Bachelor of Science Leisure Studies

The Bachelor of Science Leisure Studies is an English-taught academic programme. In three years’ time, you will become an expert at finding and understanding answers to complex issues in the leisure sector. 

Why choose BUas?

  • Only academic degree programme in the field of leisure in the Netherlands 
  • Interdisciplinary education preparing you for positions in policy, strategy or research, or for a master’s degree programme 
  • Academy for Leisure & Events is one of the five World Leisure Centres of Excellence 


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Study overview

The academic Bachelor of Science Leisure Studies is 'theory-oriented'. During your studies you develop a number of academic and management competencies by analysing academic knowledge. To do this, you will often work independently and sometimes in small groups on cases and assignments. In the field of leisure, the various lines of approach offered by, for example, psychology, sociology and anthropology, only offer partial explanations of what people want – and are able to do – in their leisure time. This means that if you want to understand leisure, you will need to adapt to new and unexpected situations, by using old ideas, theories and methods in new ways, or by developing fresh new ideas – which can then be assessed and researched. In addition, the insights and tools offered by economics and management approaches in, for instance, innovation, public policy and marketing similarly need to be adapted to new problems. This is how we push the boundaries and make crucial new contributions to existing knowledge in the industry.

The programme is completely taught in English and takes three years. Breda University of Applied Sciences also offers two professional bachelor programmes in the field of leisure: Leisure & Events Management, which is also taught in English, and Leisure & Events Management (NL), which is taught in Dutch.


The academic Bachelor of Science Leisure Studies is a separate programme within Breda University of Applied Sciences with its own management. The core team not only teaches on the programme, but also conducts substantial research which is financed by Breda University of Applied Sciences itself and by industry partners. Most of the lecturers hold, or are working on, a PhD.
To be more effective, efficient, creative and decisive,
Breda University of Applied Sciences, Tilburg University and several institutes have decided to join forces in leisure research by means of a communal Centre for Knowledge called CELTH (Centre of Expertise leisure, tourism & hospitality).

Year 1- Introduction to the core disciplines of the leisure field

In the first year, you will get a solid introduction to different branches of business and social science, as well as research methods, underscoring the varied nature of the leisure field. Some courses will focus on the consumer perspective or social science approaches, whereas in other courses the business side is more prominent. You will learn to apply your knowledge in several practical cases.

Year 2 - Deepening your knowledge & training analytical skills

In the second year, you will strengthen your knowledge on what kinds of activities people choose in their leisure time, and how companies can organise those activities and profit from them. In addition to theoretical lectures, practical seminars, debates and case studies, you will work on several projects for commissioners from the leisure field. In these projects, you will apply the research techniques and theoretical insight learnt in the various courses.

Year 3 - Expanding and integrating your knowledge

In the 5th semester, you will choose a minor at another university, preferably abroad (via our network of partner universities) or in the Netherlands. In the 6th and final semester, you will apply everything you have learned by:

  • considering leisure preferences, activities, networks and impacts from all angles. These leisure practices involve complex collaboration processes, for instance in the development of urban space and city culture;
  • considering leisure activities across different cultures; studying fundamental phylosophical questions about the relevance of leisure and the ethical questions it raises;
  • investigating the contribution leisure can make to the development of urban space and city culture.
  • In the last semester, you write a thesis, in which you will investigate a complex leisure issue. Topics for the bachelor's theses can be connected to current research being conducted by members of staff.

Generally, the differences between ‘academic’ and ‘professional’ programmes are as follows: 

  • Content (the academic programme has more research and uses more advanced theories/models, teaching you to see leisure in a broader, societal perspective);
  • Analytical perspective (the academic programme trains for roles at a more strategic level, professional programmes are focused more on operational roles);
  • Assignment and work styles (the academic programme features a large variety of assignment styles - writing papers and research reports, presentations, discussions, etc. - and more individual work than the mostly project-group-based professional programme);
  • Graduation perspectives (the professional programmes educate you for work in a specific sector, whereas an academic diploma affords more flexibility, training you in skills that you can also apply in other sectors and roles);
  • They are similar in atmosphere and attitude

The average study load for this programme amounts approximately 40 hours a week, during 42 weeks. How many hours a week you actually spend studying depends greatly on the person and differs per week. The last weeks of a block and the exam weeks are relatively busy.


After your bachelor

After graduation you approach the leisure industry from both a social and a business point of view. Career examples are: strategic manager in a theme park, policy officer in the field of culture, consultant or researcher in the field of tourism and events.

After successful completion of the Bachelor of Science Leisure Studies degree programme you are entitled to the degree of Bachelor of Science.

Like to learn more? After your bachelor.