24 June 2020 | Category: Student life

Master’s Student in International Development Studies: Part I

By Siti Widyastuti Noor

Hi! I am an Indonesian student at Wageningen University & Re...

Before starting my master’s in international development studies at Wageningen University, I wondered; Can I survive to learn all courses? Can I pass the exam? Will I have a lot of readings before starting the class? Will I have a nice classmate? How is thesis life? And other questions and doubts before coming to Wageningen.

Here, I will share my experience as an International Development student.

Following courses…..and group work

During my first year, I followed several courses, both common courses and specialization courses. All common courses usually in a big class, consisting of students from different specialization. My first course in Period 1 was Perspective and Theme in International Development Studies. This is an introductory course, where professors from different specialization background gave lectures in this class. As I have my bachelor’s in political science, I was really struggling to study the material from other specializations. However, in this class, there are group works where the members are from different specialization. I used these opportunities to learn from them and also to know new people.


What I like from studying at Wageningen University, the students are encouraged to work with people from different background and being an open-minded person when learning other science. I think the experience of studying with people from different background in my first year has familiarized me with this. However, ACT is a more complex and difficult course. This is because students were assigned to a group with different study background. Then, we need to give a consultancy to an external party (can be government agencies, organizations, companies, or research institutions).

For me, ACT was challenging but I learn a lot from this course. I was assigned to a group where we need to give a consultancy to a biodynamic certification body, Stichting Demeter. I learned from the project and dynamics of group work!

Group photo at BioFair 2020 in Zwolle 🙂

Thesis Life

Finishing my thesis was one of the happiest moments in my Master journey. It all started with an idea and write it into a proposal! My thesis is about the interactions of Indonesia and the EU over the EU Renewable Energy Directives and palm oil trade. During the proposal writing phase, I planned the framework that I will use and how to get data. Here, I make the planning for my fieldwork. I went to my country, Indonesia, to do interviews with my thesis respondents. I also went to Brussels to collect data about the EU policy.

After the data collection phase, I need to analyse the data and write the thesis report. This was very exhausting for me. However, I learned a lot of new things besides my thesis topic, such as academic writing, asking questions, handling feedback from my supervisor, and time management.

I finally finished writing my thesis report in March. Then, I have the final presentation and thesis defence in April. I had the virtual thesis defence with my examiners. In my country, passing a thesis exam is one of a milestone for students. Usually, students who passed the thesis exam will take a photo with their supervisors and friends who watched the exams. As it is an online exam, I only took a photo with my Indonesian corridor-mate who also had her exam in that period.

with my corridor-mate, after passing the exam

Well, these are so far the highlights of my WUR journey. I am now having my work-from-home internship and hopefully, I can graduate in August. I am curious where all these experiences will bring me in the future! But, I had a lot of fun and learn a lot by studying at WUR!

More information on my study program can be found here.



By Siti Widyastuti Noor

Hi! I am an Indonesian student at Wageningen University & Research, pursuing my Master's degree in International Development with a specialization in Politics and Governance of Development. I really enjoy living in Wageningen and I will share my experience of studying here, I hope every reader will enjoy my posts

There are 18 comments.

  1. By: BLESSINGS KELVIN KAYIRA · 07-07-2020 at 20:13

    I would like to enroll for a Masters in International Development after hearing a lot of goodies about your university.

    1. By: Siti Widyastuti Noor · 10-08-2020 at 16:00

      Good luck with your application!

  2. By: Celine · 24-08-2020 at 14:03

    Loved this post! I am thinking about applying to this program as well. Do you know anything about the job perspectives?

    1. By: gomez033 · 28-09-2020 at 17:06

      Dear Celine,

      Thank you for contacting us. I will send you a private email with some useful information and links.

      Kind regards,

  3. By: Rizky · 19-09-2020 at 18:04

    Mba Siti, kalau fieldwork mya itu wajib gak sih? Bisa ada alternatif lain kah?

    1. By: gomez033 · 29-09-2020 at 10:16

      Dear Rizky,

      I will send you a private email so you can ask for the information you need.


  4. By: Issa Kamara · 04-01-2021 at 16:08

    My name is Issa Kamara from Sierra Leone. Haven read various information pertaining this course (International Development Studies) in your University website as well as articles published by past and current students makes me gain more passion to go for it. Please help me with necessary information on how to go about the application… Thanks!

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 11-01-2021 at 15:14

      Dear Issa,

      I will send you an email answering your question.

      Kind regards,
      Luisa Gomez

  5. By: John · 10-01-2021 at 19:28

    Hello quite interesting stories. Would like to get more information about the program. Thanks

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 11-01-2021 at 15:21

      Dear John,

      I will send you an email answering your question.

      Kind regards,
      Luisa Gomez

      1. By: Deborah · 26-02-2021 at 07:06

        Good day,
        I am also interested in the International development course. Could you please send me more information about the course and job perspectives ?

        1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 09-03-2021 at 11:24

          Dear Deborah,

          Thank you for your interest in Wageningen University. I will send you an email with useful information.


  6. By: Prashamsa Shrestha · 01-02-2021 at 04:55

    Hello, I am also very interested to pursue my masters in international development. Would love to get more information about the university.
    Thank you!

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 01-02-2021 at 14:33

      Dear Prashamsa,

      I will send you an email answering your question.

      Kind regards,
      Luisa Gomez

    2. By: Oluwadamilare Ayodele · 21-05-2021 at 20:36

      Siti’s story is quite interesting and it’s coming at the time when I’m currently taking up a course as an intern in International Development. I’m also considering a Master’s program in this field.

  7. By: Uchendu Joshua Obugechim · 26-04-2021 at 20:55

    I’m really interested in the international Development program please I need more information, I’m a Nigerian

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 28-04-2021 at 09:29

      Dear Uchendu Joshua,

      You can read all about the Master’s International Development Studies on our website https://www.wur.nl/en/Education-Programmes/master/MSc-programmes/MSc-International-Development-Studies.htm.

      Best regards,
      International Students Advice Team

  8. By: Joan Weridity · 24-04-2023 at 14:57

    Hi, are there any Indonesian student whois going back in 2023 to Indonesia. Please let me know perhaps we can help each other for shiping our personal stuff to Indonesia.

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