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Curriculum

Archival and Information Studies is an 18-month Dual Master's programme that covers the full spectrum of the field and serves as an academic preparation for the profession. It treats contemporary archival theory and practice, trains archivists in the methods and techniques of recordkeeping, and provides insight into the archives of the past and future.

Programme structure

The Dual Master's programme Archival Studies comprises 90 ECTS credits:

  • 42 credits for courses and electives
  • 18 credits for the Master's thesis
  • 30 credits for the internship and report
  • Core courses

    Practitioners in charge of recordkeeping and collection management – whether in television studios, film archives, contemporary art museums, libraries, government archives and agencies, corporate organisations and heritage institutions – are concerned with comparable issues of access, use and sustainability. This programme introduces students to a wide range of concepts, principles and techniques of archiving and (re)presentation. In their core courses, students are encouraged to critically reflect on how such concepts, principles and techniques are used in a wide range of professional and institutional functions, cultures and traditions.

    In the first year of the programme, students acquire critical knowledge of the history, theory and practice of archiving, preserving, making accessible, curating and reusing information, as well as organisational functions and structures. In parallel, they learn how data and information are transforming lives, economies, social relations, and politics.  

  • Electives

    In the second semester, students can choose from a number of elective courses. They are free to take any elective offered by the Graduate School of Humanities, but the Archival and Information Studies programme also offers its own electives.

  • Thesis

    In the second semester, students will write a Master's thesis in which they reflect on the major challenges of information management, recordkeeping and archiving.

    The Master's thesis reports on research carried out under the supervision of an academic staff member connected to the programme. The thesis’ topic must be mutually agreed upon by the student and the academic adviser. The subject is relevant to the field of media studies, and more specifically, Archival and Information studies. The final text is between 17,000 and 23,000 words long.

  • Internship

    In the second year, students partake in an extensive internship with parallel themed weekly sessions to reflect on and gain more in-depth knowledge about specific aspects of information management and recordkeeping. The internship period is an integral component of the Dual Master’s in Archival Studies. The internship period gives you the opportunity to apply the concepts, principles and techniques you were introduced to in the first year, while building up a network in your future professional field. During this internship period there will be weekly sessions in which you will explore, discuss and deepen your knowledge, skills and insights through intensive seminars and workshops based on the experiences in your internship.

    Students taking a Dual Master's programme may be eligible for an additional internship allowance during the second year of their studies. Please follow the link below for more information.

    More information about the additional internship allowance

Detailed course information

From the academic year of 2020-21 onwards, the programme will collaborate closely with the Dual Master Presentation and Preservation of the Moving Image (also part of the dual Master’s in Media Studies cluster). For an impression of the new curriculum, download the schematic course overview here:

Course overview 2020-2021 (PDF)

For detailed course information regarding the current programme, please see:

UvA Course Catalogue: Archival and Information Studies