Why study in Holland

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Life and Study
06 Why study in Holland?

12 Holland
   a fine blend of culture and innovation

18 Higher education in Holland
   system, degrees, requirements, accreditation

26 Scholarships and
   exchange programmes

34 Preparing for study in Holland
   practical matters

40 Living in Holland
   daily life, student culture, leisure

46 Websites and addresses

48 Institutions for higher education
   in Holland
                     What do you know?
                     Dutch people you certainly heard of
                     Anne Frank, writer of the most famous diary in Dutch literature
                     Johan Cruyff, soccer genius
                     Vincent van Gogh, painter of the sunflowers
                     Freddy Heineken, the name says enough
                     DJ Tiësto, very popular in the dance scene
                     Anton Corbijn, photographer of the rock ’n’ roll stars
                     Kolonel Parker, manager of Elvis Presley
                     Erasmus, humanist in the 16th century
                     Mata Hari, double-agent during the First World War
                     Viktor & Rolf, extravagant couture duo
                     Rembrandt, another famous painter
                     Paul Verhoeven, director of the movie Basic Instinct
                     Rem Koolhaas, famous architect

                     Fun Facts about Holland
                     The Dutch are statistically the tallest people in the world
                     The Netherlands was one of the European Union’s founding nations
                     There are 16 million bicycles in Holland, which is about one for every inhabitant
                     The highest point in Holland is 323 metres high and is called a ‘mountain’
                     You’ll find a bunch of flowers in almost every living room
                     People of 200 nationalities live in Amsterdam
                     When your plane arrives at Schiphol, it lands 4.5 metres below sea level
                     The Netherlands has one of the youngest populations in the EU
                     The International Court of Justice sits at the Peace Palace in The Hague
                     New York was once Dutch
                     One in every three Dutch people belong to a sports club
                     With almost 1,000 museums, Holland has the highest museum density in the world
                     The first World Press Photo Exhibition was held in Holland

                     Some typical Dutch expressions
                     We’re all equal
                     One thing at a time
                     It’s a Dutch treat (everybody pays for himself)
                     All individual opinions are important
                     Act normal and you be acting crazy enough

4 Study in Holland                                                     Exchange programmes and scholarships 5
Holland, or more formally the Netherlands, is an
internationally-oriented and innovative country located
at a central spot in Europe.

Why study in

6 Study in Holland
Multicultural and                                Central spot in Europe
open society                                     Once you arrive in Holland, you’ll discover
Even as far back as the early 17th century,      that many European capitals are within easy
Holland was an advanced country, with            reach. Brussels is two hours by train, and a
much of its wealth coming from                   short flight from Amsterdam will take you
international trade.                             to Paris, Madrid or Berlin.
Today, international trade is still the main     The Dutch universities are an ideal starting
engine of economic growth. Dutch society         point for study tours and exchanges with
is multicultural. Groups of people with          other European countries.
non-Dutch backgrounds have been living in
Holland for decades as a result of historical    Value for money
ties with other parts of the world.              Education in Holland is not free, but tuition
The majority of the Dutch people speak           fees are reasonable. The latest Worldwide
English and very often another foreign           Cost of Living Survey shows that the cost of
language, such as German or French.              living in Amsterdam is modest compared
                                                 with cities like New York, London, Paris and
                                                                                                 Alan Guedes (26), Brasil
International study
                                                                                                 I was surprised by the objective
Holland was the first non-English-speaking
country to offer courses taught in English.
                                                 In this brochure, you will find many
                                                 more reasons to study in Holland.
                                                                                                 role of the professors
The Dutch higher education institutions          But the best way is to come and
                                                                                                 Master of International Development Studies, International
together offer about 1,150 international         experience it yourself!
                                                                                                 School for Humanities and Social Sciences, Amsterdam
study programmes and courses which are
taught entirely in English. This makes                                                                In São Paulo, I finished a Bachelor in Business Administration, but I didn’t find real
Holland the front-runner in continental                                                               fulfilment in what I was doing. Questions about the harsh reality and poverty kept
Europe.                                                                                               entering my mind, so I decided to work for NGOs in Brazil for social purposes.
                                                                                                      However, I lacked a theoretical background.
Quality and diversity in                                                                              A study that combines development, international and economic aspects is hard
education and research                                                                                to find. I came to Amsterdam because of the very specific programme they offer
Higher education in Holland enjoys a                                                                  here. My teacher in Brazil recommended the International School to me. The third
worldwide reputation for its high quality.                                                            argument to support my decision was the cost: education in Holland is affordable
This is achieved through a national system                                                            for EU students. For non-EU students it is more expensive.
of regulation and quality assurance.                                                                  It is a one-year master’s programme, which includes three months of fieldwork.
Holland has also received international                                                               About half the students are Dutch, the others come from the US, Canada, Western
acclaim for its ground-breaking                                                                       Europe, with a minority from Latin America, Asia and Africa.
Problem-Based Learning system, which                                                                  I was surprised by the objective role of the professors here. They present all the
trains students to analyze and solve practical                                                        possibilities and the different theories, but it’s up to you to reflect upon them and
problems independently through emphasis                                                               to think for yourself. Students can also be very open with their teachers, you can
on self-study and self-discipline.                                                                    express your feelings and say what you mean. Critical thinking is really the most
                                                                                                      important capacity for a student, I believe.
                                                                                                      Living in Amsterdam is relaxed compared to life in a city like São Paulo. I always
                                                                                                      go places by bike, it’s the perfect way to travel. I even bought some spare bikes
                                                                                                      for visiting friends.
                                                                                                      This city offers you the best of both worlds. If you are a serious student, you get
                                                                                                      all the possibilities to study hard and you’ll find the quietness you need. For all
8 Study in Holland                                                                                    the others, Amsterdam will mean a lot of fun!
Holland, or the Netherlands                    all the provinces, encompassing Amsterdam,
The country’s formal name is ‘Nederland’,      Rotterdam, The Hague and other well-known
meaning the ‘low country’. ‘Low’ because       Dutch cities such as Delft and Leiden.
much of the land is at or below sea level.     The name Holland is therefore also used to
Holland is in fact the name of the western     refer to the Netherlands as a whole, even
part of the country. In the 17th century,      though the other provinces are sometimes
these western provinces were the most          a little unhappy about it. If you are going to
developed and wealthiest part of the           study outside of the provinces of North and
country.                                       South Holland, try and use ‘the
At present, the provinces of North and South   Netherlands’. You’ll notice you’ll make more
Holland are the most heavily populated of      friends this way.

                                                                                                Qiuju Wang (25), China
                                                                                                I have made many friends from
                                                                                                all of the world
                                                                                                PhD in Company Law, University of Groningen
                                                                                                     When I was a child, I read an article about the Netherlands. So I already knew there
                                                                                                     are clear rivers, many windmills and tulips everywhere. Now I feel so lucky to study in
                                                                                                     this beautiful and peaceful country, and the Dutch people are really nice and friendly.
                                                                                                     I like the international atmosphere here best. There is a pleasant study environment,
                                                                                                     the views are clean and beautiful, I have many close friends, and I have met tolerant
                                                                                                     and helpful people.
                                                                                                     The teachers are very responsible and patient, and the course content corresponds
                                                                                                     closely with the practice. Thanks to the specific Master of Laws programme I
                                                                                                     completed, I acquired the latest knowledge and information in the fields I am
                                                                                                     interested in. But to achieve a good result as a PhD student, you must work hard.
                                                                                                     The whole process is definitely not so easy.
                                                                                                     Previously, I lived in an international student house. The living conditions were quite
                                                                                                     comfortable. That period was wonderful. I was surprised to see that people in the
                                                                                                     building greet each other whether they know each other or not. It contributes to the
                                                                                                     good atmosphere between people.
                                                                                                     I have made many friends from all of the world. We played music together, watched
                                                                                                     movies and went to the pubs. Quite often, we sat and chatted in the living room.
                                                                                                     Because of our different cultures, we had many topics to talk about, something
                                                                                                     which broadens my horizon everyday. It’s not only about learning and developing
                                                                                                     knowledge, but also about becoming more social and open-minded.
                                                                                                     I feel free here, and I’m very grateful for that. I’m content with the life I lead here,
                                                                                                     and I have the impression that I’m not the only one. Another thing that strikes me
10 Study in Holland                                                                                  all the time is that although China has a population nearly one hundred times more
                                                                                                     than that of the Netherlands, I see more smiling faces here.
a fine blend of
culture and innovation
‘The rest of the world is a big place’, say the Dutch, well
aware of how small their country is. For centuries,
Holland has had an attitude of openness towards the
rest of the world. In business, but also in social life
and culture.

