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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?

    Priority deadline: February 1. Rolling admission for non-EEA nationals until April 1. Rolling admission for EEA nationals until May 1 (or earlier if full capacity has been reached). Students already studying in the Netherlands who wish to apply after the May 1 deadline are advised to contact the admissions office.

  • 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 and Toefl/IELTS test scores, your file is not complete (unless you have an exemption from these requirements). In the event that your official test score report has not yet arrived, you may upload a screen shot of the ETS page that shows your GRE or Toefl scores.

  • Does TI charge a fee for this application?

    Does TI charge a fee for this application?

    Yes, the application fee is $ 50 (non-refundable). Applicants from countries on the OECD DAC list pay a reduced application fee ($ 10, non-refundable). Payment is by creditcard only. Applicants with a Dutch degree are exempted from the application fee. 

  • How do I complete my application package?

    How do I complete my application package?

    TI requests that you upload the following documents:

    • GRE score report (if applicable);
    • TOEFL or IELTS test results (if applicable);
    • 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 (optional).
    • You will also need to provide names and email addresses of two references.

    Incomplete files will not be considered. GRE and Toefl/IELTS scores must meet TI’s minimum requirements. Go to Documentation and References for further details. 

  • Do I need to upload my files in one session?

    Do I need to upload my files in one session?

    It is possible to fill out the application form and upload your documents in multiple sessions. Do not forget to save before you close the form. Once you have submitted your file, you can no longer make any changes. For necessary changes after submission, you need to contact the admissions officer at applications@tinbergen.nl.

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

    How do I find out whether my application is complete?

    You can use ‘Review Application’ at the end of your application form in Embark 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 in Embark. You will also be notified by (automated) email if your recommender has submitted your online recommendation in Embark. 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?

    Those who have received preliminary acceptance will need to submit certified copies of grade transcripts and diplomas (never send us the original diplomas). 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 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?

    All complete files will be reviewed in the month after the February 1 admission deadline. You can expect an admission decision within eight weeks. After February 15 there is rolling admission. You can expect to hear from TI within eight weeks.

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

  • Is it possible to apply to the institute for direct admission to a 3-year PhD research position?

    Is it possible to apply to the institute for direct admission to a 3-year PhD research position?

    No, this is not possible. Tinbergen Institute is a gateway to PhD positions for students who have completed TI’s research master program. For PhD positions, please refer to the job openings at the universities.

Coursework exemptions

  • There is some overlap in TI’s program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    There is some overlap in TI’s program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    In the case of exact overlap between TI courses and coursework completed earlier, exemptions from individual courses may be granted.  The exemption may not effect 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 MPhil program?

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

    No.

Admission criteria

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

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

    The TI program in economics, econometrics and finance 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 coursework (e.g., linear algebra, mathematical statistics and probability theory, calculus). Students from more quantitative programs benefit from some initial coursework in micro- or macroeconomics. 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.

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

    Can TI 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 TI program. The admissions board will evaluate your application as a whole. You are advised to check the admission requirements and to read the section in the program brochure about the right preparations for the program (section 3.6) to see whether you feel comfortable with the content of the textbooks there.

  • Are there any special admission criteria for Chinese nationals?

    Are there any special admission criteria for Chinese nationals?

    If you are a Chinese national (even if you are currently living outside China) and you are admitted to the TI program, you will need a NUFFIC Certificate to be eligible for a Dutch entry visa. NUFFIC certificates  provide an assessment of your English language proficiency and attest to the authenticity of your educational degrees and diplomas. One of the documents required for a NUFFIC certificate is an English proficiency test report. Only IELTS (academic) or TOEFL iBT (Internet-based) tests are accepted by NUFFIC. Important notice: Meeting the TI admissions criteria does not automatically lead to meeting the criteria for the NUFFIC certificate.

  • Is GMAT also accepted instead of the GRE test?

    Is GMAT also accepted instead of the GRE test?

    No. TI requires the GRE (revised) General Test results from all applicants who are not holding a Dutch degree before entering the TI program. No other tests are accepted.

