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Heritage and Memory Studies is a 1.5-year Dual Master's programme. Throughout the programme you will tackle issues such as how Europe’s classic canon of art and heritage is evolving in a less Western-dominated world; how WWII and postcolonial legacies are being dealt with; what new heritage and memory paradigms are emerging in the digitally connected, globalised world; how heritage policies engage with local versus cross-border identities and sense of belonging; and how heritage tourism and digitization affect notions of authenticity and ownership.

The programme comprises a theoretically-based first semester, an extensive internship in the second semester, and an excursion abroad as well as a thesis in the third semester. Both the excursion and the thesis connect the theory and practice of the first two semesters.

Programme structure

Below you can find the regular programme of the Master's in Heritage and Memory Studies. Apart from this, you can choose the specialisation Restitution Studies, focusing on provenance and restitution.

New specialisation: Restitution Studies

Provenance and restitution are current and urgent issues for museums, collections and heritage institutions, as well as society at large. The new specialisation Restitution Studies allows students to focus on the interaction between social debates, policies & regulations, institutional concerns and the object itself.
Find out more about Restitution Studies

  • Heritage and Memory Theory
    Period 1

    This module offers an introduction to some core texts in heritage and memory studies, so that you will acquire knowledge of the key theoretical concepts. You will develop skills in discourse analysis, critical reading of texts and conceptualising heritage and memory issues and learn to apply these skills to actual cases.

  • Free-choice electives
    Period 1
    Period 2

    You can tailor your study programme to your own interests by choosing from a broad range of electives offered by the Faculty of Humanities. See the Course Catalogue for an overview of Heritage and Memories Studies electives.

  • Who Owns the Past?
    Period 2
    Period 3

    In this course, you will explore current and past conflicts concerning heritage and memory. You will gain insight into the appropriation of culture and (identity) politics that is at play in such disputes, as well as how giving voice to multiple narratives can potentially promote reconciliation and inclusivity. A range of assignments will serve to further develop your research skills.

  • Master's Internship Heritage and Memory Studies
    Period 4
    Period 5
    Period 6

    A five-month internship lets you further develop your professional heritage skills and network, while offering scope for practical experience, specialist, knowledge and theoretical reflection.

  • Current Issues: Excursion Abroad - Heritage and Memory Studies
    Period 1

    You will practice analysing the theoretical, ethical and practical implications of site interpretations. Abroad, you will hold a presentation at a specific site/museum related to your research topic.

  • Thesis Seminar Heritage and Memory Studies
    Period 1

    You will further develop the draft of your thesis work plan. By processing feedback given by both teaching staff and peers, you will learn to evaluate and improve the plan, including the conciseness of the research questions, the logical structure of the envisioned chapters and the practical feasibility. General challenges in the research and writing process will be pointed out and discussed.

  • Master's Thesis Heritage & Memory Studies
    Period 1
    Period 2
    Period 3

    A central component of the programme, the Master’s thesis enables you to write an original work of research under the supervision of one of the staff members. The research topic will be determined in consultation with the thesis seminar lecturer and your thesis supervisor.

Compulsory course
UvA Course Catalogue: Heritage and Memory Studies
Prof. Rob van der Laarse
Copyright: onbekend
Heritage allows us to visit the past. We 'read' cities and landscapes with the aid of clues derived from film and fiction. Of all of the cities in the Netherlands, Amsterdam has the most museums and listed buildings, all within a distance of roughly half a kilometre from each other. It is therefore a perfect location for academic research into heritage. Prof. Rob van der Laarse
  • Work-experience period

    The Dual Master's programme Heritage and Memory Studies offers a unique combination of practical experience, specialist knowledge and theoretical reflection, all of which come together in the extensive work-experience period.

    Scope of the internship

    During your internship in a heritage organisation you contribute to the realisation of a heritage project, be it through research, conceptual design or practical execution. You could be investigating the experience of certain urban or rural landscapes, organising events to increase community engagement in heritage protection, assisting in shaping governmental or non-governmental (international) heritage policy, or researching the cultural-historic contexts of heritage objects or sites. Your tasks could include those of an editor, event organiser, product developer or policy adviser.

    How it works

    As a student, you yourself are responsible for finding an internship organisation that matches your specific interests. In doing so, you begin to explore the professional field in which you will later be working. The programme coordinator provides advice and contacts throughout this process.

    Be aware that many internships in the Netherlands require basic proficiency in the Dutch language. As such, you may also seek an English-language internship abroad. Also bear in mind that some internships might not be (adequately) paid.

    Internship allowance

    Students taking a dual Master's programme might in some cases be eligible for a reimbursement

  • Bologna Exchange Programme

    The University of Amsterdam–University of Bologna programme is an international Erasmus+ exchange programme for postgraduate students and staff. Bologna students and staff join the UvA programme in the first semester (September—January), while UvA students who are enrolled in the Dual Master's in Heritage and Memory Studies can participate in the programme during the second semester (February—June).

    UvA students will have the opportunity either to follow courses or combine coursework with an internship (minimum 18 EC) in Bologna. If you wish to follow this trajectory, you can submit a plan of activities and a motivation letter to:

    • Dr Tamara van Kessel, Master's programme coordinator
    • Dr Ihab Saloul, Erasmus programme coordinator
    Dr. T.M.C. (Tamara) van Kessel

    Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen

    Algemene Cultuurwetenschappen

    Prof. dr. I.A.M. (Ihab) Saloul

    Faculteit der Geesteswetenschappen

    Algemene Cultuurwetenschappen

Student blog: Heritage and Memory

This blog is created by students from this Master's. Each year, a new cohort of students take over the site, share their thoughts, and reflect on the relationship between Heritage & Memory Studies and everyday life.

Frequently Asked Questions