University of Groningen Practical Information - Exchange by yaofenjin


									University of Groningen
Practical Information - Exchange Programme

Postal address
International Office
Faculty of Law
University of Groningen
P.O. Box 716
9700 AS Groningen

Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 7942/5756/3079
Fax: +31 (0)50 363 7408

The International Office is located at
Turftorenstraat 21, room T-68

Office hours for students:
> Monday 13.30 – 15.00
> Tuesday 13.30 – 15.00
> Thursday 13.30 – 15.00

Mrs. A.E. van Dort
Exchange Officer

Ms. Rosanne van Bladeren
Exchange and Admission Officer

Mrs. M.A. van Dijk

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of
all information, there may be unintended errors and
changes without notice.


Introduction                                             4

Studying at the Faculty of Law as an international
student                                                   8
  Exchange Programme                                      8
  Study Abroad Courses                                    8
  LLB programme                                           9
  LLM programmes                                          9
  Courses in English                                     10

Credits and grading system                               11
  The European Credit Transfer System (ECTS)             11
  Grading system                                         12
  Examinations                                           12
  Transcript of records                                  13

Overview academic year                                   14

Practical information                                    17
  Procedure for incoming students                        17
  Application form law courses and learning agreement    19
  Registration for examinations                          20
  Registration at the Faculty of Law                     20
  Accommodation                                          21
  Introduction programme                                 23
  Faculty registration                                   23
  Bank account                                           23
  Insurance via Rabobank                                 24
  Entry visa                                             25
  Residence permit                                       27
  Health insurance and third-party liability insurance   30

Student facilities                                       33
  Library                                                33
  ICT facilities                                         34
  Mentor system                                          35
  Study support                                          36
  Language training                                      37
  Sports                                                 38
  Culture                                                38
  Meals                                                  39
Other useful information               40
  Living and accommodation expenses     40
  Arrival and departure date            40
  Shops                                 41
  Public transport                      41
  From Schiphol airport to Groningen    41
  Dutch climate                         42
  Buy a bike                            42
  Medical care                          42


Thank you for your interest in studying at the Faculty of Law of
the University of Groningen. Law has been studied in Groningen
since before 1614, the year in which the university was formally
founded, and the present faculty builds on this longstanding
tradition with courses and research adapted to society’s present
and future concerns.

The city and the University of Groningen offer you a pleasant
environment in which you can study law at an advanced level and
in a town which is extremely popular among students. Come and
join us for a successful period of study and we are confident that
your stay here will be a rewarding and enjoyable experience!

This guide is especially meant for exchange students. Besides
practical information, it among others contains information
about the application procedure, educational system and student

The University of Groningen, a profile

Ever since its establishment in 1614, the University of Groningen
has been educating people to serve society. All this knowledge and
experience has stimulated the university to become what it is
now: a modern, international university where work is being
carried out at the frontiers of knowledge. It is a university with its
own character. This is partly due to its geographical situation in
the north of the country.

The university is bold enough to be different: sober, but inventive;
reliable, but surprising; solid, but prepared to accept challenges.
The University of Groningen not only admitted the first-ever
female student in the country but also produced the first Dutch
space traveller: pioneering is a trait that is fundamental to this

Students, researchers and business life complement each other in
Groningen: researchers from various disciplines cooperate and
arrive at achievements that are recognised as belonging to the
international top. Staff and students are engaged in educational
renewal: the university and the commercial sector are in close
contact. Above all, Groningen is a convivial city, a magnet to
students. They keep the university and the city youthful. All in all
the University of Groningen is a classical university that knows
the challenges of the future.

The Faculty of Law

The Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen is a modern,
internationally oriented institution that has existed for nearly
four centuries. Since it has the ambition to measure itself with the
best law faculties in Europe, advanced systems of quality control
have been implemented to continuously improve the faculty’s
research and education. Also the faculty of Law of the University
of Groningen, has an outstanding reputation as one of the best
law faculties in the Netherlands. Furthermore, although the
faculty has grown to become one of the largest law faculties in the
Netherlands, it has kept its friendly and informal atmosphere and
its concern for good relations amongst its staff and students.

