Study Abroad
Amsterdam - Social Sciences & Humanities Add to favorites
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands

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Amsterdam - Social Sciences & Humanities

Why Amsterdam?

Are you eager to take an independent, fresh look at the world—and at yourself? Let Amsterdam redefine your perspective. This progressive city is known for its cutting-edge contributions to the arts, business, politics, and social policy, and for its importance in the history of Europe and the world.

Our Social Sciences & Humanities Program takes advantage of the city’s unique balance of history and contemporary culture, and lets you structure your studies at the prestigious Universiteit van Amsterdam (UvA) and at the IES Abroad Center.

What You'll Study

With a strong focus on internationalism, the UvA offers a wide range of courses in many areas of study, including Conflict & Cultural Diversity, Globalization & International
Relations, and Sociology. You can also choose from IES Abroad’s course offerings in Studio Art, Gender Studies, Dutch language, and other subjects.

Daily Life

Amsterdam will be your classroom. Many courses include hands-on components to help you explore Amsterdam and its surroundings while learning about the city’s past and present. Study the history of Amsterdam by visiting some of the city’s historic spots, including Anne Frank’s home and the Rembrandt House. Explore the city’s well- known museums, such as the Rijksmuseum, the Van Gogh Museum, and the Stedelijk Museum. Find out more about the diverse local culture by hopping on a bike to tour the city’s historic neighborhoods.

We want you to feel at home in Amsterdam, so we do everything we can to help you integrate into life in the city. From housing to cultural events, our job is to make sure you have the most authentic study abroad experience possible.

$5 Million in Financial Aid

We firmly believe that financial limitations should not prevent a qualified student from participating in an IES Abroad Program. This is why we commit $5 million to our financial aid programs.


Our mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences.

We offer unique courses that explore Dutch language, culture, and the arts. The world-class professors and course options at the Universiteit van Amsterdam (UvA) enhance your academic experience and provide you with new perspectives each day in class.

While in Amsterdam, you take 15–18 credits per semester. UvA courses and IES Abroad courses are worth up to 6 credits each.

Create your own academic experience by selecting from the following required and optional components:

  • One or more Universiteit van Amsterdam (UvA) courses (at least one UvA course is required, credits vary)
  • One or more IES Abroad course(s) - (optional, credits vary)


This is a list of planned course offerings. After you are accepted, you will see a list of final course offerings in your MyIESabroad account.

Art History
Course Name Term Language Credits
AH 315 - Highlights of Dutch Art: From Rembrandt to Mondriaan and Beyond Fall, Spring English 4
Course Name Term Language Credits
AR 250 - Studio Rietveld: An Introduction to Studio Art in Amsterdam Fall, Spring English 3
Cultural Studies
Course Name Term Language Credits
CU/DU 101 - Dutch Language and Culture Fall, Spring Dutch 2
IC/CU 221 - Dialogues on Difference Fall, Spring English 3
Dutch Language
Course Name Term Language Credits
CU/DU 101 - Dutch Language and Culture Fall, Spring Dutch 2
Gender Studies
Course Name Term Language Credits
SS/SO/GS 315 - Introduction to the Study of Sexuality and Gender in the Context of Amsterdam Fall, Spring English 4
Intercultural Communication
Course Name Term Language Credits
IC/CU 221 - Dialogues on Difference Fall, Spring English 3
IC/PS 311 - Cross Cultural Psychology Fall, Spring English 3
Course Name Term Language Credits
PO/LW 350 - Major Issues in Law and Society: A Comparative Context Fall, Spring English 4
Political Science
Course Name Term Language Credits
PO/LW 350 - Major Issues in Law and Society: A Comparative Context Fall, Spring English 4
Course Name Term Language Credits
IC/PS 311 - Cross Cultural Psychology Fall, Spring English 3
Course Name Term Language Credits
SS/SO/GS 315 - Introduction to the Study of Sexuality and Gender in the Context of Amsterdam Fall, Spring English 4
Social Studies
Course Name Term Language Credits
SS/SO/GS 315 - Introduction to the Study of Sexuality and Gender in the Context of Amsterdam Fall, Spring English 4

Partner Institution(s)

About the Universiteit van Amsterdam
The Universiteit van Amsterdam prides itself on its wide range of multidisciplinary offerings and its strong focus on internationalization. These qualities are reflected in the large number of international and study abroad students at the Universiteit. Rooted in 17th century Amsterdam, the university is known for its rich intellectual, artistic, and commercial history, and for its contributions to contemporary scholarship, business, and politics.

