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Study abroad in
Amsterdam, Netherlands

Flight Voucher $1,000 Flight Voucher when you apply with code by November 21, 2019

Study abroad in Amsterdam and fall in love with one of the most eclectic and culturally rich cities in Europe. Whether you’re walking, biking, or riding a boat down the city’s famous canals, there is always something new to explore in Amsterdam. Home to residents from over 180 nationalities, cultures, religions, and backgrounds, people are drawn to Amsterdam as a Mecca for personal freedom and tolerance. In addition to Amsterdam’s historic significance, the city is also on the cutting edge of using technology and data to improve city services and environmental sustainability.

Programs to love in Amsterdam

Programs to love in Amsterdam

  • All
Business & Economics

Business & Economics

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Join VU Amsterdam’s prestigious School of Business and Economics for a semester. You’ll choose from a wide range of English-taught courses in Economics, Management, Marketing, Accounting, and Finance. CEA students are integrated directly with degree-seeking international and Dutch students. This program is offered in Fall, Spring, and the Spring-Extended semesters.

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  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $19,995
STEM in Amsterdam

STEM in Amsterdam

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Study in the model city for engineering and urban planning. Immerse yourself in a world of cutting edge technology and data that works to improve city services and environmental sustainability. With the STEM in Amsterdam program, you can dive into courses in the Faculty of Science and choose from a list of about 100 courses in English. Study Computer Science, Mathematics, Biology, Health Sciences, Geology, Environmental Sciences, and more. Many courses even include a laboratory component, so be sure to check the course descriptions for details. CEA students are integrated directly with degree-seeking international and Dutch students. This program is offered in Fall, Spring, and the Spring-Extended semesters.

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  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $19,995
Social Sciences & Humanities

Social Sciences & Humanities

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

CEA students in the Social Sciences & Humanities program will select from almost 100 courses in English. Subjects include English Language & Literature, Sociology, Political Science, Law, History, Humanities, Film Studies, Media Studies, Art History, Philosophy, International Relations, Communication, Anthropology, and Psychology. CEA students are integrated directly with degree-seeking international and Dutch students. This program is offered in Fall, Spring, and the Spring-Extended semesters.

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  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $19,995
Interdisciplinary Studies

Interdisciplinary Studies

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

If you are undecided about your major or career path or if you are interested in exploring a totally new subject from multiple perspectives, the Interdisciplinary Studies program is for you! All courses are taught in English at VU Amsterdam and use interdisciplinary perspectives, welcoming students from any academic background. Many courses incorporate experiential learning activities that enhance your study program as they take you into the city. Fall semester students will enroll in a specific Program Track of 4 courses related to one theme, or ‘Minor Programme’ as it is called by VU Amsterdam. Summer students take one themed course at a time

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  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $3,995
Honors Program

Honors Program

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Take excellence to the next level by digging into the advanced academics that VU Amsterdam has to offer. This highly competitive program, available only in the Spring semester, allows you to complement your coursework with honors courses from a variety of themes. Honors courses are interdisciplinary, small seminar-style courses which emphasize student discussion. You'll study alongside degree-seeking international and Dutch students for an integrated experience. A Spring-Extended option is available for students who want to earn additional credits.

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  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $19,995
Summer in Amsterdam

Summer in Amsterdam

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Spend your summer in Amsterdam learning in an intensive, highly interactive, small classroom environment and experience the vibrant culture of the Netherlands’ capital city. All courses are taught in English at VU Amsterdam and use interdisciplinary perspectives, welcoming students from any academic background. Many courses incorporate experiential learning activities that enhance your study program as they take you into the city. Whether you want to learn about computer science or food security, global health or entrepreneurship, Amsterdam promises you an unforgettable summer.

See Details

  • ST
  • SU
  • SE
  • YR
  • Starting at $3,995
What's included in your Program'

What's included in your Program

From housing to excursions, our inclusions make studying abroad easy!
  • Personalized Pre-Departure Advising
  • Visa & Immigration Advising
  • Financial Advising
  • Tuition and Registration
  • Airport Pick-up
  • On-site Orientation
  • City Tour
  • On-site Staff Support
  • 24/7 Emergency Assistance
  • Travel Medical Insurance
  • International Emergency Service Support
  • Welcome & Farewell Events
  • Centrally Located Housing
  • Wellness Activities
  • Cultural Engagement
  • Excursions
  • Student Clubs & Organizations
  • Host Institution Services & Amenities
  • Official Transcript(s)
  • VU Scholarship Opportunities

Utrecht

Haarlem

Leiden

Maastricht

One of the benefits of studying abroad is the opportunity to explore your host country and surrounding destinations. Excursions are offered for all semester and summer programs; you’ll receive a calendar of available excursions during orientation. Here are a few past excursions.

