About this Course
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Beginner Level

Approx. 30 hours to complete

Suggested: 5 Weeks, 7 modules incl Honours project, approx 3 hours per week, suggested 30-45 minutes per day for experiential practices....


Subtitles: English

Skills you will gain


100% online

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.

Beginner Level

Approx. 30 hours to complete

Suggested: 5 Weeks, 7 modules incl Honours project, approx 3 hours per week, suggested 30-45 minutes per day for experiential practices....


Subtitles: English

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

2 hours to complete

Welcome to the course

People come to the study of Mindfulness for all kinds of reasons; I’m curious to know what brings you here. Perhaps you’re someone who already has a Mindfulness practice and you’re keen to know more about it? Perhaps you’re someone who has heard a lot about this mysterious thing called ‘Mindfulness,’ but you’re suspicious or skeptical about it, so you want to see what all the fuss is about? Is it really something real? Just a fad or fashion? Does it really cure all our ills? Perhaps you’re a student of psychology, or philosophy, or politics, or you’re an entrepreneur or a therapist? Whoever you are, and whyever you’re here, you’re very welcome. I look forward to learning about and from you as we embark on this adventure together.

1 video (Total 6 min), 5 readings, 1 quiz
1 video
5 readings
Meet the instructor & the team5m
Welcome to Leiden University5m
Complete our short survey10m
Study tips for studying online5m
Community Guidelines & Academic Toolkit10m
1 practice exercise
How mindful are you?2m
5 hours to complete

Introduction to Mindfulness

In this fist module, we’re going to explore the foundational question of what Mindfulness actually is! This module has been designed to approach this question by considering a series of preconceptions about Mindfulness in contemporary societies. Hence, here we meet the characters who will help and guide us through the rest of the course: the scientist, the monk, the ninja, the zombie, and the hippie. I hope you find these to be worthwhile companions on our journey. In the end, we’ll discover that these preconceptions are not without merit, but that they are only partial pictures of the whole. We’ll also engage in our first Meditation Labs so that we can begin to weigh these preconceptions against our own experiences.

11 videos (Total 68 min), 2 readings, 3 quizzes
11 videos
Preconception - enlightenment8m
Preconception - martial magic7m
Preconception - mindlessness8m
Meditation lab l part 15m
Meditation Lab l part 26m
Kuyken: why mindfulness?2m
Kuyken: representation of mindfulness4m
Batchelor: coming to mindfulness3m
Batchelor: what draws others to mindfulness?2m
2 readings
Med Lab 1: Exercises10m
What is this thing called Mindfulness?10m
2 practice exercises
Check your knowledge8m
Journal after Meditation Lab 120m
5 hours to complete

Psychology of/& Mindfulness

One of the most significant developments in the field of Mindfulness in recent years has been the development of ‘construct Mindfulness’ as a therapeutic tool and as a scientific technology. Both of these rest upon (and produce) bodies of scientific evidence about the effects and correlates of Mindfulness practice, both in terms of therapy and neurophysiology. In this second module, then, we’re going to explore some of implications and elaborations of these approaches. We’ll see what happens to the idea of Mindfulness when we make it into something that can be measured, and then we’ll investigate some of the most popular (and effective) Mindfulness-based Interventions, such as MBSR and MBCT. In the end, we’ll also ask whether this operationalized approach to Mindfulness actually hides deeper philosophical, religious, and existential questions, to which we’ll turn in the next module.

16 videos (Total 116 min), 2 readings, 3 quizzes
16 videos
Operationalizing mindfulness10m
Measuring mindfulness11m
The problem of dis-ease11m
Mindfulness-based stress reduction10m
Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy12m
Common principles in mindfulness interventions9m
Meditation lab II7m
Kuyken: encountering difficulty4m
Kuyken: assessing teaching2m
Kuyken: science and Buddhism3m
Kuyken: who should teach?5m
Kuyken: 8 weeks later?4m
Batchelor: mindfulness teachers3m
Batchelor: mindfulness qualifications3m
2 readings
Med Lab 2: Exercises10m
Psychology of/& Mindfulness10m
3 practice exercises
How stressed are you?2m
Check your knowledge20m
Journal after Meditation Lab 22m
6 hours to complete

Philosophy of/& Mindfulness

One of the great debates in the field of Mindfulness revolves around the question of the nature of its relationship with Buddhism. In this module, we consider some of the ways in which this relationship can be understood, including by paying attention to the fact that Buddhism is a diverse and multivocal tradition. Going even further, we explore the possibility that traditions of thought other than Buddhism might provide valuable insights into Mindfulness, ranging from Daoism through Stoicism to contemporary American philosophy.