GRE, TOEFL and IELTS

  • Which GRE test do I take?

    Which GRE test do I take?

    Tinbergen Institute requires the GRE (revised) general test. You should complete all three sections. Verbal Reasoning measures your ability to analyze and evaluate written material and synthesize information obtained from it, analyze relationships among component parts of sentences and recognize relationships among words and concepts. Quantitative Reasoning measures problem-solving ability using basic concepts of arithmetic, algebra, geometry and data analysis. Analytical Writing measures critical thinking and analytical writing skills--specifically, your ability to articulate and support complex ideas clearly and effectively.

    Please note: As of this year, applicants holding a Dutch degree before the start of the TI program no longer need to submit GRE test scores.

  • Can I be exempted from the GRE test?

    Can I be exempted from the GRE test?

    Valid GRE General Test results are required from applicants with a non-Dutch degree.

  • Is GMAT also accepted instead of the GRE test?

    Is GMAT also accepted instead of the GRE test?

    No. TI requires the GRE (revised) General Test results from all applicants with a non-Dutch degree. No other tests are accepted.

  • What is the minimum GRE score required?

    What is the minimum GRE score required?

    Successful applicants typically perform among the top-10% of test-takers on the quantitative part of the GRE; applicants with a Q score below 160 will not be considered.

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

    Which language test do I take, Toefl or IELTS?

    Both language tests are accepted by TI. The Nuffic certificate requires an IELTS academic or TOEFL iBT score.

  • 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. For Chinese nationals an IELTS academic or TOEFL iBT score report is always required for the NUFFIC certificate. See also the FAQ about special admission criteria for Chinese nationals.

  • 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. Chinese nationals should also read the requirements for the NUFFIC certificate.

  • What is the Tinbergen Institute code for ETS?

    What is the Tinbergen Institute code for ETS?

    TI‘s institutional code is 3811.

  • 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 and Toefl/IELTS test scores your file is not complete. In case your official test score report has not arrived yet, you may upload a screen shot of the ETS page that shows your GRE or Toefl scores.

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

    Will my application be reviewed if my GRE 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, TOEFL and IELTS test scores valid?

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

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

Facts and Figures about the TI MPhil program

  • What is the annual inflow of students into the TI research master program?

    What is the annual inflow of students into the TI research master program?

    The maximum number of students annually accepted in the TI program is 35. See below the annual inflow over the years 2014-2018. Female students represent one-third of students. TI strives to increase the number of female students and encourages women to apply to the programme. 

  • What is the academic background (MA/BA) of the students entering the program?

    What is the academic background (MA/BA) of the students entering the program?

    The graph shows with which degrees (Ba/Ma) students enter the TI program. All students hold at least a bachelor degree; many hold already a master degree (one-year master program). Almost 90% of the students have a background in economics; others are trained in computer sciences or mathematics, or have completed a liberal arts and sciences bachelor program at one of the Dutch University Colleges.

  • How is the distribution of students accross the TI universities?

    How is the distribution of students accross the TI universities?

    TI students are registered at one of the three TI universities (Erasmus University, University of Amsterdam or Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam). The affiliation of the student plays no role in access to courses, supervisors or PhD opportunities. After  completion of the research master program, VU students may transfer to EUR or UvA and vice versa without any problem. Diplomas are awarded by the university of registration and by Tinbergen Institute.

  • How high are the success rates for applicants?

    How high are the success rates for applicants?

    The graph reports the percentage of applicants admitted to the TI program over the years 2014-2018. 

     

  • How many students continue in a PhD track after having completed the research master program?

    How many students continue in a PhD track after having completed the research master program?

    About 85% of the TI students continue in a PhD track at TI. At the three economics faculties participating in Tinbergen Institute, PhD positions are allocated to most graduates of the TI research master program. Additional positions are available with external funding (from NWO and other sources). All (senior) TI research fellows (researchers with excellent international credentials) are available for thesis supervision. Usually, if the match between student and supervisor is successful, the final thesis supervisor is also the PhD thesis supervisor in the PhD phase of the program. PhD students in the Netherlands are fully employed and have a good salary.

