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Masters in Finance (online)

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Program overview
1 year
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available
Virtual open day
Virtual open day
Start dates
September 2022

September 2023

September 2024

Program description

Masters in Finance (online)

What determines stock prices? What’s the best way to finance a particular company? And how can the financial markets and financial regulations help society as a whole to prosper?

This top-ranked Finance Master’s programme, which is offered both online and on-site, explores these questions through real-life business cases, many of which are led by people who work in the financial industry themselves. You’ll look at the macro-level of financial economics: how financial markets help maximise economic growth. You’ll also look at the inner workings of financial markets and corporations – and how financial regulation is the bridge between these two sides. 

The Finance programme has a unique proposition by offering the option to follow the programme either in person or virtually. Both have their specific benefits and we make sure you will not be compromising on quality, as both online and on-site access is tailored to what is needed for this way of learning and teaching. Do you prefer to follow it online for the first semester and switch halfway during the year or vice versa? That is no problem. Professionals, international and Dutch students are able to shape the programme to their personal needs.

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Admission requirements

As a Master's student in Finance, you need to have a genuine interest in the area of finance, an inquiring mind, the capacity to cope with the rapid pace of work, an aptitude for picking out key points from large volumes of material, the ability to work accurately under pressure, good communication skills and a critical attitude towards your own results and those of others.

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. You need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):

  • Corporate Finance: Berk & DeMarzo: Corporate Finance, Pearson, or equivalent
  • Investments: Bodie, Kane, and Marcus: Investments, or equivalent
  • Financial Markets and Institutions: Mishkin, Matthews and Guiliodori: Economics of Money, Banking and Financial Markets, Pearson or equivalent
  • Mathematics: Sydsaeter, Hammond and Strom: Essential Mathematics for Economic Analysis, Prentice-Hall, or equivalent
  • Business Statistics: Berenson, Levine, Szabat: Basic Business Statistics, Pearson, or equivalent

The admission board wants to stress the intensity of the programme: reading scientific articles and writing papers will be a key part, all at 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 speaking 6,5
  • Minimum score listening 6,5
  • Minimum score writing 6,0
  • Minimum score reading 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. 

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Program content

The Finance Master’s programme is broken down into three thematic pillars on which both the core courses and electives focus: asset pricing, corporate finance and institutional finance. But you’ll also pick up valuable financial methodologies, quantitative skills, research skills and preparation for the job market.

To break it down:

  • You’ll take four core courses:

    • Asset Pricing – Learn what drives stock prices on the financial markets by competing against each other as portfolio managers. You’ll directly apply your knowledge of asset pricing by investing in (virtual) stocks to generate the most money – may the best team win!

    • Advanced Corporate Finance – You’ll work with case-studies from Harvard Business to assess how real-life companies should finance their activities in the most optimal way for their situation.

    • Financial Markets and Institutions – Led by a professor who also works for the Dutch Central Bank, the course will teach you about financial infrastructure: how financial institutions are linked and what their various responsibilities are.

    • Empirical Finance – You’ll study financial econometrics and statistical methodologies, and you’ll test the validity of economic theories. You’ll work with Rabobank to forecast which loans will not be repaid and how to predict bankruptcy.

  • You’ll take two electives, each of which relates to one of the three pillars.

  • You’ll conduct a research project in small groups that will allow you to apply your newly acquired knowledge and skills, as well as preparing you to write your Master’s thesis.

  • You’ll have the opportunity to take an internship.

  • Throughout the programme, you’ll focus on ethics in the financial industry, preparation for the labour market, and self-development.

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.

Program delivery

VU Amsterdam offers the possibility to complete the MSc in Finance fully online. In this way, you can earn an MSc diploma from this renowned research university even when you cannot travel to Amsterdam.

Online equivalent to on-site

All features and conditions of the online version of the Finance master, such as entry requirements, learning goals, and tuition, are equivalent to the very successful on-campus version of the master’s program. Upon successful completion of the online version, you will receive the exact same diploma as in the on-site version of this degree.

Option to switch between Online and On-site

Two times in the academic year you can choose to belong to the on-site group or the online group. These choices will have to be made early in August for the first semester (period September to December) and early in December for the second semester (period January to July). So, you can decide to follow the first semester online, and the second semester on-site, or vice versa, or to follow both semesters online. The choice is yours and you are free to switch between online and on-site versions provided you communicate your decision to the program administration in the aforementioned months.

Technical Requirements

To follow the online courses a sufficiently equipped computer with a webcam and a stable internet connection is required.

Tuition fees

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


Master of Science (MSc) in Finance

Career opportunities

Once you have completed the programme, you are a valuable part of any company, by being able to provide a pivotal role in bringing the numbers and the results together.  

Throughout the programme, you’ll have taken workshops that will help you find your ideal role, write the perfect CV and covering letter, and ace the interview.

The university has close connections with the Dutch Central Bank as well as companies in Amsterdam’s Zuidas business district – these are reflected both in the programme itself and in the future job opportunities of its graduates. Furthermore, VU Amsterdam has a reputation for its broader societal focus, which means the programme also applies ethical questions to the financial sector, for example, allowing students to discuss dilemmas they may face in the industry.

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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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