Skip to content

Programs : Brochure

This is the program brochure page.
Program Description


Amsterdam Canal


Come spend a semester or year gaining fascinating insight into Amsterdam, one of the world’s most beautiful, dynamic, and progressive cities, on CIEE’s Social Sciences program. Your goal: examine the social, political, and cultural realities of life in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, and Europe. A challenging social sciences curriculum, exciting volunteering activities, fun special interest groups, and a homestay with a local family all ensure a truly unique international experience.
Study abroad in Amsterdam and you'll have the opportunity to:

  • Gain an insider’s perspective on Amsterdam and the Netherlands through CIEE course field trips and unique site visits
  • Take a wide range of courses in the social sciences and humanities
  • Study Dutch language, and explore and engage with the community through the International Student Network, interest groups, weekend homestays, and community engagement opportunities
  • Live in the accessible, lively, and multicultural city of Amsterdam and get around the city on your bike



Amsterdam Bridget with Bikes


Amsterdam Canal

Location Details

About Amsterdam
One hundred sixty-five canals give Amsterdam its unique charm. The Dutch capital is full of life, day and night, with world-renowned museums, art galleries, music clubs and theaters. It is a truly international and multicultural city; with 180 different nationalities represented, Amsterdam boasts one of the most diverse populations in the world. Amsterdammers are easy-going and welcoming to foreigners, and English is the unofficial second language. With over 830,000 inhabitants, Amsterdam offers the advantages of a cosmopolitan center with a small-town feel. Because the city is so compact, bicycles are the most convenient means of transportation; in fact, bicycles outnumber the people in Amsterdam!

Cultural Activities and Field Trips
During your semester abroad with CIEE Amsterdam you will have the chance to participate in several activities and excursions to expand your study abroad experience beyond the city of Amsterdam. Each semester includes an overnight trip in which we venture off the beaten path: during the fall semester, we usually explore another city in the Netherlands, while in the spring semester we trade in our urban setting for Schiermonnikoog, an island and nature preserve off the coast of the Netherlands.

Students will also have the opportunity to join two daytrips; for example, you might focus on the historical development and distinct character of another Dutch city, whereas the second will allow students to learn more about a typical “Dutch” product or invention (for example architecture in the Netherlands, the Dutch model for sustainable farming, or the Delta Works). We do not leave out Amsterdam, though. Since Amsterdam is considered the cultural heart of the Netherlands, CIEE will invite students to a soccer match, a theatre play and/or dance performance at one of Amsterdam’s many historic theaters and concert halls.

Interest Groups
The Social Sciences study abroad program offers Interest Groups as vehicles for gaining access to a wider range of Dutch locals and to better engage with the local community. Four-to-six groups are offered per semester and meet regularly to perform volunteer work or as discussion groups supplemented with special events such as theater performances, museum visits, and movie nights. At the end of the semester, each interest group has a special closing event having to do with their interest group theme. The groups are focused on different themes such as "Education in Amsterdam," where students teach English in primary schools; "Queer Amsterdam," where students gain a better insight into the queer culture in Amsterdam, "News and Media in Amsterdam," where students contribute to their own magazine published twice a semester, and "Culinary Amsterdam," where students get a taste of Dutch cuisine.

You'll have several unique volunteer opportunities allowing you to connect and give back to the community in which you live. Opportunities may include teaching English to children aged 11 - 12. In addition to these semester-long activities, CIEE Amsterdam organizes several one-time volunteer opportunities in which you can contribute to the community by helping out anywhere from a couple of hours to a full day.

University Life
You are encouraged to sign up for activities organized by the International Students Network (ISN) of the University of Amsterdam. ISN organizes activities which help students meet other international students and ease the adjustment to living in the Netherlands. Following the CIEE orientation, you will attend the ISN orientation. You can then join one of many international student groups, with which you will attend different cultural activities throughout the semester and expand your network of international and Dutch friends.

Visa Information

U.S. citizens will require a visa* in order to participate in this program. Limited information about the visa application process may be provided by the ASU Study Abroad Office and/or CIEE, but it is your sole responsibility to research, apply, and secure a visa. Failure to obtain a visa may result in your inability to participate and, ultimately, your withdrawal from the program, subject to the terms of the Study Abroad Withdrawal Policy

Consult this page for additional information regarding visas. If you need assistance securing a U.S. Passport, visit the ASU U.S. Passport Acceptance Office in Tempe.

PLEASE NOTE: Visa requirements for non U.S. citizens may differ from those for U.S. citizens; students who are not U.S. citizens are advised to contact their International Coordinator and begin independently researching the visa requirements for their nationality as soon as possible.

*At the time of writing. This information is subject to change without notice; students should independently confirm this requirement with the relevant consulate/embassy.


