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FAQ

Below we've listed the most common questions from applicants to the program. If you can not find the information you need, please contact the admissions office.


Application procedures

  • When are the application deadlines?

    When are the application deadlines?

    Deadlines for enrolment in 2024 are: 

    • December 1, 2023; highly recommended deadline for non-EU students applying for an (external) scholarship and/or for students who are interested in applying for University of AmsterdamVU Amsterdam or, Erasmus university scholarships 
    • February 1, 2024; highly recommended for students applying for our scholarship program
    • After February 1: rolling admissions until June 15 - for EEA students only; for late applications, students can contact the admissions office

    All applicants are advised to submit their application early, because slots in the program and funding opportunities are limited. 

     

  • What do I do if is an issue with the reference letter in the portal?

    What do I do if is an issue with the reference letter in the portal?

    Unfortunately, the invitations sometimes end up in the spam folder, kindly ask your referees to check there as well. If they have still not received an invitation, please ask them to send the letter to admissions@businessdatascience.nl  and we will upload the letter for them. Please ask them to send the letter from a professional (university) email address. Only submitted and completed applications will be reviewed. 

  • Why do I have to start my application in Studielink?

    Why do I have to start my application in Studielink?

    All applications for higher education start in Studielink.  Studielink is the Dutch national registration system for higher education programmes. We can only register you as a student if you enrol through this system. Subsequently, you need to finalize your application in the Admission Portal of Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR). Erasmus University is the host university of the Business Data Science joint degree program.

    Please note: once you have enrolled in Studielink, you will receive an email with your login details for the EUR Admission Portal. Check your spam box! 

    Find more information on the FAQ page of Erasmus University

  • The program is a joint degree program: where do I apply for this program?

    The program is a joint degree program: where do I apply for this program?

    Our program is a joint degree program, jointly offered by Erasmus University Rotterdam, University of Amsterdam and Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. After unconditional admission to the program, students will be registered as a student at all three universities. 

    Erasmus University is the host university for the program. The primary enrolment of students will be at the Erasmus University and we use the Erasmus University application portal for our selection process. 

    After unconditional admission to the program, students will be also registered as a student at the University of Amsterdam and Vrije Universiteit. 

  • How do I change my profile information in Studielink and/or Erasmus Admission Portal?

    How do I change my profile information in Studielink and/or Erasmus Admission Portal?

    You can only change your personal details in Studielink, the changes will then automatically go through to the Erasmus Admission Portal. Once your details have been checked by Erasmus University you will not be able to change them anymore and will have to contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance.

  • What do I have to do in the EUR Admission Portal?

    What do I have to do in the EUR Admission Portal?

    In the EUR Admission Portal you need to answer some additional questions and upload the required documents (see in portal and on our website).

    After checking your entries, you need to submit your application. Please note: only applications with the status ‘submitted’ will be processed.

  • Do I have to complete my application in the Application Portal at one time, or can I save my entries and finish my application later?

    Do I have to complete my application in the Application Portal at one time, or can I save my entries and finish my application later?

    You can start working in the Application Portal, save your entries and use your login information to return to the Portal later.

    We will only start processing your application after you have submitted it via the Portal, by clicking on the ‘submit’ button at the bottom of the last page of the questionnaire. The status of your application will then change to ‘submitted’. If that does not work, please contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance.

  • I have not received my username and password after filling in the form in Studielink, what should I do?

    I have not received my username and password after filling in the form in Studielink, what should I do?

    Please check your spam or junk folder, if you haven’t received an email please contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance.

  • I have forgotten my username and/or password to log in on the EUR Admission Portal. What should I do?

    I have forgotten my username and/or password to log in on the EUR Admission Portal. What should I do?

    Go to the login page of the Portal and click on ‘forgot username’ and/or ‘forgot password’ (upper right corner of the screen) and follow the instructions. If that does not work, please contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance.

  • My Studielink account is permanently blocked. What should I do?

    My Studielink account is permanently blocked. What should I do?

    Please contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance to reset your account. If this does not help, please try again using a different email account.

  • I have sent an enquiry to the student helpdeks 48 hours ago but I have still not received a response from them.