12 Study in Holland
Geography                                       Worldwide trade
Holland is situated in the west of Europe.      Even in the early 17th century, Holland
To the east, Holland borders Germany, to the    was an advanced country, with much of its
south Belgium and to the north and west,        wealth coming from trade. Located in the
the North Sea. Once you arrive, you will be     delta where several major European rivers
struck immediately by the landscape. The        flow into the North Sea, Holland was ideally
country is extremely flat. There are a few       situated to become a centre of trade and
hills in the southeast corner of the country,   transport for all of western Europe. The
but even those hills barely infringe on the     17th century was the Golden Age in Dutch
broad, unbroken expanse of sky that is so       history, not surprising when you realize that
characteristic of the Dutch landscape.          Dutch ships carried 90 per cent of all the
Water is everywhere – lakes, rivers and         goods in Europe.
canals. More than 16 million people live in     Today, international trade is still the main
an area of a little more than 41,000 square     engine of economic growth in Holland.           Exporter of agricultural                       An international living
kilometres.                                     In fact, Holland is one of the world’s ten      products                                       environment
                                                leading exporting nations. Rotterdam has        Holland exports agricultural products to       The Dutch are accustomed to dealing with
Innovation and culture                          the largest port in Europe and until 2004,      the whole world. It has a 7.7 per cent share   people from around the world, and above
Holland manages to combine history and          when it was overtaken by Shanghai, also the     of the global market. Nicknamed Europe’s       all, to working with them. Groups of people
traditional culture with innovation,            largest in the world. Amsterdam’s Schiphol      vegetable garden, it is the world’s leading    with non-Dutch backgrounds have been
modernity and an international orientation.     airport is one of Europe’s major airports.      exporter of vegetables, while Dutch            living in Holland for decades as a result of
The country that uses a simple tulip to         Holland is home to several internationally      flowers hold a 60 per cent share of the world   historical ties with other parts of the world.
symbolize its export industry is itself the     renowned banks, including ING and               market. High-tech production methods and       English is spoken by most of the Dutch.
largest non-English-speaking importer of        Rabobank, both of which are in the              modern management have brought high            But German and French are spoken, too.
English books. The Dutch population, after      world’s top 20 companies in their field.         yields, top quality and healthy revenues       Holland lies at the point where the German,
making a slow start, now seems to have one      Philips is a Dutch company, and                 to Dutch agriculture.                          British and French cultures meet. This is
of the highest percentages of internet users    approximately half of Shell and Unilever                                                       evident as soon as you turn on the television.
in the world. With the same ease that the       are in Dutch hands. But there are also less     Water conservation                             In this well-cabled country, programming
Dutch have taken to the high tech world,        known, though no less important, Dutch          Holland lies on a flat, low delta and a         from the neighbouring countries and
they are equally happy taking a quiet stroll    multinationals. Take Enraf Nonius, for          quarter of the land is below sea level.        beyond can be received in nearly every
along the historic canals that run through      example, the world’s market-leader in           Because of its precarious location, it has     household. Cinemas show films from
town. This contrast is typical of Holland,      physiotherapy and rehabilitation equipment.     one of the best barrier dams in the world.     around the world in their original
there is no contradiction between the two.      The carillon is a Dutch invention, as is the    Several Dutch companies are involved in        languages. Alongside the usual church
                                                reality TV show Big Brother, the CD, which      water conservation projects and land           towers and synagogues, the minarets of
                                                was developed by Philips, and the world         reclamation throughout the world.              mosques can increasingly be seen in the
                                                famous DJ Tiësto.                                                                              large cities. You can dance the salsa every
                                                                                                                                               bit as easily as in Latin America. And Asian,
                                                                                                                                               Mediterranean and fast foods are becoming
                                                                                                                                               as familiar as wholesome Dutch fare.
                                                                                                                                               The result of all of this is that Holland is a
                                                                                                                                               place where knowledge, ideas and cultures
                                                                                                                                               from all over the world come together.

14 Study in Holland
Geography                                            Politics
Surface area: 41,528 square kilometers,              The Kingdom of the Netherlands is
one quarter is below sea level                       a constitutional monarchy with a bicameral
Longest distance north-south: 300 km                 parliament and universal suffrage
Longest distance east-west: 200 km                   based on a system of proportional
Lowest altitude: 6.74 meter below sea level          representation. This system means that
(near Rotterdam)                                     many parties can win seats in parliament
Highest altitude: 323 meter (near Maastricht)        such that no single party has an overall
Average summer temperature: 16.6 Celsius             majority. The government must maintain
Average winter temperature: 2.8 Celsius              the support of a parliamentary majority to
                                                     stay in power. For this reason, cabinets are
Government                                           always multi-party coalitions chaired by
Official name: Kingdom of the Netherlands,            the prime minister. The monarchy
commonly referred to as Holland or                   symbolizes national unity and therefore has
the Netherlands                                      a ceremonial character. Consequently, most
Form of government: Constitutional monarchy          of the population are loyal supporters of the
with a bicameral parliament                          monarchy and the royal family.
                                                                                                     Ivana Galetova (22), Czech Republic
Head of state: The hereditary monarch
Head of government: The prime minister
                                                     The first elections at which all men and
                                                     women had the right to vote were held in
                                                                                                     Dutch people are very
Capital city: Amsterdam
Seat of government: The Hague
                                                     1922. The political preferences of the Dutch
                                                     people are much the same as found in the
                                                                                                     organized and always busy
                                                     rest of Europe: the three main moderate
                                                                                                     Teacher Training, Utrecht University of Applied Sciences
Economy                                              political tendencies are represented by the
Currency: 1 euro = 1.26 USDollar (May 2006)          social democrats, the Christian democrats            I study Education at the University of Brno and I decided to go abroad to enlarge my
Gross domestic product (GDP):                        and the liberal parties. The smaller parties         outlook. I’m here for only three months and that isn’t enough to study the material in
488 billion euro                                     are generally less moderate variations on            great depth. But being abroad is a great benefit for me anyway.
Per capita GDP: 29,873 euro                          one of the three main tendencies. In the             I had heard and read a lot about the Netherlands before I came here. I was very
Cost of living: A single student can live            Netherlands, they are also referred to as            curious to know if all these rumours about flowers on every corner, windmills,
modestly on 700 - 1,000 euro a month                 ‘ideological parties’ (getuigenispartijen).          dykes, cheese and plenty of cyclists were true. I was looking forward to seeing the
International companies: Philips, Heineken,                                                               works of famous artists like Rembrandt, and experiencing one of the most tolerant
Unilever, Shell are just some of the large           See for information                atmospheres in Europe. Now I must say, my expectations were surpassed. Neither
international companies that originated in Holland   about the government and government                  my friends nor the tourist guides were exaggerating about Holland. Dutch people are
Main airport: Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam            policy.                                              very organized and always busy. They’re very kind, open and willing to help in every
(the fourth largest airport in Europe, handling      See also (available in                situation. I like their habits such as shopping every Saturday, drinking plenty of
an annual 42.4 million passengers and                English) for a brief summary of the history          coffee and going everywhere by bike, whatever the weather is doing. I live in a student
1.4 million tonnes of freight)                       of the Netherlands.                                  residence in the city centre. There are students from many countries, mostly European,
Main seaport: Rotterdam, the largest seaport                                                              but also from America, Australia and Africa. Some of them are my classmates, others
in Europe, handling 353 million tonnes of cargo                                                           have become my friends. But it’s impossible to know all of them, it’s huge.
a year                                                                                                    The student residence is a very nice place to stay, but it’s expensive. It isn’t easy to
Internet use: 78% of the Dutch people have                                                                find accommodation in Holland, but if you try hard and deal with the right people
Internet access at home                                                                                   and organizations, you’ll discover the cheaper lodgings.
                                                                                                          I really appreciate having the chance to spend time in such an expressive and
                                                                                                          compelling country that the Netherlands definitely is. I love travelling and I’m
                                                                                                          interested in art: the Netherlands offers lots of possibilities in these directions.
                                                                                                          My tip to anyone going to the Netherlands: buy the train discount card and the
16 Study in Holland                                                                                       museum card. I saved a lot of money this way. Exchange programmes and scholarships 17
Higher education in Holland enjoys a worldwide
reputation for its high quality. Experience shows that
people who have studied at a Dutch institution of higher
education perform very well in other parts of the world.
For a small country like Holland, this international
orientation, including in education and training, is a must
for survival in an increasingly internationalized world.