Utrecht
Located in the center of the Netherlands, Utrecht is the capital city of the country’s second smallest province. As a long-time religious center, this is the perfect place to explore a medieval town, canals, cathedrals, museums of religious art, and a monastery. Waiting outside the city center is a fantastical castle with an actual moat and extensive landscaped grounds just waiting to be explored.

Leiden
This city situated in the Dutch province of South Holland is known for the oldest university in the country. Leiden University was founded in 1575, and is home to the famous Leiden Botanical Garden, where the tulip was first introduced to Western Europe. This city has a wealth of museums, classic windmills, gothic Churches, and an old fort from the 11th century to experience.

Maastricht 
Travel down to the southernmost tip of the Netherlands to explore the city of Maastricht. Walk down the cobblestone streets of this medieval town and take in the vibrant, student-centric cultural scene. From boutique shops to incredible restaurants, from imposing gothic architecture to an 18th century military fort and World War II era network of caves, this city has a lot to offer. With fascinating influences from neighboring Germany and Belgium, this city will give you a broader European experience.

Haarlem 
You can’t visit the Netherlands without taking a trip just outside Amsterdam to the city of Haarlem. While it used to be a major trading port, this city remains famous as the center of the flower-growing district. Feast your eyes on the fields upon fields of tulips, the incredible art museums, and the old defensive city wall. Music lovers can’t miss visiting an organ played by Handel and Mozart, and history buffs will need to check out a museum which preserves a hiding place for Jews in World War II.

Delft
Can you think about Holland and not picture the intricately designed, hand-painted, blue and white pottery? Look no further than the canal-ringed city manufacturing these incredible pieces. Once home to the royal House of Orange and host to dozens of museums, there is something for everyone to explore in Delft.

CEA offers a variety of local immersion activities to match your interests. Whether you enjoy concerts, clubs, sports, cooking classes, language exchanges, or something entirely different, our resident staff helps you get involved in the local culture.

Anne Frank House
Step back into history and experience World War II through Anne Frank’s eyes and words. This museum used to be her father’s business and the Frank family home.

Keukenhof Tulip Gardens
A public park and showcase for the Dutch floricultural sector, these gardens are home to over 7 million spring-flowering bulbs.

Tuschinski Theater Tour
Considered one of the most beautiful movie theaters in the world, Tuschinski is a feast for the eyes even if you never see a show there. Tour through an amalgam of architectural and interior design styles that includes Art Nouveau and Art Deco, Amsterdam School and Asian influences.

Royal Palace Tour
One of three palaces in the Netherlands, the Royal Palace of Amsterdam was built during the Dutch Golden Age in the 17th century.

Artis: Homosexuality in the Animal Kindgom
In one of the most LGBTQ friendly countries in the world, the Amsterdam Royal Zoo hosts specific guided tours to discuss homosexuality in the animal kingdom.

VU Amsterdam Scholarship Opportunities
VU Amsterdam offers 3 scholarships each semester to study abroad students. CEA students are eligible to apply for a Blogger Scholarship, a Photographer/Videographer Scholarship, or an Academic Excellence Scholarship. Check out the scholarship page here for application deadlines and requirements.

Mobile Journalist Program
Want to build your digital portfolio while you study abroad? Join the Mobile Journalist (MOJO) program! You’ll blog, photograph, and video your experience abroad, then share them on social media.

Alumni Ambassador Program
Your study abroad adventure doesn’t have to end when your program is over. Keep sharing your study abroad love on your home campus…become an Alumni Ambassador! This internship allows you to help other students on their study abroad journeys while gaining work experience and growing your professional network.

