Programme manual Science and Business Management


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Programme manual

Science and Business


Version 2
Graduate school of Life sciences
Faculty of Science,
Utrecht University


Due to organisational changes, the Master’s programme Science and Business
Management was transferred from the Graduate School of Natural Sciences to the
Graduate School of Life sciences, starting September 2012.

The Graduate School of Life Sciences (GSLS) is a cooperation between the faculty of
Science, Utrecht Medical Centre (UMCU) and the faculty of Veterinary sciences.

All students enrolled in the master’s programme Science and Business Management (SBM)
are part of the Graduate school of Life Sciences, including students who started studying
before September 2012. All documents and regulations of the GSLS apply to the students
of SBM for the academic year 2012-2013.
All documents and regulations can be found the GSLS website:

Due to rapid changes in the organisation, the transfer was only completed in October
2012. Therefore SBM was not yet included in the original study guide and education
regulations starting September 1
2012. This document is an appendum to the GSLS study


1. All regulations and documents of the GSLS are applicable to master students SBM for
the academic year 2012-2013.
These include:
-Study guide
-Education and examination regulations (OER)
-Regulations of the board of examiners
-Forms for research projects/internships (application and assessment)*
-Forms for graduation
-Manual for projects for students and supervisors
-If applicable: forms for thesis and electives

*For research projects and internships applications please tick the box research projects
> than choose major research project or SBM internship resp.
If you are allowed to change to credits from 51 ec please change the credits by hand.

Forms in Natural Sciences format handed in and approved before October 2012 are still
valid and do not need to be replaced.

Please note: For Students that started SBM before September 2012 a provisional
transition is made for the Education and examination regulations. These students may
appeal to the Education and examination regulations of the Graduate School of Natural
sciences 2011-2012 till August 31

2. Students of SBM may participate in all Life sciences free elective courses and courses
of other Master’s programmes that are open to students from other programmes,
under the provision that prior approval was given by the programme coordinator.

3. Special requests to the board of examiners should be addressed to the board of
examiners Life Sciences.
Decisions previously made by the board of examiners of SBM under Natural Sciences
remain valid.

4. No changes will be made to the content of the programme for 2012-2013.
Please note that at this moment the layout of the SBM programme deviates from the
other life sciences programmes. SBM students are not obliged to attend life sciences
seminars and are not obliged to write a thesis. There are more credits in mandatory

courses and less in electives than described in the Education and examination
regulations life sciences. Detailed information on the programme is described in this

Contact Information

Names and addresses

Drs. Anje de Graaf
Kamer Z408, H.R.Kruyt-gebouw
Padualaan 8
3584 CH Utrecht
Phone: 030-2539333 / 2nd Phone nr. : 030-2533184

Open office hour every Monday 15.00-16.00, Kruyt Z408.

Student administration
Student desk Life sciences
Buijs Ballot building, room 1.24b
Princetonplein 5
3584 CC Utrecht
Phone: 030-2533792

Opening hours daily 10.00-13.30

Academic Counselor
Jos Koeckhoven
For an appointment call: 030 253 3792
Visiting address: room 1.23, Buijs Ballot Building

Secretary Board of examiners life sciences
Dr. S.Goubitz
Princetonplein 5
3584 CC Utrecht


Master’s degree Science and Business
The master’s programme Science and Business Management is part of the degree
Science and Business. The Master’s degree Science and Business prepares for a
career in science, but also in an applied environment and is especially business
oriented. The degree Science and Business falls under the responsibility of the
faculty of Science.

The master’s programme Science and Business Management finds it’s base in the
Departments of Biology, Chemistry, Information and Computing Sciences,
Mathematics, Pharmacy and Physics.

Responsibility for the programme
The Board of Studies of the Graduate school of Life sciences has final responsibility
for quality control of this programme.

Programme committee:
The programme committee is responsible for preparing the content and ensuring the
quality of the individual courses.

Programme leaders Programme coordinator
Prof. J.C.M. Smeekens Drs. Anje de Graaf
The Master’s degree programme Science and Business Management is part of the
CROHO-label Science and Business (code 60710).
The programme is offered in English. All assignments, reports, exams and the
master thesis have to be written in English.

2. Introduction to Science and Business Management
An understanding of science is essential to be able to transfer pure science to the
market. But besides a good science background, knowledge of business processes
and skills are also needed to make this conversion.

