Finance

Making a difference in the world of finance

Making a difference in the world of finance

What determines stock prices? What’s the best way to finance a particular company? And how can the financial markets and financial regulations help a society as a whole to prosper?

The Finance Master’s programme explores these questions through real-life business cases, many of which are led by people who work in the financial industry themselves. You’ll look at the macro level of financial economics: how financial markets help maximise economic growth. You’ll also look at the inner workings of financial markets and corporations – and how financial regulation is the bridge between these two sides. With a Master’s in Finance, you can work in any of the large banks or consultancy firms, but also in institutions like the Central Bank or Ministry of Finance. Whichever direction you choose to go, a Master’s degree from the Finance programme, voted the best in the Netherlands by the National Student Survey (NSE), is the right place to start.

AACSB

The Finance Master’s programme is broken down into three thematic pillars on which both the core courses and electives focus: asset pricing, corporate finance and institutional finance. But you’ll also pick up valuable financial methodologies, quantitative skills, research skills and preparation for the job market.

To break it down:

  • You’ll take four core courses:
    • Asset Pricing – Learn what drives stock prices on the financial markets by competing against each other as portfolio managers. You’ll directly apply your knowledge of asset pricing by investing in (virtual) stocks to generate the most money – may the best team win!
    • Advanced Corporate Finance – You’ll work with case studies from Harvard Business to assess how real-life companies should finance their activities in the most optimal way for their situation.
    • Financial Markets and Institutions – Led by a professor who also works for the Dutch Central Bank, the course will teach you about financial infrastructure: how financial institutions are linked and what their various responsibilities are.
    • Empirical Finance – You’ll study financial econometrics and statistical methodologies, and you’ll test the validity of economic theories. You’ll work with Rabobank to forecast which loans will not be repaid and how to predict bankruptcy.
  • You’ll take two electives, each of which relates to one of the three pillars.
  • You’ll conduct a research project in small groups that will allow you to apply your newly acquired knowledge and skills, as well as preparing you to write your Master’s thesis.
  • You’ll have the opportunity to take an internship.
  • Throughout the programme, you’ll focus on ethics in the financial industry, preparation for the labour market, and self-development.

Want to know more? Check out the Programme overview and Study guide!

  • The Master’s was voted the best Finance programme in the Netherlands according to the National Student Survey (NSE) and the relevant accreditation committees.
  • The programme size of about 150 students is optimal: small enough to maintain close contact with your classmates and teaching staff; large enough to ensure a good selection of electives.
  • One third of the programme’s professors also work in the financial industry themselves. And all other courses offer at least two guest lectures from industry professionals.
  • The university has close connections with the Dutch Central Bank as well as companies in Amsterdam’s Zuidas business district – these are reflected both in the programme itself and in the future job opportunities of its graduates.
  • VU Amsterdam has a reputation for its broader societal focus, which means the programme also applies ethical questions to the financial sector, for example, allowing students to discuss dilemmas they may face in the industry.

  • You’re driven and ambitious.
  • You’re curious and open to new ideas – you enjoy approaching challenges from different schools of thought.
  • You’re interested in the societal impact of financial markets – not only in your own career prospects.
  • You have solid quantitative skills.
  • You’ve taken Bachelor’s courses in topics like investment, corporate finance, financial markets and institutions, mathematics and statistics.

Does this sound like you? Then come along to our Master’s Evening 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?

Having completed the programme, you’ll be able to fulfil a valuable bridge function between the quants (as you’ll understand the numbers) and the business managers (as you’ll be able to interpret the results).

What kinds of jobs are available to you?

A Master’s in Finance is the perfect preparation for roles as an asset manager, risk manager, business analyst or consultant.

What have alumni of the programme gone on to do?

Graduates of the programme have gone on to work at one of the large consulting firms (Deloitte, Accenture, McKinsey, etc.), the big banks (ING, ABN AMRO, etc.), the Central Bank or large corporations. IT firms like Booking.com and Google are also interested in graduates from the Finance programme.

How does the programme help prepare students for the job market?

Throughout the programme, you’ll take workshops that will help you find your ideal role, write the perfect CV and covering letter, and ace the interview.

Keuzegids Masters 2019

Lerby Ergun

Student

Finance Lerby Ergun.jpg

"Finance is the Master's for everyone with the drive and daring to take up the challenge of complex financial issues."

Overview Finance

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

Various areas of finance including, but not limited to, corporate financial management and asset management. You could also opt to take the Honours programme in Quantitative Finance.

FIELD OF INTEREST

Economics, Business and Law

Marco Kistner

Student

Testimonial MSc Finance - Marco Kistner

"This one year master is for anybody who likes a challenge. Taught by teaching staff with great academic and professional experience, you will gain an in depth knowledge of finance through theoretical and practical tasks, and develop skills highly relevant to a career in this field. This master allows you to specialize in a particular field of Finance and the ability to tailor the course towards your interests and career goals. Aside from this, the programme offers various other services - for example career events, workshops and external speakers which aim to prepare you for the best possible career in finance."

Albert Menkveld - Universiteit van Nederland

Hoe kan de aandelenmarkt in een milliseconde onderuit gaan?

Patricia Arranz

Student from Spain

Finance Patricia Arranz.jpg

"The Master's in Finance provides the optimal combination of theory and practical application. Plenty of individual assignments and teamwork, and the chance to develop multiple skills required in the real world make the programme especially challenging and interesting."

Admission with a Dutch degree

As a Master's student in Finance, you need to have a genuine interest in the area of finance, an inquiring mind, the capacity to cope with the rapid pace of work, an aptitude for picking out key points from large volumes of material, the ability to work accurately under pressure, good communication skills and a critical attitude towards your own results and those of others.

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.