The Social Sciences & Humanities Program is part of the Amsterdam Exchange Program - Social Sciences (AEXP-Social Sciences) formerly known as the the Undergraduate Certificate Program (UCP) in the College of Social Sciences (CSS) at the UvA.

As an IES Abroad student, your course of study falls largely under the Amsterdam Exchange Program - Social Sciences (AEXP-Social Sciences) within the College of Social Sciences (CSS). Requests to take a course outside of the AEXP-Scocial Sciences are handled on a case-by-case basis, as the individual departments at the UvA have the final admission decision to each specific course.

Visit the AEXP-Social Sciences course catalog to get a sense of courses that may be offered during your term abroad.  (Note: Be sure to click on the different "clusters" to see a full range of what may be available.)

Courses at the UvA are listed in ECTS credits. 2 ECTS credits equal 1 U.S./IES Abroad credit. For example, a course worth 12 ECTS is worth 6 IES Abroad credits.

You can select from courses in:
  • Anthropology
  • Art
  • Conflict and Cultural Diversity
  • Dutch Society
  • Ethnicity, Migration, and Nationalism
  • Geography Planning and Development
  • Gender and Sexuality
  • Globalization and International Relations
  • Media and Communication
  • Politics, Governance, and Democracy
  • Sociology
  • Urban Studies and Global Health
If you qualify and have the right background, you may take up to two courses in the Faculty of Economics and Business whose Amsterdam school of Business (ASB) is EQUIS-accredited. Prerequisites and other requirements apply.
Depending upon availability, you may also be able to take a class in the Faculty of Humanities in one of the following areas:
  • Arts and Media Studies
  • English & Literature
  • European and American Studies
  • History
  • Philosophy and Discourse
Please note that these opportunities are limited.

Field Trips & Events

Even though your adventure starts in Amsterdam, our field trips take you beyond the city to discover the culture and traditions of your host country. You share a portion of the cost with IES Abroad. Here are a few possible destinations:

Ardennes, Belgium
2 Days| Fall
Take a weekend getaway in nature, with campfires and outdoor activities.

1 Day | Fall
Take a guided walking tour of the beautiful city of Gouda in South Holland and make your own stroopwafel (a famous Dutch cookie).

National Park Hoge Veluwe and Kroller Muller Museum
1 Day | Fall
Visit the largest privately managed conservation area in the Netherlands - home to several endangered species, as well as visit the park's museum.

2 Days | Spring
Explore this university city with its beautiful medieval architecture and lively arts and culture. Visit the famous labyrinth caves of Limburg, and take a walk in the spectacular hilly countryside.

1 Day | Spring
See Rotterdam's amazing modern architecture on a guided walking tour through this rebuilt city. In the afternoon, you can explore Rotterdam's many museums.

Course-Related Trips

Course-related trips are academically-focused and associated with courses. They are organized to complement IES Abroad courses and contribute to a general knowledge of Amsterdam culture and society. Participation is based on course registration.

Past examples include:

  • Tours of contemporary art museums and galleries
  • Walking tour of Amsterdam's neighborhoods
  • Guided tour of the Red-light District
  • Excursion to Haarlem and the Hague

Daily Life

Part of making you feel at home in Amsterdam is doing our best to help you feel safe and cared for. Whether it is the orientation program that makes you feel prepared, your housing that is well-located and comfortable, or the field trips that take you to places off the beaten path—we’re all about our student services.


The program begins with an orientation that introduces you to the IES Abroad Amsterdam staff, your fellow students, and the city of Amsterdam.

Our Comprehensive Orientation & Re-Entry Experience (CORE™) begins right when you arrive and continues through the semester with activities focusing on academic and cultural adjustment. Detailed information about housing, public transportation, academics, culture, health and safety, and other important topics are also covered.

You have the option to join the International Student Network’s (ISN) orientation at the University of Amsterdam, which is led by Dutch students.