Higher education
in Holland
18 Study in Holland
International education                         Universities of professional                   Degrees: bachelor, master                       Students
in English                                      education                                      and PhD                                         Total enrolment: 559,000 students with men
Higher education institutions in Holland        The study programmes offered by                Students who enrol on higher education          and women in approximately equal numbers
offer about 1,150 international study           universities of professional education         programmes will obtain a bachelor’s degree      Average enrolment: Institutions vary in size,
programmes and courses which are taught         (hogescholen) are career-oriented.             upon completion of the undergraduate            enrolling anywhere from 300 to 25,000 students
in English. These programmes cover a broad      Acquiring practical work experience            phase, and a master’s degree upon               Completion of studies: Each year some
range of fields. Curricula are intensive, at     through internships is an integral part of     completion of the graduate phase.               83,000 students complete their studies
an advanced level, practically-oriented, and    professional study programmes. The country     Universities and universities of professional   Age entering university: Variable, but most
designed to meet the expectations of            has 42 government-approved universities of     education award both types of degrees,          first-year students are around 18
students seeking specialized knowledge.         professional education. The largest enrol      but with a difference in orientation: most      Age graduating: Variable, but most
The courses alternate theory with practice      20,000 to 39,000 students. Altogether some     degree programmes at universities focus on      often 22 or 23
in real or simulated work situations.           350,000 students are enrolled on this type     academic study and research, and those at       Foreign students: 42,000 students, about half
Most study programmes and courses lead to       of higher education programmes.                universities of professional education          of whom are from Europe
a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, a PhD                                                  on practical, professional knowledge.
degree, a diploma or certificate.                Institutes for International                   Institutes for International Education offer    Higher education
                                                Education                                      master’s programmes, but no bachelor’s          institutions in Holland
The Dutch education system                      Holland has been offering another form of      programmes.                                     Universities (research-oriented universities):
Holland has two main types of regular           higher education for more than 50 years:                                                       • 14 universities, three of which specialize
higher education: university and university     advanced courses taught in English in what     A bachelor’s programme at a university            in engineering
of professional education.                      is known as ‘international education’.         requires three years of full-time study (180    • Bachelor, Master and PhD programmes
The universities focus on the independent       These institutes (11) focus on development-    credits) to complete while a bachelor’s         Universities of professional education
practice of research-oriented work in an        oriented courses, based on working in small,   programme offered by a university of            (career-oriented institutions):
academic or professional setting. The           intercultural groups and the exchange of       professional education requires four years      • 42 universities of professional education
universities of professional education          knowledge, facilitated by teachers with        of full-time study (240 credits). Depending     • Bachelor and Master programmes
are more practically-oriented, preparing        extensive experience of working in low-        on the discipline, master’s programmes at       Specialized Institutes of International
students directly for specific careers.          income countries.                              universities, universities of professional      Education:
A smaller branch of education is provided                                                      education and Institutes for International      • 11 Institutes of International Education
by Institutes for International Education,      An overview of the universities, the           Education will last one to two years (60-120    • Master and PhD programmes,
which offer programmes designed especially      universities of professional education and     credits). The doctorate (PhD) is only offered     often aimed at mid-career professionals
for foreign students.                           the Institutes for International Education     at universities and takes at least four         Research in Holland:
                                                can be found at and on page     years. A master degree is compulsory            • 10 of the 14 universities in Holland are in
Universities                                    48 of this brochure.                           for admission.                                    the top 200 of the Times Higher Education
There are 14 government-approved                                                                                                                 Ranking
universities in Holland, three of which                                                                                                        • 5th place on the world ranking of number
specialize in engineering. These institutions                                                                                                    of publications per capita
essentially train students in academic study
and the application of knowledge, although      Higher education in Holland
many study programmes do also have a
                                                 Universities                                   Universities of professional education         Institutes for International Education
professional component and most graduates
                                                 PhD: 4 years                                   Master (M): 1-2 years                          PhD (only possible at 5 institutes): 4 years
actually find work outside the research
                                                 Master of Arts (MA): 1-2 years                 Bachelor (B): 4 years                          Master of Arts (MA): 1-2 years
community. The universities vary in size,
                                                 Master of Science (MSc): 1-2 years                                                            Master of Science (MSc): 1-2 years
with enrolments ranging from 6,000 to
                                                 Bachelor of Arts (BA): 3 years
30,000. Altogether they enrol some 185,000
                                                 Bachelor of Science (BSc): 3 years

20 Study in Holland
Accreditation and Quality                        Accreditation of degree programmes
Control                                          A degree programme leads to a bachelor’s,
Higher education in Holland enjoys a             master’s or PhD degree.
worldwide reputation for its high quality.       The system of accreditation in higher
This is achieved through a national system       education aims to guarantee that study
of regulation and quality assurance.             programmes meet the highest standards.
The Ministry of Education, Culture and           The law – the Accreditation of Higher
Science ( is responsible           Education Act 2002 – requires that all
for legislation pertaining to education.         degree programmes offered by universities
See also                           and universities of professional education be
If you look for an international programme       evaluated against a specific set of criteria.
or course in the database at,     Programmes that meet the criteria are
you will notice that the status of individual    accredited (i.e. officially recognized).
programmes is indicated by icons.
                                                 Quality control of specialized courses
The accreditation of programmes is an            A specialized course does not lead to a
                                                                                                 Brenda Madrazo Gonzalez (24), Mexico
ongoing process, which began in 2003, and
it will take several years before all existing
                                                 degree, but to a certificate or diploma. As
                                                 these courses do not lead to a bachelor’s or
                                                                                                 Holland provides more
and new programmes have been reviewed
and accredited. In the meantime it has been
                                                 master’s degree, they cannot be submitted
                                                 for accreditation by the NVAO. The fact that
decided that those programmes which have         a specialized course has not been accredited
                                                                                                 Research Master in Human Geography and Planning,
been approved under the old system of            does not therefore mean that it does not
                                                                                                 Utrecht University
quality assurance are also granted the status    meet quality criteria. The quality of
of accredited programme. Institutions may        specialized courses that are part of an              Holland is a good option for someone who wants to study in Europe. Holland and the
also offer bachelor’s, master’s or other         accredited master’s programme is assured             UK are recognized as prime places for programmes taught in English. However, the
programmes that have not been accredited         through the accreditation of the main                UK is very expensive, so Holland provides more opportunities. What’s more, there
by the NVAO, but by a body in another            programme. For other sorts of specialized            are almost no two-year master’s programmes in the UK, whereas in Holland there
country. For example a master’s programme        courses, a procedure is currently being              are many. In this regard, I find two-year master’s programmes much more attractive.
offered by a Dutch university of professional    prepared so that institutions are able to            In one year, you barely have time to settle down, make friends, do research, write a
education, but validated by an accredited        declare that the course meets a minimum              thesis and get ready to leave. In two years, you can experience the full cycle much
British university.                              set of quality criteria.                             better, and you can take more advantage of being abroad. Holland also offers good
                                                                                                      opportunities to get scholarships, which is not only really helpful, but essential.
Accredited programmes will be listed in          The Dutch way of teaching                            My programme is quite interesting and I’m enjoying it very much. I looked hard to
the Central Register of Higher Education         Respect for each individual’s opinions and           find an English-taught master’s programme that precisely combined geography and
Programmes (CROHO). Responsibility for           convictions is a national virtue that gives          planning, and this is the only one. So I was quite sure I wanted to study in Utrecht.
accreditation has been allocated to the          strength to the fabric of Holland’s diverse          Only the Christmas break is disappointing. Usually you get papers or exams to do,
Netherlands-Flemish Accreditation                and plural society. This is the foundation of        so it’s not a real break in which you can go back home to visit family and friends.
Organization (see                 the teaching method used at the Dutch                For the rest, it is nice that you can decide for yourself how to manage your time.
Students will be awarded recognized degrees      educational institutions.                            However, I find that making plans with Dutch students is more difficult since they
only after completing an accredited degree                                                            totally rely on their agendas, which are already full for the next coming weeks!
programme. Only degree programmes can                                                                 There is not much room for spontaneity.
be accredited by the NVAO.                                                                            This country is fascinating, definitely a place to experience. I like people’s sense of
                                                                                                      proximity, efficiency and movement, especially in terms of going from one city to
                                                                                                      another for an event on the same day. I’ve been travelling around a lot and every city
                                                                                                      has something to offer. Moreover, there are many cheap flights to other places in
22 Study in Holland                                                                                   Europe, so Holland provides a great opportunity to see Europe.
                                                                                                                                                         Exchange programmes and scholarships 23
The teaching style can be described as            students must have a diploma judged               Code of Conduct for                             student. The educational institution must
student-centred, providing students with the      equivalent to the minimum diploma                 institutions                                    make clear what services it provides to
attention and freedom they need to develop        required.                                         On 1 May 2006, the Code of Conduct with         international students, such as help with
their own opinions and creativity in              There are also study programmes - in the          respect to international students in Dutch      obtaining a visa and a residence permit,
applying their newly acquired knowledge.          arts for example - for which institutions set     higher education came into effect. This         housing, introduction sessions and student
Holland has received international acclaim        their own additional requirements.                Code sets out standards for Dutch higher        counseling. In their information materials,
for its groundbreaking Problem-Based              For admission to a master’s degree                education institutions in their dealings with   educational institutions must specify clearly
Learning system, which trains students            programme, applicants must have at least          international students. By signing the Code     what services they offer and what the
to analyze and solve practical problems           a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.            of Conduct, the institutions are offering       associated costs are.
independently through emphasis on                 In certain popular fields, the number of           international students a guarantee of the
self-study and self-discipline. A large portion   places is limited and quotas are set.             quality of their programmes, student            Students from outside the EU, seeking a
of all study programmes is dedicated to           It is essential for foreign students to be able   recruitment, selection and counseling           course at an institution of higher education
writing papers, working in groups to analyze      to speak, read and write English well.            procedures. Only institutions that have         that did not sign the Code of Conduct, will
and solve specific problems, acquiring             Students must have passed an English              signed up to the Code are allowed to recruit    not be able to obtain visas. The full version
practical work experience through                 language test. TOEFL is commonly accepted,        international students from outside the         of the Code of Conduct can be found at
internships, and conducting experiments           but institutions may accept other tests as        European Union (EU). This Code of Conduct This website also
in laboratories.                                  well, such as IELTS.                              is an initiative of the Dutch institutions.     provides a list of the institutions that have
                                                  The required scores are at least 500 - 550                                                        signed the Code.
Admission requirements                            for TOEFL. For IELTS a score of at least 6 is     The Code of Conduct requires educational
To be admitted to a programme of                  required for the B and M level.                   institutions to provide timely, reliable
higher study, you should first contact the                                                           and easily accessible information to
institution that offers the programme.            Affordable study                                  international students about their study
                                                                                                                                                     Leading role
                                                                                                                                                     Holland has a broad number of disciplines
The main requirement for admission to a           Education in Holland is not free, but tuition     programmes. Specifically, this includes
                                                                                                                                                     in which it has a leading role.
bachelor’s programme is a secondary-school        fees are reasonable compared to other             information such as accreditation status,
                                                                                                                                                     The ones that are particularly well known
diploma at the appropriate level. Foreign         countries. The annual tuition fees for            quality, admission requirements as well as
                                                                                                                                                     around the world are:
                                                  enrolment on a degree programme or course         many more important rules and procedures
                                                                                                                                                     • management & business studies
                                                  at a Dutch higher education institution start     for international students. The information
                                                                                                                                                     • agricultural sciences
                                                  at approximately 1,500 euro for EU students.      provided by the educational institutions to
                                                                                                                                                     • medicine
                                                  The costs of programmes or courses for            international students on the basis of the
                                                                                                                                                     • civil engineering
                                                  non-EU students are generally higher, so          Code of Conduct must be in English, in the
                                                                                                                                                     • remote sensing
                                                  we recommend that you visit our online            language used for the study programme, or
                                                                                                                                                     • arts & architecture
                                                  database at                       in the native language of the international
24 Study in Holland
The Dutch government is attempting to make Dutch
higher education as accessible as possible to students
and mid-career professionals from other countries.
In Holland, higher education is subsidized, which means
that tuition fees can be kept relatively low, especially
compared with the United Kingdom and the United

