, participants’ perspectives, intercultural comparisons, .... As such, arts and culture in their myriad forms and practices offers both a context for learning and a critical perspective on learning. Research within this focal area consists of, but is not limited to

Arts mediation


Arts mediation (e.g. via various hybrid and digital processes, within various learning settings and institutions, and at different ages) & related (ped)agogical frameworks;

Cultural participation


Cultural participation (and barriers to it) & the functions cultural participants ascribe to art and culture within their own identity-construction and lifelong learning;

The study of the aesthetics and performative nature of social processes


care, remembrance, the inclusion of vulnerable populations in arts and culture;

Cultural representations


Cultural representations (of cultural themes and groups) within society and their impact.

Research Teams

The Department of Educational Sciences consists of several research groups. All falling within and under the overarching scope of departmental work (educational change, community development and culture education), each has distinct lines of research and expertise. To find out more about the research strands, ongoing and past projects and the general team makeup, please consult the list and respective websites below. 

BELGIAN AGEING STUDIES

BELGIAN AGEING STUDIES


Established in the early 2000s, the BAS team engages in the scientific study of the social aspects of ageing. The team’s research focuses on a range of social gerontological issues, including social, cultural and political participation in old age.

Team & Projects


BAS Website

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BRUSSELS RESEARCH CENTRE ON INNOVATION IN LEARNING AND DIVERSITY

BRUSSELS RESEARCH CENTRE ON INNOVATION IN LEARNING AND DIVERSITY


The team promotes interdisciplinary collaboration for educational innovation and change, generating ideas and implementing projects with the potential to transform education.

Team & Projects


BILD Website

More Information

EU-CHINA HIGHER EDUCATION RESEARCH CENTER

EU-CHINA HIGHER EDUCATION RESEARCH NETWORK


Research in the area of higher education to facilitate collaborations between European and Chinese institutions, and to promote mutual understanding about the educational systems, policies, governance, innovations, practices, and cultural issues.

Team & Projects


ECHE Website

More Information

INTEGRATED APPROACH OF RESEARCH IN LOCALITIES, ONTOLOGIES, AND COMMONS

INTEGRATED APPROACH OF RESEARCH IN LOCALITIES, ONTOLOGIES, AND COMMONS


A Multidisciplinary research group and an open knowledge network, LOCI directly engages with challenges and opportunities in the realm of development.

Team & Projects


LOCI WEBSITE

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PARTICIPATION AND LEARNING IN DETENTION

PARTICIPATION AND LEARNING IN DETENTION(PALD)


The interdisciplinary team focuses on the target group of ‘prisoners’ and connects the concepts 'participation', 'learning' and 'detention'. (Participatory) research about the participation of prisoners in formal, non-formal and informal learning activities is a priority.

Team & Projects


PALD WEBSITE

More Information
Degrees are underpinned by the important role of research and informed-based practice, which run centrally across the educational tracks. 

Educational Programmes

The Department hosts several educational tracks (and associated dregrees), in the field of education: Educational Sciences and Adult Educational Sciences. All programmes operate in both a multidisciplinary and multifunctional manner. Multidisciplinary, in that they rely and draw upon various feilds, offering both critical insights into and pathways upon which to learn more about the societal topics, systems and people with whom we work with. Multifunctional, refering to three levels (or function profiles), in which we operate: the level of guidance, management and policy development.

The department consists of both Dutch and English-taught programmes of study.

Bachelor Agogische Wetenschappen


Dutch-taught 3-year Bachelor Programme.

Programme Details

Master of Science in de Agogische Wetenschappen


Dutch-taught 1-year Master Programme.

Programme Details

Master Onderwijskunde


Dutch-taught 2-year Master Programme.

Programme Details

Master in Educational Sciences


English-taught 2-year programme.

Programme Details

Doctorate in Educational Sciences


Dutch and English supported doctoral pathways.

PhD Details

Internship Details and Documentation

In addition to collaborating on diverse research efforts within and beyond Belgium, the Department equally emphasises the value of experiences both across students' courses, and as an integrated and mandatory internship moment within the respective programmes of study (scroll down for details and documentation).  

Jaarlijks wordt een introductie georganiseerd voor de tweede Bachelor studenten.

Agogische Wetenschappen

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Stages Agogische Wetenschappen


Part of the bachelor programme, more details can be found by following the various detailed links & documents.

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Coordinator

Prof. De Backer
Free.De.Backer@vub.be
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Coach

G. De Coorde
Gert.De.Coorde@vub.be
There is a yearly introductory moment organized for first year students.

Educational Sciences

Students who will undertake an internship as part of their programme should register for the course on PointCarre. Students will then have access to the latest updates as well as the internship-related documentation. 

Stages/Internship Information


Internship Coordinator: Prof Koen Lombaerts

Stages/Internship Information

Stages Onderwijskunde


Coach: Jaël Muls - Jael.Muls@vub.be

Internships Educational Sciences


Coach: Júlia Griful-Freixenet - Julia.Griful.Freixenet@vub.be

Internships Educational Sciences


Coach: Karen Triquet - Karen.Triquet@vub.be

OTHER USEFUL STUDENT LINKS

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Exchange Possibilities


Find out all exchange possibilities for your programme.

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Erasmusuitwisseling


Aan de VUB kan je met het Erasmus + programma een leerervaring opdoen aan een buitenlandse universiteit.

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Programme Brochures


Order your programme brochure.

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Faculty Home


Faculty Pages: Registration, Course Selection, Lesson Plans and Important Programme Dates.

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Doctoral School


Offering multiple activities to assist in extending and improving students' capabilities to obtain their PhD.

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EDWE TEAM

​This directory provides an overview of the EDWE research team: professors, post-docs, PhD students, and affiliate researchers. Each profile image is hyperlinked, providing redirection to individuals' respective academic profiles. 

Professors



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Post-Doc Researchers

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Doctoral Students



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Assisting staff & affiliate members

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EDWE Publications

The following links redirect you to the central departmental and individual academic outlets. Regarding ongoing and past project outputs (pilots, reports and related documentation), these can be consulted on research teams' respective website. 

PURE Portal


Vrije Universiteit Brussel Research and Information Portal (Journals, Books, Conference Proceedings, Reports etc.)

Find Publications

Project Outputs


Outputs from ongoing and past projects can be consulted through the respective research units' website/s.

Research Units

Individual Academics


Each individual's profile is hyperlinked to their respective research portal overview.

Find a Researcher

Contact The Department of Educational Sciences

How to reach key EDWE staff - Secretariat contact details.

EDWE Secretariat - Office 3B255
Karina Van den Berghe

Phone Number
+32 (0)2 629.13.10

Email Address
kvdbergh@vub.be
EDWE Secretariat - Office 3B255
Siegrid D'Haeseleer

Phone Number
+32 (0) 2 629.13.10

Email Address
sdhaesel@vub.be

Department Address


BUILDING B - DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES | FACULTY OF PSYCHOLOGY AND EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES | VRIJE UNIVERSITEIT BRUSSEL | PLEINLAAN 2 | 1050 IXELLES

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