Yun - University of Amsterdam

M Business
Winter 2023
I gained a deeper understanding of the European market and culture.


Taking part in the Globalisation course at the University of Amsterdam will help me to better understand politics, economics and business in the context of globalisation on the one hand, and on the other hand, I will be able to make good friends with excellent students from Europe and South America, which will help me to expand my business network in the future.

Personal Development

I gained a lot of things from this experience. Firstly, I gained a deeper understanding of the European market and culture. While visiting many museums in Amsterdam, I felt the charm of the city and the power of the citizens. Secondly, in the process of communicating with students from 18 countries, we overcame each other's accents from different places, and on the basis of language, we used gestures to convey our thoughts more accurately. Lastly, I gained a better comprehension of and respect for different cultures and opened up my own horizons under different cultural backgrounds.

Academic Development

This experience has given me a deeper understanding of academics and has helped me to establish co-operation with some of my peers. First of all, the education in Europe is very strict, especially the research universities in the Netherlands, we have endless homework and reading literature every day, which even reminds me of the gaokao system in China. However, after the teacher's communication, we reduced some homework appropriately. Compared to UQ, I think the Netherlands universities have a relatively single assessment method, but the intensity is very high. In UQ, the intensity is moderate, but the assessment methods are various, which can better develop students' ability to adapt to different challenges in the future. I think both have their own strengths. In addition, outside of the classroom, I met up with a group of Chinese friends who were also studying in the Netherlands, including some who were working on their PhDs, and we had a great chat and eventually agreed on some future academic collaborations.

Professional Development

In UvA, we have greatly improved our presentation skills, ability to express ourselves, logical thinking ability, and there are excellent students from all over the world in the class, forming a good atmosphere for learning and discussion, which greatly encourages us to be more proactive in expressing our views. In addition, during our daily group work, we discussed topics and refined our tasks, during which I greatly improved my team communication skills and ability to work together. Overall, these skills greatly improved our ability to communicate, express and think, and laid a good foundation for us to think independently and work as a team in the workplace in the future. Of course, since the students in the class came from all over the world, although we all communicated in English, due to the problem of local accents, there were occasional deviations in expression and inaudibility, but in the end, we overcame this difficulty by carefully and repeatedly explaining our own points of view to each other.


Concerning the budget, I managed it mainly by making lists. Firstly, I categorised the expenses that I needed and could predict, broadly divided into categories such as tuition fees, accommodation, travel (flights and rail), food, insurance, visas, and so on. In addition, I set aside an amount of money for other unforeseen expenses. Talking about the details, tuition was €1,675, accommodation was €760 per month, flights were about €2,500 round trip, food was about €12.50-20 per meal, and the metro was about €3 per trip. If you want to enjoy Amsterdam, each trip to the museums costs about €25, but you get a 50% discount because of the University of Amsterdam student card. Overall, the cost of living in Europe is on the high side, and my personal advice is to set aside some money to visit the museums indoors in Amsterdam.


This fund was so useful to me. Apart from the basic travelling expenses, I used this fund to pay for my breakfast at school, printing, daily transport to and from school and museum tickets on weekends, which somewhat alleviated the pressure of the cost of living in Europe. In addition, visiting different museums expanded my horizons and helped me to better understand all aspects of Europe's history, people and socio-economics.


I chose the hostel provided by the university at that time, and I was very satisfied with the hostel arrangement provided by the university. I learnt from talking to my classmates at UvA that UvA considers every student who participates in a short-term exchange to be a student at the university as well, and therefore gave us a dormitory subsidy. If you go out and choose your own accommodation, it will be about 300 euros more than the price given by the school. In addition, the UvA hostel has a private bathroom and a small fridge, which gives us plenty of privacy. The downside is that it is about 30 minutes from the school metro and travelling a total of 1 hour, which is a bit far and expensive for a return ticket. My advice is to choose the flat provided by the school for convenience if you can't find other housing. If you can find short-term flats on social media that other international students are renting out for their holidays back to their home countries, you can also reach out to them to cut down on the cost.


There are many highlights of the programme. Firstly, the strong humanistic and historical atmosphere, UvA is located in the centre of Europe, and Europe has a strong humanistic and historical atmosphere, so studying here can improve our humanistic qualities. Secondly, it is the cultural diversity, there are students from 18 countries in the class, and communicating with students from different cultural backgrounds greatly expands our horizons and enhances our cultural understanding. Lastly, I am proud that I was able to represent UQ in Europe. When I introduced UQ to the students, many of them said they did not know much about this university, but in the continuous introduction and communication with them, many of them learnt about UQ as an Australian institution, and at the end of the programme, I actively invited them to come to UQ when they have time. I think sharing itself is also a happy thing.

Advice/Top Tips

This is a great experience for learning about the culture, economy, and customs of the local people in regions other than Asia and the Pacific. It is especially recommended for students majoring in humanities and social sciences. The University of Amsterdam is known as the "European Harvard", and has a strong humanities and social sciences atmosphere, where you can receive a good humanistic cultivation. Of course, there are a lot of suggestions here. First of all, the Schengen visa processing cycle is very long, the required application materials are also very much, must be submitted as early as possible to apply, it is best to start applying about 3 months in advance (immediately after getting the offer), and carefully check whether the application materials are complete, once omitted to submit the application materials may need to queue up to apply again. Secondly, you don't need to exchange too many euros in advance, Visa payment is very convenient in Europe, you can use Visa card to solve the problem of taking the underground, eating, shopping and so on. Third, pay attention to your health. Finally, I wish future participants of this programme the same academic and professional success for an even better future!