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  Application procedure

Applicants for this master’s programme must first fill in an application via Studielink, the online application tool for higher education in the Netherlands. After that you can apply directly to Maastricht University via the My UM portal.

Apply via Studielink

PLEASE NOTE: all students with a registered address in the Netherlands and a current Citizen Service Number (BSN) must have their own DigiD code in order to log o n to Studielink.

To request an enrolment in Studielink, please take the following steps:

  1. Apply for an account in Studielink. You will receive an email with your Studielink login details within minutes.
  2. Login to Studielink, set a personal password, enter your personal data and select ‘new enrolment application’.
  3. Select first the university and then the programme of your choice.
  4. In the following steps you will need to fill in:
    • Diploma or diplomas which you have obtained or will obtain
    • Payment information such as bank account number from which your tuition fees will be paid. This information can only be changed via the university and not in Studielink so please give a bank account only when you are sure it will be used to pay the fees. If you are not sure, you can supply this information later. However, be careful not to forget it as it is essential for processing your payments and therefore your registration.
  5. Finish by clicking ‘Send my enrolment application’.

Note: If you have entered an address in the Netherlands, Studielink will check this address against the Dutch municipal personal records database. If it matches, Studielink will send you a ‘verification code’ by post. Non-Dutch students will automatically be mailed the verification code. You have to submit this code in Studielink. It takes at least 5-7 working days before you receive this letter. However, you do not have to wait for it to continue the application procedure.

Apply and register via the My UM portal

Once you have submitted your application via Studielink, you will receive an email from Maastricht University containing login details for the My UM portal, where you can finish the application process. Please use Internet Explorer to fill in the application.

Make sure that you complete the application procedure once you have started it!
When you apply via Studielink but wait too long to send in the requested documents, your application will be put on hold, causing a delay in the procedure and some effort to solve it. If this nevertheless happens, contact the Student Service Centre via study@maastrichtuniversity.nl to have your application re-opened.

  1. Go to the My UM portal and upload the required documents
  2. Maastricht University will assess your application and make a decision.
  3. You will receive an email to inform you if you are either admitted, conditionally admitted (e.g. when a document is still missing) or not admitted.
  4. If you are admitted or conditionally admitted, you will receive the invoice of the tuition fees, also by email. Finish your registration by returning the signed invoice. You can either send it by post (Maastricht University, SSC-Registration Office, PO Box 616, 2100 MD Maastricht), or hand it in at the desk in the Visitors’ Centre. Please make sure that you have also entered the payment details in Studielink or your payment cannot be processed!

More information

For question about how to apply via Studielink, please consult the Studielink website

If you have other questions regarding the application process, you can send an email to: study@maastrichtuniversity.nl

The required documents for your application that can be uploaded via My UM are:

  • a recent copy of your CV
  • a copy of your passport
  • a passport-size picture
  • proof of proficiency in English* (IELTS / TOEFL)
  • two letters of reference, from current or former professors and/or employers
  • copies of your degree(s) and lists of grades (If necessary translated in English by an official translation agency)
  • a motivation letter which explains why you chose this programme and which convinces the Board of Admissions that you will complete the programme successfully
  • an essay (400 words in Word/PDF with searchable text) on the topic of your choice; (Make sure the essay really covers one of these topics and that you title the essay properly with the topic and question as stated below):

    1. Social Policy Design and Financing: What is, in your opinion, the most important challenge for social protection policy in your country in the next five years?
    2. Migration Studies: In your opinion, what are the key factors that governments should take into account when forming their immigration policy?
    3. Foreign Policy and International Relations: Intellectual property rights are a controversial topic: one the one hand, they protect the investments of past innovators, but on the other hand, they can stifle future innovators seeking to build on existing work. Have intellectual property rights been beneficial for your country? Discuss.
    4. Risk and Vulnerability: "We constantly face the risk of calamities and disasters, either man-made or natural. Which do you consider to be the most pressing risk face by your country, and how should it be addressed?"
    5. Regional Integration and Multi-Level Governance: In your opinion, how can regional cooperation help your country address some of its most important policy challenges? What are the main promises and pitfalls?
    6. Institutions, Innovation and Development: In the age of globalization, knowledge is supposed to flow easily between countries. Hence all countries should be able to benefit from innovation-based growth. Do you agree with this optimistic outlook on development?

