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Pre-Master’s programme

Cultural and Social Anthropology

The Master’s programmes in Cultural and Social Anthropology offer several pre-Master possibilities to academic and Dutch HBO (University of Applied Sciences) students to make up for (slight) credit deficiencies.

Pre-Master's programme

The pre-Master’s programme gives you the necessary background in anthropology that will help you to complete the Master's programme succesfully. Often the programme will build on the knowledge you have already gained in your previous discipline. This offers you the possibility to broaden and deepen your interests and knowledge. It is possible to take extracurricular courses along with your pre-Master's programme.

This pre-Master's programme consists of courses from the Bachelor Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology.

Pre-Master's programme for academic students (30 ECTS)

This short pre-Master’s programme of 30 ECTS is intended for academic students that are studying or have already completed an academic Bachelor’s programme in the social and behavioural sciences or the humanities. We recommend you to take the pre-Master's programme as a minor during your Bachelor’s programme. To be admitted to this programme, you need to apply to the Master’s programme first. The admissions committee will decide whether you can follow the pre-Master’s programme. The study adviser can provide you with more information and advice.

Pre-Master's programme for HBO (University of Applied Sciences) students (60 ECTS)

HBO students with good grades in a relevant Bachelor's degree, preferably a Bachelor's degree that contains courses on analytical skills and on writing, may be admitted in the Master's programme provided that they first complete a 60 ECTS pre-Master's programme.To be admitted to this programme, you need to apply to the Master’s programme first. The admissions committee will decide whether you can follow the pre-Master’s programme. After receiving communication about your admittance, please contact the study adviser for your study planning.

  • Restricted-choice electives: Regional Course
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  • Introduction to Cultural Anthropology
  • Historical and Comparative Sociology
  • Restricted-choice electives: Specialisation Course
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  • Restricted-choice electives: Theme Course
  • Practicing Ethnography
See UvA Course Catalogue for more information about this pre-Master's programme

For students who are now doing a Dutch HBO bachelor, it is good to know that we also offer a fast-track Bachelor's programme.

Please note that the pre-Master’s programmes in Cultural and Social Anthropology are not yet clear for the academic year of 2023-24 at this moment. We will update the website on this topic as soon as possible. Please check the website again at a later moment to view the updated information.


Qualitative Research Methods

For students with a slightly insufficient background in qualitative social science research methodology, we offer an e-course Qualitative Research Methodology (3 ECTS) in the period prior to the Master's programme. This e-course is taught by lecturers of the Anthropology programme department and can be completed anywhere in the world. To be admitted to this e-course, you need to apply to the Master’s programme first. The admissions committee will decide whether you can follow the e-course. Please note that this course follows very shortly after the admissions procedure, but may allow you to still start your MA in September .

The tuition fees for this two months long distance e-course offered in May/June/July is EUR 400.

Social Science Switch

The Summer School Programme organises a Social Science Switch course for those trained in the natural or medical sciences. The programme enables them to develop a more holistic approach by combining their work and studies with social science theories and concepts. Participants can expect weekly live zoom meetings in addition to pre-recorded materials, readings and discussions in our online learning environment as well as assignments and comprehensive feedback.

Reading assignments

Promising students who do not fully (but nearly) meet the requirements or who are in need of brushing up on their knowledge in the field of social sciences and research methodology, may be asked by the admissions committee to complete a reading assignment prior to the Master's programme.

Reading assignments are offered for free and do not require extra tuition fees.

Application to pre-Master's programme

Application for a pre-Master’s programme is not needed or even possible. You must register for the Master’s programme in Studielink and then submit an application through the link in Myinfo, also for the Master’s programme. The Admissions Committee will assess your application for the Master's programme and decide if a pre-Master’s programme or course is needed and if it will sufficiently prepare you for entry to the Master's programme.

Tuition fee

For information about the tuition fee, please see tuition fee.


If you still have any questions regarding application and admission, please contact the Admissions Office at

Facts & Figures
Language of instruction English
Starts in September