The programme

The one-year master programme History of Politics and Society has a study load of 60 EC and consists of two semesters, each divided in two study periods. In the programme book you will find all the information you need at the start of the academic year.

  • Go to the course planner for an overview of your exam programme and the courses it consists of. Make sure to select the correct academic year.
  • For a more detailed description of the various parts of the programme see below:

First semester

In the first semester you participate in four compulsory courses. The first is the course 'Cities, States, and Citizenship' in study period 1: this course deals with the development of urban citizenship to national citizenship as an example of a process of institutional change. In study period 1 you also take the course 'Toolbox for Comparative Historical Research', where you familiarize yourself with methods for comparative and long-term analysis. Compulsory courses in study period 2 are the practical oriented course 'Challenges of the Welfare State' and the course 'Themes in the History of Politics and Society', where you develop the design for the thesis you will write in the second semester. In addition you take two electives, one in the first study period and the other in the second.

At the end of the first semester you participate in the career seminar, a series of trainings to help you prepare for the labour market and a meeting with alumni of the program.

Second semester

In the second semester you do an internship and write your thesis. Ideally you do spend half of your time in study periods 3 and 4 on the internship and the other half on the thesis. However, it is also possible to concentrate the internship in one study period and the thesis in the other.

Your thesis requires you to do individual historical research based on primary sources and to report your findings according to the rules of the field. During the course 'Themes in the History of Politics and Society' in study period 2 you already selected one of the subjects on offer and developed a thesis design, allowing you to make a quick start with the actual research in study period 3.

The internship comprises an individual assignment at an academic level related to a political or societal issue. An alternative for the internship is a skills lab: a project that allows you, in cooperation with a small group of fellow-students, to chart a current-day political or societal debate from a variety of angles and to record your findings in an advice or report.


The compulsory courses in the programme are in principle taught only in English. For the electives  Dutch-speaking students can choose between a course in English or one in Dutch. English-speaking students are given priority for the English-taught courses. 

Entry Requirements

Look carefully at the entry requirements of the courses and whether there is a placement committee.

Exam requirements

When you start this programme, you will be registered for its exam programme. This is a 'translation' of the exam requirements described in the Education and Examination Regulations.In order to complete your Master's programme you will need to meet the exam requirements.

Study Progress Report (SPR)

Your study progress report lists all of your current results, and tells you how far along you are in meeting your exam requirements. View your study progress report in OSIRIS > tab Progress. See the example (pdf, in Ducth) for an explanation of the Study Progress Report.

If you wish to deviate from the curriculum, you must first ask your programme’s Board of Examiners for approval or exemption. In case your request is granted, the changes will be processed in OSIRIS and integrated into your exam programme and Study Progress Review.

In order to graduate, you will need to meet your programme's exam requirements as described in the Education and Examination Regulations. Based on these criteria and your Study Progress Review, the Board of Examiners determines whether you have graduated. The courses that are listed on your Study Progress Review will appear on the International Diploma Supplement (IDS), the attachment that you receive with your diploma. Note that courses listed under the heading ‘Results-Other’ are not part of the examination syllabus and do not appear on the IDS.

If you have questions about your Study Progress Review or find errors in it, contact the Student Desk Humanities.