Business Administration: Leadership and Change Management

Become an agent for change

How can you effectively lead a group of people to a common goal when they each have differing interests? How can you create a compelling call to action when addressing multiple stakeholders?

The Leadership & Change Management Master’s programme offers a unique proposition: it teaches you to lead a team through organisational change, to manage the change project, and to get buy-in from all involved. Leadership and change are a natural combination – no change management can be effective without good leadership, and only an effective leader can create positive change. Having completed the programme, you’ll come away with the organisational, political and rhetorical skills you need to be a successful future leader. Whether you want to find a role in consultancy, work internally for a large firm, or become an entrepreneur or project manager – this is the first step.

AACSB

The Leadership & Change Management programme will set you up as an academic professional, with knowledge of the theories of organisational change and leadership, as well as skills in implementing change and being an effective leader. In addition to courses that are unique to the Leadership & Change Management programme, you’ll also be able to take electives from the other Business Administration specialization programmes.

To break it down:

  • You’ll take two mandatory courses:
    • Perspectives on Organisational Change – Different perspectives on change, both theoretically and practically.
    • Intervention & Project Management – Practise organisational skills and project management.
  • You’ll take three elective courses in period 2 and 3; these should include at least two of the following three courses:
    • Change Rhetoric and Politics – Make and deliver an effective speech that resonates with multiple audiences.
    • Leadership: Advanced Perspectives – Practise your project management skills, and swap leadership styles to discover how diversity and bias come into play.
    • Organisational Change Serious Game – Simulating a company’s political landscape, you’ll accrue power throughout the game by earning points for your various change leadership skills.
  • You’ll take a course in Business Ethics in Leadership and Change Management. Explore current debates in business ethics and learn how to apply your insights to workplace moral dilemmas.
  • You’ll learn academic research skills and put them straight into practice by writing your Master’s thesis.  
  • Whatever your personal career ambitions, you can tailor your Master’s to ensure success. Select from many potential electives and three different types of internships to customise your Master’s. Choose to specialise exclusively in Leadership & Change Management or generalise your degree with other BA courses from Human Resource Management, International Management, Management Consulting or Strategy & Organisation. 

Want to know more? Check out the Study Guide!

  • The programme offers a unique combination of change management skills coupled with the leadership skills to enable you to actually put that change into practice.
  • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam has strong links with business practitioners – for example, we work with both Ten Have Change Management and Royal Haskoning DHV to gain access to companies and projects in the professional world.
  • The scholars who teach this programme are at the cutting edge of their field, publishing their vision on change leadership in top international journals.
  • All courses offer you the opportunity to put your organisational and rhetoric skills to use from day one – for example, you’ll pitch your recommended changes directly to a firm and get their feedback on your ideas.
  • Change need not just be a cost-cutting exercise – the emphasis is on leading positive social change in an organisation. The programme uniquely covers business ethics when it comes to change management.
  • You’re a go-getter who loves an adventure.
  • You’re ambitious, curious and – above all – sociable. Being effective in social situations is key to effective change leadership.
  • You have a good grasp of English, both written and spoken. Remember you’re going to be making speeches in English!
  • Your Bachelor’s degree could be in a range of different subjects – for example, engineering, medical sciences, psychology, communications, public administration or of course business administration.
  • You have some knowledge of organisations, strategy and people management (e.g. HRM) – if you don’t have this background already, the admission board decides if you can follow a pre-Master’s, take some relevant Bachelor’s courses or engage in self-study to prepare.

Does this sound like you? Then come along to one of our Master information sessions where you can find out more and try out the programme for yourself! If you’re keen to apply and meet the entry requirements (see below), then take a look at our application procedure and deadlines.

