M.Sc. Ecology

  • On Campus
  • 24 months
  • EUR12000 per Year (International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

    EUR1984 per Year (EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

  • English ( Take IELTS test or Find a course )
| Amsterdam, Netherlands
The VU University Amsterdam mastersí programme in Ecology and Evolution has an explicit research oriented character and is designed to provide the students the knowledge, skills and insights to operate as an independent professional scientist in the fields of Ecology and Evolution and to become a promising candidate for a subsequent PhD position or other research related function in a fundamental or applied ecological field.



Ecologists investigate the relationships between organisms and their environment. As a masterís student you will study how nature works. Both as an aim in itself to understand and explain why the world looks like this and to develop the tools to predict and combat problems caused by pollution, biodiversity loss and climate change. You will study Ecology from a plant, animal and systems perspective. Ecological processes are investigated from the molecular level on to the regional and global scale, where field observations and experiments are used to identify ecosystemsí patterns and functions.

The Ecology and Evolution programme is a combination of the former VU Amsterdam Ecology and University of Amsterdam (UvA) Ecology and Evolution programmes. The programme offers a broad and varied package of courses from which you can chose to suit your own personal interests. You will share classes and teachers with students from the two universities. This is a unique opportunity to profit from the diversity in scientific expertise, teaching experience, research equipment and all other facilities the two universities can offer you. To participate in this programme you need to be registered as a MSc Ecology student at VU University Amsterdam.

The Ecology and Evolution is a full-time, two year programme, comprising 120 ECTS and starting in September. The first four months of each year are spent on coursework. The remainder is spent on research projects and a literature survey.

Career prospects

As a Masterís graduate in Ecology, you have a wide range of career options. The demand for ecologists is considerable these days. About 50 percent of our graduates continues their studies, pursuing a PhD project.

Others (10-15%) find jobs as researchers in applied environmental sciences and the remaining in societally related fields. They deal with topics like:

  • Nature management and restoration
  • Landscape planning
  • Plant breeding
  • Environmental consultancy
  • Teaching

Detailed Course Facts

Start dates and application deadlines

Starting in

    Apply until:
  • ( International

    Deadline applies if you do not have the same nationality as the university.

  • ( EEA

    Deadline applies if your country of nationality is in the EEA (European Economic Area)


Dates reflect the university's timezone.

Tuition fee
  • EUR12000 per year ( International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

  • EUR1984 per year ( EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Credits (ECTS) 120 ECTS
Duration full-time 24 months
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

Courses included:
Compulsory courses
  • Experimental Design and Analysis
  • Soil-Plant-Animal Interactions or Current Trends in Evolution
  • Masterclasses in Ecology and Evolution
  • Scientific Writing in English
Elective courses
  • Soil-Plant-Animal Interactions
  • Current Trends in Evolution
  • Evolution of Species Interactions
  • Spatial Processess in Ecology and Evolution
  • Ecosystem Services and Scientific Advocay
  • Microbial Ecology
  • Environmental Genomics and Adaptation


Step 1: Meet admission criteria

In order to gain admission to one of our Masterís programmes, you will need to have at least a Bachelorís degree from an accredited research university including at least three full years of academic study amounting to a minimum of 180 ECTS or equivalent. We do not require a GRE or GMAT test score.

Step 2: Prepare documents and apply online

Please prepare the following documents. You can find an explanation of each document on theapplication page. All documents should be provided in English.

  • Copy of your valid passport or ID (only for EU residents)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter of Motivation
  • Transcript (Provide a certified translation if it is not in English)
  • A description of the relevant courses you have taken during your previous higher education
  • A list of all the main literature used during your previous higher education
  • Thesis (or another sample of academic writing)
  • 2 Letters of Recommendation

International students should consider taking a Pre-Master to gain access to universities in Netherlands when:

  • You are considered ineligible for admission
  • You need to improve your academic, study, research or language skills
Search all Pre-Masters

More Information


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Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Netherlands Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam is an internationally renowned university located in the vibrant city of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. Amsterdam is one of the most multi-cultural cities in the world, boasting 179 different nationalities and English is widely spoken. At Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam78 nationalities work and study closely together, creating an international and dynamic academic community.

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