Stenden University of Applied Sciences and NHL University of Applied Sciences have merged on 1st of January and is now NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences. For the latest information on the university, the courses and application procedure please visit our new website:

Stenden University of Applied Sciences is merging with NHL University of Applied Sciences. Visit

University of Applied Sciences

Sustainable PBL Concepts in Higher Education

The research department ‘Sustainable PBL Concepts in Higher Education’ investigates how Problem-Based Learning (PBL) can be applied in higher education, in the framework of ‘design thinking’.  

Stenden University of Applied Science has been applying PBL for the past 25 years. This research department is geared towards quality and future orientation of this educational concept, shaped by the principles of design thinking. The focus here is on deepening, renewing and professionalising, in order to ensure the on-going development of sustainable and future-oriented education.

Our job is to investigate the effectiveness of PBL as it is applied in the degree programmes at Stenden. To be specific: we will research whether and how this concept helps reach the educational goals, and in what direction development should move to ensure continuity in providing sustainable education. 

What do we want to achieve with PBL?

The questions we receive, revolve around what lecturers, tutors and managers want to achieve with Problem-Based Learning. What goals do they envisage? Subsequently, can they tell whether or not the goals were achieved, and why? Based on those answers, we can conduct intervention studies and impact assessments.

Research into the applied educational concept

The research department will research the applied educational concept, in particular in the framework of Stenden’s higher education role. In addition, the research will be conducted elsewhere, in The Netherlands as well as abroad. The international character of our student and lecturer populations adds importance to the need for research beyond the borders.  

The research department will collaborate with the educational programmes to gather research data and make it available to Stenden’s educational departments. 

Circle of knowledge - 'Kenniskring'

Dr. Gerry Geitz is the research department's lector. The Kenniskring (Circle of knowledge) is complemented by lecturers/tutors, managers and education consultants. In addition, the research department will expressly seek collaboration with other higher education institutes in the Netherlands and abroad. More on Dr. Gerry Geitz.

The inauguration of Dr. Gerry Geitz as lector ‘Sustainable PBL Concepts in Higher Education’ will took place on 1st of December 2016. 

Contact person for the inauguration: Bureau Academisering (Academisation Bureau), Sonja Schuil.

Contact information

Cluster Expertise, Services & Research (E.S.R.)
Postbus 1298
Rengerslaan 8
8900 CG Leeuwarden 

Lector: Dr. Gerry Geitz
T: 06 55 12 50 71 

Office Manager ESR/Bureau Academisering: Sonja Schuil
T: 06 19 28 13 29

Stenden University of Applied Sciences and NHL University of Applied Sciences have merged on 1 January 2018 and are now NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences.

For the most up to date information about the university, the courses, and application procedure, we would like to refer you to our new website

The latest news and information about our research activities are both still accessible on