Skip to Main Content

Manage your personal profile in Pure

This guide will help you update your personal profile page in the VU Research Portal

Get started with your Biosketch

What is a biosketch?

A biosketch (or bio) is a brief description of professional identity. It usually ranges from 50 to 300 words. In your biosketch you promote your research and other achievements.

Where do I add it in Pure?
  • Scroll down to Curriculum and research description in the metadata tab.

  • Click Add profile information and choose one of the headers.

Biosketch Guidelines

General guidelines
  • Preferably use a maximum of 300 words in total for personal information, research and teaching.
  • Write it like a biosketch that can be used for a conference submission or grant application. This will make it more inviting for peers and press to read it. See below for tips and tricks to fill out your profile like a biosketch.
  • Write in the third person. For example, ‘Cees Kleverlaan is a professor in Dental Materials Science at ACTA’ or ‘Sander Veraverbeke, earth system scientist at the Climate & Ecosystems Change research group’.
  • Focus on your most important research topics and achievements. What do you want to be known for?
  • Focus on research or teaching activities related to VU Amsterdam (or ACTA). Describe other research or teaching activities only if relevant to your VU Amsterdam (or ACTA) research career, and be concise.
  • Do you expect to be less active in keeping your profile up to date? Make sure that you are less specific in, for example, years of experience.
  • You don’t have to mention your PhD in the biosketch. For this you may use the field Academic qualification.
  • Use the correct spelling of the name of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam or the mother universities (for ACTA).
Guidelines per header

Personal information

Promote yourself
  • Introduce yourself and describe your professional situation by giving your name, degree(s), and current institutional affiliation.
  • While describing your research, keep in mind you don’t only write for your peers, but also for a broader audience, for example journalists. Use interesting key words they would be looking for and keep the language understandable for the public.
  • Also describe the societal impact of your research and teaching if applicable.
  • This is also a good place to mention any awards, both for research and teaching. The advice is to only mention the most important or prestigious awards. A complete list of your awards and grants can be registered in Pure, under Prizes.
    No awards (yet)? Mention professional affiliations, professional licenses, or involvement with national organizations. For example chairing a committee.
  • Are you a junior researcher? Focus on your more recent accomplishments. 


Your fit in the professional universe

  • First write down your main areas of focus / your expertise. And then communicate any accomplishments regarding these topics, especially if you’re the first researcher to develop a program or study an issue.
  • Are you a senior researcher? Promote your experience and describe your research accomplishments. Many will use the phrase ‘best known for’. As in ‘Cees Kleverlaan is best known for his work…’ or ‘Cees Kleverlaan is best known for creating…’. Avoid the use of academic titles (like ‘Prof. Dr.’) in the text; instead mention your substantive assignment, e.g ‘neuropsychologist’.
  • Are you more junior? Be more specific about your expertise, interests and the focus of your research.


Your impact

  • Use bullets to sum up the subjects you teach. Do not use the name of the course you are teaching here, but name the subject of the course. A full overview of your courses should be listed in the Courses tab of your profile in Pure.
  • Indicate the educational programmes you’re involved in and what your specialization is. You may also mention external teaching activities.

Ancillary activities

Ancillary activities are sourced into Pure from the HR-system on a daily basis.

Please do NOT register ancillary activities directly in Pure.

To view, register, amend, or discontinue ancillary activities, you need to go to the self-service option

  • Registration via the self-service option is required to obtain formal approval from your manager.
  • Indicate that you give permission for publication of the ancillary activity if you want it to be included in Pure.

More information you find on the page Ancillary activities on

Please remove ancillary activities that you have added manually in Pure, after making sure they have been imported from the HR-system. If you have entered activities here that are not eligible for registration in the HR-system you can add them as as content items: Add content > Activity

Tips and Tricks

Move the text fields up or down

Use the up-and-down arrows next to the text fields to change the order.

Ancillary activities tend to end up on top since they will usually be the first header added to Pure. Preferably adjust the order of the headers to:

Personal information > Research > Teaching > Ancillary activities

Adding in-text links to profile text fields

This allows  you to add links within the profile information text to connect to other websites with relevant information.

Select the text which should have a link associated with it and click the link symbol

Insert the URL in the Link URL field and click Insert