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The curriculum of the Master’s in Persuasive Communication comprises one year of full-time study. You will study a variety of marketing and health communication theories, and learn how to apply these theories to challenging problems of health behaviour, advertising, and branding. You will learn how communication can be used strategically to inform and influence people, or how people can be empowered to resist persuasion.
  • First semester

    You will start the Master’s with the mandatory specialisation seminars: Marketing Communication and Health Communication. Right from the start of the programme, you will also start your thesis process in the course Thesis Preparation Groups. Towards the end of the first semester, you take the course Research Methods Tailored to the Thesis, in which you will refresh and further develop your research skills before starting with writing your Master’s thesis in the following semester.

  • Second semester

    In the second semester, you choose two electives, allowing you to create a Master’s programme that suits your interests best. There is a range of excellent electives offered, including, for example, Brand Communication, Persuasive Design in a Digital Era, Media Strategies, Persuasion and Resistance, Digital Analytics, Brands and Organisations in Social Media and Sustainability Marketing and Communication. You can find all electives here (selection of electives varies each semester).

  • Master's thesis

    In the second semester, you will complete your Master’s thesis. You will be guided and supervised in the creation, design, conduct, analysis and reporting of an academic empirical study. Previous research topics include:

    • The effects of sponsorship disclosures in influencer marketing
    • How can social media influencers be used to promote sustainable fashion purchases
    • How to promote engagement with brands on Instagram
    • Are mental health apps effective to improve young people’s well-being
    • Health misinformation on Twitter and the influence on vaccine hesitancy
    • How to enhance doctor-patient communication
Lecturer Carolin smiling at camera, dark shirt and hair, light background
The Master's Thesis is the perfect opportunity to explore a persuasive communication topic of your choice. Dr. Carolin Ischen about the Master's Thesis and different research questions, read more
  • Health Communication
    Period 1
    Period 2

    In this course, you'll gain the skills to empower people to make lasting changes in their health behaviour. You'll become an expert in creating and assessing health communication campaigns and interventions, learning theories that explain health behaviour. You’ll learn about effective communication methods, including emotional appeals and storytelling, to drive behavioural change. Also, you will familiarise yourself with the development of a health communication intervention plan.

  • Marketing Communication
    Period 1
    Period 2

    Explore how communication between advertisers and consumers shapes attitudes and behaviours. This course covers marketing communication theories and practices, focusing on how they affect buying and consuming products and services. You will learn how to apply this knowledge when designing theory- and evidence-based campaigns. You will also look at consumer-brand interactions in the digital age, addressing topics such as influencer marketing and ethical issues in social media advertising.

  • Thesis Preparation Groups
    Period 1
    Period 2

    This course serves as an introduction to the individual Master’s thesis you will write in the second semester. You will set up an Initial Thesis Proposal: select a core theme, central research question, and research methodology.

  • Research Methods Tailored to the Thesis
    Period 3

    This course builds on your prior knowledge of research methodology and statistics. You will further develop your skills as a preparation for your Master’s thesis. You will focus on the research method you plan to use: content analysis, experimentation, survey, or qualitative research.

  • Elective 1
    Period 4

    In this Master’s programme you choose two electives. The selection of electives may vary each semester. These electives allow you to create a Master’s programme that suits your interests best.

  • Elective 2
    Period 4

    In this Master’s programme you choose two electives. The selection of electives may vary each semester. These electives allow you to create a Master’s programme that suits your interests best.

  • Thesis Persuasive Communication
    Period 5
    Period 6

    For your Master’s thesis, you are linked to an individual supervisor. After passing the extended research proposal, you will continue with conducting your research, analysing your results and writing your thesis.

Compulsory course
Find more information in the online course catalogue
  • Workload

    This Master's programme is a full-time study. A large part of your programme focuses on self-study, e.g. preparing for tutorials or working on assignments (32 hours per week). In addition, you have weekly lectures (4 hours per week) and opportunities for tutorials and group projects (4 hours per week).

Academic staff of Persuasive Communication

Dr. Stephanie Welten
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In Marketing Communication you will encounter four top experts from the advertising and media planning field, ready to share their tips and tricks with you. Dr. Stephanie Welten about the specialisation seminar Marketing Communication, read more
Frequently asked questions
  • Is it possible to have a side job next to my Master’s?

    It is very personal how you experience the workload and how much effort your side job takes. Keep in mind that the Master’s programme is a full-time study and takes up about 40 hours a week (8 contact hours and 32 hours of self-study). The week before the start of the programme/semester, you can see on which days you will have lectures and tutorials which can help in making your (work) planning.