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European Policy (European Studies)

Study programme

The Master's in European Policy is a one-year programme that offers in-depth knowledge of contemporary European politics and governance. The first semester comprises several core courses and a skills seminar, while the second semester allows you to tailor the programme to your own interests through a series of electives and the Master's Thesis.

Programme structure

The Master's in European Studies comprises 60 ECTS credits:

  • 18 credits for core courses
  • 24 credits for elective package
  • 18 credits for a Master's thesis
  • Core courses

    The programme's core courses give an in-depth introduction to theories of EU governance, EU policies, European geopolitics and European integration.

    Cultures of Governance (12 EC)
    In this course, insights into the driving forces, organisation and practices of European governance in terms of policymaking will be related to wider historical, cultural and geographical contexts.

    Skills Seminar (6 EC)
    During the Skills Seminar, students will practice the diverse skills needed to successfully conclude a Master's thesis. These skills include: defining a research question and problem, identifying methods and theoretical approaches and data-gathering techniques. A trip to Brussels will take place in the fourth week of the course, where students will learn more about the practice of European policymaking, with interactions with EU officials.

  • Elective package

    The electives complement the programme's core courses and provide a further contextualisation of the theories of EU governance, EU policies, European geopolitics and European integration, and also allow students to pursue regional interests. 

    You supplement your core programme with a pre-structured elective package of your choice. Elective packages consist of four electives (6 EC each) that have a distinctive focus. You can choose from two thematically distinct elective packages:

    1. External Relations of the EU
    2. Internal Policies of the EU

    Additionally, from the second semester onwards (based on grade and motivation) you can opt to apply for the EU Policy Lab package. This is an intensive, project-based policy course, immersing students in the practice of EU policy research and report writing. It includes an obligatory field trip to conduct policy research, in principle hosted by a Dutch Institute abroad. 

    Electives that are offered within the two electives packages are:

    • The State of the European Economy
    • The Power of Law: Legal Integration in the European Union
    • European Cultural Policy
    • European Geopolitics
    • Democracy in the European Union
    • Enlargement and External Relations of the EU
    • Memory and Conflict in Eastern and South-Eastern Europe
    • Russia and the World
    • Religion, violence and conflict

    You also have the opportunity to develop a fully customised programme with a selection of courses from other Master's programmes. A proposal for such an individual programme must be approved by the programme’s examination board.

  • Internship

    The one-year Master's in European Policy can be extended with an additional internship which you can do at an EU institution, an international organisation or a national or regional administration. The organisation of the internship is the full responsibility of the student and, in consultation with the programme coordinator, we will attempt to accommodate the internship within the framework of the programme.

  • Thesis

    The Master's thesis is an individual research project carried out by the student under the supervision of a faculty member. The subject of the thesis should relate to topics covered in the courses and will be mutually agreed upon by the student and the supervisor.

    You will also follow a thesis tutorial that prepares you for thesis writing. Serving as a complement to the January skills seminar, the tutorial will help you in starting to define your research problem and question, as well as beginning data gathering and determining the structure of the thesis.

Detailed course information

For detailed course information, please see the UvA Course Catalogue:

Research Master's

Students who show exceptional promise for research during a regular or professional Master's programme are encouraged to continue their studies in a Research Master's programme in History. Once students are admitted to the Research Master's programme, they can transfer credits earned during their previous course of study towards their Research Master's degree. The Examinations Board determines which courses qualify for transfer.

Accreditation and academic title

The Master's programme European Policy forms part of the broad label European Studies. The quality of this programme has been positively assessed by the Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO). This means that upon successful completion of the programme students will receive a legally accredited Master's degree in European Studies and the title Master of Arts (MA).