Scholarships and
exchange programmes
26 Study in Holland
Inbound students                                    Exchange programmes
Foreign students enrolled on full-time,             The easiest and cheapest way to study in the
government-financed programmes:                      Netherlands is through an exchange
Estimated at 21,363 (2003-04)                       programme. Many Dutch higher education
Main source countries of foreign students:          institutions have exchange agreements with
1. Germany                                          partner institutions in countries throughout
2. Belgium                                          the world. Exchange programmes and
3. China                                            agreements are often limited to specific
4. Indonesia                                        fields or disciplines. Ask at your own
5. Vietnam                                          university or college about the possibilities.
Main specialities of foreign students:
1. Business and administration                      Funding
2. Social and behavioural science                   There are several possibilities for obtaining    Erasmus Mundus                                within those partnerships. For information
3. Health                                           funding. These are described here in brief.      Erasmus Mundus is a programme of the          about existing partnerships (and related
4. Engineering and engineering trades               More information can be found at                 European Commission. Its aim is to improve    scholarships) please contact your own
5. Arts                                   , an online search engine       the quality of European higher education      university. For more detailed information
Dutch government spending on                        which brings together a range of Dutch           and to encourage cooperation with             please visit
scholarships for foreign students:                  scholarships for international students who      countries outside the EU. It does this
5.2 million euro a year                             wish to come to the Netherlands.                 through joint master’s degree programmes      Asia
(source: Ministry of Education, 2004-05)                                                             offered by partner institutions in the
                                                    Worldwide                                        member states. The programmes are based       Y.C. Lo Scholarship
Outbound students                                                                                    on a joint curriculum that is taught by       Programme Taiwan
Dutch students going abroad (full time,             Huygens Scholarship                              cooperating institutions in at least three    This programme for postgraduate studies
regular HE): Estimated at 12,000                    Programme                                        European countries.                           supports promising Taiwanese graduates
Scholarship recipients: Some 6,200 students         The Huygens Scholarship Programme (HSP)          Students both from inside and outside the     and young professionals intending to pursue
go abroad with a scholarship from one of the main   is open to students from all countries of the    EU can apply to follow these programmes.      postgraduate degree programmes at Dutch
Dutch Government or EU programmes (2003-04)         world. It is aimed at excellent students who     Students coming from outside the EU can       universities. Participants include a range
Free movers: Some 25,000 credit-mobile              want to come to the Netherlands in the final      apply for an Erasmus Mundus scholarship.      of Dutch companies and institutions.
students a year pay their own way or have a         phase of their bachelor’s studies or during      A second Erasmus scholarship can be           More information about the Y.C. Lo
scholarship from an unknown source                  their master’s studies. PhD applications can     requested by EU students.                     Scholarship is available at the Netherlands
Regions to which the scholarship                    only be accepted from students from              For further information, see also             Education Support Office in Taiwan
recipients go:                                      Croatia, Turkey, Bulgaria and Romania.           or from
Europe (94%), other regions (6%).                   The Dutch Minister for Education, Culture        programmes/mundus/index_en.html.
Dutch government spending on scholarships for       and Science has made four million euros                                                        StuNed Scholarship
outgoing Dutch students: 2.6 million euro a year    available for international students coming      Tempus                                        Programme
(source: Ministry of Education, 2004-05)            to the Netherlands under the HSP Huygens         The Tempus programme enables universities     StuNed Scholarships for Master studies,
                                                    programme. The minister has reserved part        in a number of countries in Eastern Europe,   short courses and customized training
                                                    of the total budget for students following       Central Asia, the Western Balkans and         programmes are available for Indonesian
                                                    programmes in Dutch studies. Applications        the Mediterranean region to establish         professionals with at least two years
                                                    for HSP for the 2007-2008 academic year          partnerships in the European Union that       work experience in a development-related
                                                    must be received by Nuffic by 1 February          help them restructure their higher            organization.
                                                    2007 at the latest. More information about       education systems.                            For more information contact
                                                    the application procedure and requirements       The programme allows universities to offer    NEC Indonesia
                                                    can be found at               scholarships for student exchanges only

28 Study in Holland
Europe                                          Leonardo
                                                Leonardo is the European programme for
Most student exchanges within Europe            professional education. The programme
are funded by the European Union.               finances internships in the Netherlands for
For European students, EU exchange              periods of three to twelve months. Only
programmes have the advantage that many         students or graduates from educational
important matters are already taken care of,    institutions that take part in the programme
such as funding, housing and acceptance at      and have a structural relationship with a
the institution.                                company in the Netherlands are eligible for
Often a student will know in advance how        a Leonardo grant. Your institution sets the
many credits he or she will earn during the     exact eligibility criteria and the amount of
period of exchange.                             the grant. For more detailed information
                                                contact your own institution or visit:
The Erasmus programme aims to encourage         leonardo/leonardo2/naweb_en.html.
cooperation among the higher education
                                                                                               Revriryan Zulkifli (20), Indonesia
institutions of Europe. A large amount of
money is earmarked for supporting students
                                                More information about the
                                                European programmes                            You can really focus on your
who wish to complete part of their studies in
another country of the European Union or
                                                You can obtain more information about
                                                these European programmes from your own
                                                                                               study and your results
to finance a European internship.                institution, from the EU information centre
                                                                                               Bachelor of Information Technology,
An Erasmus scholarship covers a period of       in your own country, or from Nuffic. For
                                                                                               Fontys University of Professional Education
three to twelve months. Your own institution    information about opportunities related to
must participate in the programme and           regular student grants and refunds for the          Dutch people have shown me how to get by on my own in a foreign country.
must also have a bilateral agreement with       double payment of tuition fees, students            They are straightforward people, and really honest about the situation. If they don’t
an institution in the Netherlands before        from EU member states can contact                   like your work, they will say so. This direct attitude is part of the culture in Holland.
your mobility period abroad starts.             the Informatie Beheer Groep at                      I think it’s very important, because it allows me to learn new cultures or customs,
For more detailed information, please visit     +31 (0)50 599 77 55 or             and these are valuable for me to move forward.
the local website of the National Agency in                                                         I like a lot of things about Holland, for example, I like the study facilities, I like the
your own country, which you can find at                                                              environment, I like the people, I like the public transport, and I like the culture.                                                                Holland is a developed, calm country, where the educational system is settled.
programmes/socrates/nat-est_en.html.                                                                So thanks to this stability, you can really focus on your study and your results.
                                                                                                    I think it is important to remember to make a success of your study here in Holland.
                                                                                                    Make sure the “investment” of the people who put their trust in you doesn’t go to
                                                                                                    waste. This must be your first objective when you go and study abroad. And you
                                                                                                    should endeavour try to make yourself useful to society afterwards.
                                                                                                    A last piece of advice: before your departure from your home country to Holland,
                                                                                                    take all the documents with you, such as passport, birth certificate, diploma
                                                                                                    transcript, letter of acceptance, and so on. Administrative problems can cost
                                                                                                    you a lot, financially and emotionally.

