History: History and International studies

Understand today’s world by studying the past

How have societies been connected throughout history?

History and International Studies at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is a unique programme combining approaches from history and the social sciences to understand how societies have been connected throughout history. The programme offers a combination of history courses, modern language units and research skills from the fields of global history and international relations. It is taught by a highly motivated staff, strongly committed to teaching excellence and the learning experience of their students.

Learning about the historical origins of global society

How has democracy become a global standard while other types of government are considered ‘deviations’? How did decolonization influence the relationship between Europe and Asia? What are the historical origins of global inequality and climate change? History and International Studies is an excellent choice for students interested in learning about the historical origins of our global society from an interdisciplinary perspective.

Great variety of courses and tracks

Courses discuss the history of Europe and the world from antiquity to the present. Students also choose electives, organized around different themes such as Politics & Economy; Migration & Ethnicity; Culture & Religion or Heritage & Memory. In addition, students can take courses in modern languages, learn about different approaches from the fields of international relations and global history, and are trained in academic skills. In Year 3, students can study a semester abroad, take an internship or choose a minor.


Why History and International Studies at the VU in Amsterdam?

The small scale of the programme offers close interaction  between students and staff, several of whom have won University Teaching Awards for outstanding performance and dedication to undergraduate education at the VU. The staff of History and International Studies cooperates with different public and private organizations as well as with the Rijksmuseum, Tropenmuseum, the Anne Frank Huis and many other research and heritage institutions. The Vrije  Universiteit is located in Amsterdam, a city with international and historical allure. The internationally oriented VU campus offers easy access  to the city and its historical sights, archives, NGOs and museums.

Impression of the Bachelor day

Video by Steve Melone

A BA in History and International Studies provides a foundation for an MA in history, heritage studies, or international relations, or a career in education, research, at NGO’s and international organizations, museums, heritage foundations and media.

To be admitted with a non-Dutch diploma, you must hold an equivalent to a Dutch pre-university school diploma (VWO) for example a Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife or IB Diploma. Depending on your background, you may also need to supply proof of your English language proficiency.

Even if you possess a diploma that is equivalent to the Dutch VWO, you may still have to meet specific entry requirements before you will be admitted to a Bachelor’s degree programme. In October, a general guide with specific accepted diplomas will appear on our website.

VU Amsterdam requires all international applicants to take an English language proficiency test and to submit their scores before 31 August. Applicants who have completed their education in Canada, the USA, the UK, New Zealand or Australia are exempt from this requirement, as are those who have obtained an International Baccalaureate or European Baccalaureate diploma (English-taught programs only).
We accept the following tests and minimum scores:

  • IELTS: 6.5
  • TOEFL paper-based test: 580
  • TOEFL internet-based test: 92
  • Cambridge Advanced English (CAE): A, B or C
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): A, B, C

Students living in the Netherlands can also register for a TOEFL-ITP exam offered by the VU Taalloket. The test costs €80 and is only valid for admission to VU Amsterdam.

 

You start the application procedure through the Studielink.nl national application system. You will then receive an e-mail inviting you to complete your application in the VU student portal, where you will also be asked to submit all documentation needed for the admission procedure. You do not have to complete your application in one session; you can save it and come back to it as often as you want before completing and submitting it.

Required application documents:

  • CV
  • Copy of valid passport or ID (ID for EEA students only)
  • Copy of your diploma (if obtained, can also be provided after conditional admission)
  •  Copy of your latest transcript of records (if you have not graduated yet, please send us an official transcript listing the marks you have received to date). For A-level and IB applicants: include predicted Grade transcript if available.
  • Proof of sufficient English language test results (can also be provided after conditional admission)

A (to be obtained) secondary school diploma equivalent to the Dutch pre-university VWO is a primary admission criteria.

The VU Matching Programme enables you to check whether you have chosen the right degree programme. The matching programme consists of two steps: a digital questionnaire on VUnet, which is part of the application process, and an online matching activity. By taking part in the matching activity, you can check whether the programme is really the right one for you. For more information, please see the VU Matching Programme website.

Questions? Get in touch with us:

Please contact Eva Meijerink
T: +31 20 59 86331
E: bachelors.hum@vu.nl

Bachelor information day
At the Bachelor information days there will be information rounds with practical information. Afterwards you can visit the information market to ask your questions to current students and an academic advisor. 

This is what you will be doing

History and International Studies is a three-year BA programme. It starts with a broad-based first year that covers the history from antiquity until the present, followed by a year in which students choose a specialization, and finishes with a thesis on a subject of one’s choice in Year 3.

In Year 1, students take courses on the history of antiquity, the medieval period, early modern history and modern and contemporary history. Throughout this first year European developments are studied in relationship with Middle Eastern, Asian, American, and African developments. Students are introduced to the field and approaches of global history and taught to reflect on the relationship between history and contemporary debates on issues such as democracy and authoritarianism, global inequality, or climate change. From Year 1, students are also trained in Academic English as well as in research and writing skills.

In Year 2, students can choose courses in modern languages. They also take courses on history and theory, international relations, global political economy, and on the methods of the historical and social sciences. Students learn to apply these methods to analyzing interactions between individuals, states, societies and international organizations. They are also offered a range of electives, organized around different themes such as Politics & Economy; Migration & Ethnicity; Culture & Religion or Heritage & Memory.


In Year 3, students can opt to take a semester abroad, complete an internship or choose a minor. The final semester includes courses on international relations in a historical perspective, an elective, and the writing of a thesis, which is supervised on an individual basis by our staff members.

In Year 1, students take courses on the history of antiquity, the medieval period, early modern history and modern and contemporary history. Throughout this first year European developments are studied in relationship with Middle Eastern, Asian, American, and African developments. Students are introduced to the field and approaches of global history and taught to reflect on the relationship between history and contemporary debates on issues such as democracy and authoritarianism, global inequality, or climate change. From Year 1, students are also trained in Academic English as well as in research and writing skills.

In Year 2, students can choose courses in modern languages. They also take courses on history and theory, international relations, global political economy, and on the methods of the historical and social sciences. Students learn to apply these methods to analyzing interactions between individuals, states, societies and international organizations. They are also offered a range of electives, organized around different themes such as Politics & Economy; Migration & Ethnicity; Culture & Religion or Heritage & Memory.


In Year 3, students can opt to take a semester abroad, complete an internship or choose a minor. The final semester includes courses on international relations in a historical perspective, an elective, and the writing of a thesis, which is supervised on an individual basis by our staff members.

Overview HISTORY: History and International Studies

LANGUAGE OF INSTRUCTION

English

DURATION

3 years (fulltime)

APPLICATION DEADLINE

1 April (non-EEA students requiring visa and/or housing) / 1 May (all others)

START DATE

1 september 2018

STUDY TYPE

Full-time

BINDING STUDY ADVICE

You need to obtain 42 ECTS including academic skills

FIELD OF INTEREST

Art, Culture and History
Language and Communication