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Built Environment

Do you want to find out how you can keep your country and cities accessible in the future? Want to map out problems in disadvantaged districts? And would you like to design the ideal residential area of the future? Built Environment is the programme for you.

International Spatial Development

In our globalising and urbanising world, ever greater importance is placed on cities built for human well-being, with attractive living and working environments, traffic accessibility, traffic safety and sustainability. In the study programme International Spatial Development, a differentiation area of Built Environment, you will explore spatial development from an integrated perspective, based on urban planning, urban design and mobility – looking across country borders.

After your bachelor

You are trained to optimise living environments and to design functions and accessibility of areas or locations on the international market. Career examles are: strategic designer, urban planner and manager of sustainable urban mobility at international companies. Possible employers are multinationals, government services and consultancy agencies.

After successful completion of the Built Environment degree programme you are entitled to the degree of Bachelor of Science.

Like to know more? After your bachelor

Study overview

This programme will start with a broad basis of knowledge of the built environment. Throughout your course of study, you will have opportunities to specialise. Various aspects relating to urban space and mobility will be dealt with: behaviour, design, planning and research. You will learn how to design safe cities, manage urban planning efficiently, influence people towards making clever transport choices and think and design strategically.

You will also learn to plan and design, from the perspective of area development in the broadest sense of the word. You will produce sketches and designs for land use and you will build scale models. In this process, you will take into account a variety of external factors: is everything financially viable; how do stakeholders react; is everything in accordance with relevant laws and regulations?

In design workshops you will attend classes delivered by specialists from the field who will teach you all about the required design skills. You work on projects together with fellow-students. You attend courses and training sessions in small groups. You can find detailed information about planning, courses and projects in the course catalogue of Built Environment (pdf).

Year 1 and 2

The first years are about exploration and integration. You get familiar with the comprehensive discipline. The courses and projects are centred around the following themes:

  • (Dutch) Urban Design
  • Sustainable (Urban) Mobility Planning
  • Smart Cities and Societies
  • Water Management
  • Planning for an Uncertain Future: Flexible Use of Space
  • Energy

During the second year you continue the courses and projects of the first year. At the end of year two you can opt for becoming a specialist:

Strategic Designer
In this role you will focus on integrating strategic design with the process of shaping society. Your objective in this process will be designing future cities.
Projects and courses: urbanism, design, sociology, and drawing and visualisation skills (by using Illustrator and Photoshop).

Urban Planner
This role is all about developing a long-term vision for cities while at the same time allowing scope for all stakeholders to collaborate and accomplish their own ideas. You will optimise and align living, working, mobility and recreational conditions.
Projects and courses: research methods, quality of life, financial control, sustainability and environment, governance and project management.

Sustainable Urban Mobility Manager
The main focus comprises behavioural changes in mobility such as promoting active modes of transport like walking and cycling. You will optimise the use of public transport and incorporate smart work and mobility solutions into people’s daily lives.

Projects and courses: travel behaviour and safety, mobility management and their relation to urban planning and design (including road design). 

Year 3

During the third year, you have courses with in-depth focus on spatial design, technology/engineering, energy and management. You also perform two placements, both lasting for three months.These placements provide you with on-the-job-experience and allow you to learn as you work at a company that matches your interests and ambitions. Your placement can be at an international company in the Netherlands or abroad. Multinationals, consultancy firms or government services are examples of suitable companies.

Year 4

You start your fourth year with a minor programme which you choose yourself. BUas offers several programmes such as: Society and Space, Space and Mobility or Design.

In the second semester of the fourth year you carry out a 20-week graduation project. As with your placement, the graduation assignment will be at an international company in the Netherlands or abroad.
Examples of possible graduation assignments are:

  • Researching travel time estimations in traffic jams with the help of GSM signals;
  • Designing for better quality of life in spontanious settlements;
  • Research into leisure-related traffic in a spatial development;
  • Planning for water management in coastal cities.

During this year you can also opt for our pre-master's programme Strategic Strategic Business Management and Marketing (SBM). Successful completion of this track will give you direct access, after Breda University of Applied Sciences, to various Master of Science programmes in business-related studies in management and marketing at several partner universities. A few examples are the universities of Maastricht, Tilburg, Brussels (B) and Warwick (UK). This pre-master's programme also links up directly to the academic master's programme of Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies of Breda University of Applied Sciences. In this way, it will be possible for you to earn an academic master's degree within five years' time or, after having completed a three-year track, even within four years' time.

Study load

Average hours of study are 32 hours per week. How many hours a week you actually spend studying depends greatly on how motivated you are and how challenging the subject matter is. The study load also differs per week. The last weeks of a term and the examination weeks are relatively busy.


Studying abroad for a while gives you the opportunity of broadening your horizons. You live in an international environment, meet people with different cultural backgrounds and learn a lot. In addition, you can considerably enhance your command of modern foreign languages. The long and the short of it is that studying abroad is a wonderful opportunity... Why not seize it?
In the fourth year you can complete part of your studies abroad at any place in the world, for instance Graz, Cape Town; Breda University of Applied Sciences has built partnerships with a large number of universities all over the world who will be happy to accommodate your exchange.

All students perform two placements, during year 3, both lasting for three months. These placements provide you with on-the-job-experience and allow you to learn as you work at a company that matches your interests and ambitions. Your placement can be at an international company in the Netherlands or abroad. Multinationals, consultancy firms or government services are examples of suitable companies.

Your placement assignment may be, for example:

  • A bicycle routes user satisfaction survey
  • Planning for future cities with a lot of variable factors
  • (Re)designing a sprawling neighbourhood
  • Sustainable urban mobility plan development
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