Social and Cultural Anthropology

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

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Deze opleiding

!Deze opleiding communiceert alleen in het Engels.
We tonen daarom de Engelstalige opleidingsinformatie.
Study the cultural and social complexity in today's world by delving into the nitty-gritty reality of how people experience daily life. Ready to learn about anthropology ánd to put it into practice?

open_in_newstudy website

typeregulier, 60 EC
start1 september
taalvolledig English
opleidingsduur12 maanden voltijd
numerus fixusnee
Are you fascinated by the social and cultural complexity of human communities? Are you excited about delving into the nitty-gritty reality of how people experience daily life all over the world? Are you ready to not only learn about anthropology but to put it into practice by conducting fieldwork of your own? Then the Master's programme in Social and Cultural Anthropology may be for you! You will gain a firm theoretical foundation in anthropology while developing strong qualitative research skills.

The programme teaches you to apply anthropology to the challenges facing us in today's globalizing world. You will gain in-depth insights into a variety of topics, ranging from Islam in Europe, to politics and power, to urban anthropology and anthropology of crises, to migration, development and globalization. You will participate in public debates and write blogs and articles that communicate anthropological knowledge about the way people live around the world.

Waarom aan de Amsterdam VU?

Our master Social and Cultural Anthropology distinguishes itself from other masters in the same discipline by an applied approach to anthropology, training students to use anthropological skills and knowledge in different professional settings.


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opbouwCourses: Field Research Design, Theoretical Orientation on Mobility 1 and 2 (specialization), Fieldwork, Thesis writing. Thesis research is extensive: 10 to 12 weeks of anthropological field work abroad or in the Netherlands.
  • You will receive a theoretical foundation in Mobility, Diversity & Development
  • You will choose a specialization
  • Mobility & Diversity
  • Development & Sustainability
  • City, Space & Politics
  • You will receive rigorous skills training in qualitative methods, visual methods and ethnographic writing
  • You will receive individual guidance from a staff member throughout the programme
  • You will conduct your own three-month fieldwork project
  • You will write a Master's thesis based on your fieldw
Theoretical Orientation on Mobility part 1
6 EC
Field Research Design onderzoek
12 EC
Theoretical Orientation on Mobility part 2
6 EC
Field Research
18 EC
Master's thesis in Social and Cultural Anthropology afstuderen
18 EC


specialisatie Mobility & Diversity

This specialization looks at identity, diversity and belonging through the lens of mobility and its adversary, immobility.

This notion includes social mobility and geographic mobility, as well as technologies of mobility. It applies to flows of people, as well as those of images, ideas, ideologies and products. Mobility also involves social mobilization and social movements that change the world we are living in. It refers moreover to the instability and fluidity of everyday life in the contemporary world. On the one hand, this fluidity and instability may cause insecurity and unsafety, but on the other hand it can be a source of security.

specialisatie Development & Sustainability

This specialization focusses on the physical but culturally entangled aspects of human needs and different perspectives on addressing those needs.

We approach development with a critical focus on the ways in which it is defined in policy and practice. This involves critical issues such as:

Global inequality.
Ecological sustainability.
Human development.
Social justice.
Industrial and infrastructural development.

You will learn to analyze the consequences of these issues for the organization of social life, social engineering and dependency. You will also gain a thorough understanding of global capitalist development and its implications.

specialisatie City, Space & Politics

More than half of the human population lives in cities.

Urban anthropology and anthropology of the city are established traditions in the discipline, which allow us to see cities in their full extent. The urban condition is a combination of:

Geographic and social mobility.
Proximity with strangers.
Cultural diversity.
Struggle over spacedevelopment of built environment.

At the same time, the city, from its very own foundation, is a political unit. The political conditions of a city are reflected in the ways in which its built environment develops and is organized, as well as the ways in which different social classes, ethnic groups or other communities are living and moving within the city. Moreover, it is the relationship between the city, nature and its people that defines the urban environment. Urban public spaces are where the recent wave of uprisings, from the Arab Spring to Occupy Wall Street, have taken place, changing the face of global political agendas.


taal van onderwijs100% en
onderwijsopzet40% zelfstudie
30% theorie
30% praktijk
case study, group discussion, group assignment, individual assignment, literature study, research, research project, project, working group, self study
To provide students with advanced knowledge, skills and attitudes in the field of anthropology, with special knowledge of anthropological perspectives on mobility, beliefs and belonging. Graduates are trained to apply with considerable degree of self-reliance anthropological theories and concepts to concrete issues of cultural diversity, international inequality and development, with ample attention for the articulation of and interaction between local, national and global processes.