Financial support

  • How much is TI’s tuition fee for me?

    How much is TI’s 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 2019-2020 is:

    EEA national € 2,078
    non-EEA national € 15,450
    students holding a Dutch MSc degree € 15,450

    Qualifying students holding a Dutch master degree are encouraged to apply for a tuition waiver. 

    In the PhD phase no tuition fees are charged.

  • Am I eligible for a scholarship?

    Am I eligible for a scholarship?

    Tinbergen Institute awards scholarships based on merit. Applicants who wish to compete for a TI scholarship should indicate this on the online application form. These applicants are advised to submit their application as early as possible, preferably by the priority deadline of February 1. For more information, please visit the scholarships section of our website.

  • How many students receive a scholarship from TI?

    How many students receive a scholarship from TI?

    TI runs its own merit-based scholarship program for students in the research master program. Over the years, we have offered scholarships to some 50% of the students entering the program. Percentages are even higher for second-year students. In the second year, the vast majority of  students gets additional income from part-time appointments as teaching or research assistants. Students in the program's PhD phase are typically employed by one of the TI departments as PhD researchers. These are full-time positions that come with all the benefits of employment, including a good salary. For more information, see our scholarship pages.

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

    I intend to apply for external funding and need help from Tinbergen Institute. How to proceed?

    Contact applications@tinbergen.nl and explain your case. TI will provide the necessary documents.

  • Is it possible to work while following the MPhil program?

    Is it possible to work while following the MPhil program?

    The core (first-year) program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students Tinbergen Institute offers a number of teaching assistantships. Many second-year students also find other research assistantships connected to their research interests in one of the TI departments. Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

Practical matters after acceptance

  • 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 diplomas). 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 intend to apply for external funding and need help from Tinbergen Institute. How to proceed?

    I intend to apply for external funding and need help from Tinbergen Institute. How to proceed?

    Contact applications@tinbergen.nl and explain your case. TI will provide the necessary documents.

  • Is it possible to work while following the MPhil program?

    Is it possible to work while following the MPhil program?

    The core (first-year) program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students Tinbergen Institute offers a number of teaching assistantships. Many second-year students also find other research assistantships connected to their research interests in one of the TI departments. Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

  • How do I prepare academically for the TI program?

    How do I prepare academically for the TI program?

    Depending on their academic background, students may want to prepare academically for one or more core sequences before they come to TI. For them we have composed a reading list.

Miscellaneous

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

    Can TI advise me whether I am qualified to apply?

    Due to the large number of applications we receive it is impossible to give individual feedback on your chances of being accepted to the program. You are advised to check the admission requirements and to go through the reading list to see whether you feel comfortable with the content of the textbooks there.

  • 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 diplomas). 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 TI website and our online admission program provide detailed information. If you still have questions, please send them to this address: applications@tinbergen.nl. Using any other address will cause delay.

  • Is it possible to apply to the institute for direct admission to a 3-year PhD research position?

    Is it possible to apply to the institute for direct admission to a 3-year PhD research position?

    No, this is not possible. Tinbergen Institute is a gateway to PhD positions for students who completed TI’s research master program. For PhD positions we refer you to the job openings at the universities.

  • Is it possible to work while following the research master program?

    Is it possible to work while following the research master program?

    The core (first-year) program leaves little or no time for any jobs. For second-year students Tinbergen Institute offers teaching assistantships. Many second-year research master students also find research assistantships connected with their thesis research in one of the TI departments. Also see the Nuffic pages on working while studying.

  • How do I prepare academically for the TI program?

    How do I prepare academically for the TI program?

    Depending on their academic background, students may want to prepare academically for one or more core sequences before they come to TI. For them we have composed a reading list.

  • There is some overlap in TI’s program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    There is some overlap in TI’s program with my earlier coursework. Can I get exemptions?

    In case of exact overlap between TI courses and coursework completed earlier, exemptions from individual courses may be granted. This may not have an effect on the program requirements in ECTS. 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 TI program?

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

    No.