Academic Program & Courses

Where You'll Study - University of Amsterdam

The Social Sciences study abroad program at the University of Amsterdam was established in 1993. The CIEE program falls under the College of Social Sciences (CSS), which offers bachelor’s level programs in English. CIEE students can choose between a large number of social science courses, in addition to a limited number of humanities courses.

Academic Program
Most classes offered at the University of Amsterdam (UvA) are small in size, consisting of 30 students or less. Most meet twice a week (once for a two-hour lecture and once for a two-hour seminar or discussion-based work group).

Classes comprised of so many different nationalities offer a wide range of perspectives. This diversity enables students to analyze and discuss issues from multiple viewpoints. Enrolling in classes offered by CIEE Amsterdam and the University of Amsterdam not only helps students develop a better understanding of the principal social, political and cultural issues in Europe (from an international/comparative perspective), but also enhances their ability to communicate with people from other countries, which is crucially important in light of today’s globalization and increasingly international work environments.

The University of Amsterdam operates on a semester calendar, with each semester consisting of two consecutive eight-week class and one consecutive four-week periods. The university’s fall semester runs from the end of August to the end of December, and the spring semester runs from the beginning of February to the end of June. CIEE students are only enrolled in courses that run during the first two consecutive eight-week class blocks, meaning that you can finish your semester before Christmas (first semester), and at the end of May (second semester).

Students from the U.S. may notice a substantial difference between the educational style employed in their own countries and that used in the European system. The European educational system allows students a high level of individual responsibility and initiative, and developing an independent and critical way of thinking is strongly encouraged. This academic environment will be part of the challenge for visiting students at the UvA.

The CIEE Study Center office is located on the Roetersstraat on the eastern side of the city centre, within close proximity to the UvA academic buildings.

CIEE classes are designed for CIEE study abroad participants only. UvA classes are open both to Dutch and to international students, although in many classes the majority is international.

CIEE offers a Beginning Dutch course in which students can learn the basics of the Dutch language. Enrollment in this course is required for students who have no previous knowledge of the Dutch language.

Students complete 15 credits per semester.

The credit system is based on a student’s overall workload, including lectures, seminars, and independent study. In general, grades are based on a combination of class participation, oral presentations, papers, and/or written or oral examinations. Unlike in the U.S., grades are based on a numerical scale of one to 10, rather than letters. All CIEE participants receive a University of Amsterdam transcript listing course titles, final grades, and credits earned as well as the CIEE Academic Record, which converts the grades to a U.S. grading scale.
Groningen Classroom

nhtv breda


Common space

Groningen Academic Building

Program Housing

Housing and Meals

Housing is included in the program fee, and there are several housing options. Bedding is provided with all housing options.


The best way to experience Dutch culture up close is through a homestay. Students have a furnished private room and share a kitchen, bathroom, and living area with the host family, and receive daily breakfast and lunch plus one other meal per week with the family. All other meals are the responsibility of the student. Homestays can range from families with children to one-person households, and are all located within the ring of Amsterdam.

Residence Hall

De Key residence halls are located in several buildings throughout the city, all within a reasonable commute by foot, bike or bus to the classes. Students have a single room with usually shared shower and kitchen facilities where students can prepare meals. All locations have RAs who provide support in the case of minor housing issues and organize activities throughout the semester. Some buildings have wireless internet, other locations provide wired internet which require a router and internet cable (that CIEE will provide for you). Meals are not included in the program fee and are the responsibility of the student. Note: students staying at de Key are required to pay a €100 security deposit fee that they receive back at the end of the program, when the room is left in proper state.

Additional residence hall accommodation is available at the Student Hotel Amsterdam West, a newer building offering more comfort than the de Key dorms. All rooms are singles and feature en-suite bathrooms. The Student Hotel West is located outside of the city center, about a 20-minute commute from Central Amsterdam, and offers several extras including a free bike, wireless internet, on-site bar, study facilities, and a gym. Meals are not included in the program fee; students can prepare meals in the shared kitchens, or take out a meal plan at the in-house restaurant.


You are encouraged to bring a wireless-enabled laptop. Wireless Internet is available at the CIEE Study Center and in all University of Amsterdam (UvA) buildings. You'll also have access to the UvA computer labs spread across the city for class-related activities, and students also receive a personal email account upon arrival, free of charge. Most housing options have wireless Internet. In some cases, there is wired Internet (for which you might need a router and an internet cord, that CIEE provides).

Special Considerations

Below you will find information that may help you in planning for your study abroad experience. Early discussions and planning can help to support you in having a positive experience abroad. We invite you to meet with the International Coordinator for this program to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.