Receive a $1,000 Flight Voucher when you apply by November 21, 2019

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when you apply by
November 21, 2019

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What's included in your Program'

Amsterdam Housing

Available:

Semester

Students looking to stay abroad with other international students and get the benefits of shared living should pick this housing option. Students will be placed in a hotel-like building in a furnished private room. The room includes a bed, desk, chair, shelves, and a small kitchen. The residences have ample communal space inside and outside, study spaces, and shared laundry facilities. The buildings have 24-hour reception and security. 

Typical Commute

  • VU Amsterdam: 20-40 Minutes by Public Transportation

Meals Included

None

Roommates

  • Single, private room

Unit Amenities

  • Limited kitchen
  • Bed linens included
  • Internet access
  • Closet / Dresser
  • Desk and chair
  • Shared living space – Indoors and Outdoors
  • Private or shared bathroom (depending on availability)
  • Shared laundry facilities
  • Regular cleaning service
  • Restaurant on site
Student Residence Photo #1
Student Residence Photo #2
Student Residence Photo #3
Student Residence Photo #4

Download Overview

Available:

Semester

CEA Students have the option to stay with a Dutch family while abroad in Amsterdam. Get the insider local’s perspective and even practice your Dutch language while getting a truly personalized experience. Houses are easily accessible to VU Amsterdam by bike or public transportation. Each student is guaranteed an independent bedroom, with internet, a bed, a wardrobe, and a desk. Students have access to the kitchen and are invited to have dinner with the family once a week. 

Typical Commute

  • VU Amsterdam: 30-45 Minutes by Public Transportation

Meals Included

  • One dinner per week (optional)

Roommates

  • Single Room
  • 1 -2 Students per Homestay

Unit Amenities

  • Limited kitchen
  • Shared living space – Cable TV
  • Shared - co-ed bathroom
  • Bed linens included
  • Towels included
  • Internet access
  • Closet / Dresser
  • Desk and chair

Download Overview

Available:

Summer

Summer housing is based entirely on which block session(s) students choose to enroll in. Options may include hotel, hostel and student residence. Not every option is available during every session. Our partner university VU Amsterdam does all housing placements on a first come, first serve basis, taking into consideration which sessions students will be onsite. All housing options meet CEA’s housing standards, and it is up to the student to determine which housing option and which courses are best for them. Students will be in the same housing assignment throughout their stay in Amsterdam. 

Typical Commute

  • VU Amsterdam: 15-30 minutes via public transportation  

Meals Included

N/A

Roommates

Roommates vary by housing option: 

  • Single, private room (Session 1,2, 3)
  • 4 - 8 people per room (Session 1)
  • 1 - 2 students per room (Session 2, 3)

Unit Amenities

Unit amenities may vary by housing option: 

  • Bed Linens included
  • Shared kitchen
  • Laundry facilities
  • Onsite restaurant 
  • WiFi
  • 24 reception/security 

Download Overview

While CEA highly recommends that you choose one of our Amsterdam housing options provided, you also have the option to arrange independent housing. If your ideal housing scenario includes living in a particular neighborhood, having specific amenities or living with a specific person as your roommate, then independent housing could be just the ticket for you.

Use the online housing application form to request permission for this option no later than the application closure date. If your request is approved, you will receive a rebate for your housing payment, however CEA will not provide you with any assistance setting up independent housing. Keep in mind, rebates are not granted to students who move out of their CEA housing or choose to pursue independent living arrangements after the application closure date.

Typical Commute

N/A

Meals Included

N/A

Roommates

N/A

Unit Amenities

N/A

What's included in your Program'

Institutions

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU Amsterdam) was founded in 1880 and is now ranked one of the top 100 universities in the world. With a focus on research and academic excellence, VU Amsterdam hosts about 25,000 students a year, and 14% of them are international. Higher education in the Netherlands is world renowned and regulated by the Accreditation Organization of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO). All Bachelor programs are accredited through the NVAO.

VU Amsterdam was the first university in the Netherlands to be established without interference from the church or the state. In fact, Vrije Universiteit literally means Free University. That secular tradition continues in the university’s work to create its own study programs with an emphasis on a personalized approach to teaching and learning. The campus is easy to navigate, thanks to the single-building complex design, and students quickly feel at home.