Toelating en kosten


1 september 2019

aanmelding deadline : 1 juni 2019
wettelijk tarief : € 2083 (€1042 in het eerste jaar)

1 september 2020

aanmelding deadline : 1 juni 2020
collegegeld nog niet bekend

Registration for the Master's programme in Studielink and VUnet and is open until 31 May (non-VU-students) / 31 July (VU-students) at the latest.

Niet VU-studenten en niet direct toelaatbare VU-studenten: Aanmelden doe je vóór 31 mei in Studielink en VUnet. Je aanmelding is pas volledig afgerond als je bevestiging hebt gekregen van Studielink, het portal hebt voltooid, toegelaten bent en het collegegeld betaald hebt op 31 augustus.
Als hbo'er kun je starten nadat je de bijbehorende premaster
toelaatbare profielen
WO bachelortoelaatbaar
hbo bachelorAdmission to the Master's programmes is open to individuals holding a Bachelor's degree in higher vocational education (Hbo), providing they successfully completed the pre-Master's course. Admission to the pre-Master's course is possible for Hbo holders with a study load of 240 ECTS credits (168 'old' credits), who have also successfully completed a pre-Master's assessment. The assessment is designed to ensure that students admitted to the pre-Master's (with the intention of subsequently completing the Master's programme) are able to meet the required academic level.

aanvullende vakeisen

erkende certificaten



IELTS score with a minimum of 6.5
TOEFL score paper based test: 580
TOEFL score computer based test: 237
TOEFL score internet based test: 92-93
VU TOEFL-ITP: 580 (only valid for VU University Amsterdam)
CPE: A, B, C

Opleiding met minor Anthropology
VU POL, CW, B&O: als deze vakken behaald zijn:

  • Core Themes in Anthropology
  • History and Theory of Anthropology
  • Urban Studies

Daarnaast moet er een Engelse toets gemaakt worden.



inbegrepen in collegegeld

estimated monthly costs

bron: Nibud
424kamerhuur in Amsterdamboven landelijk gemiddelde
172collegegeldop basis van € 2060 per jaar
80studieboeken en -spullen
77uiterlijkkleding, kapper, schoenen
132vrije tijdstappen, uit eten, vakantie
42vervoernaast de OV-kaart

€ 1292totale maandelijkse uitgaven landelijk gemiddelde is € 1181
Hiernaast staat een overzicht van de gemiddelde kosten die een uitwonende student heeft. Niet iedere student heeft met iedere kostenpost te maken. Het totaalgemiddelde is dus niet gelijk aan de optelsom van alle kostenposten.

Bekijk ook de uitgebreide toelichting: wat kost studeren?

Studenten en studentenleven


33 studenten volgen deze opleiding
79% daarvan is vrouw
27 eerstejaars gestart in 2017
74% daarvan is vrouw
22864 studenten aan de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
58% daarvan is vrouw
bron: StudieData



Op kamers in Amsterdam

115129studenten studerend
47168studenten woonachtig   
€ 424gemiddelde kamerprijs
kamer betaalbaarheid
21 m2gemiddelde kameroppervlak
kamer beschikbaarheid
bron: Nationale Studenten Enquête

Feiten en / studie in cijfers


bron: Nationale Studenten Enquete
algemeen oordeel4.34.3
De Nationale Studenten Enquete is het grootschalige onderzoek van de overheid onder studenten in Nederland naar de kwaliteit van opleidingen aan hogescholen en universiteiten.
In 2017 hebben meer dan 280.000 studenten hun oordeel gegeven over hun studie en instelling.

Social and Cultural Anthropology aan de Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is beoordeeld door 12 respondenten. Gemiddeld waarderen ze de opleiding met 4.3 uit 5.

Na de studie

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The theoretical orientation, thematic specialization, skills training and intensive fieldwork experience are important assets on the labor market. As an Anthropology graduate from the VU you are able to analyze complex situations, question what is taken for granted, and understand (inter)cultural sensitivities and group identities. You are aware of perspectives and interests of different stakeholders in all sorts of professional environments.

Beroepsperspectief / arbeidsmarkt

  • Research in academic or non-academic institutes.
  • Strategic work with NGOs.
  • Policymaking in development, aid or governance.
  • Consulting for private enterprises.
  • Journalism.
  • Tourism.
  • Museums.
  • Design anthropology.

Potentiële beroepen

development consultant
diversity consultant
organizational consultant
policy maker
researcher (academic)
researcher (applied)
bron: StudieData


T: (020) 598 5000
International admissions FSW
Meer informatie?
Bezoek de website van deze opleiding.

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