Physical Considerations

Study abroad participants may find themselves walking or taking public transit abroad more frequently than they are accustomed at their home campus.

Disability Accommodations Abroad

Individuals with disabilities can and do study abroad, but may find accessibility and accommodation in one of more of this program’s locations very different from the United States. 

In general, the Study Abroad Office cannot guarantee access to public transportation, buildings, or public sites on this program. Any student who anticipates needing any kind of special accommodation due to a disability should contact the ASU Study Abroad Office early in the planning process to investigate the availability of accommodations (including accessible facilities) on this specific program. Contact Student Accessibility and Inclusive Learning Services and your Disability Access Consultant to include them in the discussion; be sure to give your Disability Access Consultant permission to speak with the Study Abroad Office on your behalf. You can find additional information and resources on our Students with Disabilities page.

LGBTQIA Students Abroad

Students of diverse sexual orientations or gender identities will find that the social climate, laws, and norms of other cultures will often differ from the U.S. If you identify as a lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, or queer student - or if you are still exploring your identity - you may face unique challenges when traveling abroad. 

We encourage students who identify as members of the LGBTQIA community to visit the U.S. Department of State website for helpful information about laws and attitudes in this program’s locations, including pre-travel tips and advice on staying safe while abroad. You can find additional information and resources on our LGBTQIA Students page.

Gender Identity Abroad

When traveling abroad, you may find different gender roles and norms than you’re used to. It’s possible that you may be treated differently or be expected to treat others differently based on your (or their) gender identity. 

You can find additional information and resources on our Gender Identity Abroad page.

Racial and Ethnic Minorities Abroad

Students of different ethnic and racial backgrounds may encounter unique challenges transitioning from life here in the United States to life as a student living abroad, including but not limited to access to personal care products and services.

You can prepare yourself for the situations you may experience by researching the ethnic composition of your host country and exploring its history of racial and ethnic relations. We encourage students to start that research on our Racial and Ethnic Minority Students page.


Cost Information

Partnership program participants will NOT pay ASU tuition for the courses completed abroad. Instead, participants will pay a Program Fee as a condition of participation. Partnership program participants are also responsible for paying a non-refundable $50 Application Fee, in addition to the published Program Fee. All other costs associated with participation in the program are the responsibility of the individual student. Be sure to reference the Fall semesterSpring semester, and Academic Year cost sheet for information on current program fees and any additional estimated expenses.

The program may allow for time which can be spent in non-program activities. Participants may wish to travel, sightsee or participate in activities or events in which they have a personal interest. Please note that the participant is fully responsible for making arrangements and for all costs of transportation, lodging, food and additional expenses that may be associated with any non-program activities.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Please see Financing Your Study Abroad Program for detailed information about financial aid and scholarships.


Funding Your Study Abroad Program

Studying abroad is an investment in your future, which requires careful planning and management. However, the personal, academic, and professional rewards that you will gain from this experience will last a lifetime. You should carefully consider costs, budgets and financing when selecting and preparing for your experience abroad. If you have questions at any step of the process, we encourage you to reach out to your International Coordinator for guidance.

Steps to Financing Your Study Abroad Program

  1. Review the Considering Costs Table for a general overview and cost comparison of popular programs.
  2. Be sure to reference the Fall Semester Cost SheetSpring Semester Cost Sheet or Academic Year cost sheet to find a breakdown of program expenses.
  3. Attend a Financing Your Study Abroad Workshop.
  4. Consider your Financial Aid options.
  5. Search and Apply for Scholarships and Grants.
  6. Exhaust your options by exploring Additional Funding Resources including our Community-Based Funding Guide.
  7. View our  Financing Your Study Abroad Program Handbook for more information, including Payment Information.

Unique Funding Opportunities for This Program






Dates & Deadlines
Dates & Deadlines
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring Semester 2021 10/15/2020
Rolling Admission 01/25/2021 05/29/2021
NOTE: Dates are subject to change. Do not purchase airfare until dates are confirmed by the Study Abroad Office and/or in any host institution acceptance materials.
Fall Semester 2021 03/01/2021 ** Rolling Admission 08/23/2021 12/25/2021
NOTE: Dates are subject to change. Do not purchase airfare until dates are confirmed by the Study Abroad Office and/or in any host institution acceptance materials.
Academic Year 2021-2022 03/01/2021 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
NOTE: Dates are subject to change. Do not purchase airfare until dates are confirmed by the Study Abroad Office and/or in any host institution acceptance materials.
Spring Semester 2022 10/15/2021 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA
NOTE: Dates are subject to change. Do not purchase airfare until dates are confirmed by the Study Abroad Office and/or in any host institution acceptance materials.

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Students will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision tasks prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed