Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies

1-year academic master’s programme | English-taught

1 year
Full time

Multidisciplinary approach to leisure and tourism

People have more and more leisure pursuits to choose from. Because our leisure time is becoming increasingly complex, we need graduates who understand what is happening within the leisure and tourism industry. In this academic master's programme, you will learn to look at leisure and tourism from different scientific disciplines. Central to this are the research themes Experience & Storytelling and Placemaking & Events. 

Do you  have an academic bachelor’s degree from a Dutch or foreign university? Or did you complete the academic bachelor’s programme Leisure Studies or Tourism at BUas, or the pre-master Strategic Business Management and Marketing or Leisure and Tourism Studies? Then take a look at the Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies!

Why choose this master's degree at BUas?

  • Recognised by WLO as a World Leisure Centre of Excellence
  • The only academic master’s programme in Leisure and Tourism in the Netherlands
  • Multidisciplinary approach; strongly related to topics in the international leisure and tourism industry

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Study overview

Study programme

Our leisure time is a vital resource that can be used for creative and physical activity, building relationships, forging identities and developing skills. The experiences that fill our leisure time are provided by an industry which accounts for 6% of the workforce in the Netherlands. The phenomena of Leisure and Tourism are increasing in complexity and require an integrated and multidisciplinary approach. Courses of this academic master’s programme build on knowledge and expertise from various fields such as sociology, psychology, economics, management and marketing.

Research themes

You will work on two important research themes: Experiences & Storytelling and Place-making & Events. The programme is divided into two phases. In the first phase you will take courses like Understanding Leisure and Tourism Attractions and Events, Leisure, Creativity and Space, and Experience Marketing in Leisure and Tourism. In the second phase you will work on your graduation. You will prepare for this in seminars together with other students, after which you will write your individual master's thesis.

Course details

The programme consists of two phases. The aim of the first phase is to provide context in the form of master’s courses. In the second phase you will work on providing your own content to the field in the form of your master’s thesis. A complete overview of the curriculum, course content and learning objectives can be found in the study guide.

The programme covers 12 months and is made up of two main phases:

Phase 1 - Master's courses on leisure in a network society

All five master’s courses in this first phase will have a dynamic set-up in the sense that they are positioned within the context of leisure in a network society. The master’s courses centre on the two main current research programmes in leisure and tourism: Experiences & Storytelling and Placemaking & Events.

Leisure, Creativity and Space
This master’s course discusses recent insights into the processes of globalisation, mediafication and commercialisation and their impact on the changing role of leisure in the design of public and private places and spaces.

Understanding Leisure and Tourism Attractions and Events
Recent insights and research in the field of change management, innovation, networks, co-creation, attractions, theme parks, and ‘eventful cities’ are the key ingredients of this master’s course.

Organizing Strategy and Entrepreneurship (at Tilburg University, with reservations)Central in this course is the idea that our world is evolving in a rapid pace and that we are in direct need of a ‘transformative change’ of our society and the role of organizations. In this course the focus is on organisation strategies by taking a ‘systematic approach’ and ‘serious gaming’ as strategic instrument.

Experience Marketing in Leisure and Tourism
As marketing is a key instrument in the leisure and tourism industry, the master’s course in Experience Marketing will immerse you into the field of marketing and market research, zeroing in on the leisure and tourism industry and the experience economy. The pros and cons of various research techniques is one of the topics addressed in this course.

Analysing Leisure Interactions
You are introduced to the field of practice theories and core concepts of leisure and tourism studies. You will work in groups to study issues related to authenticity, new media or happiness.

Phase 2 - Master's thesis

To ensure a smooth progression from the course and content phase (phase 1) to the thesis phase (phase 2) you will first attend the Seminar Leisure Studies to select and elaborate a thesis topic. A structured process leads to the finalisation of your individual thesis proposal. This proposal culminates in a research thesis on a theme which has academic and societal relevance.


Study load and coaching

The Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies is a one-year, full-time programme. The total study load is 60 ECTS credits, including the final project. To give you an idea: 1 ECTS credit = approximately 28 hours of study a week.

We offer you a small-scale study environment as the number of students involved in this master's programme are limited. For questions about course content, lecturers can be easily reached. In addition, the master's coordinator is available to help with day-to-day issues. If you wish to discuss personal problems that may be affecting your life as a student, you can turn to the student counsellor.

A unique insight into visitor experience

I have completed both the pre-master and the master Leisure and Tourism Studies. The first one is a very intensive year, in which your knowledge and skills are raised to a higher level.& nbsp; In my master I learned a lot about the meaning of leisure to the individual person, businesses and society as a whole. It offers you many opportunities to pursue your passions and to take control of your own development. I, for instance, had the opportunity to work with state-of-the-art technology to give a museum a unique insight into its visitor experience.


Graduate | Consultant at PW Consulting

My knowledge and experience are very diverse

After having studied Leisure & Events Management and following the pre-master, I completed the Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies. I learned about the different meanings of leisure in a changing society, and about the relationship between leisure and policy making.  Thanks to BUas, my knowledge and experience are very diverse and broad. This really helps me in my professional career at the municipality of Eindhoven. I found out that municipalities in particular have a need for graduates with a multidisciplinary background.   


Graduate | Account manager at the municipality of Eindhoven

Making students enthusiastic

The best thing about teaching is that I can make students enthusiastic about topics such as leisure behaviours and holiday choices. One of the subjects I teach is Analysing Leisure Interactions. It is a fairly theoretical module, and I think it's great to see how students get to work with the theory and use it to better understand interesting and funny leisure or tourism activities.

Bertine Bargeman

Lecturer Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies


Students who have successfully completed one of the academic bachelor's programmes or pre-master's programmes of BUas have direct access to the programme. If you have successfully completed an academic bachelor’s degree in any of the social sciences your access will be evaluated.

Please check out the full admission requirements.


If you meet the admission requirements, you are invited to apply for this programme. Please check out the application procedure.


In the academic year 2024-2025 the statutory tuition fee for master's programmes is €2,530. In addition to the tuition fee, you will need to take into account additional costs for the purchase of study materials such as textbooks. Read more about study costs.

Your career

Completion of the Master of Science Leisure and Tourism Studies will offer you a range of career opportunities in leisure and tourism management, policy, research and education.

After your graduation you are entitled to the degree of Master of Science.

Like to learn more? After your master's programme.