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Curating Art & Cultures

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
1 year
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available
English, Dutch

About this program

Curating Art & Cultures

Learn the academic and the practical skills to become a curator

Are you ready to investigate museum displays from multiple perspectives? Are you keen to intern at a museum, directly contributing to curating exhibitions yourself? And are you looking to become a curator of the future?

The Dual Master's in Curating Art and Cultures is a unique, two-year programme offered jointly by the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU), the University of Amsterdam (UvA), and leading museums and cultural institutions in the Netherlands. Taking place in both the lecture hall and the exhibition space, this interdisciplinary Master's programme prepares you for a career as a professional curator by strengthening your disciplinary and theoretical foundations, and equipping you with the research skills and practical experience needed to achieve your ambitions.

You will spend half of the programme taking core courses related to curating and collecting, as well as elective courses in your field of interest, such as art history, cultural history or design. The other half of the programme provides you with the unique opportunity to do an internship at one of our partner institutions, spending an entire year under the supervision of a curator and contributing first-hand to several projects in the museum.

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Admission requirements

The Master's programme in Curating Art and Cultures is open for application to students with a Bachelor's degree from an accredited university in:

  • Art History,
  • Cultural Studies,
  • History, and
  • VU Bachelor Media, Kunst, Design en Architectuur (MKDA),

or an equivalent humanities Bachelor's degree with a minimum of one full semester (30EC) in one of these disciplines, or the history of design or fashion (e.g. a minor).

Dutch Language requirements

The internship at a Netherlands-based museum or cultural institution is an integral component of the programme. Non-native students are recommended take a Dutch course during the first six months of the programme and in order to obtain an A1 or A2 certificate before commencing the internship. Please note that there are a limited number of English-only internships.

English Language requirements

You must always present official test results proving your proficiency in English. You can apply online without having the test results, but in case you haven't taken a test yet we advise you to plan a test date as soon as possible. The qualification or test result must have been awarded no more than two years prior to the proposed date of enrolment. Below you will find the minimum English test scores for the English taught programmes at the Faculty of Humanities.

An applicant should demonstrate that he or she has sufficient level of proficiency in English by meeting at least one of the following standards, no more than two (2) years before the start of the programme at the VU:

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Program content

Year 1

  • Internship part 2
  • Master Thesis Curating Art and Cultures
  • Collecting, Curating and Display I
  • Curatorial Practices in the Contemporary World II
  • Collecting, Curating and Display II
  • Curatorial Practices in the Contemporary World I
  • Internship part 1

Year 2

  • Internship part 2
  • Curatorial Practices in the Contemporary World II
  • Master Thesis

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.


  • Tuition fee for EU: € 2,209
  • Tuition fee for NON-EU/EEA: € 16,830

Career paths

As a graduate of the Dual Master's in Curating Art and Cultures programme, you will have gained both the academic knowledge and the practical work experience to become a curator of the future.

You will have learned not only about museum and curatorial studies, but also developed your own field of specialisation. You will have had direct, hands-on, professional experience as a curator-in-training, working for a whole year in one of the leading museums in the Netherlands – in areas such as organisation and policy, registration and reporting of research results, art handling, restoration and conservation, representation and communication, and production of an exhibition.

You will also have critical, reflective and communication skills that will stand you in good stead for a curatorial career at museums of art, ethnography, design and history, galleries and exhibition spaces or any other cultural institution where research into objects and cultures is central.

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About this institute

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...

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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

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