The faculty offers the entire range of law subjects and a large
variety of specialized courses. Some 3,700 students study here
under the supervision of 35 professors and 150 other teaching
staff members. Each year around 150 foreign students stay for a
term or a full year of study. More than 50 courses are taught and
examined in English.

Part of the faculty’s research programmes falls within the ambit of
the Research School Centre for Law, Administration and Society:

> Legislation and the evaluation of the quality of legislation
> Ensuring compliance with legal norms
> Functions and functioning of adjudicatory institutions
> Legal aspects of public and private organizations
> Individual rights, duties and powers
> Law and European unification
In addition the faculty has a long-standing reputation in several
fields of public international law and specialized subjects such as
administrative relations between individuals and the state; peace
and security co-operation; constitutional institutions and their
relationship; criminality in a changing society; socio-economic

and company law; the principles of roman law; byzantine law,
and the interdisciplinary study of law.

The law building is located in the very centre of the city and has
its own library. The library has reading rooms, several study
rooms and computers with free internet connection. Apart from
the computers in the library, the faculty has a large number of
computers installed in computer rooms to which students have
free access. It is also possible to make a reservation for a private
study room beforehand.

The International Office

The International Office is the faculty's information and service
centre for international relations. The faculty has established
international exchange agreements with more than 60 partner
universities and faculties of law in and outside of Europe and
offers five LLM Programmes in English and one LLB Programme.
The International Office provides general support and (study)
guidance to foreign law students, both LLM, LLB and exchange
students, gives advice to law students from the University of
Groningen on studying abroad and general support in preparing
such a study period.

The office’s international atmosphere and internationally
oriented staff offer an excellent basis for a rewarding and
stimulating period in an outward-looking and research-led

Groningen, the top of Holland!

Groningen, an old but modern city with approximately 182,000
inhabitants, is the cultural, commercial and business capital of
the province of Groningen in the north of the Netherlands. It was
founded over 950 years ago and it is an important centre of trade,
transport, culture, education and science. It has two large
hospitals (the University Hospital is one of the largest hospitals in
the Netherlands), several theatres, the internationally known
‘Groninger Museum’, bookshops specialized in all European
languages, art galleries and music and film festivals. The
Groningen industry includes sugar, tobacco and coffee factories,

and companies specialized in the printing of schoolbooks. We call
it the Top of Holland!

Groningen is a university city; the presence of the university staff
and students can be felt in all aspects of city life. But it is not only
the university that leaves its mark. Other educational facilities,
vocational training, art academy, etc. also give the city a very
special and particularly youthful character. Over 50% of the
inhabitants are under 35!

The surrounding countryside offers many sights within easy
reach: woods and meadows to the south, the Friesian lakes to the
west, the sea, the islands, the dunes of the Wadden, tidal flats and
the unique wetlands to the north. And what is more, it is only two
and a half hours by train to Amsterdam!

Studying at the Faculty of Law as an
international student

Exchange Programme

It is possible for foreign students to take law courses at the
University of Groningen if they are taking part in a bilateral
exchange agreement under the Socrates programme, or in any
other officially recognized bilateral student exchange agreement
between the University of Groningen and their home university.

For students who want to start their studies in Groningen from
September, the deadline for sending in their application
documents is 1 June. Students who want to start their study
period in Groningen from February will have to send in their
application documents before 1 November. For more information
please contact the International Office or check

Study Abroad Courses

Students from universities that do not have an exchange
agreement with the Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen
can also participate in law courses. These courses form part of our
Study Abroad programme.

For some courses applicants from all categories have to meet
specific requirements, but a few courses can also be taken by
participants who do not have a law background. Students will
have to pay for the law courses they want to take, provided their
application is accepted. Upon request the International Office will
provide more information on the fee for courses and for exams,
registration procedure, etc. The deadline for application for the
first semester is 1 June. For courses starting in the second
semester the deadline is 1 November. For information on our
Study Abroad programme students can send an e-mail to

LLB programme

Since 2008 the Law Faculty also offers a bachelor programme in
English. This bachelor programme (3 years) on International and
European Law is a unique law programme for internationally
orientated students from all over the world. The focus is on
teaching International and European Union law on the basis of a
more conceptual understanding of what law is and how it
functions, rather than on a detailed knowledge of national law.
The programme is set up as an honours programme and has
specific admissions requirements.

