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What is Applied Health and Lifestyle Sciences?

In this programme we develop professionals who will facilitate other people finding their balance in life and work. In a world where, due to the increasing intensity of life, many people are dealing with stress and challenges to maintain their work-life balance and healthy lifestyle behaviour, there is a need for innovative young professionals who can face this trend. In this open international semester, students will meet with a key common interest: to find innovative ways of engaging people and coaching lifestyle behaviour on the one hand and developing sports and health promotion programs on the other hand.

This international semester will take place in Autumn, and usually attracts a group of 10-20 international students from all over Europe. The emphasis will be on theoretical lectures as well as on experiential learning and individual- or group-projects. Students will work on different projects, mostly in mixed multidisciplinary teams. The aim is to integrate students from abroad with Belgian students and stimulate teamwork and international communication and cooperation.

The international semester programme offers a choice out of 11 modules, with an overall maximum of 30 ECTS.

This English-taught semester is organised by our Bachelor of Applied Health and Lifestyle Sciences (TGW), Bachelor of Sports and Movement (SB) and Bachelor of Applied Psychology (TP).

This programme is only available in English.

Studenten Toegepaste Psychologie tijdens groepswerk

What makes this semester unique?

The international semester in Applied Health and Lifestyle Sciences is aimed at both bachelor's students and graduates.

Since there is the possibility for an individual itinerary (= open semester), the international semesters are interesting for students of different study programmes, especially sport and movement, applied psychology, applied health sciences but also other fields of study such as nursery, health coaching, leisure management, or social work.

This semester will surely give added value to your degree and your career opportunities as you improve your team working and communication skills.


Minimum 3 successfully completed semesters or an equivalent of 90 ECTS in a Bachelor of Sports and Movement, Applied Health Sciences , Sports and Leisure Management, Tourism and Recreation Management or Applied Psychology. This will need to be confirmed by means of an official certificate, a survey of completed courses, or a signed letter from the sending university. The students must have sufficient affinity with applied psychology, coaching and counselling in order to receive the permission to follow this international semester Applied Health and Lifestyle Sciences. It’s also advisable that the students are eager to join intensive counselling and coaching assessments and show engagement.

Click here for Howest language expectations.

All students should bring their own laptop, with all necessary and officially licensed software. The course overview above mentions any further specific software necessary for the course unit. Howest applies a very strict policy on the use of legal software.

Non-exchange students are not able to attend this international semester.

Course overview

Find the course unit descriptions for this programme (course catalogue) here.

Innovation in Applied Health & Lifestyle Sciences (3ECTS)

In this module real-life cases and challenges in the domain of sports, exercise and preventive health care are tackled by going through the different phases of the Design Thinking methodology: (i) Empathize: Fully understand the experience of the user, through observation, interaction, and immersing yourself in their experiences; (ii) Define: Process and synthesize the findings from the empathy work to form a user point of view that will be addressed with your innovation; (iii) Ideate: Explore a wide variety of possible solutions through generation a large quantity of diverse possible solutions to the challenges, allowing you to step beyond the obvious and explore a range of ideas; (iv) Prototype: Transform your ideas into a physical form so that you can experience and interact with them and, in the process, learn and develop more empathy; (v) Test: Try out innovations and use observations and feedback to refine the innovations, learn more about the user, and refine your original point of view. This module gives students many opportunities for interdisciplinary and intercultural learning.

Cultural Frameworks in Health (3ECTS)

This course starts with a short introduction or rehearsal of the basic principles of prevention and health promotion. The social, behavioral and cultural determinants of health are discussed through gamification. Next, topics such as intercultural communication, health promotion in different cultures (incl. refugees), health literacy and active participation in health promotion projects will be studied. We will discuss about the role of stereotypes, prejudice, discrimination in the health sector. Finally, some cultural differences in health aspects (such as nutrition, tobacco use, alcohol use, etc.) are being described.

eHealth (3ECTS)

eHealth is a relatively recent term for healthcare practice supported by electronic processes and communication. During several workshops you get acquainted with the diverse landscape of e-health practices: e.g. serious games, mobile health, social media, chat and mail support.

Health Promotion Project (3ECTS)

In this course, students organize a health promoting event for a specific target group, going through all phases of event organization, starting from the brainstorming phase up to the evaluation phase. The objective and concept/content of the event is developed by the students themselves. For this, the students work together as a team and also involve the target group and partners during the development and implementation of their project. They also prepare a communication plan and implement it themselves.

Personal Development and Group Processes (6ECTS)

This course unit covers relevant models and theoretical backgrounds around personal development and group dynamics. These are applied in specific cases with a focus on team coaching and leadership. You will learn about Self-awareness and learning styles, several training skills (including feedback), group dynamics and taking leadership, Belbin and group coaching methods.

Sport Psychology (3ECTS)

In this module you will get acquainted with the foundations of sport psychology. After an introduction in basic psychological principles such as motivation, goal pursuit, personality, anxiety etc., we will apply these principles to both athletes and coaches. Further, we will also have a look into mental skills training and morality in sport.

Solution Focused Health Coaching (3ECTS)

Solution Focused Health Coaching is a practical course that provides an invaluable overview of solution focused health coaching skills and techniques. Reflecting upon research on the solution focused approach (The Bruges Model – Korzybski Institute) and her wide experience in several projects United Kingdom, Anneleen De Lille brings her own experiences of solution focused health coaching together with others in the field to cover topics such as: the coach-coachee relationship, the role of technology in coaching, inclusive coaching group and team coaching practical issues and skills. Incorporating coachee case studies, worksheets, practice tips and discussion points, the skills, strategies and techniques in this course are straightforward to apply and can be used in different coaching settings.

Coaching in and with Nature (3ECTS)

The course 'Coaching in and with nature' offers an answer to the urge and desire of many people to return to the experience, to be connected to nature and to find inspiration and energy there to relate to their life questions and to make them concrete. to deal with.

We go into nature with a small group of students and together we investigate how we can use nature in the coaching process of people who have questions about their work, work-life balance, their search for certain life questions, etc. The group consists of a mix of Flemish and international students. Language does not have to be a barrier here as we use a lot of non-verbal elements.

We walk, use what we find in nature, both small material and landscape elements, use photos, metaphors, physical elements, etc.

For this course we base ourselves on, among other things, the concepts and tools from walking coaching, solution-oriented coaching, the presentation theory, ACT, mindfulness, etc. No floaty states, based on scientific insights.

Cultural & Socio-economic Introduction to Belgium - survival course Dutch (3ECTS) – evening course (optional)

In this module you will learn about Belgian and Flemish politics, culture and socio-economic data, all in comparison to the socio-economic data of your home country. This module includes visits to several important cities in Belgium.

English for Exchange Students - evening course (optional) (3ECTS)

This English course provides exchange students with training in speaking, listening, reading and writing skills, all focused on their ongoing or upcoming academic experience. The lecturer will take the diversity of academic areas of the participants into account, by addressing a range of topics and choosing subjects that are relevant to the attending students wherever possible. The course aims at the B2 proficiency level. We strongly recommended it to all exchange students who have not fully achieved the B2-level in English at the moment of application for their mobility project. For the more proficient students, we still see the course as an interesting immersion experience.

Welcome international students!

Discover everything you need to know about Howest.

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How to apply

Procedures, deadlines and tuitions: you will find all the information here.

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Programme in pictures

Register now!

Have you decided? We look forward to welcoming you to our Howest community! 
You can find all information about registering via the link below.

Apply now

Studenten in pauze met koffie op de campus


Do you have questions? Don't hesitate to contact us!

Sigrid Van den Branden

Sigrid Van den Branden

International Coordinator