    I have sent an enquiry to the student helpdeks 48 hours ago but I have still not received a response from them.

    At times it can be very busy at the student help desk, please be patient. If you haven’t received a response after 3 working days, you can send a reminder.

  • Does the program charge a fee for the application?

    Does the program charge a fee for the application?

    No, we do not charge an application fee.

  • How do I complete my application package?

    How do I complete my application package?

    By uploading the following documents: 

    • if applicable: GRE/GMAT score report (or screen shot showing the score)
    • if applicable: TOEFL or IELTS test results (or screen shot showing the score)
    • Curriculum vitae;
    • Certified transcripts of coursework or copies of diplomas of bachelor and master programs (certified English translations should be uploaded of transcripts and diplomas that are not in Dutch or English);
    • Statement of Academic Interests and Purpose of Study, including (short) research proposal;
    • Writing sample E.g. Bachelor or Master thesis or published paper (optional).
    • You will also need to provide names and email addresses of two references.

    Incomplete files will not be considered. GRE/GMAT and Toefl/IELTS scores must meet the minimum requirements. Go to Application Procedure for further details. 

  • How do I find out whether my application is complete?

    How do I find out whether my application is complete?

    You can review your application at the end of the application form to check if you have answered all the required questions and uploaded the required documents. We advise you to double check your entire application for completeness. Please note that it is your responsibilty to remind your referees to submit their reference letters on your behalf before the admission deadline. You can check the status of your recommendation letters when you log in to your application. Files that are not complete (incl. reference letters) at the deadline will not be reviewed.

  • What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    After you have received a preliminary acceptance, you are asked  to submit certified copies of grade transcripts and diplomas (never send the originals). A certified copy is a photocopy with an endorsement or stamp that states that it is a true copy of the original document. You can certify copies of your documents at your school or sometimes at the municipality or notary.

  • I applied last year; do I need to submit a new application?

    I applied last year; do I need to submit a new application?

    Yes, you will need to submit a new application and upload all of the required documents.

  • When can I expect a decision on my application?

    When can I expect a decision on my application?

    You can expect to hear from us within eight weeks after the deadline (December 1 or February 1). If you submit later than February 1, you can expect a decision within eight weeks after your submission date. Please note that incomplete files will not be reviewed.

  • Is it possible to apply to BDS for direct admission to a PhD research position?

    Is it possible to apply to BDS for direct admission to a PhD research position?

    No, this is not possible. The research master program is a gateway to PhD positions at the participating schools.  For PhD positions, please check job openings at the universities. 

  • I cancelled my application in Studielink and re-applied. In the Erasmus Admission Portal, my application has the status “Cancelled”. What should I do?

    I cancelled my application in Studielink and re-applied. In the Erasmus Admission Portal, my application has the status “Cancelled”. What should I do?

    Please send an email to us via admissions@businessdatascience.nl; we can change the status of your application.

  • I have specific questions about the application procedure. Whom can I address?

    I have specific questions about the application procedure. Whom can I address?

    The BDS website and our online admission program provide detailed information. If you are stuck in Studielink or Osiris, please contact the Erasmus University Student Service Centre and ask for assistance. If you still have questions, please send them to this address: admissions@businessdatascience.nl. Using any other address will cause delay.

  • Do I have to wait for the official test score reports before I can complete my application file?

    Do I have to wait for the official test score reports before I can complete my application file?

    Unless you are exempted from the requirement to submit additional test results, your file is not complete without the required GMAT/GRE and/or English proficiency scores. In the event that you risk to miss the submission deadline because you did not yet receive your official test score report, you may upload a screen shot of the page that shows your scores. 

Admission criteria

  • How can I best prepare for the admission during my Bachelor or Master program?

    How can I best prepare for the admission during my Bachelor or Master program?

    The research master is a challenging program building upon the quantitative and analytical paradigms developed in the discipline.

    Students in more business oriented undergraduate programs can improve their admission possibilities by extending their curriculum with some quantitative course work (e.g., linear algebra, mathematical statistics and probability theory, calculus). Students from more quantitative programs benefit from initial course work in one or multiple business fields, for instance marketing, accountancy, human resources. See Research fields–Businessdatascience.nl for more information.