The Master's programme Science & Business Management is intended to equip
students with sufficient knowledge and skills, not only to undertake scientific
research but also to be able to translate a scientific idea into a successful product.
Students will learn to identify and manage problems that arise in each phase of the
innovation process. These will involve not only aspects such as financial
management, drawing up a business plan, managerial ICT and environmental issues,
but also communication skills.

Apart from in-depth knowledge of the subject and its applications, managerial
elements will also be presented in groups, with great importance being attached to
interaction between students and teachers.


Graduates have:
1. profound knowledge of, and insights into theory and practice in one of the
disciplines of Science, namely an area in one of the disciplines of Biology,
Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry, Informatics, Mathematics, Pharmacy or Physics

and have an overview of the area of scientific research and development
2. profound knowledge of, and insights into at least one specialization (of applied
nature) within one of the disciplines of Biology, Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry,
Informatics, Mathematics, Pharmacy or Physics
3. knowledge of, and insights into the fundamentals of Business and Economics, the
fundamentals of Finance and Management accounting and the fundamentals of

Graduates have skills to:
1. identify, formulate, analyse and suggest possible solutions to problems
independently in the field of Science and Business Management
2. conduct research with an applied component within one of the disciplines of Biology,
Biomedical Sciences, Chemistry, Informatics, Mathematics, Pharmacy or Physics
and report on it in a manner that meets the customary standards of the discipline
under the supervision of a scientific staff member.
3. communicate conclusions orally and written, as well as the underlying knowledge,
grounds and considerations, to an audience composed of specialists or non-
specialists in English.
4. apply knowledge and problem solving capacities in new and unknown situations in a
broader (or multidisciplinary) context related to the field of specialisation, can
integrate knowledge and handle complex matters
5. transform a scientific idea into a product and direct the development of this product
6. optimize a part of an industrial process from the Research & Development
7. speak the professional language of both science and business
8. identify if new findings can be patented

Graduates display attitudes that enable them to
1. act in a professional and academic way, in particular with respect to the field of
Science and Business Management
2. apply knowledge and insight in a way that demonstrates a professional approach to
his or her work or profession
3. be able to work together in a (possibly interdisciplinary) team of experts with
different nationalities and backgrounds
4. enrol in a PhD programme
5. continue in organisations or companies
6. start up his/her own company

3. Career perspectives
The Master’s programme Science and Business Management focuses on preparing
the student for a position in an application environment. This might be in a product
management position, a process management position, or a consultancy position.
The intention is that by the end of the course students will have knowledge of both
the scientific world and of business and can bring the two together. Students who
take part in this course will be trained for jobs in national and international business
and in non-profit organisations.


4. Programme content

Please note: For more information on procedures regarding study planning and
approval please refer to the study guide Life sciences. For official regulations on
programme content, approval of the Board of Examiners and the use of official forms
please refer to the Examination and Education Regulations (EER) as well as the
Rules and Regulations of the Board of examiners of the Graduate School of Life

The programme starts with a research project, a disciplinary component that is
primarily aimed at applied academic research. This is followed by a year in which the
focus is more on business, and includes the extensive Fundamentals of Business and
Economics course, workshops and work placement in a company.

Practical scientific research and the substantive theoretical component that is an
intrinsic part of it takes place in one of the Science faculties. This research will be
selected on an individual basis in consultation with the heads of the participating
groups and must be of an applied nature. Work placement in faculties that have an
established collaborative partnership with business will therefore be given preference
for this part of the course. The subject for the research work placement must be
tested against its application focus, something that will be decided by the board of

The work placement will include a short dissertation on the application of the
research carried out. This report must also be presented to fellow students to
emphasise the diversity in backgrounds (science-wide) and to link the first and
second year.

The rest of the programme consists of the course Fundamentals of Business and
Economics, which includes the following topics: Economic Environment, Organisation
Theory, Marketing Management, Quantitative Decision making and Production
Management, ICT for Business, Management Accounting, Financial Management,
Human Resources Management. There are also workshops on topics like intellectual
property, purchasing management, pharmaceutical marketing and corporate law.
Some of them will be offered by companies. Within the workshops case studies will
be presented with practical examples to trigger students to come up with solutions.
In the first part of the second year, also a course in Entrepreneurship will be given.