30 Study in Holland                                                                                                                                   Exchange programmes and scholarships 31
                                                                                                NFP master’s, NFP short courses and               NFP country list
                                                                                                NFP PhD studies award fellowships to              To be eligible for an NFP fellowship,
                                                                                                individuals. NFP also finances tailor-made         applicants must be a national of one of
                                                                                                training courses that are designed                the following countries:
                                                                                                to meet the specific training needs of an          • Afghanistan
                                                                                                organization in one of the NFP countries.         • Albania
                                                                                                                                                  • Armenia
                                                                                                NFP Refresher Courses finances courses for         • Autonomous Palestinian Territories
                                                                                                NFP alumni who would like to prolong the          • Bangladesh
                                                                                                effect of earlier learning and update their       • Benin
                                                                                                                                                  • Bhutan
                                                                                                knowledge and skills.                             • Bolivia
                                                                                                                                                  • Bosnia-Herzegovina
                                                                                                                                                  • Brazil
                                                                                                More information about NFP                        • Burkina Faso
North America                                    Asia, Africa,                                  More information about NFP, including             • Cambodia
                                                 Latin-America and                              the application forms, are available at           • Cape Verde
                                                                                                                                                  • China *
ISEP                                             Eastern Europe                                 Netherlands embassies and consulates,             • Colombia
American students can apply to the                                                              NEC/NESO offices or from Nuffic’s website           • Costa Rica
                                                                                                                                                  • Cuba
International Student Exchange Program           Netherlands Fellowship                                                • Ecuador
(ISEP). ISEP offers diverse exchange             Programmes                                                                                       • Egypt
                                                                                                                                                  • El Salvador
programmes, which are administered in            The Netherlands Fellowship Programmes          Applicants for PhD studies, master’s degree
                                                                                                                                                  • Eritrea
their own country. For more information          (NFP) are demand-driven fellowship             programmes or short courses must first gain        • Ethiopia                                    programmes designed to foster capacity         academic admission to the course of their         • Georgia
                                                                                                                                                  • Ghana
                                                 building within organizations in 57            choice before applying for a fellowship           • Guatemala
Fulbright Scholarships                           developing countries by providing              through the Netherlands embassy or                • Guinea-Bissau
                                                                                                                                                  • Honduras
Fulbright Scholarships are available             training and education to their mid-career     consulate in their country. Also, they can        • India
for American graduate students and               staff members. The NFP are funded by the       only apply for an NFP fellowship if the           • Indonesia
researchers. Inquire at your own institution     Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs from   course is on the NFP course list for that         • Iran
                                                                                                                                                  • Ivory Coast
or at the Netherlands America Commission         the budget for development cooperation.        particular year.                                  • Jordan
for Educational Exchange (Fulbright Center)                                                                                                       • Kenya
                                                                                                                                                  • Macedonia                                The need for education and training must       In all cases, applicants are advised to contact   • Mali
                                                 occur within the organization of the           the Netherlands embassy, consulate or NEC/        • Moldova
Transatlantic Degree                             applicant. This means that applicants          NESO well in advance for specific instruc-         • Mongolia
                                                                                                                                                  • Mozambique
Consortia                                        must be nominated by their employers.          tions, and to inquire about specific local         • Namibia
Transatlantic Degree Consortia are a new         In fact, applications without the support      procedures and deadlines, requirements            • Nepal
                                                                                                                                                  • Nicaragua
form of partnership programmes between           of an employer will not be considered.         and selection criteria.                           • Nigeria
the EU and the US. Curricula are being                                                          These may differ from the general                 • Pakistan
                                                                                                                                                  • Peru
developed for bachelor’s programmes that         There are five NFP sub-programmes:              information provided on Nuffic’s website
                                                                                                                                                  • Philippines
lead to the award of a joint or double degree.   • Fellowships for master’s degree              or in the brochures.                              • Rwanda
A consortium has to include one higher             programmes                                                                                     • Senegal
                                                                                                                                                  • South Africa
education establishment in the US and at         • Fellowships for PhD studies                                                                    • Sri Lanka
least two in the EU. Students spend time         • Fellowships for short courses                                                                  • Suriname
                                                                                                                                                  • Tanzania
studying on both sides of the Atlantic.          • Tailor-made training courses                                                                   • Thailand
For more information, see                        • Refresher courses                                                                              • Uganda                                                                                                              • Vietnam
                                                                                                                                                  • Yemen
programmes/eu-usa/consult_en.html.                                                                                                                • Zambia
                                                                                                                                                  • Zimbabwe
32 Study in Holland                                                                                                                               * excluding citizens of Hong Kong and Macao
Preparing for study
in Holland
Be sure to allow plenty of time for preparations. You will
need to start planning your stay a year in advance.
Remember, the academic year in Holland runs from the
end of August to the end of June.

34 Study in Holland
Visas and residence permits                      Application procedure                            European citizens                                a week year-round, or full-time during the
To enter Holland for study purposes,             The regular application procedure for            Nationals of EU/EEA states are not required      months of June, July and August only.
inhabitants from most countries need             an MVV may take three to six months,             by law to apply for a residence permit. Nor      If you have successfully completed your
a visa. This is a sticker placed in your         sometimes even longer. The Dutch host            are they required to register with the Dutch     programme of higher education, you may
passport at the Dutch embassy or consulate       institution can apply for an MVV on your         immigration authorities. However, it is          apply for a residence permit to work.
in your own country, but it must be applied      behalf using a fast-track procedure.             advisable to do this in order to avoid hassles   To do this, you must have a contract of
for well in advance. For a stay of less than     But to do this, the institution must give the    when dealing with certain authorities and        employment. For more information about
three months, you might need a ‘short stay       authorities a guarantee, which they sign.        companies. You can find more information          all of these procedures, see
visa’ (Visum Kort Verblijf), depending on your   Institutions will not always agree to do this.   about how and where to register on     
nationality. If you will be staying for longer   But it is worth asking the institution about and
than three months, you need an                   the fast-track procedure, because it will save                                                    Insurance
‘authorization for temporary stay’               both time and trouble. The administration        Work permits                                     Dutch law requires everyone living in
(Machtiging tot Voorlopig Verblijf, or MVV).     fee for an MVV is 433 euro if you apply for      International students, with a non-EU/EEA        Holland to be covered by health insurance.
This requirement does not apply to citizens      it yourself and 250 euro if the Dutch host       nationality, who do an internship or             Students must make sure that they have
of the EU/EEA, the USA, Australia, New           institution applies for the MVV on your          practical training as part of their studies      adequate cover. If the insurance you have
Zealand, Canada, Japan, Switzerland              behalf.                                          in the Netherlands may not need to have a        in your own country provides full cover for
or Monaco.                                                                                        work permit anymore after 1 October 2006.        medical costs while you are in Holland, you
                                                 Within three days of arriving in Holland,        In the upcoming months the Dutch                 should bring with you a statement
                                                 all foreign nationals must register with the     government will take a final decision on          (in English) detailing the insurance cover.
                                                 local municipality. Those intending to stay      this proposition of the Dutch cabinet.           If you do not have adequate cover, you will
                                                 for longer than three months also need           If you have followed a programme of study        have to take out a policy. In some situations
                                                 to obtain a residence permit                     in your home country, and you come to the        you may be obliged to join the Dutch public
                                                 (verblijfsvergunning). You may need this even    Netherlands solely for an internship or          health insurance scheme, for example if you
                                                 if you did not require a visa to enter the       practical training, you will need a work         have a job in Holland or if you are going to
                                                 country. The administration fee for a            permit if you are not an EU/EEA national.        be staying in Holland for a few years or
                                                 residence permit currently stands at             Your employer must apply for this permit for     longer. The student dean at your host
                                                 433 euro if you do not need an MVV and           you. You also need a work permit if you want     institution can provide you with more
                                                 188 euro if you do need an MVV.                  to take paid work alongside your studies.        information. Some insurance policies are
                                                                                                  There are two options if you want to work        specially developed for students, please see
                                                                                                  while you study: either less than ten hours