16 videos (Total 126 min), 2 readings, 2 quizzes
16 videos
Buddhism and sati10m
Vipassana and samatha11m
Modernity and mindfulness12m
Meditation lab III8m
Kuyken: Buddhism and other traditions3m
Batchelor: was Buddha a therapist?6m
Batchelor: secular dharma5m
Batchelor: Pali canon3m
Batchelor: is dharma always Buddhism?3m
Batchelor: dharma needn't be Buddhist2m
Batchelor: towards modern dharma4m
2 readings
Med Lab 3: Exercises10m
Philosophy of/& Mindfulness10m
1 practice exercise
Journal after Meditation Lab 32m
5 hours to complete

Politics of/& Mindfulness

It is commonly assumed that Mindfulness is a solitary pursuit, and yet there is also often talk of a ‘Mindfulness Revolution,’ as though Mindfulness is also a social movement. In this module we’ll explore some of the ways in which the practice of Mindfulness might impact on ethical, social, and political issues today. We’ll ask questions about whether a Mindful society would really be a utopia, or whether it would be a nightmare. We’ll investigate the significance of Mindfulness in the military and in education, and finally we’ll attempt to engage with the meaning and significance of the commercialization of Mindfulness in capitalist societies.

10 videos (Total 80 min), 2 readings, 2 quizzes
10 videos
Mindful utopias and distopias11m
Martial mindfulness10m
Mindfulness in education10m
The mindfulness industry10m
Meditation lab IV4m
Kuyken: mindfulness in society3m
Batchelor: mindfulness in society5m
Batchelor: commercialism and mindfulness3m
2 readings
Med Lab 4: Exercises10m
Politics of/& Mindfulness10m
1 practice exercise
Journal after Meditation Lab 42m
2 hours to complete

Mindfulness into the Future

In this last module, we’ll spend some time reflecting on the path we have travelled to get to this point. We’ll consider some of the main challenges that we might have encountered, and also give some thought to what might come next for those of us who want to keep a Mindfulness practice in their lives.

6 videos (Total 21 min), 4 readings, 2 quizzes
6 videos
Meditation Lab V3m
Dana and Donation Box2m
Dana Box Update2m
Course update 20172m
Kuyken: parting advice1m
4 readings
Med Lab 5: Exercises10m
Meet our contributors10m
Complete our short survey10m
2 practice exercises
How mindful are you now?4m
Letter to Self2m
3 hours to complete

Honours Project

Having come to the end of the regular programme, you might already be considering what you can do to continue the process of de-mystifying mindfulness for the world today. Perhaps you've identified a practice that really challenges you, or an idea that inspires you into action? Perhaps you're wondering whether your experiences and insights might also be valuable to other people; you're thinking of ways to test them or share them or both? This 'Honours Module' provides you with the opportunity to build on the knowledge we've accumulated and constructed over the previous weeks by creating original, new projects of your own. Successful completion of this project will mean that you will earn 'honours' on your certificate - the highest quality stamp available. More than that, your projects might make genuine and important contributions to our mission: building knowledge for a more mindful world.

1 video (Total 6 min), 1 reading, 1 quiz
1 reading
Project samples10m
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Top reviews from De-Mystifying Mindfulness

By ALNov 2nd 2017

Awesome!\n\nLots of valuable theory, which includes uncovering fears and doubts. And the most important: practice. You can learn meditation here, and truly understand why the hell it's so important.

By VKFeb 7th 2019

An excellent MOOC course with in-depth exploration of the mindfulness concept, with interviews of experts in the field and critical appraisal of the subject matter. I loved the course !



Chris Goto-Jones

Prof. dr.
Honours Academy

About Universiteit Leiden

Leiden University is one of Europe's foremost research universities. This prominent position gives our graduates a leading edge in applying for academic posts and for functions outside academia. Leiden University is the oldest university in the Netherlands. It was founded in February 1575, as a gift from William of Orange to the citizens of Leiden after they had withstood a long siege by the Spanish. Our motto is: Praesidium Libertatis — Bastion of Liberty....

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

  • It is very wise to consider whether you need support for your participation in this course. You will spend quite a lot of time working on yourself, so it is possible that issues will emerge that disturb you. So, before you start the course, consider telling a good friend or family member that you intend to take this course and ask them to be available for you if you need some support during the course. Perhaps they will even want to take the course with you. You can also make use of the community of students and teachers around this course to seek support and answers to your questions. You will probably discover very quickly that many of us share similar issues, and that talking with your peers about them will help. Finally though, do not be afraid to seek more professional help if issues arise with which you feel unable to cope. Remember, this course is not itself a programme of therapy. In the end, if it feels too much, you should be willing to reconsider whether this is the right time for you to take this course -- do not feel pressured or obliged to continue it. You can leave and rejoin at any time, as feels comfortable to you.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.