The knowledge thus gained can be applied in practice during the internship, the final
work placement in a company. The intention is that the topic of research is linked to
the theory dealt with during the course. This academic question must be answered
and then incorporated into a final thesis. A supervisor from the university liaises with
the student on work placement so that problems can be pointed out and solved at an
early stage. Students will be encouraged to ensure that their work placement in a
company links their scientific background with one of the topics from the
Fundamentals of Business and Economics course.


Programme Overview

An overview of the programme:

Research project
(51 ECTS)
(5 ECTS)
and Essay
(4 ECTS)

of Business
(15 ECTS)
Finance and
(7,5 ECTS)
Business Traineeship
(30 ECTS)
Idea and
(7,5 ECTS)

Research project with applied component (51 ECTS)
This is a 36-week research project with one of the participating research groups
from the Utrecht Science Faculty. This includes giving a presentation and writing a
report. If approved by the programme coordinator, it is also possible to conduct the
research project outside Utrecht University under the supervision of one of the
research groups. It is possible to decrease the research component with 9 ECTS to
42 ECTS and do more research related theoretical courses.

The research project has to have an 'applied' signature. This means that you have to
choose a project that generates knowledge that may be used by third parties
(companies, governmental organisations, patients, customers, and others) in the
near future.

Assessment research projects

The master research project is an important part of the science component of their
master’s programme. The student should be able to design and conduct a research
project in a structural and scientific manner, accompanied by adequate oral and
written communication. Cooperation within the research group is of importance as
well. The assessment is filled in on Form 2a.

Assessment criteria
The academic supervisor is responsible for the final grade. This grade consists of:
-Research component (practical work) (60 %)
-Written report (30%)
-Oral presentation (10%)

Personal competences such as independency, cooperation, active attitude find their
place within the three categories mentioned above.

Research component (60%)
 The student is capable of formulating sound research questions.
 The student is capable of preparing, designing and conducting (experimental)
research in a specific science area with attention for quantative or qualitative
methods of data collection and analysis.

 The student uses scientific literature and insights in a critical manner during the
whole project and identifies implications for his/her own project.
 The student conducts the project according to the research proposal and time
schedule. The student is capable of overseeing the whole process and makes the
right corrections in setup or strategy when necessary.

Written report (30%)
 The report has a logical structure and line of reasoning. Conclusions are adequately
funded by literature and results.
 The student has taken into account the common academic level for the structure of
the report and the use of scientific language.
 The language style and spelling are correct.
 The report was handed in on time, complete with annexes, figures and references.

Oral presentation (10%)
 The student is capable of preparing and performing an oral presentation (in several
stages of the project) for different groups (at least fellow students and member of
the research group). This presentation should cover the content but be relevant.
The final presentation is the most important.
 The student is capable of reflecting on theories, concepts and developments in the
specific science area.
 The student is capable of proper communication on developments, methods and
techniques and their possible applications and implications within the specific
scientific area.

Theoretical Courses, research project related (5 ECTS)
The theoretical courses in the first year depend on the research you will be
conducting. Usually the research group where you carry out your traineeship will be
involved in organising courses. It would be a good idea to take part in one of these
courses. Contact the programme coordinator if you need help in determining which
courses you should take. Example: if you do an applied research project in
cooperation with a large multinational about the micro-organisms causing dandruff,
a theoretical course about biotechnology or microbiology would be advised.

Introduction, Return meetings and Essay (4 ECTS)
During the first year, in which the research project takes place, there are at least
three meetings with the other students that are undertaking the Master's degree
programme Science and Business Management. These seminar days are meant to
underline the interdisciplinarity of the group, to keep the focus on applications, to
learn from each other's mistakes and to celebrate each other's successes. In the end
an executive summary has to be written about the applications of the results of the
research traineeship. The requirements of this course can be found also on the

Fundamentals of Business and Economics (15 ECTS)
This course covers the basics of business and economics and comprises amongst
others: Economic Environment, Organisation Theory and Strategy, Marketing
Management, and Quantitative Methods for Business. There will also be some
classes about ICT for business and human resource management. Each subject will
be concluded with an exam. This part of the programme has duration of 10 weeks
and is fulltime.

Finance and Management Accounting (7,5 ECTS)
This course covers topics like Finance and Management Accounting. Each subject will
be concluded with an exam. This part of the programme has duration of 10 weeks
and is halftime.