36 Study in Holland
Housing                                           Checklist
If you are taking part in an exchange             1 Examine the available study programmes.
programme or are enrolled on an                     See for a recent list of
international course, it is quite possible that     international study programmes and
a room will be arranged for you. Accept it          courses. To avoid disappointment, make
immediately, or you will regret it later!           some second choices as well.
Finding a place to live in a country as           2 Make sure that the programme of your
crowded as Holland is not easy. It is even          choice is an accredited programme. If it is
difficult for Dutch students to find their own        not, it doesn’t mean that its quality is not
rented rooms on the private market. Rooms           up to par, but it may mean that the degree
are generally unfurnished, and kitchens and         is not formally recognized in the Nether-
bathrooms are often shared with others.              lands. As a consequence the degree may
Most rental contracts are for at least six           not be recognized in your home country.
months or a year. Before you leave your own       3 Contact the Dutch embassy or the
country, ask your host institution whether           international relations office of your own
or not housing will be arranged for you in           institution to find out about scholarship and
                                                                                                     Julius Fofang Awambeng (29), Cameroon
advance.                                             exchange opportunities and look at
                                                                                                     The curriculum is rich
The EIU’s latest Worldwide Cost of Living
                                                  4 Contact the institution in Holland that
                                                     offers the programme you have chosen,
                                                                                                     and intensive
Survey shows that the cost of living in              and ask for more information about
                                                                                                     International Hotel Management, International University
Amsterdam is modest compared with cities             admission requirements, etc.
                                                                                                     of Applied Sciences NHTV Breda
like New York, London, Paris and Beijing.         5 If the programme is suitable and you meet
Experience shows that to live and study in           the requirements, follow the institution’s           In Cameroon, I was a receptionist at a hotel. I’m happy that I could come to Holland
Holland for one year costs a student between         procedure for gaining admission.                     to follow a study programme that I’ve dreamt of for a long time. The most important
700 and 1,000 euro a month. This is needed        6 At the same time, check which immigration             thing is that I know I have a future with my international degree after graduation. It is
to cover daily expenses, to pay the rent, and        regulations apply to you. You will find this          recognized everywhere, so I can be confident that I will find a job.
for registration and tuition fees.                   information at:             The study system is not the same as in Cameroon. In the Netherlands, there are only
                                                     or                                       a few students in a class, so the tutor can easily monitor the progress of each student
You cannot rely on finding a source of             7 Gather all the documents which the Dutch              closely. Grades are awarded according to your competences.
additional income after you arrive. The              immigration authorities require in your case.        The curriculum is rich and intensive. You need to be very motivated to complete the
institutions have very limited funds for             If you need an entry visa (MVV), ask your            academic year successfully. In general, classes take all day. The weekends are free,
supporting students. If you are from an EU           host institution if they can arrange it on           but I have to do assignments and prepare for the coming week. My student life is
or EEA member state, however, you may be             your behalf.                                         busy, so an agenda is a necessity for me.
entitled to a regular student grant or to a       8 Ask the host institution about arranging a            The facilities for studies and leisure are modern and available to every student: the
refund of the tuition fees.                          place for you to live.                               library, all the media, the infrastructure and machines, sport accommodations, you
For specific information, contact the              9 Check whether your current health                     name it.
Informatie Beheer Groep,            insurance provides sufficient coverage while          Although the cost of rent for your room and insurance isn’t cheap, study in Holland
                                                     you are in Holland. Check the information            is less expensive compared to other countries. The tuition fees and the price of food
                                                     on                  and drink are relatively low.
                                                     healthinsurance.pdf.                                 One good tip: start as early as possible with your admission procedure because it
                                                  10 Once all of your papers are in order, you            can take some time. It’s important to study the rules and regulations very well before
                                                     can start making your travel plans.                  making plans.
                                                                                                          About the Dutch: I think they are hard-working, hospitable and proud people. Their
                                                                                                          lifestyle is simple and sociable, but strict. This explains, in my opinion, why they are
38 Study in Holland                                                                                       able to train good and successful managers. Exchange programmes and scholarships 39
in Holland
The Dutch have an urban, cosmopolitan lifestyle, but
they live in cities built on a human scale. The cities are
a nice mix of traditional and modern architecture. You can
get nearly everywhere in Holland by bike or by train, and
there are plenty of activities and cultural attractions to
enjoy during your leisure time.

40 Study in Holland
Population                                             Daily life                                        Security                                        Leisure
Total population: 16,335,509 inhabitants               In daily life, you may suddenly find yourself      By international standards, Holland is a        The Netherlands is more varied than you
(December 2005), Holland is the third most             thinking about the things that you take for       safe country, with low levels of violence and   might think. There’s plenty to see, from
crowded country in the world                           granted at home, such as finding a place to        street crime. The police are friendly and       strolling through town, making a boat trip
Ethnic composition: 90% of the inhabitants are         live, taking out insurance, finding out            helpful, they have a duty to protect everyone   on the canals or lakes, lazing on the beach,
ethnically Dutch, and 7% have their roots in one       whether you’re allowed to work, and getting       and can always be safely approached. If you     to walking in the woods and dunes. Have a
of the following countries: another EU member          used to a different currency. But you are also    contact them, don’t worry about language        look a to see what the
state, Indonesia, Suriname, Turkey, Morocco,           bound to have some practical questions too,       difficulties as the police will always find       possibilities are. There’s no shortage of
or the Netherlands Antilles and Aruba                  like how to get a mobile phone, how to send       someone, free of charge, who speaks your        entertainment either. Major international
Foreign residents: 3 million (without Dutch            a parcel home, what are the rules of the          language. In an emergency where there is        stars regularly play at Dutch stadiums and
nationality)                                           road, etc. For more information and useful        a danger to life or a crime is in progress      other smaller venues.
Religion: 52% identify themselves as Christian,        links, see         you can contact the police, fire brigade or      Parkpop (in The Hague in June) is the biggest
40% claim no affiliation, and 8% belong to other        For a general view of life in Holland, take       ambulance by dialling 112 from any phone        free live music festival in Europe. Musicals
religions                                              a look at the interesting movies on               (free of charge).                               and the theatre are also very popular. With
National language: Dutch. Nearly everyone                                       It is essential that you take out insurance     over 1,000 museums, there’s a lot for you to
also speaks English, especially in the larger cities                                                     when you arrive in Holland to insure your       discover in the Netherlands (more
and towns. Many Dutch people speak German              Student culture                                   belongings against theft and accidental         information at and
and French as well. In the northern province of        The higher education institutions are spread      damage. For general information on     in Dutch).
Friesland, Frisian is spoken as a second language      throughout the country and very few of            insurance, look at          At Queen’s Day or when the national soccer
by some 600,000 people                                 them have campuses. The buildings of a                                                            team is playing, people dress in orange and
                                                       single university might even be scattered         Costs                                           go partying in the street.
Average prices                                         throughout a city. Nevertheless, there            Although differences between incomes are
A cup of coffee/tea in a café 1.50 euros               certainly is a student culture. Around each       relatively small in Holland, most students      Food
A cheese sandwich 2.00 euros                           institution, a network of associations brings     live towards the bottom of the economic         Dutch cuisine is not exactly world famous.
A Big Mac 2.95 euros                                   students together for study-related activities,   ladder. If you have an average student          The Dutch themselves do not have a fine
Dinner in a typical student restaurant                 sports and recreation. These associations         income – from a scholarship for example         tradition of cooking, and hot meals are
   10 euros                                            are run by students and some are                  – you will find that one-third of it will go     limited to one a day, traditionally in the
A cinema ticket 7.50 euros                             internationally oriented. Students also have      towards housing. Food might cost you            evening. Breakfast generally consists of
A text message on your mobile phone                    their favourite pubs, restaurants and other       another third. Fortunately, most higher         sliced bread with cheese, sliced meat or jam.
   from 0.07 euros                                     meeting places. In general, we can say that       education institutions offer hot meals at       Most people have sandwiches for lunch with
                                                       the Dutch higher education community              reasonable prices. Many cities have pubs        the addition of perhaps soup, a salad or
                                                       seeks to be part of society and not isolated      (eetcafé’s) where you can eat cheaply and       fruit. For the evening meal, large quantities
                                                       from it.                                          well. But the cheapest way to eat is to do      of potatoes and vegetables are accompanied
                                                                                                         your own cooking. The remaining third of        by a relatively small serving of meat or fish.
                                                                                                         your money will go towards books, travel,       This traditional diet is also the most
                                                                                                         and other expenses.                             economical.
                                                                                                                                                         In recent years, however, Dutch tastes are
                                                                                                                                                         becoming more international and refined.
                                                                                                                                                         You will find a large variety of products
                                                                                                                                                         (pasta dishes, rice, curry) in the regular
                                                                                                                                                         supermarkets, and many restaurants offer a
                                                                                                                                                         wide range of international dishes.

