As an external PhD candidate, you are responsible for the following costs:

• Membership fee of the Graduate School (yearly)
• VUnet-ID (not obligatory)
• The costs of following the training programme courses and activities (faculty online courses excepted)
• Travel and accommodation costs (if applicable) 


Membership fee

The fee has to be paid beginning from the month following your acceptance to the Graduate School. You will receive instructions on how to pay the fee as soon as you have been accepted as a member of the Graduate School. Following VU regulations, the fee is determined on an annual basis and is to be received two months after acceptance at the latest.

• The fee for the academic year 2017-2018 is € 500,-

An academic year runs from 1st September to 31st August. If you are admitted during the academic year, you pay a percentage of the fee, depending on your starting date:

• starting between 1 July and 31 December: full fee
• starting in January, February or March: 50%
• starting in April, May or June: 25%

Depending on the date of your PhD ceremony, a refund of your membership fee is possible under the following conditions:

• graduation between 1 July and 31 December: 50%
• graduation in January, February or March: 25%
• graduation in April, May or June: no refund 

What is a VU-net ID and do I need it?

The VU-net ID is a digital identity (username and password combination) with which you get access to various IT services and systems, such as your e-mail box and your home folder, in which you save your files on the VU servers. It also gives access to the closed area of the faculty and to the electronic library facilities and databases. Employees, students and guests with a hospitality agreement get a VU-net ID. As an external, non-resident PhD (Dutch: buitenpromovendus) you normally do not need a VU-net ID, especially not if you have sufficient access to an academic library in your own vicinity and/or do not need a visum. Our mandatory online courses can be accessed without a VU-net ID.

Given the high annual costs of a VU-net ID, we recommend that you first explore whether your local academic library or your national library are workable (or perhaps better) alternatives before you opt for a VU-net ID. VU University Library issues library cards for use on spot (a library card does however not provide full access to digital resources such as ATLA Religion Database). For more information on the VU library regulations, clickhere. In the Netherlands, membership of theKoninklijke Bibliotheekin The Hague gives access to many online services and collections for only€ 15 a year (see theconditions for membershiphere).

If you still wish to haveaccess to the VU e-library, you must purchase a VU-net ID. In 2018 this costs € 673,-- per year. Please note that this needs to be renewed annually. The fee charged for a VU-net ID is determined by the University, not by the Graduate School or the Faculty. Should you need a visum or come to Amsterdam from abroad and need full access to our electronic services, you must have a VU-net ID.

Should you decide to purchase or renew a VU-net ID, please use thislink. Payments have to be received before a VUnet-ID can be obtained. Payments are for the full year, independently from when you apply for a VUnet-ID.
Fees for the Graduate School, the VUnet-ID and all other costs are non-refundable. If you should decide to discontinue your PhD trajectory, or the Graduate School decides to terminate your membership, you will not be refunded for any fees paid thus far.


Different regulations and fees apply for internal candidates (AIO's) and for candidates who enter the PhD trajectory at the Faculty of Religion and Theology via one of the faculty’s recognized partner institutions or via some other agreement.