MA Heritage Studies: Museum Studies

University of Amsterdam

Program Description

MA Heritage Studies: Museum Studies

University of Amsterdam

Dual Master's programmes (MA)

Museum Studies at the UvA is the only university Master's programme in the Netherlands that focuses on the multidisciplinary museological field. The heart of this Master's programme, previously called Museum studies, is a six-month internship in a museum.

A solid basis for working in a museum

The Master's programme Museum Studies prepares you for a position in the wider field of museum professions. You will gain first-hand experience of the sector during your studies when you complete an intensive internship at a Dutch or foreign museum.

The museological world is constantly on the move. Important historical events are followed by major societal shifts. Museums reflect this by means of exhibitions, changes in acquisition policy and architectural innovation. At the same time, internationalisation and globalisation require constant repositioning. The UvA Master's programme in Museum Studies emphasises the public face of the museum: where the visitors enter and where the collections tell their stories.

Museums arrange their collections to reflect the story they wish to tell. This concept is based on scientific research into exhibits but is also linked to ideology and political, religious and economic power. The question of which stories are being told by which objects is constantly subject to change. Museum Studies investigates the dynamics and raisons d'être of heritage museums, such as those focusing on antiquities, archaeology, ethnology, and history and art museums. This is always done from a solid cultural-history basis and in an international context.

Whether you would like to organise exhibitions, devise educational projects, manage museums, create policy, conduct scientific research or write reviews: it all starts with a solid basis of knowledge, creative thinking and a critical attitude. Alumni of the UvA Master's programme in Museum Studies are currently working as exhibition organisers, curators, educational employees, policy officers, project managers, researchers and directors.

Degree certificate

Museum Studies is an accredited degree programme of Heritage Studies. After successful completion of this programme, you will receive a legally accredited Master’s degree in Heritage Studies and the title Master of Arts (MA).

Structure of the Master's programme

The Museum Studies programme has a workload of 90 ECTS:

  • 30 ECTS: Core courses
  • 12 ECTS: Electives
  • 30 ECTS: Internship
  • 18 ECTS: Master's thesis

During your Master's programme you will go on a number of trips, including an extended trip to dynamic locations in the museum world abroad. Last year’s destinations were Istanbul, London, New York, Paris, Jerusalem and Berlin.

Work experience period (internship)

The heart of the Master's programme Museum Studies is a six-month internship (30 ECTS). Your internship will be determined in accordance with the placements offered by the museums and the development path you wish to follow. At the museum, you will work together with professionals who will show you the tricks of the trade. The students are fully responsible for the organisation of their internships and benefit from the great network the UvA Museum Studies Staff has in the Netherlands and abroad. Museums that frequently offer internships are:

  • the University of Amsterdam’s Special Collections
  • Jewish Historical Museum in Amsterdam
  • Hermitage Amsterdam
  • National Museum for World Cultures (Amsterdam and Leiden)
  • National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden
  • Amsterdam Museum
  • the Van Gogh Museum Amsterdam
  • Rijksmuseum (Historical dept)
  • Centraal Museum Utrecht
  • Boymans van Beuningen Museum in Rotterdam
  • De Hallen in Haarlem
  • Van Abbe Museum Eindhoven
  • Twentse Welle in Enschede
  • Museum Kranenburgh in Bergen

Some students went abroad to a.o. Victoria and Albert Museum and the British Museum in London, the Wallraf Richartz Museum in Cologne, the Hermitage in St. Petersburg, the Australian Museum in Sydney and the CAFAM in Bejing.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated December 22, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
18 months
Full time
1,984 EUR
Netherlands - Amsterdam
Start date: Sept. 2017
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Sept. 2017
Netherlands - Amsterdam
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
EU/EEA students. Non-EU/EEA students €13,400 per year.