  • What skills make you interesting to potential future employers?
    • Students of the programme are “change agents” with the project management and leadership skills needed to drive change effectively. This is an attractive proposition for potential future employers.
  • What kinds of jobs are available to you?
    • A Master’s in Business Administration – Leadership & Change Management will set you up to become a change manager, project manager, business developer or consultant at a range of different firms.
  • What have alumni of the programme gone on to do?
    • Many of our students have become change managers at Akzo Nobel, GVB or Philips, for example, while others have become project managers. Some students now work for the Big Four consulting firms, such as Deloitte.
  • How does the programme help prepare students for the job market?
    • During the programme, you’ll have plenty of contact with the business world. You’ll also have the opportunity to do an internship (e.g. at Philips, KPMG, Deloitte, VUmc or Royal Haskoning), and to create a portfolio for potential future employers.

Overview Business Administration: Leadership and Change Management

LANGUAGE OF INSTRUCTION

English

DURATION

1 year

TUITION FEE

APPLICATION

1 April for international degree holders from non-EU/EEA countries (different deadlines may hold for other category students);
15 July for Dutch degree holders and international degree holders from EU/EEA countries

START DATE

1 September

STUDY TYPE

Full-time

SPECIALIZATIONS

Specialization in Business Administration

FIELD OF INTEREST

Economics, Business and Law

Study in Holland

Admission with a Dutch Degree

We welcome and look for motivated and ambitious students who are actively developing themselves and are aware of their position and role in society. In order to be successful in this programme you will need a solid academic basis in, for instance, (International) Business Administration, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, and other related disciplines. Typically, successful students in this programme have at least a 7 average grade (or an equivalent GPA score for international students) in the third year of their Bachelor’s programme, or a GMAT score of 600. Prior relevant work experience and experience with volunteering or other citizenship behaviours are encouraged and also taken into account.

Admission requirements
With a Bachelor's degree in (International) Business Administration, Economics or Econometrics and Operations Research from Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam you are admissible provided you successfully meet the requirements in this document. Furthermore, we take into account your motivation, prior relevant work experiences, and any relevant volunteering experiences and/or citizenship behaviors.

Application procedure
To enroll in the programme submit your enrolment application via Studielink. Please note: in Studielink you can apply for the Master in Business Administration and in VUnet you can select your specialization.

Step 1:
Apply for the MSc programme Business Administration via Studielinkbefore 15 July. You can apply for the specialization in VUnet (see step 2)

Step 2:
Please complete your application in VUnet by answering additional questions and affirming  your choice for the specialization. Furthermore you need to upload:

  • a formal transcript of your bachelor grades. Your transcript must include an average score (GPA).
  • a motivation letter in which you explain why you want to pursue a Master’s programme in BA, Leadership and Change Management, at VU Amsterdam, and also explicitly elaborate on your vision about the role of BA graduates in society.
  • a recent resume.

Please note: we can only process your application when your choice of specialization is clear and your documents are uploaded.

More information regarding registration WO-bachelors, see the VU website (in Dutch).

Services for international (IBA) students / Residence permit:
If you are planning to continue your studies at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam after your IBA, please contact the Central Admission’s Support Team of Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam for further information and specific questions about the offered services for international students like extending your residence permit. You will need to apply for extension of your residence permit if you continue your studies at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam.

We welcome and look for motivated and ambitious students who are actively developing themselves and are aware of their position and role in society. In order to be successful in this programme you will need a solid academic basis in, for instance, (International) Business Administration, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, and other related disciplines. Typically, successful students in this programme have at least a 7 average grade (or an equivalent GPA score for international students) in the third year of their Bachelor’s programme, or a GMAT score of 600. Prior relevant work experience and experience with volunteering or other citizenship behaviours are encouraged and also taken into account.

