Amsterdam Excellence Scholarship (AES)


The Amsterdam Excellence Scholarship (AES) is a full scholarship. Scholarship recipients become part of a select community, taking part, for example, in extracurricular activities developed especially for them.

Scholarship recipients

The scholarship is highly competitive: there are one to two scholarships available for Humanities students (1:25 chance).

Eligibility criteria

  • You hold a non-EU/EEA passport and not be eligible for support under Studiefinanciering, the Dutch system of study loans.
  • You are new to the UvA. An AES will not be awarded to candidates who are applying for a second Master's programme at the UvA.
  • You have not been granted another scholarship in addition to AES. Please notify the UvA if you have been awarded and have accepted another scholarship.
  • You are applying for a Research Master's or a Dual Master’s that does not include interviews in its selection process.

Academic requirements

  • Minimum GPA, comparable to:
    • 3.7 (USA)
    • First class degree (UK)
    • Cum laude (Dutch system)
  • English proficiency:
    • TOEFL: overall score of 100 (minimum score of 22 for each component);
    • IELTS: overall score of 7.0 (minimum score of 7.0 for each component);
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): grade A
    • Cambridge Certificate for Proficiency in English (CPE): grade B (or C if test taken after Jan. 2015);

Only students who have completed their Bachelor's in the UK, Ireland, USA, Canada (with the exception of Quebec), Australia or New Zealand or a Bachelor's in English Language and Culture at a Dutch university are exempt from providing proof of English proficiency. Exemptions from the Examination Board are not accepted as proof of English proficiency in the scholarship application.

Deadline scholarship application: 1 February

Please make sure you upload your scholarship application onto your Personal Service Page before 1 February. Late or incomplete applications for the AES scholarship will not be considered.

How to apply

You will need to upload a scholarship application parallel to your MA application. The MA application and the scholarship application will be reviewed by different selection committees. Submit your scholarship application by completing the following steps:

  1. You start your application for a Research Master's programme or Dual Master's programme;
  2. In the online application form for the Master's programmes in the Humanities, you will find the option ‘apply for a scholarship’. Tick this box;
  3. You upload all the MA application documents onto your Personal Service Page before 1 February for your choice of MA programme;
  4. In the meantime you also upload your scholarship application onto your Personal Service Page before 1 February. You need to use the Required Scholarship Application Format (see below) and upload it under the section 'Scholarship application' as one document containing the following components:
    • Academic records: transcripts (and diploma if you have already finished your degree), including your GPA (see Academic requirements);
    • Letter of recommendation by a dean, teacher or academic supervisor, in which he/she confirms that you belong to the top 10% of your class/year;
    • Letter of motivation (maximum 500 words) in which you explain the reasons for choosing the specific Master’s programme (broader context, relevance for future career);
    • CV, including a description of extracurricular activities such as participation in student committees, international experience, sports or music at a high level or volunteer work;
    • Proof of English proficiency (see Academic requirements).

The selection committee of the Faculty of Humanities will decide whether you will be pre-selected for an AES and nominated to the AES UvA selection committee. Candidates who are awarded an AES scholarship will be contacted in the Spring.


The University of Amsterdam cannot be held responsible for the contents of the information presented here or for any consequences resulting from its use. No rights can be obtained from the information presented here.

Published by  Graduate School of Humanities

5 February 2018