42 Study in Holland
Travel                                           country also reflects the mentality. Society
Holland is a small country. You do not really    is organized in a non-hierarchical way.
need a car to get around. Public transport       For example, a teacher is most of the time
will take you almost anywhere you need           accessible and a real interlocutor for his
to go. Although train and bus fares are not      students. You’ll be on familiar terms with
cheap, it costs much more to operate a car.      everybody very soon.
Consider buying a discount card for the
train; it really is worth the investment.        Religion
The Netherlands has a dense railway              Although modern Dutch society is very
network that offers frequent service and the     secular and not many Dutch people
quickest way to travel between city centres.     identify with an organized religion, you will
Particularly in the western part of the          see plenty of churches, mosques and other
country, the cities are easily accessible by     places of worship. You will have plenty of
train, even at night.                            opportunities to practice your own religion
Use a travel planner (, in          if you wish. Ask the student affairs office
Dutch) to work out your journey beforehand,      of your host institution to help you locate
                                                                                                  Linn Torp (23), Norway
and you’ll be there in no time.
The bicycle is the cheapest and easiest way to
                                                 practitioners of your religion. Or telephone
                                                 the Netherlands Centre for Foreigners in
                                                                                                  Dutch people are friendly,
get around, especially if you live in a city.
Most Dutch people, regardless of their
                                                 Utrecht at (in Dutch).
                                                                                                  open and honest
profession or status, own a bicycle. Buy a       Problems                                         Bachelor in Communication, INHOLLAND University
second-hand one rather than a new one.           If you encounter a problem, the first person
                                                                                                  of Applied Sciences, Rotterdam
This will save you money, but be sure to buy     to talk to should be the person who can help
at least one strong lock. Sometimes a good       resolve it. If, for example, you have problems        I like studying in the Netherlands, especially at an international school. It’s completely
lock costs more than the bike itself!            about your course, first talk to your tutor            different than studying in your own country. We work a lot in groups and that is very
                                                 about it. Because of cultural differences or          interesting, even if it is frustrating sometimes. It is a challenge to come to a solution
Mentality                                        because you are new to the Netherlands,               that people from five different countries can agree on. I learn a lot from it every day.
The Netherlands is a ‘self-service country’.     you may wish to find out more. In the first             Dutch people are friendly, open and honest. When you try to learn the language they
That means that the Dutch try to manage          instance, contact the international student           react in a very enthusiastic way. On the other hand, they can also be rude in this
most of the things themselves, which makes       office at your university. Almost all                  crowded city. I really like the small old villages in Holland, and the beaches. I could
them very independent and organized.             universities and universities of professional         not believe just how beautiful they were!
They take their own shopping bags to the         education have a counsellor who is assigned           There is not much organized for the international students at my school. Social
supermarket, they weigh the vegetables           to help students or handle complaints.                things happen on people’s own initiative. But Thursdays and the weekend are very
themselves, they perform all kinds of repair                                                           lively in the city, and there’s always something happening.
jobs and, in the eyes of the Dutch, the best     If you tried all the options above and                Studying abroad is an experience for a lifetime. You learn a lot about yourself and
remedy for the flu is good rest and not           you still can’t get the right help, the               about other cultures. In the Netherlands, you meet people from all over the world in
immediately medicines. Another                   International Student Helpdesk                        a small country, so you get to know a lot of cultures here. Moreover, it is a perfect
distinctive characteristic of the Dutch people   ( will be able to point you          location for taking small trips to other countries all over Europe. Before I came here,
is their openness and direct way of acting       in the right direction. This website provides         I thought society in Holland was almost like mine, but it turned out to be quit
and speaking. You will notice that you can       you with information about the problems               different and new. That is what I like best about living here.
say what is on your mind, the Dutch aren’t       most commonly faced by international
offended easily. The physical flatness of the     students in the Netherlands.

44 Study in Holland                                                                                                                                     Exchange programmes and scholarships 45
Useful websites and                       Study in Holland                               Living in Holland                             Indonesia
addresses                                 • Everything about study in Holland,           • AON, insurance for foreign students         Netherlands Education Centre Indonesia
                                            including a list of study programmes in                        Menara Jamsostek 20th floor
General information                         English                                      • IPS, the Insurance Passport for Students,   Jl. Gatot Subroton no.38
about Holland                                                      is specially developed for students,        Jakarta 12710
• Ministry of Foreign Affairs, with       • Online search engine, which brings             researchers and teachers going abroad       Tel: +62 21 5290 2172
  addresses of Dutch embassies abroad       together a range of Dutch scholarships for     to study or work.                        international students               
• Information on Dutch immigration laws                            • Living in the Netherlands or moving to      Taiwan                       • This website is the portal for all foreign     the Netherlands                             Netherlands Education Support Office Taipei
• Netherlands Board of Tourism,             students in Holland                                    Room D, 7th floor
  including a map of Holland                      • Learn Dutch; the Learn Dutch website        133 Minsheng E. Road, Section 3                         • The website of the international               is a resource for Distance Learners who     Taipei 105, Taiwan
• A movie that portrays the life of five     student organization                           like to exercise their mind with a          Tel: +886 2 8770 7621
  foreigners in Holland                                             difficult-to-learn language                                  • The site of the Erasmus Student Network
                                            in the Netherlands                                                                         Vietnam
                                                                 Netherlands Education                         Netherlands Education Support Office
                                          • Nuffic, Netherlands Organization for          Support Offices                                Vietnam
                                            International Cooperation in Higher          Netherlands Education Support Offices          35, Le Thanh Ton St. District 1,
                                            Education                                    are overseas representative offices of         Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
                                                                   Nuffic and provide information, support and    Tel: +8822 0713 or +822 0724
                                          • More information about accreditation         liaison for the academic communities of the
                                            and a list of accredited study programmes    Netherlands and of the country they
                                                                    are situated in.                              Mexico
                                          • The Association of Universities in                                                         Netherlands Education Support Office
                                            the Netherlands                              China (also covering Hong Kong)               Mexico
                                                                    Netherlands Education Support                 Presidente Masarik 191, 7th Floor, Colonia
                                          • The Association of Universities              Office China                                   Polanco
                                            of Professional Education                    Beijing New World Center                      zip.11570 Mexico City, Mexico
                                                                South Office Tower 615                         Tel: +52 55 3200 8682
                                          • Quality assurance in Dutch                   3 Chongwenmenwai Street             
                                            higher education                             Beijing 100062, P.R. China
                                                                   Tel: +86 (10) 6708 4086