Admission requirements
The masterprogramma Business Administration, specialization Leadership and Change Management is open to students with a university Bachelor's degree that provides a thorough knowledge in Business Administration. Also, we take into account your motivation, prior relevant work experiences, and any relevant volunteering experiences and/or citizenship behaviors.
Furthermore you need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):

Organizational Behavior:
•    Sinding et al. (2014). Organisational Behaviour. 5th edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill
or
•    Brehm, S. S. Kassin, S. M., & Fein, S. (2002). Social Psychology. 4th edition. New York: Houghton Mifflin
Organization Theory / Strategic Management:
•    Jaffee, D. (2001). Organization Theory: Tensions and Change. London: McGraw-Hill
or
•    Hitt, M. A., Ireland, D. R., & Hoskisson, R. E. (2014). Strategic Management: Competitiveness and Globalization – Concepts and Cases, 11th Edition. Stamford: South-Western College Pub

Concerning the specialization Leadership and Change Management, approval is in most cases given to students who hold an academic Bachelor’s degree in
o    (International) Business Administration,
o    Psychology (provided that  they have a sufficiently matching profile),
o    Sociology (provided that  they have a sufficiently matching profile),
o    Communication Sciences (provided that  they have a sufficiently matching profile),
o    Economics

If you do not meet these requirements, you may be admissible with the Premaster programme.

Application procedure
To enroll in the programme submit your enrolment application via Studielink. Please note: in Studielink you can apply for the Master in Business Administration and in VUnet you can select your specialization.

Step 1:
Apply for the MSc programme Business Administration via Studielinkbefore 15 July. You can apply for the specialization in VUnet (see step 2)

Step 2:
After applying for the programme in studielink you will receive a VUnet-ID and password. Please complete your application in VUnet by answering additional questions and affirming  your choice for the specialization. Furthermore you need to upload:
-    a formal transcript of your bachelor grades. Your transcript must include an average score (GPA).
-    a motivation letter in which you explain why you want to pursue a Master’s programme in BA, Leadership and Change Management, at VU Amsterdam, and also explicitly elaborate on your vision about the role of BA graduates in society,
-    a recent resume.
Please note: we can only process your application when your choice of specialization is clear and your documents are uploaded. 

Step 3:
The admission committee will assess your application and decide whether you are admissible. You will be informed about this decision via email.

More information regarding registration WO-bachelors, see the VU website (in Dutch).

Admission via premaster programme
If you have an academic bachelor's degree but do not meet the requirements above, you can gain admission after doing the premaster programme.

The premaster programme is a deficiency programme that provides the necessary knowledge and prepares you for this master's programme. It is a 30 EC program that takes place in the second semester, from February through July.

Course details in the study guide

Admission requirements premaster programme

  • You have an academic bachelor's degree from a Dutch university
  • You have a Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) combined score of at least 550 for the parts Verbal and Quantitative. Also note the following:
    • The score may not be older than two years, counted from the date you start the premaster programme
    • The Integrated Reasoning and Analytical Writing Assessment score do not count for admission
    • You can use a Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) score for the parts Verbal and Quantitative to satisfy the GMAT score requirement. To convert your GRE score to its GMAT equivalent, use the GRE Comparison Tool

GMAT and GRE
A GMAT score of at least 550 or an equivalent GRE score is a requirement to participate in the premaster programme. Please fill in the test that 'Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam' may receive your score. The official score will be sent by GMAT to VU. Please note that it may take up to 20 calendar days for the VU to receive your GMAT score, so plan GMAT on time.

The School of Business and Economics (SBE) offers a course in preparation for the GMAT, the GMAT preparation course. The preparation course starts each year in August. For more information, please visit the website of the GMAT preparation course.

Costs
Tuition fee 2018-2019: EUR 1030.00

Deadlines and application
The programme starts 1 February, and you must have completed your application before this date! Note that the Premasterassessment does not apply in this case!

Apply now

You will gain direct admission after completing the premaster programme; this is a full-time programme with courses on at least three days per week.

Premaster programme
The premaster programme is a deficiency programme that provides the necessary knowledge and prepares you for this master's programme. It is a 30 EC program that takes place in the second semester, from February through July. These courses involve both content as well as academic skills and knowledge, and research methods.

