VU Amsterdam Summer School

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Spend your summer studying a challenging and interdisciplinary topic in the vibrant UNESCO World Heritage city of Amsterdam. The VU Amsterdam Summer School offers small-scale courses in a wide range of exciting fields at an excellent research university, VU Amsterdam. Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands, is a historic city with a modern and creative feel. It is the most international city in the world, a true metropolis, bustling with student life. It is considered a very safe and friendly city in a country where English is widely spoken.

The VU Amsterdam Summer School offers courses in three consecutive blocks during the month July and August. It is possible to combine two courses in order to create a four- or six-week programme.

Included in the tuition fee: airport pick-up service, an orientation program, on-site support, 24/7 emergency assistance and a transcript of records after completion of the course. Housing is available both on and off campus.

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Questions & Answers

I could do pretty much I wanted to do. I didn't sign up for any excursions (we had only one trip to firefighters training center which was part of learning program). After the end of classes in each day I could do what ever I wanted to do and with who I wanted to. I took "Big Data in Society", maybe some other curriculum they have more field trips inside program.


based on 24 reviews
  • Academics 9
  • Support 9.2
  • Fun 8.7
  • Housing 9.1
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 16 - 24 of 24

Nice university and people

It was my first summer school and studying abroad experience and it was fun. Amsterdam and VU is very nice place to be. So many different cultures and people really make studying here unique. Teachers are professional and help as much as is needed. I took Big Data Society class and in the end of the second week people who had no previous knowledge about coding were coding. And they loved it. And biggest value is the friends you are going to make here.

How can this program be improved?
Maybe more segmentation for advanced and begenners level
Yes, I recommend

Best summer school

Last summer, I had the pleasure of participating in the Amsterdam Summer School. I took the 2 week course Decolonizing Europe: History, Idea, Praxis which was in collaboration with Brown University. I was astounded by the level of expertise of my professors, and by the wide range of topics we covered. I honestly consider it the most important and fulfilling course I have taken, and it was just 2 weeks!
The program was well organized, and the staff was always accessible and helpful. Amsterdam is a beautiful city, and the Amsterdam Summer School helped me explore it. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who likes to be challenged.

How can this program be improved?
I only wish it would have been a bit longer!
Yes, I recommend
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Best Summer Ever!!!

Going to Amsterdam for the summer school was the best decision I have ever made. My course "New Venture Creation and Entrepreneurship" gave me an international insight into the business world and really broadened my horizon. The course was challenging and very rewarding at the same time and brought the best out of me. The lecturers were really caring and made the course enjoyable by bringing in different guest speakers and organising field trips. I had the opportunity to meet some remarkable people from all over the world and made some lifetime friends.
Amsterdam is a truly amazing and beautiful city with a vast amount of history around every corner. Anne Frank house, Maritime Museum and Van Gogh Museum were a few of the amazing attractions I had the opportunity to see.
Overall, I would recommend you put Amsterdam on top of your list when looking at places to study abroad and be ready for an experience of a lifetime.

How can this program be improved?
There aren't many improvements that could be made if anything the programme could be longer. It was all a BLURRR.
Yes, I recommend
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VU Amsterdam

VU Amsterdam is the perfect place to study abroad. Amsterdam is a beautiful city full of history, and at VU you can learn both in and outside the classroom.The program itself went above and beyond my expectations. I thoroughly enjoyed both my courses. The professors were caring, friendly, and truly cared about our success. The excursions were fun and the staff always put our interests first. I would recommend everyone to join this program.

How can this program be improved?
Maybe more course offerings in the second block and more food options on campus.
Yes, I recommend
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Best Experience/Summer Abroad!

Amazing opportunity I had last summer: The "New Venture Creation and Entrepreneurship" course VU offers! The quality of the lectures, the campus' environment, the professors' commitment and the diversity of students positively surprised me.
Amsterdam is a beautiful, active and historical city. VU insisted on taking us to different places around the country, making our learning more dinamic and interesting. Besides, they were always relating the places to our course projects/assignments, what provided us a more intense experience.
I was also glad to have the opportunity to meet and talk to some important/sucessful entrepreneurs of the business world that have been brought by the Summer School during the weeks. They volunteered in the program to present us their life's story and show us the practical part of the field.
Finally, the program also gave me some good friends from all different parts of the world: Italy, France, Spain, USA, Uganda, Turkey, Armenia, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Romenia, China, South Africa, Scotland, UK and Colombia that added a lot of fun moments and good laughs to my trip.
I'm thankful for all the Amsterdam Summer School team for making this amazing summer my best experience abroad.

