Praktijkonderzoek in het medisch onderwijs
Praktijkonderzoek in het medisch onderwijs

Doctors with character: towards a Master of Medicine that takes virtues seriously

Comenius Senior Fellowship
Project type

Assistant professor in Healthcare Ethics Jos Kole (Radboudumc) recently received a Comenius Senior Fellowship for the theme ‘Bildung and identity formation’. Master’s students in medicine are stimulated to keep developing themselves by gaining conscious and critical virtues.

Reason for the project

Medicine students continuously develop their virtues. During the bachelor’s programme, students are taught virtues and empathy, but because of the so-called ‘hidden curriculum’ during internships, they might actually be unlearned. As a result, students are not always equally aware and critical of their virtues. The master’s curriculum paid too little attention to this.

Approach within the project

The educational innovation plan of this Comenius project aims to renew the professionalisation learning path of the medicine master’s programme by helping students form their personal and professional identity by means of Bildung. Students become aware of their formation during internships and thus learn how they would like to form themselves. By mastering virtues, interns develop a robust personality so that they can later do their work as doctors both ethically and with empathy for patients. Using various work forms and source material from visual arts, literature, and film, students work on their personal and professional identity.


This project is funded by a scholarship from the Comenius Programme. Every year, the Netherlands Initiative for Education Research (NRO) awards these grants to renewal projects in education. 

Contact information

Would you like to know more? Do not hesitate to contact the project holder, Jos Kole, via