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Frequently Asked Questions

When applying to BSc Political Science

On this page:

Q: What documents do I need to submit?

A: For both the registration in Studielink and application in MyInfo, you need to upload the following documents:

  • Copy of passport (Studielink)
  • CV

If secondary school diploma obtained:

  • Diploma
  • Final grade list

If secondary school diploma not yet obtained:

  • Final results from your previous year
  • Intermediate results of your final year

If non-native speaker of English and test already taken:

  • Your English test score


Q: I have not obtained my secondary school diploma yet. Can I apply?

A: Yes, you may already submit your application while you have not yet obtained your secondary school diploma. Most of our applicants are still in the last year of high school when they start their application. Please submit a transcript of grades obtained so far and in case of an IB diploma programme, a list of predicted final grades.


Q: How would you like to receive my official documents?

A: After it has been decided that you can be admitted to our BSc programme Political Science, we will ask you to send certified copies of your diplomas and transcripts, and your original English test score by regular mail. Certified documents contain the original stamp and signature of the educational institution that issued them and mention the name of the applicant and the name of the institution. To be considered official, academic records must either be received in an official envelope, sealed by the issuing institution, or be sent via secure electronic delivery by the issuing institution. 

If the diploma and/or transcripts are not in English, Dutch, French, German or Spanish they need to be translated by a sworn translator. 


Q: How long does it take to process my application?

A: Provided that we receive the application before the application deadline, we aim to process each application and send the applicant a possible admissions offer within 8 weeks after receiving the application. This may take longer if the application file is not complete or if we need to receive extra documents in order to assess your secondary school level.


Q: Do you offer housing?

A: The University of Amsterdam's housing department, UvA Housing, offers limited possibilities to all international students. There is a high demand for housing  in Amsterdam, and therefore housing offered by the university cannot be guaranteed.

Applicants are recommended to start looking for accommodation as soon as possible. For more information, please visit


Q: Do I need an entrance visa for the Netherlands?

A: If you are not a Dutch national, you may need an entry visa and/or residence permit to study in the Netherlands. For more information please read the Visas and permits section of the UvA website.


Q: Can I defer my application?

A: Yes, you can defer your application to the next academic year. You will need to submit a whole new application in both Studielink and MyInfo for the next academic year as well.  Please note that the admission procedure, the programme curriculum and entry requirements are set anew each year and may be subject to change. So it is not guaranteed that you will be admitted again, as this depends on the entry requirements set for that (next) academic year.


Q: I have already graduated, but my secondary school will not be able to provide me with my official diploma in time. What do I do?

A: If your secondary school cannot provide you with your official diploma yet, please ask them to provide you with an official and certified statement of secondary school graduation instead. This statement should clearly confirm that you have completed your secondary school diploma and the date of your secondary school graduation. The statement must either be sent in an official envelope, sealed by the issuing institution, or be sent via secure electronic delivery by the issuing institution. 


Q: Can I apply if I do not meet the English language test requirements yet?

A: We can process your application without having received your English test score report. If admitted, it will be under the condition that you submit an official English test score report meeting the entry requirements before August or earlier if you are in need of an entry visa to the Netherlands. If possible, you should submit a test score at your earliest convenience. Please note that test centres tend to be fully booked in June and July.


Q: I have taken the following subjects in secondary school:…. Do I qualify for the BSc programme Political Science?

A: Students will need to have completed their secondary school diploma before the start of the BSc in Political Science. The diploma (to be) obtained should be equivalent to a Dutch VWO diploma with mathematics and English taken as subjects on upper secondary / university preparatory education level and both subjects should be included in the final secondary school or university entry examinations. Also, students are expected to have a basic knowledge of modern history.

Please see the list of approved qualifications for an overview on diplomas that are considered equivalent to the Dutch VWO-diploma. The list is far from exhaustive, will be updated on a regular basis and is meant for general guidance only. No rights can be derived from it. All applications will be evaluated on an individual basis by professional diploma evaluators.

If your qualification is not on the list, it does not necessarily mean you cannot be admitted and you are invited and encouraged to apply.

In general, mathematics has to be included in the upper secondary education curriculum up until the final year and final examinations. The level of mathematics should be equivalent to at least the Dutch level of VWO mathematics. There are no further minimum grade requirements.


Q: I will be completing a foundation or preparatory programme. Do I qualify for entry to your BSc programme?

A: We will need to have a look at a detailed overview of the courses and credits you will complete. The exit qualifications of the foundation programme will need to be equivalent to a Dutch VWO diploma. You are therefore invited and encouraged to apply and submit a detailed overview of your foundation/preparatory programme along with your application documents.


Q: I will be completing my A-levels this summer. However, I will not have an A-level in mathematics. Will GCSE mathematics meet the entry requirements?

