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Masters in Business Administration: Management Consulting

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Program overview
1 year
Full time
Start dates
16,630 EUR
September 2021

16,630 EUR
September 2022

16,630 EUR
September 2023

Program description

Masters in Business Administration: Management Consulting

Want to find out if a career as a consultant is for you? In the Management Consulting Master’s programme, you’ll apply various different disciplines in a project-based environment to prepare you for the next step in your career as a consultant. You’ll also come away with the research, communication and presentation skills you need to become an effective consultant.

Prepare to work hard – just like you would at a consultancy firm. Because you’ll be looking at everything from change management and the development of business models to the ethics of management consulting and the acquisition of clients. You’ll be combining an academic mind-set (learning theories and thinking critically) with consulting in practice (gaining real-life experience with businesses in the field). In order to be a management consultant, you’ve got to do a lot of things – and do them well. And this programme is the place to start.

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Admission requirements

We welcome and look for motivated and ambitious students who are actively developing themselves and are aware of their position and role in society. In order to be successful in this programme you will need a solid academic basis in, for instance, (International) Business Administration, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, and other related disciplines. Typically, successful students in this programme have at least a 7 average grade (or an equivalent GPA score for international students) in the third year of their Bachelor’s programme*, or a GMAT score of 600. Prior relevant work experience and experience with volunteering or other citizenship behaviours are encouraged and also taken into account.

Admission requirements

In order to gain admission to our Master’s programme, you need to have at least a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited research university including at least three full years of academic study amounting to a minimum of 180 EC or equivalent. We do not require a GRE or GMAT test score, but we do take into account your motivation, prior relevant work experiences, and any relevant volunteering experiences and/or citizenship behaviors. Furthermore you need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):


  • De Wit, B., Meyer, R. (2010) Strategy: Process, Content, Context. An International Perspective. 4th edition, London: Thomson

Organization Theory and Change:

  • Jones, G.R. (2012) Organizational Theory, Design and Change. 7th edition, Upper Saddle River: Pearson Prentice Hall
  • O’Mahoney and Mangham (2013) Management Consultancy 2nd edition, Oxford: Oxford University Press

Research Methods:

  • Saunders, Lewis, & Thornhill (2012). Research Methods for Business Students, 6th Edition. Edinburgh: Pearson Education Limited/Prentice Hall

English language proficiency

The admission board wants to stress the intensity of the programme: reading scientific articles and writing papers will be a key part, all in a very high pace. Your English language skills, both oral and written, are extremely important in this programme. As you will have to communicate frequently with your fellow students and you will be working with and for international companies.

VU Amsterdam requires all applicants to take an English test. You can already apply online without having the test results. We do advise you to plan a test date as soon as possible. Below you will find the minimum English test scores for the programme: 

IELTS (academic):

  • Minimum general score 6,5
  • Minimum score writing 6,0


  • Paper based test 580
  • Internet based test 92

Cambridge English

  • Cambridge Proficiency Exam A, B, C
  • Cambridge Advanced Exam A, B, C

The Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers the TOEFL ITP English-language proficiency test. The test is offered by the VU Taalloket.

Does this course require proof of English proficiency?

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Program content

The Management Consulting Master’s will teach you the theories of management consulting and organisational change, but also hone your skills in communicating your recommendations, developing business models and carrying out consulting projects. In addition to Management Consulting courses, you’ll be able to take electives from other Business Administration specialization programmes.

To break it down:

  • You’ll take two mandatory courses:
    • Management and Practice of Consulting – Uncover your role as a consultant and explore the contemporary challenges of the client-consultant relationship.
    • Strategy Evaluation and Advice – Learn the different criteria for evaluating strategies, and how to apply them to your own advice and second opinions.
  • You’ll take three elective courses in period 2 and 3; these should include at least two of the following three courses:
    • Business Model Innovation – Study an existing consultancy’s business model and look for ways to improve it.
    • Organisation Development and Change – Learn various perspectives on change, and develop your critical thinking on change conduct.
    • Consulting Project – A four-week, group consulting project at a real-life client, such as a bank or consultancy firm.
  • You’ll take a course in Business Ethics in Management Consulting – you’ll interview a consultant about their ethical dilemmas and discuss these issues with your peers.
  • In your second semester, you’ll learn academic research skills and put them straight into practice by writing your Master’s thesis.
  • Whatever your personal career ambitions, you can tailor your Master’s to ensure success. Select from many potential electives and three different types of internships to customise your Master’s. Choose to specialise exclusively in Management Consulting or generalise your degree with other BA courses from Human Resource Management, International Management, Leadership & Change Management or Strategy & Organisation.

Scholarships & funding

With our own scholarship, the VU Fellowship Programme (VUFP), we offer highly motivated students with excellent study results the unique opportunity to pursue a Master’s degree with financial support provided by the university. The VUFP scholarship is a tuition fee waiver. The Holland Scholarship Programme (HSP) is meant for students from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) who want to follow a Master’s programme in the Netherlands. VU Amsterdam embraces diversity as an enrichment to our teaching, research and our contribution to society. This scholarship is specifically intended for excellent students who contribute to the diversity at our campus. As an international student planning to study at VU Amsterdam, you can apply for a variety of grants and bursaries.

Tuition fees

  • EU-EER students fee: € 2,168
  • NON-EU students fee: € 16,630


On completion of this program, students will receive a Masters in Business Administration: Management Consulting

Continuing studies

  • What skills make you interesting to potential future employers?
    • You’ll come out of the programme not only with knowledge and theory of consulting, but also skills in communication, research, acquisition, presentations and conducting interviews.
  • What kinds of jobs are available to you?
    • For obvious reasons, a Master’s in Management Consulting is a passport to a career in consulting – whether in a large or a smaller firm. But roles in research, government policymaking or start-ups are also open to you.
  • What have alumni of the programme gone on to do?
    • 75% of graduates now work in major consulting firms such as KPMG, Accenture or PwC, or as internal consultants in companies like PostNL. The programme’s focus on acquisition and entrepreneurialism means that some graduates go on to start their own businesses.
  • How does the programme help prepare students for the job market?
    • Our alumni mentor programme helps coach students in their transition from their Master’s studies to future employment. Plenty of hands-on experience with companies throughout the programme, plus the possibility of doing an internship, means that many students have job offers before they’ve finished the programme.

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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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