    Students opting for the more challenging Advanced Econometrics track in their first year, should have completed a solid Econometrics course at the level of a graduate economics program.

    Students lacking a strong mathematics background should prepare before they come to Tinbergen Institute and start the research master Business Data Science by refreshing their knowledge. 

    Refresh and Test your knowledge and skills – Businessdatascience.nl

  • Can BDS advise me whether I am qualified to apply?

    Can BDS advise me whether I am qualified to apply?

    Due to the number of applications we receive it is not possible to offer individual feedback on your chances of being accepted to the BDS program. The admissions board will evaluate your application as a whole. You are advised to check the admission requirements and to read the academic preparations to see whether you feel comfortable with the content of the textbooks there.

  • Does BDS organize on-campus and virtual visits?

    Does BDS organize on-campus and virtual visits?

    Are you curious about the research master Business Data Science, but haven't applied yet or finalized your application? We participate in the open days of the three universities and offer an on-campus or a virtual visit option if you are abroad to experience our program. Find details on our information session page or request a (virtual) visit here.

    Research Master Business Data Science in 13 slides

    See also information sheet for prospective students.

Coursework exemptions

  • There is some overlap in the BDS program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    There is some overlap in the BDS program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    In the case of exact overlap between BDS courses and coursework completed earlier, exemptions from individual courses may be granted.  The exemption may not affect the ECTS requirements. Exemptions will be discussed in an intake interview with the Director of Graduate Studies at the start of the academic year.

  • I followed (parts of) a master program elsewhere. Can I skip the first, core year of the research master program?

    I followed (parts of) a master program elsewhere. Can I skip the first, core year of the research master program?

    No.

GRE, GMAT, TOEFL and IELTS

  • Which tests do I take?

    Which tests do I take?

    Applicants holding a Dutch degree before the start of the program are exempted from the requirement to submit additional test results. From all others test scores are required.

    To demonstrate general aptitude and quantitative skills: GRE General Test or GMAT test
    To demonstrate proficiency in English: IELTS or TOEFL


  • Can I be exempted from the GRE or GMAT test?

    Can I be exempted from the GRE or GMAT test?

    Valid GRE or GMAT test results are required from all applicants not holding a Dutch degree.

  • What is the minimum GRE or GMAT score required?

    What is the minimum GRE or GMAT score required?

    Applicants with a GMAT score below 700 or a GRE Quantitative score below 160 will not be considered. Successful applicants typically rank among the top 10% of examinees on the quantitative section of the GMAT or GRE.

  • Which language test do I take, Toefl or IELTS?

    Which language test do I take, Toefl or IELTS?

    Both language tests are accepted. 

  • Can I be exempted from the TOEFL or IELTS test?

    Can I be exempted from the TOEFL or IELTS test?

    Yes, you can if you hold a degree from an institution at which English is the language of instruction, or hold a degree from a Dutch university. 

  • What is the minimum Toefl/IELTS score required?

    What is the minimum Toefl/IELTS score required?

    Minimum scores required: 100 on the TOEFL iBT test and 7 on the IELTS test. If your score is lower than the minimum requirement, we recommend that you improve your English level and retake the test. 

  • What is the school's code for GRE and GMAT?

    What is the school's code for GRE and GMAT?

    For GRE: the institutional code is 3811 (shared with Tinbergen Institute, partner of the Business Data Science program).

    For GMAT: program code is QK8-4B-73 (shared with Erasmus School of Economics)

  • Do I have to wait for the official test score reports before I can complete my application file?

    Do I have to wait for the official test score reports before I can complete my application file?

    Without GRE, GMAT and Toefl/IELTS test scores your file is not complete. In case you risk to miss the submission deadline because you did not yet receive the official test score reports, you could use the print functionality in your GMAT or ETS account and upload this (preliminary) document in stead.

  • Will my application be reviewed if my GRE/GMAT or Toefl/IELTS scores do not meet the required minimum?

    Will my application be reviewed if my GRE/GMAT or Toefl/IELTS scores do not meet the required minimum?

    No. We advise you to re-take the test and participate in the next admission round.

  • How long are my GRE/GMAT, TOEFL and IELTS test scores valid?