46 Study in Holland
Institutions for higher                       Universiteit Nimbas Graduate School of          HAS Den Bosch University of                  Royal Academy of Art, University
education in Holland                           Management                                       Professional Education                       of Professional Education
This is a complete overview of all the                                                        Helicon University of Professional           Saxion Universities of Applied Sciences,
institutions for higher education in          Dutch universities of                             Education, based on anthroposophy            University of Professional Education
Holland.                                      professional education                          HES Amsterdam School of Economics              (several locations)
For the institutions which offer              The English term preferred by most Dutch          and Business, University of                STOAS, University of Professional
international courses, go to the ISPAC        hogescholen is ‘University of Professional        Professional Education                       Education, Teacher Training
database at                   Education’, and many add this as a subtitle     Hogeschool Domstad, University of            The Hague University of Applied Sciences,
For more information about the institutions   to their Dutch name. This list is based upon      Professional Education, Teacher Training     University of Professional Education
and direct links, see also    the overview of CROHO.                          Hogeschool De Horst, University of           Utrecht School of the Arts,
                                                                                                Professional Education                       University of Professional Education
Dutch universities                            Government-funded universities of               Hogeschool Edith Stein OCT, University       Van Hall Instituut/Larenstein, University
This list is based upon the overview          professional education                            of Professional Education,                   of Professional Education
of CROHO.                                     Amsterdam School of the Arts,                     Teacher Training                           Windesheim University of
                                                University of Professional Education          Hogeschool Leiden, University of               Professional Education
Government-funded universities                ArtEZ Institute for the Arts,                     Professional Education                     Zuyd University of Professional
Delft University of Technology                  University of Professional Education          Hogeschool van Amsterdam, University           Education (several locations)
Erasmus University Rotterdam                  AVANS University of Professional                  of Professional Education
Eindhoven University of Technology              Education (several locations)                 Hogeschool van Utrecht, University of        Government-approved universities
Leiden University                             CHN University of Professional Education          Professional Education                     of professional education
Maastricht University                         Codarts, University of Professional             Hogeschool Zeeland, University of Applied    HANIO, HAN Individueel Onderwijs
Open University of the Netherlands              Arts Education                                  Sciences, University of Professional       Hogeschool Thorbecke
Radboud University Nijmegen                   De Kempel, University of Professional             Education                                  Instituut Brouwer
Tilburg University                              Education, Teacher Training College           Hotelschool The Hague International          Stichting Hoger Onderwijs NOVI
Universiteit van Amsterdam                    Design Academy Eindhoven, University              Institute for Hospitality Management       Azusa Theologische Hogeschool (in Dutch)
University of Groningen                         of Professional Education                     INHOLLAND University of Applied Sciences,    St Amsterdamse Balletacademie
University of Twente                          Drenthe University of Applied Sciences,           University of Professional Education       The New School for Information Services
Utrecht University                              University of Professional Education            (several locations)                        Stichting Hoger Onderwijs voor
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam                  Driestar Christian University of                IPABO Amsterdam, University of                 Bedrijfskundige Informatiekunde
Wageningen University                           Professional Education                          Professional Education, Teacher Training   Stichting opleidingen Hoger Onderwijs
                                              Dronten, University of Professional             Iselinge, University of Professional           voor Tolken en Vertalers
Government-approved universities                Education, Agricultural                         Education, Teacher Training                Markus Verbeek Opleidingen Stichting
Katholieke Theologische Universiteit          Ede Christian University of Applied Sciences,   Marnix Academie, University of                 Hoger Onderwijs
  te Utrecht                                    University of Professional Education            Professional Education, Teacher Training   Hogeschool GEO
Theologische Faculteit Tilburg                Fontys Pedagogic Technical University           NHL University of Applied Sciences,          PBNA-HBO
Theologische Universiteit van de                of Professional Education                       University of Professional Education       HBO Nederland
  Christelijke Gereformeerde Kerken           Fontys University of Professional               NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences,   Hogeschool Dirksen B.V.
Theologische Universiteit van de                Education (several locations)                   University of Professional Education       Nationale Luchtvaart School
  Gereformeerde Kerken                        Gerrit Rietveld Academie, University of         Reformed University of Professional          Knowledge Services (IBBB)
Theologische Universiteit van de                Professional Education                          Education Zwolle                           European University for Professional
  Gereformeerde Kerken (vrijg.) Ned.          HAN University of Applied Sciences,             Roman Catholic Primary Teacher                 Education
Transnationale Universiteit Limburg             University of Professional Education            Training College Zwolle, University        Hogeschool Schoevers
  Nyenrode Business Universiteit              Hanze University of Applied Sciences              of Professional Education                  Academie voor Eurythmie
University for Humanistics                      Groningen, University of Professional         Rotterdam University of Professional         InterCollege Business School
                                                Education                                       Education
48 Study in Holland
Dutch Delta University of Professional       Stichting Esperanto bij het Onderwijs
                                                                                             Cover photography: Taco van der Eb
  Education                                  Hogeschool Management Documentaire
                                                                                             Other photography:
Hogeschool Hanzesteden                         Informatievoorziening (HMDI)
                                                                                             Taco van der Eb: photos page 2, 12
Hogeschool Wittenborg                        De Wittenberg; Chr. hogeschool en
                                                                                             Arenda Oomen: photos page 4, 6, 15, 18, 24, 25, 26, 29, 32, 34, 36, 37, 40
Hogeschool DOC                                 toerustingscentrum
                                                                                             Serge Ligtenberg: photos page 9, 11, 17, 23, 31, 39, 45
TMO, Hogeschool voor Modemanagement          De Vrije Muziek-Akademie
                                                                                             Design: Fabrique [design, communication & new media], Delft
Stichting ABC Hogeschool Dordrecht en        Stichting Windesheim
                                                                                             Print: Prints & Proms, Rotterdam
  Omstreken                                  Hogeschool Schumann Akademie BV
IVA Driebergen                               Stichting Reformatorische Leergangen
                                                                                             This is a publication of: Nuffic, Netherlands organization for international cooperation in
De Stichtse Hogeschool
                                                                                             higher education.
Theologische HS vanwege de                   Dutch Institutes for
  Gereformeerde Bond ‘Johannes Calvijn’      International Education
Stichting Post-Hoger Onderwijs Eindhoven     This list is based upon the overview of FION.
                                                                                             The information contained in this publication was compiled with the greatest of care. Nevertheless,
Hogeschool Notenboom
                                                                                             we are unable to guarantee its accuracy or completeness at the time of reading. Because information
Fontys Bedrijfshogeschool                    International Agricultural Centre
                                                                                             is constantly subject to change, Nuffic is unable to accept any liability whatsoever for your use of the
Hogescholen Oost Nederland                     (Wageningen International, formerly IAC)
                                                                                             information. It is up to you to check the accuracy of any information before acting on it.
Hogeschool Gorinchem IDE bv                  Institute for Housing and Urban
                                                                                             Inclusion in this guide does not constitute an approval or guarantee by Nuffic of the quality or
Christelijke leergangen op reformatorische     Development Studies (HIS)
                                                                                             accreditation status of the courses and institutions listed. Nor does it constitute confirmation of
  grondslag de Driestar                      Institute for Plant, Animal and Technology
                                                                                             the validity or status of the degrees or other qualifications awarded.
Hogeschool voor Pedagogisch en                 (PTC+)
                                                                                             Copyright © 2006 Nuffic. All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced or published without
  Sociaal-Agogisch Onderwijs Groningen       International Maritime Transport
                                                                                             the prior written permission of the author. However, sections of up to five pages of this work may be
Hogeschool TIO                                 Academy (STC)
                                                                                             reproduced or published as long as Nuffic is properly acknowledged as the source of the work.
Stichting Hogeschool Rens & Rens             Institute of Social Studies (ISS)
Hogeschool ISBW B.V.                         International Institute for Geo-information
Stichting NTI Hogeschool                       Science and Earth Observation (ITC)
Stichting LOI Hoger Onderwijs                Royal Tropical Institute (KIT)
                                                                                             Kortenaerkade 11
Internationale Hogeschool voor               Larenstein University of Professional
                                                                                             P.O. Box 29777
  fysiotherapie Thim van der Laan              Education
                                                                                             2502 LT The Hague
Bourdon Hogeschool voor Muziek               Maastricht School of Management (MSM)
                                                                                             The Netherlands
NEA Transport Hogeschool                     Radio Nederland Training Centre (RNTC)
                                                                                             Phone: + 31 (0)70 42 60 260              Nuffic is a non-profit, professional organization
Hogeschool Praehep                           Institute for Water Education (UNESCO-IHE)
                                                                                             Fax:   + 31 (0)70 42 60 399              aimed at making education accessible all over the
Eurocollege Hogeschool
                                                                                             Mail: info@                     world, especially in countries where educational
KBK Hogeschool B.V.                          Other Dutch higher education
                                                                                                                                      infrastructure is lagging behind.
Hogeschool Thorn Kreato Muziekacademie       institutions
                                                                                                                Education is crucial for fostering global socio-
Instituut voor psychosynthese                Business School Netherlands (BSN)
                                                                                                                                      economic development, improving the quality of life,
Stichting Stichtse Opleiding                 Hogeschool van Utrecht,
                                                                                                                                      and increasing intercultural understanding. Nuffic
  Middelbare Akten (SOMA)                      Theo Thijssen Academie
                                                                                                                                      strives to be the intermediary between the education
ITV Hogeschool voor Tolken en Vertalen       Pro Education B.V. van de Hogeschool
                                                                                                                                      community of the Netherlands and the international
Stichting NBI Hogeschool voor theologie        van Amsterdam
Evangelische Theologische Hogeschool         Roosevelt Academy
Stichting management opl. gezondheidszorg    Schouten en Nelissen
                                                                                                                                      Nuffic’s main areas of activity are:
  Zeeland te Vlissingen                      Stichting Wetenschappelijke
                                                                                                                                      • Development cooperation
Stichting Hogeschool West-Nederland            opleidingen Twente
                                                                                                                                      • Internationalization
  voor Vertaler en Tolk                      Transfergroep Rotterdam
                                                                                                                                      • International credential evaluation
                                                                                                                                      • International marketing of Dutch higher education
50 Study in Holland
 This is a publication of Nuffic, Netherlands organization for international cooperation
 in higher education • Copyright © July 2006
52 Study in Holland

Description: Even as far back as the early 17th century, Holland was an advanced country, with much of its wealth coming from international trade