A: Unfortunately, GCSE mathematics will not be sufficient for entry in the BSc Political Science. In comparison to similar BSc programmes in the UK, our BSc Political Science is much more research oriented. The entry level in mathematics is therefore relatively high. Nevertheless, an A-level in Mathematics is higher than the required entry level VWO Wiskunde mathematics. GCSE mathematics on the other hand is too low. There is just no in-between level that perfectly matches both educational systems.

If you will not have completed an A-level in mathematics but (will) have completed GSCE mathematics, we recommend and invite you to apply as soon as possible. We will then assess the combination of A-level subjects you will have completed and decide whether this can be sufficient. Make sure to add detailed descriptions of your A-level subjects to your application documents, especially if and when statistics, or any kind of research methodology is studied. If the combination of A-level subjects is not found to be optimal enough for entry to the BSc Sociology, alternative options to meet the entry requirement before the start of the programme may be to complete one of the English taught mathematics courses and exams offered by the James Boswell institute in The Netherlands. We will accept VWO certificates in mathematics A, B and C. Another alternative route may be to submit a SAT subject test Mathematics Level 1 score of at least 610 or an ACT Mathematics score of at least 27.

James Boswell:*



)* As the exams offered by the James Boswell institute requires your presence in The Netherlands, this is not be a viable option when needing a visa.


Q: I have a deficiency in mathematics, when shall I sit for the SAT, ACT or James Boswell exams?

A: You will need to meet all entry requirements before August or if you are in need of a visa: before June and before the visa application procedure can be started.

Please check the respective websites for exam dates.

James Boswell:*



)* As the exams offered by the James Boswell institute requires your presence in The Netherlands, this is not be a viable option when needing a visa.


Q: Can I take the Maths for Amsterdam UC courses and exams offered by the Boswell-Bèta Centre?

A: No, these courses and exams are organised for AUC applicants only, not for other UvA colleges.


Q: I (will) have good to excellent grades for my examinations. Will that be taken into account and possibly compensate a deficiency in mathematics and/or English?

A: Admission to the BSc Political Science is non-selective and non-competitive. Places are not limited. All students just need to meet the minimum entry requirements. There are no minimum grade requirements. A deficiency in mathematics and/or English needs to be met before the start of the programme and cannot be compensated.


Q: I am trying to register for the BSc Political Science in Studielink, but Political Science is not listed. Only the BSc Politicologie. How do I register for the English taught Political Science programme?

A: You have logged into Studielink in Dutch, which is why the Dutch title of the programme is listed. It is the same programme, however, and you can register for the BSc Politicologie even if you wish to study in English only. Once you have confirmed the programme and the enrolment period by clicking both green buttons in Studielink, you will be asked to indicate the language of instruction you prefer: a mix of Dutch and English or English only.

Please note that you can also click on the British flag button.


Q: When I register in Studielink, I can choose between ‘Political Science’ and ‘Politicologie’. Is there a difference?

A: Please note that in Studielink ‘Politicologie’ and ‘Political Science’ lead to the same programme. The different titles do not reflect the language of instruction. After confirming your choice for the programme, you will be asked to indicate your language preference.


Q: Can I transfer from another BSc programme to the BSc Political Science? For example, from the BSc History taught at the UvA? Or from a BSc Political Science from another university?

A: In principle, students transferring from other BSc programmes, from within or from outside the University of Amsterdam, have to start in the first year of the BSc Political Science. However, when students have successfully completed a course that shows substantial overlap in contents, level and form of examination with a course in the curriculum of the BSc Political Science, they can apply for a waiver for that specific course with the Examinations Board. The Examinations Board will decide on the application for a waiver after having received a well-documented request, including course descriptions, syllabus, and official transcript of results obtained via:

Please note that according to the Teaching and Examination Regulations (Article B.4.7) the Examinations Board cannot grant waivers for more than 30 credits. For more information about potential waivers, you can contact the student advisors at


Q: I have applied to the Dutch/English-taught BSc programme Political Science, but want to change to English-only (or the other way around). Is this possible and how do I go about it?

A: After partaking in the matching activities and before enrolment, you will be asked to confirm you choice of language. You will then be registered for courses and tutor groups in the language of instruction of your choice. At the end of the first and second semester of the first year, you will be given the opportunity to change to the other language track in consultation with your tutor and study advisor. Please note that the diploma supplement will mention Dutch/English as language of instruction if and when courses and/or tutor groups were (partly) taken in Dutch. The supplement will mention English as language of instruction only if all courses have been taken in English (excluding extracurricular courses).


Q: I receive e-mails about the start of the programme/introduction week. Does this mean I am admitted to the programme?

A: No, receiving e-mails about the start of your programme or with an invitation to the introduction day/week does not mean that you are admitted to the programme. Throughout your application process you will receive several automated e-mails sent by the UvA as well as e-mails from the study adviser. These e-mails are sent to all students that have submitted an application at that moment, regardless of being admitted or not.


Q: I have some questions relating to the content of the programme. Who can answer these questions?

A: If you have any questions about the content of the programme, please contact our Education Desk Social Sciences by sending an email to