Masters in Development Studies- Netherlands and Belgium- which one is better?

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Clao
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#1
Report Thread starter 6 years ago
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Hello everyone. I was wondering if there was anyone that could provide some input on K.U. Leuven's Masters in Culture and Development Studies. Is it very hard to get it?
I was also wondering about Utrecht's Masters in Development Studies and would like to know if someone around here knows the master and also if it is really har do be admitted to this programme?

I want to apply in total to 3 universities. My options are: International Development Studies at University of Amsterdam (I've heard is really hard to get in) and ISS (Institute of Social Sciences- Erasmus Rotterdam University). I need to choose a third option between Utrecht's programme and K.U. Leuven so I need your help.

Also... what do you think of me other 2 options (ISS and UvA)?

Thanks! =)
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Tcannon
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Your choice really depends on your areas of interest, hence fit with your Dev programme's focus.

In general Amsterdam IDS Institute has a good reputation to combine theory with practice, field project and flexible teaching. The work shops and guest speaker series are educational. There are a few well known lecturers with publications at Amsterdam. I heard that some students have prior experience (employment, volunteering, internships) and contribute to class room discussions. Good eco systems for ideas and networking.

ISS is small and expensive, hence enrollment only with funding affordable. The research focus (growth, gender equality, governance, mainly Africa) is smaller, but it produces good work and grads end up in relevant jobs. But the tuition is not subsidized and hence higher than Amsterdam for EU students. Most international students are funded and receive scholarships from the EU or Dutch gov. I think it is 15 month programme vs standard 12 month for most Dutch MSc.

Amsterdam and ISS are considered as the leading DEV programmes in Holland, great choice. I am not familiar with Utrecht and KU Leuven DEV. For my interest, I may choose Groningen or VU over Utrecht. In Belgium, I may prefer the MSc Dev syllabus at UC Namur & Louvain.
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Clao
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Report Thread starter 6 years ago
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Thank you so much! This answer really helped me.
Yeah, actually my top choices are ISS and UvA. The financial thing to me is not that much of a problem, not because I have lots of money, but because I am a non EU student, so they're both pretty much equally expensive to me. I need funding in either case.


The thing is that I've heard that being admitted to the IDS programme at UvA is really hard... so I will apply and give it a chance, knowing that the possibilities to get in are pretty narrow. I need to apply to at least 3 universities to keep my options open.


Also, what you say about IDS programme at UvA is what I want: theory and practice. That's what I'm looking for in a Masters programme. Do you know if ISS has the same reputation? Does ISS only focus on theory or also gives students tools to work in applied fields such as social policy, governmental organisations or intergovernmental organisations?


Which programme at VU do you recomend? Also, I will keep on looking for Utrecht's Masters programme to see its reputation and quality.


Thank you! =)
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Tcannon
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I now get it that as international student, you may pay overseas fees. I assumed wrongly that you are EU student and the tuition difference is rather dear btw ISS and other DEVs.

I like UvAmst IDS as it gets the balance right btw theory (research track) and practice (policy analysis). It can leverage on other departments' knowledge and the syllabus offers more electives (see three key research tracks). IDS works with some NGOs and to me, IDS has more interesting themes. Incidentally, there is a mandatory 9 week project in a developing country where you can gather field experience and apply your theory. With popularity comes competition and IDS entry may be more selective. I don't have the admissions rate.

ISS is positioned on a more narrow platform (fewer electives) and compared to IDS, one sees a moderate research output with regards to topics and regional concentrations. Due to its higher tuition for EU students, most unfunded EU applicants consider cost/benefit may prefer IDS or other unis with lower tuition. Within Europe, ISS has a good reputation for Dev policy analysis. After all, its degree is funded by EU's Erasmus Mundus scheme. The EU would not target or fund iffy degrees.
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Clao
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Again, your answer was really helpful.

I will ppaly to both and see what happens. For what you say, both are great programmes.

Thank you!
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