Course details in the study guide

Admission requirements
The premaster programme has two admission requirements:

  1. You have an hbo degree
  2. You have a Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) combined score of at least 550 for the parts Verbal and Quantitative. Also note the following:
    • The score may not be older than 2 years, counted from the date you start with the premaster
    • The Integrated Reasoning and Analytical Writing Assessment score do not count for admission
    • You can use a Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) score for the parts Verbal and Quantitative to satisfy the GMAT score requirement. To convert your GRE score to its GMAT equivalent, use the GRE Comparison Tool!

GMAT and GRE
A GMAT score of at least 550 or an equivalent GRE score is a requirement to participate in the premaster programme. Please fill in the test that 'Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam' may receive your score. The official score will be sent by GMAT to VU. Please note that it may take up to 20 calendar days for the VU to receive your GMAT score, so plan GMAT on time.

The School of Business and Economics (SBE) offers a course in preparation for the GMAT, the GMAT preparation course. The preparation course starts each year in August. For more information, please visit the website of the GMAT preparation course.

Costs
Tuition fee 2018-2019: EUR 1030.00

Deadlines and application
The programme starts 1 February, and you must have completed your application before this date!

Apply now


Information days and activities
contact@vu.nl
Admission questions
toelating.sbe@vu.nl
or on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 15:00h and 16:00h: Tel. 020 5985873
Tuition fees, Studielink, VUnet
Central Student Desk
Application
Studielink
Other questions
contact@vu.nl

Visit our information day
Master's Evening
December 3rd, 2019
More information

Admission with an International Degree

We welcome and look for motivated and ambitious students who are actively developing themselves and are aware of their position and role in society. In order to be successful in this programme you will need a solid academic basis in, for instance, (International) Business Administration, Psychology, Sociology, Economics, and other related disciplines. Typically, successful students in this programme have at least a 7 average grade (or an equivalent GPA score for international students) in the third year of their Bachelor’s programme*, or a GMAT score of 600. Prior relevant work experience and experience with volunteering or other citizenship behaviours are encouraged and also taken into account.

Admission requirements
In order to gain admission to our Master’s programme, you need to have at least a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited research university including at least three full years of academic study amounting to a minimum of 180 EC or equivalent. We do not require a GRE or GMAT test score, but we do take into account your motivation, prior relevant work experiences, and any relevant volunteering experiences and/or citizenship behaviors. Furthermore you need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):

Organizational Behavior:
•    Sinding et al. (2014). Organisational Behaviour. 5th edition. Boston: McGraw-Hill
or
•    Brehm, S. S. Kassin, S. M., & Fein, S. (2002). Social Psychology. 4th edition. New York: Houghton Mifflin

Organization Theory / Strategic Management:
•    Jaffee, D. (2001). Organization Theory: Tensions and Change. London: McGraw-Hill
or
•    Hitt, M. A., Ireland, D. R., & Hoskisson, R. E. (2014). Strategic Management: Competitiveness and Globalization – Concepts and Cases, 11th Edition. Stamford: South-Western College Pub

English language proficiency
The admission board wants to stress the intensity of the programme: reading scientific articles and writing papers will be a key part, all in a very high pace. Your English language skills, both oral and written, are extremely important in this programme. As you will have to communicate frequently with your fellow students and you will be working with and for international companies.

VU Amsterdam requires all applicants to take an English test. You can already apply online without having the test results. We do advise you to plan a test date as soon as possible. Below you will find the minimum English test scores for the programme:  

IELTS (academic):
•    Minimum general score 6,5
•    Minimum score writing 6,0

TOEFL
•    Paper based test 580
•    Internet based test 92

Cambridge English
•    Cambridge Proficiency Exam A, B, C
•    Cambridge Advanced Exam A, B, C

The Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam offers the TOEFL ITP English-language proficiency test. The test is offered by the VU Taalloket. You can find more information and register for this test at www.taalloket.nl

Please refer to the language requirement page for the general requirements regarding the English language test.