Application procedure
To enroll in the programme submit your enrolment application via Studielink.

Step 1:
Apply for the programme MSc Finance via Studielink before 15 July.

Step 2:
Please complete your application in VUnet by answering additional questions and uploading the following document: a formal transcript of your bachelor grades. Your transcript must include an average score (GPA).

Please note: we can only process your application when uploaded all documents. 
 
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.

As a Master's student in Finance, you need to have a genuine interest in the area of finance, an inquiring mind, the capacity to cope with the rapid pace of work, an aptitude for picking out key points from large volumes of material, the ability to work accurately under pressure, good communication skills and a critical attitude towards your own results and those of others.

Admission requirements
The masterprogramme Finance is open to students with a university Bachelor's degree that provides a thorough knowledge in economics and business. You need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):

Corporate FinanceBerk & DeMarzo: Corporate Finance, Pearson, or equivalent
InvestmentsBodie, Kane, and Marcus: Investments, or equivalent
Financial Markets and Institutions    
Mishkin, Matthews and Guiliodori: Economics of Money, Banking and Financial Markets, Pearson or equivalent
MathematicsSydsaeter, Hammond and Strom: Essential Mathematics for Economic Analysis, Prentice Hall, or equivalent
Business StatisticsBerenson, Levine, Szabat: Basic Business Statistics, Pearson, or equivalent

Approval is in most cases given to students who hold a:
•    Economics and Business Economics,
•    Econometrics and Operations Research,
•    (International) Business Administration,
•    Industrial Engineering and Management
•    Science, Business and Innovation 



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.

Step 1:
Apply for the programme MSc Finance via Studielink.

Step 2:
After application in studielink you will receive a VUnet-ID and password via email. Please complete your application in VUnet by answering additional questions and uploading the following document: a formal transcript of your bachelor grades. Your transcript must include an average score (GPA).

Please note: we can only process your application when your transcript is uploaded.

Step 3:
The admission committee will assess if you meet the admission criteria and will inform you about the decision via email.

For the full description of the registration procedure 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

Visit our information days
Master's Events

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

Admission with an international degree

As a Master's student in Finance, you need to have a genuine interest in the area of finance, an inquiring mind, the capacity to cope with the rapid pace of work, an aptitude for picking out key points from large volumes of material, the ability to work accurately under pressure, good communication skills and a critical attitude towards your own results and those of others.

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. You need to have successfully completed courses and studied literature related to the core of this programme, consisting of (or equivalents of):

Corporate FinanceBerk & DeMarzo: Corporate Finance, Pearson, or equivalent
InvestmentsBodie, Kane, and Marcus: Investments, or equivalent
Financial Markets and Institutions    
Mishkin, Matthews and Guiliodori: Economics of Money, Banking and Financial Markets, Pearson or equivalent
MathematicsSydsaeter, Hammond and Strom: Essential Mathematics for Economic Analysis, Prentice Hall, or equivalent
Business StatisticsBerenson, Levine, Szabat: Basic Business Statistics, Pearson, or equivalent

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 speaking 6,5
•    Minimum score listening 6,5
•    Minimum score writing 6,0
•    Minimum score reading 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. 

See our 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.

Step 1: Prepare documents and apply online
Please prepare the following documents and arrange the payment of the application fee, a non-refundable €100 application fee applies. You can find an explanation of each document on the application page. All documents should be provided in English.
•    Copy of your valid passport or ID (only for EU residents)
•    Curriculum Vitae
•    A motivation letter
•    Transcript of records
•    Thesis (or another sample of academic writing)
•    A description of the relevant courses you have taken during your previous higher education
•    A list of all the main literature used during your previous higher education

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 our application page to see which application deadline applies for you.

Step 2: Await decision on admission
The admission board will review your application as soon as it is complete. Normally this takes about four weeks, but it might take longer in busy periods so be sure to apply as soon as possible. If you gain admission, you will receive a letter of conditional admission by email. You can start planning your move to Amsterdam!

Step 3: Finalize your registration and move to Amsterdam!
Make sure to finalize your registration as a student before the start of the programme. Here you will find an explanation what to do after admission. When all conditions are met you will be ready to start your programme at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam!

Further information about: 
Accommodation 
Visa 
Tuition fees

If you 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 skills to prepare you for this master's programme. It is a 30 EC programme that takes place in the second semester, from February through July.

See course details in the study guide

Admission requirements for the premaster programme

  • You have an academic 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 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
  • You can demonstrate sufficient English proficiency. A degree from an English-speaking is sufficient. In other cases, the English requirements as stated above apply

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.

Deadlines and application
The programme starts 1 February, and you must have completed your application before 1 November if you are a non-EU citizen! EU citizens must complete their application by January 31st.

Apply now

Note: You can select the premaster programme in Studielink after selecting "Type of study programme: Bachelor's or other non master programmes"

Some international students are happy to tell you about their experiences with living and studying in Amsterdam. These Student Ambassadors come from all over the world and have attended various bachelor's and master's programmes.
Our student ambassadors are listed here on this webpage: vu.nl/ambassadors.

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

As an international student planning to study at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, you can apply for a variety of grants and bursaries.

Detailed information about scholarships and deadlines can be found on www.vu.nl/scholarships or www.grantfinder.nl.

Visit our information days.

Central International Office
For detailed questions about the Master’s programmes or the application procedure contact your International Student Advisor at the International Office:

Foto Leanne Schrijver Leanne Schrijver
Tel +31 20 59 83032
E masters.sbe@vu.nl





Foto Paul SteemanPaul Steeman

Tel +31 20 59 88739
E masters.sbe@vu.nl
 




Shrestha_Amu_86x129Amu Shrestha
Tel +31 20 59 84296
masters.sbe@vu.nl

 




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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