The programme consists of a number of compulsory courses
which both give an introduction into several fields of law and
compare different legal systems in these fields of law. In the first
semester of the third year students will study abroad. They can
use this semester for studying law courses in their home country,
if there is an exchange agreement between the university and the
Faculty of Law or University of Groningen, but can also opt for
further specialization.

For more information about the LLB programme please contact
the International Office of the Faculty of Law,, or visit
the website

LLM programmes

Our Faculty of Law offers five specialized programmes for
graduates in law who wish to broaden and deepen their
knowledge of a specific field of law:
> Criminal Law and Criminology
> European Law
> International and Comparative Private Law
> International Economic and Business Law
> International Law and the Law of International Organizations

Within the programme International Law and the Law of
International Organizations and European Law it is possible to
choose for a specialization in Human Rights. The deadline for
application is 1 June.

For more information about these programmes, please contact
the International Office of the Faculty of Law (LLM@rug,nl). You
can also check our website

Courses in English

Groningen’s Faculty of Law has been conducting some of its
regular courses in English since September 1990. All courses are
taught by specialists and are open to advanced students. Not all
law courses in English are open to exchange students and
students of the Study Abroad programme; some courses are only
open to students of the LLM programmes.

Credits and grading system

The European Credit Transfer System (ECTS)

ECTS, the European Credit Transfer System, was developed by
the European Commission of the European Union in order to
provide common procedures that guarantee academic recognition
of courses completed abroad. It provides a way of measuring and
comparing learning achievements, and of transferring these
achievements from one institution to the other.

ECTS also improves access to information on foreign curricula.
The ECTS system is based on the principle of mutual trust and
confidence between the participating higher education

European credits (EC’s) are values allocated to course units to
describe the students’ workload required to complete them. They
reflect the quantity of work each course requires in relation to the
total quantity of work required to complete a full year of academic
study at the institution, i.e. the sum of lectures, practical work,
seminars, private work - either in the library or at home - as well
as examinations and/or other assessment activities.

One European Credit stands for 28 hours of work. In Groningen
(and in all other European universities using the ECTS), the
workload of a full year of study corresponds to 60 EC’s. Normally,
it is possible to obtain 30 credits in a semester (teaching period

All classes and courses carry a number of European Credits. In
the course descriptions the credits for each course are listed.
Credits are only awarded when a student passes the exam.

Grading system

The Dutch grading scale runs from 1 to 10. The passing grades
range from 6 (pass) to 10 (outstanding).
        10    =       outstanding
        9     =       excellent
        8     =       very good
        7     =       good pass
        6     =       pass

Please note:
> The grade 10 is hardly ever given.
> In general, Groningen Law Faculty does not award high
    grades very easily.
> In the Netherlands, grades are given on an absolute basis.
    Results of exams will hardly ever be adjusted to a curve. We
    do not use a comparative system for grading. The scale of
    grading is from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest mark (hardly
    ever given) and 6 being the passing grade.
> Sometimes no marks are given, but only the qualification
    PASS or FAIL.


IMPORTANT: For detailed information on the exact dates and
registration periods for examinations, please read the instructions
in the Study and Information Guide Exchange Programme.
Oral and written examinations are mostly used to assess students’
comprehension of lectures and required reading. In the case of
seminars, performance is assessed and grades are given on the
basis of papers, presentations, quality of participation in group
discussions and other assignments.

The duration of a written examination is two to three hours.
Written examinations may consist of multiple choice questions,
problem questions, essay questions, or a combination. In general,
this is previously indicated by the teacher of the course. The
results of written examinations are published by the examination
office, both in Progress and on the notice board in the Weber
Foyer of the Harmony Building, and are usually available within
10 days.