If you have read the admission requirements and feel you are eligible for admission, please take the following steps to submit your application. Note that the initial application procedure is fully online and that scans of your relevant documents are required. You can already apply online without having completed your Bachelor’s degree. After admission, you will have until 31 August to send a proof of graduation by postal mail.

Step 1: Prepare documents and apply online
Please prepare the following documents and arrange the payment of the non-refundable €100 application fee. You can find a more detailed explanation of each document on the application page. All documents should be provided in English, and preferably in .PDF format.

  • Copy of your valid passport or ID (only for EU citizens)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Motivation letter
  • Transcript of records
  • A description of the relevant courses you have taken during your previous higher education, with the main literature used for those course. You can use this format.
  • Thesis (or another sample of academic writing). If your thesis was not written in English, please submit the original with an added summary of about 3 pages in English.

After having prepared the required documents, please follow the online application procedure. After you have completed the application, our international student advisors will contact you via e-mail. Please refer to the application page to see which application deadline applies to you.

Step 2: Await decision on admission
After submitting your complete application, the Admission Board will review all your documents to assess your eligibility. In general, we can inform students of the admission decision within 4 weeks. Around deadlines, this can take a bit linger, so we always recommend to apply as soon as possible. If you are admitted, you will receive your letter of conditional admission by email. After that, you can start planning your move to Amsterdam!

Step 3: Finalize your enrolment and move to Amsterdam!
Make sure to finalize your enrolment as a student before the start of the programme. Here on our website, you will find an explanation of all things to arrange after admission. When all enrolment requirements have been met you will be ready to start your programme at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam!

Further information about:

All international students are required to apply for the MSc programme of their choice first. If you do not meet the admission requirements directly, you could gain admission after completing the premaster programme.

The premaster programme is a deficiency programme that provides the necessary knowledge and skills to prepare you for this master's programme. It is a programme of 30 ECTS that is offered in the second semester, from February through July. Content details of the offered premasters can be found here.

Admission requirements for the premaster programme

  • You have a bachelor's degree from a non-Dutch university or from a non-Dutch university of applied science.
  • You have a Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) combined score of at least 550 for the parts Verbal and Quantitative. Also note the following:
    • The score may not be older than two years, counted from 1 February
    • The Integrated Reasoning and Analytical Writing Assessment scores do not count for admission
    • You can use a Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) score for the parts Verbal and Quantitative to satisfy the GMAT score requirement. To convert your GRE score to its GMAT equivalent, use the GRE Comparison Tool
  • You can demonstrate sufficient English proficiency by meeting the requirements listed above

More information on the requirements, including GMAT preparations, can be found on the central premaster website.

Deadlines and application
The programme starts 1 February. Because of visa application deadlines, non-EU citizens must have completed their application before 1 November. EU citizens can complete their application until January 31st.

Note: When applying, you can find the premaster programme in Studielink after selecting "Type of study programme: Bachelor's or other non-master programmes".

Our international student ambassadors are happy to tell you all about their experiences with studying at VU and living in Amsterdam. Our student ambassadors come from all over the world and are currently attending various bachelor's and master's programmes.

Our student ambassadors are listed here.

Reach out to them and hear their stories about being a VU Amsterdam student!

International students can apply to several scholarships. For all VU scholarships, please see www.vu.nl/scholarships. Any available external grant or scholarship can be found through www.grantfinder.nl.

Visit our Master's Events

Central International Office
For detailed questions about the Master’s programmes or the application procedure, please contact one of your International Student Advisors at the International Office: masters.sbe@vu.nl

Leanne Schrijver
Leanne Schrijver
Tel +31 20 59 83032
Paul Steeman
Paul Steeman
Tel +31 20 59 88739
Amu Shrestha
Amu Shrestha
Tel +31 20 59 84296
Lotte de Winter
Lotte de Winter
Tel +31 20 59 89072


For general information about VU Amsterdam:
Please phone us at +31 (0)20 598 5000 (Monday – Friday, 09:00 to 17:00).
You may also e-mail us at study@vu.nl.

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