The certified copies of your degree(s) and grades and your original letters of recommendation will need to be sent to our postal address in addition to being uploaded digitally:

Maastricht University
Maastricht Graduate School of Governance
Attention: Admissions
P.O. Box 616
6200 MD Maastricht
The Netherlands

The reference letters must be sent to us either as an original hardcopy by mail, or alternatively, they can be sent directly by your former or current professors/employers via email to info-governance@maastrichtuniversity.nl.

* Proof of English proficiency

Maastricht University requires a proof of your proficiency in English unless you are a native English speaker or have obtained a Bachelor or Master degree in an English-language program and in an English-speaking country. (Please upload a brief note under the box ‘request for exemptions’ if you want to apply for an exemption on these grounds.)

If you cannot be exempted from the English proficiency requirement (see above), we need a proof of your proficiency in English.

Maastricht Graduate School of Governance accepts TOEFL, IELTS, Cambridge English: Proficiency and Cambridge English: Advanced tests. The TOEFL code number of Maastricht University is 7102.

Maastricht University has established minimum scores for admission. For a TOEFL test, we require minimum score of 100 (IBT). For an IELTS test, we require a minimum score of 7.0. For the Cambridge English: Proficiency test, the minimum grade required is a C and for the Cambridge English: Advanced test Grade A is required.

Results of tests taken more than 3 years before the date of your application will not be considered.

Due to experience in previous years, we will also verify partial scores to ensure that all students are capable of participating fully in this intensive Public Policy and Human Development program. The requirements for partial scores are:

Reading: 23 or higher Reading: 6.5 or higher
Writing: 23 or higher Writing: 6.5 or higher
Listening: 22 or higher Listening: 6.5 or higher
Speaking: 22 or higher Speaking: 6.5 or higher


Cambridge English:Proficiency Cambridge English: Advanced
Reading: Grade C1 or higher Reading: Grade B
Writing: Grade C1 or higher Writing: Grade B
Listening: Grade C1 or higher Listening: Grade B
Speaking: Grade C1 or higher Speaking: Grade B

N.B. Without fulfilling this requirement, your application is incomplete and will not be submitted to the Board of Admission for assessment.

Application deadlines

  • Students who require a visa: 15 June every year
  • Students who do not require a visa: 15 July every year

 The Visa Office wll assist you with your visa requirements.

Handling fee

All non-EEA (EU+EFTA) students who apply for the Master’s programme in Public Policy and Human Development at the Maastricht Graduate School of Governance are requested to pay a handling fee. The handling fee costs € 100 (incl. bank costs) and must be paid before 15 June. You will be requested to pay this handling fee only once, regardless of the number of applications within one academic year. The handling fee can only be paid by bank transfer. (see the details below).

Please note that your application can only be processed upon receipt of the fee. The handling fee does not apply to EEA students.

EEA countries
The following countries are in the European Economic Area: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Malta, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. while Switzerland is not in the EEA, Swiss nationals have the same rights as EEA nationals..

Payment procedure

Upon registration in Studielink, you will be informed by email on the payment procedure.
The handling fee must be paid by bank transfer. Unfortunately credit card payments are not possible. Please use the details below:

Name Card holder: Maastricht University
IBAN: NL10 INGB 0749 5482 31
Name of the bank: ING Bank
Address of the bank: PO Box 1800, 1000 BV Amsterdam

Please indicate “handling fee” and your student id number in the payment form.


There are a few exceptions to the requirement to pay the handling fee for non-EEA candidates:

  • students with a nationality from an EEA country;
  • students with a European Bachelor’s degree;
  • students with a valid, current refugee status within an EEA country.
Refund handling fee

You are eligible for a refund if you are admitted to the programme, completed your registration and started your studies. The refund of the handling fee (excl. bank costs) will be transferred to a SEPA bank account only. This will be done in October 2016.
You are not eligible for a refund if:

  • you are not admitted to the programme;
  • you withdraw your application;
  • you did not complete your registration before 30 September 2016.

The programme starts in September.



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