Show as: Mobile

Bachelor in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
3 years
Full time
Bachelor's degree
On campus
01 September 2021

Program description

Bachelor in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology

What attracts people to populism? How do differences between rich and poor affect a neighbourhood? To what extent does a colonial past influence societies today? Why are people concerned about climate change, but do not change their behaviour to prevent it? Where do we stand today with racism, xenophobia and “white privilege”?

The more the world throws these kinds of questions at us, the less we seem to understand them. Anthropologists shed light on issues of this kind by studying them from close up. They are different from other scientists, because they look at the world through the eyes of the people they study – in many cases people and groups that the rest of society overlooks. Anthropologists make complex subjects human and accessible.

The Bachelor’s programme in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at VU Amsterdam is ranked the best in the Netherlands the best in the Netherlands, and it is the only English Bachelor’s programme in Anthropology in the country.

Why Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at VU Amsterdam?

  • It’s the best anthropology bachelor’s programme in the Netherlands according to the 2019 Keuzegids ranking.
  • You will immediately start working with issues from your own environment, city, country and region.
  • Unlike at many other universities, you will work with students from other disciplines to find solutions to societal challenges such as globalisation, diversity and digitisation.
  • VU Amsterdam works closely with organisations and companies so that you can apply your acquired knowledge and skills and make a difference.
  • You are part of an international classroom with students and teachers from various national and religious backgrounds. Diversity is highly regarded at VU Amsterdam.
  • At VU Amsterdam, you will have the time and freedom to develop your own profile and choose what you find interesting.
  • Diversity is important at VU Amsterdam. Everyone is welcome.

Admission requirements

The admission requirements for candidates with a non-Dutch pre-university school diploma is as follows:

  1. A diploma equivalent to a Dutch VWO diploma
  2. Proof of sufficient proficiency in Mathematics
  3. Proof of sufficient proficiency in English

For more information about this programme, fill out the 'Information Request' form.

Does this course require proof of English proficiency?

The TOEFL® test is accepted by 10,000+ universities and higher education institutes in over 150 countries. Book your test today!

Learn more Advertisement

Program content

The programme in a nutshell

This three-year international specialization of the Bachelor’s programme in Anthropology expressly relates anthropology as a (social) science to modern-day societal challenges. Year 1 starts with an introduction to core concepts of anthropology, followed by immediately putting academic theory, research skills and methods into practice. In year 2 you deepen your knowledge on various anthropological key themes, such as development, migration, identity and political economy and combine anthropology with a multidisciplinary approach The third and final year focuses on the anthropology theme you are passionate about. The study programme concludes with writing a thesis based on your own ethnographic research.

Tuition fees

  • EU-EER students fee: € 2,168
  • NON-EU students fee: € 8,870


Upon completion of this program, graduates will be awarded a Bachelor in Bachelor in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology.

Continuing studies

Do you want to make a difference to our world by investigating and understanding the everyday lives of people, and by providing a critical perspective and alternative to topical social issues? As an Anthropology graduate you can find employment as, a researcher at a civil society organization, (culture) specialist in the public or private sector, journalist, policy advisor in local or national institutions, or as community manager. And if you are interested in a specific theme such as for example sustainability, this bachelor offers you the possibility to specialize.

The whole world is your professional domain. You address universal themes such as globalization, power, migration, emancipation and inequality by zooming into local situations: Right wing voters in Europe, the women’s movement in Egypt, the effects of climate change on residents in Florida… You then link your findings to anthropological theory and previous research, so that your local study generates know-how that the whole world can use!

Request info

Want to know more about this program, Bachelor in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology? Fill out the following form and include any questions you have. This information will be sent directly to the school, and a representative will respond to your enquiry.

About this institute

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Welcome to Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (‘VU Amsterdam’) is an internationally renowned research university founded in 1880. The university offers over 175 English-taught programmes at Bachelor’s, Master’s and PhD level to more than 26,000 students from all over the world. Students and staff...

Read more about this school

Why study at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

With more than 24,000 students, of which 4,088 are international, VU Amsterdam conducts cutting-edge research into problems of societal and scientific importance.

They distinguish themselves in research and education through four interdisciplinary themes:

  • Human Health and Life Sciences
  • Science for Sustainability
  • Connected World
  • Governance for Society

As a student this will help you to look beyond the boundaries of scientific disciplines, and to seek for tangible solutions for a better world.

In addition, VU Amsterdam regards diversity, whether in culture, conviction, nationality or prior education, as source of innovation and progress, and hence as special strength.

The Dutch higher education system has been ranked in the top 10 by Universitas 21. In the first Times Higher Education University Impact Ranking, VU Amsterdam is ranked 16th worldwide. In this ranking, universities are assessed based on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in order to measure the impact of the universities on society. In the Academic Ranking of World Universities 2018 (Shanghai Ranking) VU Amsterdam holds the 104th position. The international QS World University ranking 2021 places the Vrije Universiteit at number 236 in the world, which means the Vrije Universiteit belongs to the top 20% of the world.

At VU Amsterdam, the teaching style can be described as student-centred: they encourage students to develop their own opinions through independent and creative thinking. This means that teaching is mainly conducted in small tutorials, where interactivity is the norm rather than the exception. At every opportunity, students are encouraged to engage in constructive dialogue with their professors.

Contact info

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Netherlands, the

 Show phone number

Request information

Want to know more about Bachelor in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology? Fill out the following form and we'll pass your details on to a representative from the school, who will respond to your enquiry.


Be the first to write a review!

Career test - find your perfect career

Take our free career test that will match you with programs and careers based on your interests and personality.

Take the test

You may also like...