Thesis subject

The role of positive emotion and experiential learning in sports for development

In sports for development programmes, sports is used as a means to achieve non-physical outcomes like increased social participation and wellbeing among socially vulnerable people. Most of the research into the outcomes of these programmes focus on possible (social, emotional and cognitive) skills that participants develop by playing sports. However, next to this rather ‘instrumental’ view on how participants may benefit from sports participation, theories on positive emotion and experiential learning describe a very different way of how positive development among participants may take place.

The aim of this thesis assignment is to gain a better understanding of the emotional and experiential learning processes that take place during sport for development programmes. Data collection methods may include literature study, (expert) interviews, and what the thesis student considers useful (i.e., in consultation with the supervisor, the research methods will be chosen).

This thesis project is part of a larger research project that focusses on the impact of sport programmes for socially vulnerable adults. Partners in this project are, among others, Stichting Life Goals and Sport Services at various communities.

Interested or want to know more? Please contact Kirsten Verkooijen ( (include in the CC).

Duration: 6 months
: Dutch / English

Start: Anytime