The university has a wide variety of academic offerings, with over 350 courses regularly taught in English. Like many Dutch institutions, VU Amsterdam puts a heavy emphasis on academic responsibility and independence. Instructors expect students to be active listeners and participate in classroom discussions. There is a high level of classroom interaction, a strict adherence to attendance policies and school rules, and direct honesty in grading, with no grade inflation.

When you study at VU Amsterdam, you’ll be just 15 minutes by bike from the city center. International students are actively welcomed, and encouraged to take part in arts, sports, and cultural programs through the student center and the ERASMUS Student Network (ESN). You can even expand your horizon by joining student clubs, participating in free workshops, or joining a volunteer program. From the campus bike repair shop to volleyball courts to film screenings and the on-campus grocery store, VU Amsterdam creates a cozy home away from home for all students.

Accreditation

VU Amsterdam is fully recognized by the Dutch Ministry of Education as a research university. All bachelor's and master's degree programmes at VU Amsterdam are either accredited by or in the process of being accredited by NVAO (Nederlands-Vlaamse Accreditatieorganisatie,) the Accreditation Organization of the Netherlands and Flanders. This body was established by international treaty and guarantees the quality of higher education in the Netherlands and Flemish-speaking Belgium through the accreditation of study programs.

Grading
The Dutch grading system is generally based on a mark between 1 (minimum) and 10 (maximum). The highest grades of 8, 9 and 10 are rarely awarded. Generally, a grade of 6.0 or more is a passing grade, and a grade of less than 6.0 is a failing grade. However, it is up to the provider/partner and/or home institution to determine the appropriate grade conversion for students. Transcripts from VU Amsterdam will always come with grades based on a Dutch grading scale, which then must be converted to the grading scale of the host institution. 

ECTS % Quality Assessment ECTS grade Dutch grade
10% Excellent/Very good A 8.0 - 10.0
25% Good B 7.5 - 7.9
30% More than satisfactory C 7.0 - 7.4
25% Satisfactory D 6.5 - 6.9
10% Sufficient E 6.0 - 6.4
Fail F 0.0 - 5.0

Classroom and Information

  • Dutch and international faculty teach all courses.
  • The semester is divided into Periods. Two Periods in the Fall and two or three Periods in the Spring. Exams, presentations, or projects generally due at the end of each Period. Each faculty member will outline specifics on the first day of classes.
  • Exams, homework assignments, and final exams will be administered.
  • Class attendance is 100% mandatory and monitored by professors. Some professors allow 1-2 absences, but this is detailed on the first day of class.
  • Most classes do not meet on the same day each week, and some can even meet multiple times per day.
  • Teaching styles in the Netherlands may differ from those in the U.S. Be prepared to adapt to different classroom structures and coursework expectations.
  • Grades are typically based on a mid-term and a final exam, and sometimes on only one exam. Cramming does not work.
  • Class sizes range from about 10-25 students in seminar classes and 300-500 students in large lecture classes. However, in all classes, small group work and independent learning is emphasized.
  • Many of your peers at VU Amsterdam will be Dutch, but you will also attend class with other CEA students and other international students.

Amenities
  • Clubs & Organizations
  • Student Government
  • Student Center
  • Student Lounge
  • Study Room
  • Study Area
  • Counseling Services
  • University Library
  • Computer Lab
  • Computers
  • Printing Facilities
  • Student ID
  • Internet Access & Wi-Fi
  • Academic Advising
  • Tutoring
  • Fitness Facilities
  • Student Sports Teams
  • Dining Facilities
  • Banks & Post Office
  • On-campus ATM
  • Lockers
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Hear from Netherlands students

A Look Back at Amsterdam, Netherlands | Andrew Monk | November 04, 2019

November 04, 2019

A Look Back at Amsterdam, Netherlands

Andrew Monk

A Tale of Two New CEA Cities | Matthew Baldini | July 31, 2019

July 31, 2019

A Tale of Two New CEA Cities

Matthew Baldini

Art in Amsterdam: Must-See Museums | Abigail Haley | June 21, 2019

June 21, 2019

Art in Amsterdam: Must-See Museums

Abigail Haley

Just Go to Amsterdam, Okay? Okay. | Cate Lewellyn | June 04, 2019

June 04, 2019

Just Go to Amsterdam, Okay? Okay.

Cate Lewellyn

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Amsterdam Staff

Image description

Frans van den Bliek

Program Director - Amsterdam