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English Language and Communication Studies

Communication and Information Studies

Explore English

Should higher education be taught in English? Are advertisements in English more effective than advertisements in Dutch? How can we ensure that the increasing use of English does not lead to inequality and the loss of other languages?

English has become the most important language for international communication. Around the world, millions of people use English in their daily and professional lives. In this specialisation of the Bachelor’s in Communication and Information Studies, you study spoken and written communication in English, paying special attention to people with different levels of proficiency.

You explore varieties of English worldwide, and, in courses like Global English, you investigate how language evolves. What role does English play in society and in different social situations? Naturally, you also develop your own skills in spoken and written English.

The programme gives you plenty of opportunities to shape your own curriculum and follow your interests. For example, you can spend the semester allotted to your minor in year 3 at a university in an English-speaking country. Alternatively, you might choose to apply your knowledge of English in an internship.

VU Amsterdam is an international university located at Amsterdam’s Zuidas, the city’s main business district, which is home to many multinational companies and close to Schiphol Airport. This makes it the ideal place for a programme focused on the central role of English in society.

Fact and Figures

First year

In the first year, you are introduced to how English-language communication works in different contexts, including conversations, social media and websites. You also learn how we use English creatively to convey certain messages.

Subjects

  • English Language Test Faculty of Humanities
  • Introduction to Communication Studies
  • Introduction to Linguistics
  • Orientation Module CIS 1
  • Academic English CIW-L&S Grammar
  • Academic Skills CIS 1
  • Language, Media and Communication
  • Academic English CIW-L&S Writing
  • Academic Skills CIS 2
  • Discourse Analysis
  • Methods
  • Orientation Module CIS 2
  • Persuasive Communication
  • English: International Communication
  • The Structures of English

You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

Second year

During the second year, you study written and spoken English in different areas. These include face-to-face contexts as well as mediated settings (including social media and websites), for example in the course Analyzing Text and Talk. You pay attention to multimodal interaction (speech and gesture, text and image) in courses like Spoken Language and Gesture. You also study texts in translation and intercultural communication, particularly in the course Text Production and Translation.

Subjects

  • Global English
  • Language in Social Media
  • Analysing Text and Talk
  • Text Production and Translation 
  • Philosophy CIS-L&S-MKDA
  • Communication Cultures
  • Spoken Language and Gesture
  • Applied Statistics
  • Globalisation and Localisation
  • Language, Culture and Variation

You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

Third year

In the third year, you can shape your own curriculum. During the semester allotted for your minor, you can study at a university in an English-speaking country, or apply your knowledge of English in an internship. The Bachelor’s thesis gives you the opportunity to conduct your own hands-on research into an aspect of the English language.

Subjects

  • Bachelor Thesis Communication and Information Sciences
  • Language Change 
  • Metaphor in Professional Settings
  • Bachelor Thesis Colloquium Communication and Information Sciences 
  • Advanced English Language Skills

You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

  • 1st year

    First year

    In the first year, you are introduced to how English-language communication works in different contexts, including conversations, social media and websites. You also learn how we use English creatively to convey certain messages.

    Subjects

    • English Language Test Faculty of Humanities
    • Introduction to Communication Studies
    • Introduction to Linguistics
    • Orientation Module CIS 1
    • Academic English CIW-L&S Grammar
    • Academic Skills CIS 1
    • Language, Media and Communication
    • Academic English CIW-L&S Writing
    • Academic Skills CIS 2
    • Discourse Analysis
    • Methods
    • Orientation Module CIS 2
    • Persuasive Communication
    • English: International Communication
    • The Structures of English

    You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

  • 2nd year

    Second year

    During the second year, you study written and spoken English in different areas. These include face-to-face contexts as well as mediated settings (including social media and websites), for example in the course Analyzing Text and Talk. You pay attention to multimodal interaction (speech and gesture, text and image) in courses like Spoken Language and Gesture. You also study texts in translation and intercultural communication, particularly in the course Text Production and Translation.

    Subjects

    • Global English
    • Language in Social Media
    • Analysing Text and Talk
    • Text Production and Translation 
    • Philosophy CIS-L&S-MKDA
    • Communication Cultures
    • Spoken Language and Gesture
    • Applied Statistics
    • Globalisation and Localisation
    • Language, Culture and Variation

    You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

  • 3rd year

    Third year

    In the third year, you can shape your own curriculum. During the semester allotted for your minor, you can study at a university in an English-speaking country, or apply your knowledge of English in an internship. The Bachelor’s thesis gives you the opportunity to conduct your own hands-on research into an aspect of the English language.

    Subjects

    • Bachelor Thesis Communication and Information Sciences
    • Language Change 
    • Metaphor in Professional Settings
    • Bachelor Thesis Colloquium Communication and Information Sciences 
    • Advanced English Language Skills

    You can find the complete course overview for this year in the Study guide

Change your future with the English Language and Communication Studies programme

Change your future with the English Language and Communication Studies programme

After the Bachelor’s programme, you can specialise further by following a Master’s programme. As a graduate of Communication and Information Studies, you could work as a translator, teacher or web editor in government, for an education institution or at a translation agency.

Explore your future prospects
Student in a square with other people in the background