How can this program be improved?
I would make the program a bit longer than the 2 weeks duration. Everything went very fast for me and I wish I could have been a bit more with my colleagues and professors.
Yes, I recommend
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Doing Research with Discourse Analysis: A Discourse Perspective on Making Sense of Social Change

I was already very interested in (Critical) Discourse Analysis and the course did not disappoint me at all. The lecturers presented their research in a very accessible manner trying to involve the students at all times. The focus on research was clear. We had to chance to use the same methods that the researchers used when doing their research and we were presented with new software that we used and were welcomed to also use it to analyse our own data.

The discussions were interesting and everyone in the group was very critical and participative which made it very stimulating. The topics were varied and so were the frameworks used. I learnt so much in two weeks. Both from lecturers and students. It motivated me to pursue higher academic goals after my Research MA.

For a whole day we heard about the research other students were doing. It was inspiring and stimulating.

The day trip to the Hague was also a lot of fun and we learnt about the Dutch political system. The game where we had to create different political groups and make a coalition made us aware of the language we would use in such scenarios and the importance of it in negotiations. I would strongly recommend this course to anyone that aims at having a more critical and socially engaged approach to research.

How can this program be improved?
The organisation of the course was not clear from the beginning. Everything turned out well in the end but there were a few changes we were only informed of during the first session.
Yes, I recommend
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Expanding your horizons in Amsterdam

Going to Amsterdam to take a Dutch course there, I didn't image coming out of the course learning more than just how to introduce myself in Dutch. I learned far more then I could've ever imagined by immersing myself in the culture and the people that surrounded me. By going overseas to study you're able to learn in a new academic setting that allows you to challenge yourself. Additionally, you're expanding your mind just being surrounded by people from a different culture. The amount of kindness and happiness that I found in Amsterdam rubbed off on me. Going overseas one can find people waiting for them with open arms and ready to share their culture.

Being back in your home town you're surrounded by the same people stuck in the same routines which often times blind sides you from taking a moment to enjoy life. Traveling and studying overseas has helped me to take that moment where I ever I am to appreciate the people i'm around, the food, the culture. Going over seas has been a life changing experience, i've learned about a new culture, language and have made my own personal growths.

How can this program be improved?
As far as the Dutch course, I think the amount of material that is expected to be learned by the end of the two weeks and the pace of the course is a bit much especially for people learning a second language for the first time. However, the professors were incredibly understanding and supportive.
Yes, I recommend
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Had a great time!

Amsterdam is a lovely city. Beautiful canals, nice people, museums and loads of fun all in one place.

I took a Dutch language and culture course, because I thought it can help me to fit in better, know the place in depth and get the most out of the overseas adventure. In two weeks time, I am happy to be able to order drinks in Dutch and to understand some phrases around myself.

And VU's team was supportive in the summer programme. The pick-up service, opening party and introduction programme were satisfactory. Overall, this is a pretty well-built programme.

Yes, I recommend
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Great Experience - work hard, play hard!

I had a lot of fun studying a neurodegenerative disease course at VU. The content and lecture material was current, new and exciting as well as informative and challenging to the students. Housing organised by the Summer School at the Student Hotel was brilliant - I thought. Rooms were clean, individual bathrooms, gym and lounge areas within the main building. And most importantly, a bicycle to ride to uni! Also got to meet some really amazing people who's rooms would be a couple doors away.

Staying in Amsterdam, I had an absolute blast. Everything was close to get to, central wasn't too far and there was always something to do. The classes also finished at a reasonable hour so students had free time to explore the city. The course was enough to study for and learn from, but not too much that it became a burden. So, you get to work hard AND play hard~

Definitely recommend!

Yes, I recommend


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Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is a comprehensive research university, ranked amongst the top 100 universities of the world. Since its founding in 1880 interdisciplinary research questions from society have been leading in its education. Throughout the...