Sustaining natural biodiversity and protecting the environment is impossible without extensive knowledge of ecology and evolution.

The Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED) offers a state-of-the-art Research Master's programme in Ecology and Evolution. The aim of the programme is to promote understanding of: *the relationships between living organisms *the extinction and evolution of species *the functioning of ecosystems *how organisms live, interact and disperse on earth Ecology and Evolution offers a tailor-made individual study programme in which you focus on topics of personal interest, and choose from a variety of courses and a wide array of research projects.

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline Start in 1 September: May (non-EEA: February).
Tuition fee
  • EUR 12000 Year (Non-EEA)
  • EUR 1906 Year (EEA)
Start date
Credits (ECTS) 120 ECTS
Duration full-time 24 months
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

Students in this track begin the programme with some coursework on cutting-edge topics in Ecology and Evolution, by the second semester they willacquire hands-on research experience in their first research projects. Indeed, most of the track's two years are devoted to developing the necessary research skills in projects of your own choosing, within the University of Amsterdam or abroad. A thesis completes the curriculum.

Based on their background and interests, students may specialise in one of six majors, teaching state-of-the-art insights into both fundamental and applied ecology and evolutionary biology. It is by no means necessary to pursue such specialisation - the majors described below also serve to showcase the foci of particular expertise in Ecology and Evolution available in the research institute IBED.

Students benefit from a tailor-made individual study programme in which they focus on topics of personal interest, choose from a variety of courses and a wide array of research projects that are carried out in Amsterdam or abroad (for examples please do have a look in our digital database of research projects).

The six majors are:

  • Ecological and Evolutionary Dynamics
  • Spatial Ecology
  • Paleo-ecology and Global Change
  • Systematic and Evolutionary Biology
  • Tropical Ecology
  • Computational Geo-Ecology

Professional specialization within the Masters programme

In general, Masters students are trained to become independent researchers. But at the UvA Faculty of Science you can also choose to complete your Masters programme with a professional specialization, that focuses on other skills than doing research.

There are three professional specializations available:

  • Science Communication (in Dutch)
  • Teaching (in Dutch)
  • Management, Policy Analysis & Entrepreneurship.

Degree requirements

A Master of Science in Biological Sciences is awarded upon successful completion of the core courses in the curriculum (19 EC), elective courses (up to 11 EC), at least two independent research projects (in total at least 80 EC) and a written thesis (10 EC). This translates into a total of 120 ECTS credits.


Previous education

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

Additional language requirements:

  • Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English: B1
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English: B1
  • IELTS overall band: 6.5
  • IELTS listening: 6
  • IELTS reading: 6
  • IELTS writing: 6
  • IELTS speaking: 6
  • TOEFL paper based: 580
  • TOEFL computer based: 235
  • TOEFL internet based: 90

Work Experience

No work experience is required.

More Information


Accredited by: NVAO in: Netherlands

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University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

Netherlands A modern university with a rich history, the University of Amsterdam (UvA) traces its roots back to 1632, when the Golden Age school Athenaeum Illustre was established to train students in trade and philosophy. Today, with more than 30,000 students, 5,000 staff and 250 study programmes (Bachelor's and Master's), many of which are taught in English, it is one of the larger comprehensive universities in Europe.

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