Make sure you are well informed by your study adviser about your courses, your plans, approach and ambitions. They know what would suit your interests well and if there is room for extra activities.
Almost every study programme begins with general basic courses about theories and methods which you need to master in order to lay the foundations for your academic career. As a result of this, you will become broadly orientated and you will discover where your interests and talents lie over the course of the years.
As soon as you have more insight into this, there are opportunities to specialise within your study programme, for example through electives. It is, however, also important to look further than your study programme. You could do this, for example, through minor programmes, internships, a foreign exchange programme and through building up a network.
You should also try to discover which other people are working on your theme. You can often discover, without too much difficulty, if academics within or outside the UvA, nationally and internationally, are working on the same subject or using comparable research methods. Literature and academic articles are always a good source of information and you should also think about conferences, awards for students or the UvA essay competition.
Exchanges, internships abroad and conferences generally sound expensive. However, there are grants and (private) funds for this. You should also seek information from a Student counsellor regarding what the possibilities are and ask for support when writing a letter of motivation and when drawing up a budget.
Think about what you would like to do with your study programme and where you would like to be in a few years’ time. This is generally a difficult question for most people and a voyage of discovery. Try to see the greater whole and discover where your challenges lie in order for you to succeed. The Student Careers Centre may also be able to help you with this.
There are various possibilities in order to strengthen both your academic and organisational qualities during your study. For example, the UvA offers various minors, opportunities to study abroad, organise a large event or to have a say on the University’s policy.
In addition to regular courses and minors, you can choose to take a number of electives within another study programme during your Bachelor’s or Master’s programme. It is possible to attend certain lectures or lecture series at the Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies (IIS). Courses with an interdisciplinary character are the main focus here.
It is also possible to take a minor (small curriculum) that suits your interestsoutside of your own study programme.
It is possible during your study to study abroad or do an internship for half of or the entire academic year. There are various possibilities to go on an exchange programme. At the UvA’s study abroad website, you will find all information about your destination, how to orientate and register. Also consider internships and conferences abroad.
Academics and professors at the University are regularly searching for students who can support them with certain studies. This is an ideal opportunity to become acquainted with research activities. If you are interested in a job on the side as a student assistant, please look at the vacancies page via the link below.