Idea and Start (7,5 ECTS)


This course covers topics related to Entrepreneurship. Emphasis is for instance on
generating ideas and development of entrepreneurial skills. This part of the
programme is optional and has duration of 10 weeks halftime.

Internship/ Business Traineeship (30 ECTS)
To really understand how things work outside the university, a traineeship with a
company or institute is obligatory. Preferably the topic of the traineeship is a
combination of both business and science. Before the start of the traineeship a clear
formulation of a problem, which will be the subject of investigation, has to be
approved by the programme coordinator. The traineeship includes practical work,
and a report (in total around 5 months), for instance with a consultancy firm
advising multinationals on their research policies, or in a small biotech start-up
company working on business development. A supervisor from Utrecht University
should be involved in guiding you through this business traineeship.

Assessment internship
The intrernship is turned in for evaluation to the responsible supervisor. The
internship will be assessed on the basis of the general assessment criteria. In case of
a second supervisor, the responsible supervisor and second assessor jointly
determine the mark for the content of the final thesis or internship. The mark is
filled in on a standardized assessment form (form 2c). The final mark consists of
three components: the quality of the content, the quality of the process and the
quality of the oral presentation:

 quality of the content (70%)
- quality of the work
- quality of the report (structure, theoretical approach, objectives, research
methodology, argumentation, empirical data)
- critical analysis of own results (discussion, conclusion)
- degree of innovativeness
 quality of the process (20%)
- degree of independent work
- degree of initiative shown
- co-cooperativeness with instructors
- following up on agreements
- co-cooperativeness at the place of internship
- attendance at cluster meetings
 quality of the oral presentation (10%)
- structure
- manner of speaking
- proficiency in the English language
- non-verbal communication
- quality and use of audio-visual media
- answers given to questions that are asked

Order of events
The preferred sequence of the different programme parts is first the scientific
traineeship, then the fundamentals of business and economics course and finally the
business traineeship

5. Practical Information
How do I find a position for my research project?
Any research group within the Utrecht Faculty of Science or the Utrecht Life
Sciences will do. At their websites you can find more information about the research
institutes and schools within the Faculty of Science, the groups within the Science
departments, and the Life sciences research groups and schools. Please note that
your bachelor background will be a determining factor in finding a suitable research
group, although you should not be afraid to try and see whether it is possible to
cross the barrier to another discipline.

The research project should be ‘applied', what does this mean?

Applied Science means that within a certain time limit the results of this scientific
research can be used by consumers, companies, patients, governmental
organisations, institutions or other end-users. It depends a lot on the way the
research and its results are described. This will be more difficult for some research-
themes than for other subjects. It really is a matter of “selling your research”.

How do I find a research course?
All courses are listed in the GSLS course list online.
First, you should try to find a course that provides you with knowledge or capabilities
that you need in your research project. Hence, you could ask around at the
department where you do your research. Other ways are: browse through the
courses in the University Catalogue, take a look at the master's programmes in your
field (e.g. at the department you're doing your research, or even at other
departments), and the courses in these programmes. If you did your bachelor at
Utrecht University, you could also contact the group where you have been involved
during your bachelor.

Are there any forms to fill in before I start my research project or business
All the relevant forms can be found through:

Are there differences between starting in September and starting in February?

How do I find a Business internship-position?
Finding a business internship-position is all about using your network. This can be a
professional network but also within your social life. It is a matter of finding the right
persons and contacting them. For more information contact internship coach Dhr T.
van Hoof:

6. Internationalisation
The programme offers students the opportunity to spend part of their time studying
or conducting research at an overseas university, research institute or company.
Projects or courses abroad require a university supervisor who has the ultimate
responsibility (responsible for the final mark).

Overseas projects can be costly. Financial support is available. Make sure to apply
for funding at least six months in advance. Students are responsible for arranging
their own funding. There are also two standard funds that can be requested via the
academic counsellors.

Erasmus bursary
Utrecht University is affiliated to over twenty, mainly European, universities, offering
a range of exchange programmes to students:
- waiving of tuition fees (continue to be paid in Utrecht),
- affordable accommodation is arranged for you,
- a small contribution towards travel expenses and additional costs incurred.

The vast majority of exchange programmes with European universities fall under the
aegis of the Socrates / Erasmus programme of the European Union. The exchange
programmes are arranged by The International office of the University of Utrecht.
Further information is available from the study adviser.