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Doing a PhD after your Master’s

Last modified on 08-02-2024 15:36
You are considering doing a PhD after your Master’s. Here, you will find information to help you discover whether a PhD is right for you.
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Is a PhD the right thing for you?

Find out if doing a PhD is right for you by doing the following exercise:

Score yourself on a scale of one to five regarding the following aspects and ask people who know you to score you on the various aspects as well. One stands for ‘to a very low degree’, with five standing for ‘to a very significant degree’.  Naturally, you pick the people you consult yourself and you determine what you do with their feedback.

A conversation about the results can clarify a great deal. You should regard this exercise as an indication and starting point to facilitate a dialogue with others about your opportunities and options. Naturally, you can discuss the results of this exercise with a careers adviser.

Talk to people in your study environment

More and more PhD positions have a Research Master’s as an admission requirement. That's why you should consider the differences between a one-year and a two-year (Research) Master’s and talk to people in your study environment, such as your study adviser, your lecturers, supervisor or PhD candidates. Explain that you are exploring the possibilities of doing a PhD and ask for their advice and for any tips. Try to find out where PhD candidates in your field end up on the job market. This could also be the beginning of your professional network as a budding academic.

Get familiar with the researchers 

What researcher would you like to be working with and at what research institution? Who teaches the (Research) Master’s programmes and what kind of research do they do? You should also try and find potential supervisors.


Doctoral positions are funded in various ways in the Netherlands. You can either pursue a doctorate with an employment contract or without an employment contract. In the latter case, you will not receive a salary from the university, but you will have to find an employer to pay you or obtain a scholarship from the university.

Tip: follow developments in scientific research in the Netherlands, research funding, funds, etc. to make sure you are properly informed about the types of doctoral positions and types of funding available.

Vacancies for doctoral positions

More information

Read more information about obtaining a PhD at the UvA on uva.nlExternal link