    How long are my GRE/GMAT, TOEFL and IELTS test scores valid?

    GRE and GMATscores are valid for five years after the test date. TOEFL and IELTS scores have a two-year validity period.

Financial support

  • How much is the tuition fee for me?

    How much is the tuition fee for me?

    In the master phase of the program a tuition fee is charged to all students. Tuition fees are due until all examinations, including the final thesis, are passed. The tuition fees are determined annually by the Dutch government and the universities.

    The annual tuition fee for the academic year 2024-2025 is:

    EEA national € 2,530
    non-EEA national € 17,000
    EEA students holding an EUR, UvA or VU Master's degree € 2,530
    Students holding a Master's degree from another Dutch university € 17,000

    In the PhD phase no tuition fees are charged.

  • Am I eligible for a scholarship?

    Am I eligible for a scholarship?

    Scholarships are awarded based on merit. Applicants who wish to compete for a scholarship should indicate this on the online application form. For more information, please visit the scholarships section of our website. Applicants applying for a scholarship are advised to submit their application as early as possible,. For more information, please visit the scholarships section of the website.

  • I intend to apply for external funding and need help from the school. How to proceed?

    I intend to apply for external funding and need help from the school. How to proceed?

    Contact admissions@businessdatascience.nl and explain your case. The school will provide the necessary documents.

  • Is it possible to have a job while following the BDS program?

    Is it possible to have a job while following the BDS program?

    The first year of the program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students the school offers teaching assistantships. Research assistantships connected to research masters' thesis research are available at the affiliated departments. 

    Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

Practical matters after acceptance

  • How can I prepare for the program?

    How can I prepare for the program?

    Depending on your educational background, you may want to prepare academically for one or more core sequences before coming to BDS. Please check here.

  • I intend to apply for external funding and need help from the school. How to proceed?

    I intend to apply for external funding and need help from the school. How to proceed?

    Contact admissions@businessdatascience.nl and explain your case. The school will provide the necessary documents.

  • Is it possible to have a job while following the research master program?

    Is it possible to have a job while following the research master program?

    The first year of the program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students the school offers teaching assistantships. Research assistantships connected to research masters' thesis research are available at the affiliated departments. 

    Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

  • What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    After preliminary acceptance you will need to submit certified copies of grade transcripts and diplomas (never send us the original documents). A certified copy is a photocopy with an endorsement or stamp that states that it is a true copy of the primary document. You can certify copies of your documents at your school or sometimes at the municipality or notary.

  • I need help with immigration procedures

    I need help with immigration procedures

    The Erasmus Immigration office will contact you and guide you through the process. Please find more information here: Immigration | Erasmus University Rotterdam (eur.nl)

  • I need help to find accommodation

    I need help to find accommodation

    The universities offer limited accommodation for students who are new to the Netherlands. We will help the students who qualify to register for student housing but we advise to continue your search for alternative options. 

    Students who have been living in the Netherlands before have to find their own accommodation. 

Miscellaneous

  • What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    What is a certified copy of a diploma?

    After preliminary acceptance you will need to submit certified copies of grade transcripts and diplomas (never send us the original documents). A certified copy is a photocopy with an endorsement or stamp that states that it is a true copy of the primary document. You can certify copies of your documents at your school or sometimes at the municipality or notary.

  • I have specific questions about the application procedure. Whom can I address?

    I have specific questions about the application procedure. Whom can I address?

    The website and our online admission program provide detailed information. If you still have questions, please send them to this address: admissions@businessdatascience.nl. Using any other address will cause delay.

  • Is it possible to apply to BDS for direct admission to a PhD research position?

    Is it possible to apply to BDS for direct admission to a PhD research position?

    No, this is not possible. The BDS program is a gateway to PhD positions at the affiliated schools. For PhD positions check job openings at the universities.

  • Is it possible to have a job while following the research master program?

    Is it possible to have a job while following the research master program?

    The first year of the program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students the school offers teaching assistantships. Research assistantships connected to research masters' thesis research are available at the affiliated departments. 

    Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

  • I followed (parts of) a master program elsewhere. Can I skip the first year of the program?

    I followed (parts of) a master program elsewhere. Can I skip the first year of the program?

    No.