M.A. On Campus

Arts and Culture Design Cultures

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

12 months
16630 EUR/year
2168 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


Do you want to learn about how design shapes the world? Then follow the Arts and Culture Design Cultures MA programme offered at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.


Interiors, fashion, artefacts, graphics and digital design define affect nearly every area of our lives. Design Cultures takes a Humanities perspective and explores the history and theory of design in connection with contemporary issues such as identity, ecology and inclusion. Other programmes train students on how to design objects. This programme will train you on how to interpret, reflect and write about design.

This Arts and Culture Design Cultures MA programme offered at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam raises the following questions: What makes a design iconic? How is design used to construct national identity? How can we approach design from a post-colonial, ecological and feminist perspective? How do designers think? Why does the very same object mean different things to different users?

What you will learn

You will acquire solid research skills and learn how to generate in-depth, design related content for museum texts, articles, videos or podcasts. Moreover, you will get access to professional networks where our graduates are now established.

When you graduate, you will be well-qualified to work in the fields of media editing, teaching, academic research, journalism, exhibitions and the design industries.


Our graduates achieve expertise in design, distinguishing them in an increasingly specialized job market. They are capable of critically analysing, situating and reflecting on design as a topic for research.

Promotion alumni sessions Master’s day

During the Master’s day, you can also meet our (international) alumni during several workshops. In these sessions they will tell you more about career opportunities after finishing your Master’s degree.

Programme Structure

Courses include:
  • Methods of Design Analysis: The Meaning of Design 
  • Design, Culture and Society 
  • Trending Topics Arts and Culture 
  • The Arts and Crafts of 'Dutch' Design  
  • Design in Words: Criticism, Writing and Theory 

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months

Start dates & application deadlines

More details

The next VU Online Master's Event will take place on Saturday 5 March.




On Campus

Academic requirements

We are not aware of any academic requirements for this programme.

Other requirements

General requirements

  • A Bachelor’s degree from an accredited research university. Your degree should include at least three full years of academic study amounting to a minimum of 180 ECTS or the equivalent.
  • The programme is designed for students with an academic Bachelor’s degree in design, fashion, art or (visual) cultural studies. You may also be accepted if you have an academic Bachelor’s degree in other disciplines of the Humanities (history, journalism, communication studies) or in anthropology or sociology, with a major or specialisation in design, fashion, art or visual culture (equal to a minimum of 30 ECTS).
  • Create an enrollment application in Studielink
  • Complete your application in Vuweb
  • Pay the application fee (€100)
  • Copy of your valid passport or ID
  • CV
  • 1 or 2 Letters of recommendation
  • Statement of Intent (Letter of Motivation)
  • Transcript of records
  • Thesis 
  • A description of the relevant courses followed and literature used during your previous higher education

Tuition Fee

To alway see correct tuition fees
  • International

    16630 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 16630 EUR per year during 12 months.
  • EU/EEA

    2168 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the tuition of 2168 EUR per year during 12 months.

Living costs for Amsterdam

1000 - 1500 EUR /month
Living costs

The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Our partners

Arts and Culture Design Cultures
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam


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