Local field trips and activities are also arranged, as well as an overnight orientation trip, where you’ll have the opportunity to learn more about the Netherlands and Dutch Culture.


We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave Amsterdam, it will feel like home.

You can choose from two different apartment options. Both options include an en-suite bathroom with shower.

Shared Studio 
Share a spacious double room in a studio apartment with an IES Abroad student or another international student. Each room is equipped with a kitchenette and an en-suite bathroom. A resident assistant lives on-site.

Private Student Residence 
Live in a single room with a private bathroom. You share a kitchen with other students on your floor. The building features 24-hour reception and a gym. Single rooms carry an additional cost.

Meals are not included in either option, but you can cook your own meals. Meals are not included in either option, but most students cook meals in their apartments or eat in nearby student cafeterias (Mensas) and restaurants.

Extracurricular Activities & Cultural Events

Redefine the way you live and learn in Amsterdam through cultural events, such as:

  • Seeing the windmills in the Zaanse Schans
  • Attending a local soccer match
  • Touring the Keukenhof tulip garden (spring only)
  • Visiting Hoge Veluwe National Park
  • Bicycling to Volendam and Marken
  • Exploring the medieval castle Muiderslot and the Isle of Pampus

Get to Know Your New City

Cycle Everywhere

Rent or buy a cheap bike and get around Amsterdam the way the Dutch do!

Enjoy Traditional Dutch Dishes

From excellent coffee and sweet stroopwafels and poffertjes (tasty little pancakes), to more unusual fare like thick fries with Dutch-Indonesian peanut sauce or stamppot (a hearty dish of potatoes, onions, kale, root vegetables, and sausage), eating in Amsterdam is a real treat.

Shop the Amsterdam Street Markets

Stock up on fresh produce, cheese, and other food, as well as souvenirs and gifts at the Albert Cuypmarkt. Or dig for the perfect find at the I-J Hallen vintage market.

Appreciate Art

Amsterdam is home to so many art museums, from the “big ones,” like the Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh Museum to lesser known gems like the Museum Willet-Hothuysen and the Foam Photography Museum.

Swing Out Over Amsterdam

For a thrill, try riding the swings found on the observation deck on the new A’DAM Tower. Or just marvel at the beautiful 360° views of the city.

Program Cost

Consider these prices as a starting point. We encourage you to contact your study abroad office to determine the actual cost to you when factoring in financial aid, scholarships, your home school policies, and other factors.

Term: Fall 2019
Term Tuition Housing Insurance Total
Fall 2019
Academic Year
Term: Spring 2019
Term Tuition Housing Insurance Total
Spring 2019 $15,230 $4,940 $230 $20,400

Use our budget worksheet to calculate your costs

$5 Million in Financial Aid

We firmly believe that financial limitations should not prevent a qualified student from participating in an IES Abroad Program. This is why we commit $5 million to our financial aid programs.

Our Center

The IES Abroad Amsterdam Center is housed in the Oranje-Nassau Kazerne, former military barracks that has since been turned into offices and apartments, and located across from the famous Artis Zoo. Features include: a small library, classroom space, staff offices, WiFi access, and space for students to meet and study.

Our Staff

Chantal Omloo

Center Director

Chantal Omloo earned an M.A. in the History of International Relations at the University of Utrecht and an MSc in Development Studies at the School for Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London. Her academic focus was centered on economic development in Sub Saharan Africa and she has published a number of articles in this field.

Prior to joining IES Abroad in 2001, Chantal worked for Voluntary Services Overseas (VSO), an NGO based in the United Kingdom. Chantal managed customized programs for IES Abroad out of the London Center before moving back to her native Netherlands to become our Amsterdam Center Director.

IES Abroad Staff

IES Abroad Staff

Chantal Omloo
Center Director

Flor Macias Delgado
Student and Diversity Affairs Specialist

Rosa de Hoog
Program Coordinator Social Sciences and Humanities Program

Anabelle Goulette
Student Affairs and Administration Coordinator

Diana Kaekebeke
Academic Program Coordinator



Depending on your program, you will be taught by faculty from the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, Vrije Universiteit, Universiteit van Amsterdam, or the IES Abroad Amsterdam Center.