Know Thyself - mindfulness for professionalsOrganization logo: Erasmus University Rotterdam

About this minor

Learn mindfulness-based practices to maintain your health and well-being and to systematically improve skills that are essential for professionals working with other people.

Learning outcomes

Upon successful completion of the sessions and assignments of this minor on mindfulness, students will be able to:

  • Define mindfulness and describe the working mechanisms and effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions on various (health) outcomes in diverse populations, including healthcare professionals.
  • Demonstrate attentional focus and shifting modes from thinking/conceptual to sensing/embodied, and from focused concentration to open monitoring.
  • Develop the ability to come off autopilot in daily life situations, by tuning into the present moment, noticing inner processes (thoughts, emotions, physical sensations), and consciously choosing how to respond (i.e. develop a pause button).
  • Process difficult emotions and uncomfortable feelings by holding them in awareness with an attitude of curiosity, self-kindness and self-acceptance.
  • Demonstrate mindful listening skills; non-judgmentally attending to self and others with care and compassion.
  • Apply self-care skills in stressful situations
  • Demonstrate self-reflective skills; i.e., the ability to communicate about personal experiences.
  • Apply all abovementioned core practices and skills within a professional context.

Teaching method and examination

Teaching methods

Experience-based learning, team-based learning (max 15 students).

Every 1st session of the week will be comprised of meditations, inquiry/self-reflection, teachings (mini-lectures), group discussions, mindful communication, experiential exercises.

Every 2nd session of the week will start with meditation and Q&A, then a lecture or literature discussion.

Home practice is comprised of formal/ informal meditation, self-reflection, behavioral experiments, logs/diaries, reading scientific literature, and a team-based project on translation of skills to practice.

Teaching materials

Scientific articles
Chapters from handbooks
TedX talks
Your own experience

Method of examination

  • Attendance (missed meetings should be compensated with a substitute assignment)

  • Professional conduct

  • Weekly self-reflection report about meditation practices (2-3 pages)

  • Bi-weekly literature questions

  • Final self-reflection report (individual)

  • Team-based project on translation of skills to work field of choice

Composition final grade

  • Attendance (sufficient/insufficient)
  • Professional conduct (sufficient/insufficient)
  • Weekly self-reflection report about meditation practices (2-3 pages; sufficient/insufficient)
  • Bi-weekly literature questions (sufficient/insufficient)

All should be sufficient to pass the course.

  • Final self-reflection report (individual; graded 1-10) – weight 60%
  • Team-based project on translation of skills to work field of choice (graded 1-10) – weight 40%

Good to know

The minor is highly experiential in nature. There is a lot of practicing, both in-group and at home. The student is asked to commit to this as this is the most important way of learning within this minor.

Mindfulness can be potentially therapeutic in nature, but this minor is not a replacement for therapy . Trainers will create a safe(r) space and provide tools and guidance on how to work with all sorts of (difficult) inner experiences, but they will be unable to offer extensive individual support. We ask students to take responsibility for their own processes and stay within their window of tolerance as well as possible.

Groups have a maximum size of 15 students; the trainer is experienced and certified in mindfulness (or a related discipline).

When translating learned skills to the (future) work field, we will mainly work with examples from healthcare . The minor therefore fits really well with education for helping professions. However, students from all educational backgrounds are admissible; diversity is strongly welcomed . Becoming more mindful and compassionate could be interesting and beneficial to all students and work fields , and there will be plenty of opportunity to discuss how learned skills and insights translate to work fields besides healthcare.

The minor is open for international students; some groups will be in English, some in Dutch.

Additional information

  • Code
  • Theme
    Behaviour and society
  • Credits
    ECTS 15
  • Selection minor
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