M.A. Heritage Studies: Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image

University of Amsterdam

Application deadline: Start in 1 September: April (non-EEA: April).
Tuition fee:
  • € 1,906 / Year (EEA)
  • € 10,500 / Year (Non-EEA)
Start date: September  2015
Credits (ECTS): 90 ECTS
Duration full-time: 18 months
  • English
Delivery mode: On Campus
Educational variant: Full-time

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Moving images are part of our most cherished but also fleeting cultural heritage. As well as capturing time and place, memory and history, they carry a myriad of other important data.

How is this audiovisual material preserved for future generations and how is it best presented today as a source of information, culture and entertainment, to a general or specialised audience? The Professional Master's programme Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image addresses these questions in theory and practice. Students spend the first year acquiring critical knowledge, which is put into practice during an internship during the second year. The city of Amsterdam provides an ideal location for this academic programme, and for an internship. The Master's programme is affiliated with various local and regional audiovisual institutes ( e.g. Eye Fim Institute Netherlands, the Netherlands Media Art Institute and V2_, Institute for the Unstable Media) to highlight the role of preserving and presenting moving images as key activity of archives, film museums, festivals, distributors, broadcasting companies and film studios. Archives and festival organisers not only supervise student interns, but are also in charge of some of the academic courses, contributing with a professional background to the development of an effective curriculum.


The Professional Master's programme in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image provides students with the knowledge and skills to archive audiovisual material (film, video, digital media) in an institutional context and to present such work to an audience.

The first year of this programme focuses on the history and theory of media, as well as on the historical and contemporary practices of programming and archiving. In the second year, students put their new knowledge into practice with a 10 to 14-week period of work experience. The combination of in-depth theoretical knowledge and practice-based learning makes the Professional Master's programme in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image unique in Europe.

Programme outline

The Professional Master's programme in the Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image yields 90 ECTS: 60 credits for core courses, 10 credits for a Master's thesis and 20 credits for an internship.

The specific number of credits a student is required to obtain through coursework is determined by the admissions committee and is based on the student's previous qualifications. Fulfilment of all the requirements will take at least one-and-a-half years. In exceptional circumstances, the course requirements may be completed in one year.

Most courses are open exclusively to students of the Professional Master's programme in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image, and are taught in groups of no more than 15 students.

Students can use the facilities of the Film Museum and the Institute for Sound and Vision. These two national archives are also in charge of some of the academic modules. The programme also maintains contacts with the film archives in Bologna and Dublin, the Film Museum in Düsseldorf and universities in New York, London, Berlin, Udine, Gorizia, Bergen, Oslo and Trontheim.


In the third and last semester, students take part in an internship project at an institute in the field of audiovisual archiving and presentation, either in the Netherlands or abroad.

Past internship projects include: the identification and description of nitrate film and digital restoration in the Film Museum's collection department, the development of a website for the online distribution of films for the International Film Festival Rotterdam, collaboration on the European BIRTH project on early television at the Institute for Sound and Vision, and the cataloguing and description of video works by Cardenas and Hooykaas & Stansfield at Montevideo TBA.


The Master's thesis reports on research carried out by the student under the supervision of two academic staff members involved in the programme. The subject of the thesis must be mutually agreed upon by the student and the academic adviser(s). The final text should be approximately 10,000 words. The thesis must be developed in close collaboration with one or more institutes in the field of audiovisual media archiving and presentation. Students present their theses at a joint symposium.

Degree requirements

Students who successfully complete this programme receive a Master's degree in Heritage Studies and the title Master of Arts (MA).

Credit transfer
Students who show exceptional promise during a Regular or Professional Master's programme are encouraged to continue their studies in a Research Master's programme. Once students are admitted to the Research Master's programme, they can transfer credits earned during their previous course of study towards their Research Master's degree. The examination committee determines which courses qualify for transfer.


Grade average: Applicants are expected to have an overall grade point average (GPA) equivalant to at least: B/ 3.0 (American system) 2.1 (a second class upper/division one degree in the British system) C (ECTS-system) 7.0 (Dutch system)

Written request: Students can apply from 1 December until 1 April by filling out the digital application form and uploading the necessary documents via the website of the Graduate School of Humanities (

Language test: IELTS: average score 7 TOEFL: score 100 Cambridge Advanced English: score A2 Cambridge Proficiency in English: score B1

Previous education: The Master´s in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image is open to all students with a Bachelor´s diploma from the UvA, or a recognised equivalent from another accredited university in: - Media and Culture; - another discipline whereby a minimum of 60 ECTS credits were achieved in courses related to art, culture and media (to be judged by the Examinations Board). Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image is a Professional Master's programme. Because of the limited amount of internships that are available, all prospective students of Professional Master's programmes are subject to a selection process. The selections committee will hereby scrutinise the content of a prospective student's Bachelor programme, his/her study results and general motivation.

Additional language requirements: * Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English: A2
* Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English: B1
* IELTS overall band: 7
* IELTS listening: 7
* IELTS reading: 7
* IELTS writing: 7
* IELTS speaking: 7
* TOEFL internet based: 100

English Language Requirements

IELTS band: 7
CAE score: (read more)

Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) is part of the Cambridge English suite and is targeted at a high level (IELTS 6.5-8.0). It is an international English language exam set at the right level for academic and professional success. Developed by Cambridge English Language Assessment - part of the University of Cambridge - it helps you stand out from the crowd as a high achiever.

80 (Grade B2)
TOEFL iBT® test: 100



Accredited by: NVAO in: Netherlands


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