Oral examinations are arranged for by the teachers, and normally
take half an hour to an hour. In principle, oral exams must take
place in the examination period following the semester or during
mid-term exams (so in the same period in which the written
examinations take place). Right after the oral exam, the student
will receive the result (the grade and the number of credits
obtained). Students are requested to inform the International
Office of their results.

Every module has two examinations per academic year: the first
examination and the resit. If you pass the first examination, you
passed the course and it will not be necessary to take the resit. If a
student fails both examinations, then in principle there is no
possibility any more to pass this course in the same academic
year. An extra examination (i.e. a third chance) is hardly ever

In general, the original examination and the resit are in the same
examination period. For some courses, however, the resit takes
place in the examination period of the next teaching period or
next semester.

The exam dates of all written exams are scheduled at the
beginning of the year. The exact time of the exam will be
announced later on. Once the dates of the written exams are set;
these dates cannot be changed. Students should take this into
account when planning their journey home. An early flight home
is not accepted as a reason for granting a special (written) exam

Transcript of records

At the end of the student’s study period in Groningen the
International Office will send a questionnaire to the student on
which the student must indicate the courses and exams that were
taken. After the student has returned this questionnaire to the
International Office, all the student’s results will be checked and
when all results are available, the student’s official transcript of
records can be made. This transcript will be sent both to the home
university and the student.

Overview academic year

The academic year is divided into 2 semesters. Each semester is
divided in two lecture periods (A and B). Some courses will run
through period A and B (1AB or 2AB courses), some will only be
taught in A (1A or 2A courses) and some only in B (1B or 2B

Between these two lecture periods there is one week scheduled for
mid term exams. The examination period at the end of the
semesters will last 5 to 6 weeks. For each course there are two
exam possibilities per academic year; the exam and the resit.

Courses that run only in the A-period (1A or 2A courses) have the
exam in the mid term exam week, but may have the resit in the
final exam period at the end of the semester.

Courses that run through period A and B (1AB or 2AB courses)
and courses that are taught only in lecture period B (1B or 2B
courses) normally have the exam and the resit in the final exam
period at the end of the semester.

The resits will take place at the end of the exam period.

We advise exchange students to arrive well before the start of the
semester, so that they have the opportunity to arrange the
necessary formalities and get acquainted with Groningen and the
university. Students arriving late are not guaranteed admission to

The academic calendar is as follows:

     •   28 August 2010: festivities of the city of Groningen – all
         university buildings will be closed
     •   1 & 2 September 2010: University introduction
         programme for all incoming international students
     •   2 September 2010, in the afternoon: Faculty
         introduction programme for all incoming international
         law students

Semester 1A:
Lectures from 30 August 2010 - 22 October 2010
Midterm exam week from 25 October 2010 – 29October 2010

Semester 1B:
Lectures from 1 November 2019 - 17 December 2010
Exam period from 20 December 2010 – 4 February 2011
Christmas holiday: 24 December 2010 - 3 January 2011
January exams start as of 4 January 2011

Semester 2A: 1 February 2010 – 19 March 2010
Lectures from 7 February 2011 - 25 March 2011
Midterm exam week from 28 March 2011 - 1 April 2011

Semester 2B: 29 March 2010 – 21 May 2010
Lectures from 4 April 2011 - 27 May 2011
Spring holiday from 30 April 2011 – 6 May 2011
Exam period from 30 May 2011 - 15 July 2011

No lectures will be given on:
22 April 2011 and 25 April 2011 (Good Friday and Easter
30 April - 6 May 2011 (Spring Holiday)
2 June 2011 (Ascension Day) and 3 June 2011
13 June 2011 (Whitsun Monday)

   Overview Academic Year 2010-2011

Semester 1 (divided in period A and period B)

Lectures 1A      30 August 2010 - 22 October 2010

                 25 October 2010 – 29 October 2010
Mid term exams

Lectures 1B      1 November 2010 - 17 December 2010

                 20 December 2010 – 23 December 2010

                 >>Christmas holiday: 24 December 2010 – 3 January 2011

                 4 January 2011 - 4 February 2011

Semester 2 (divided in period A and period B)
Lectures 2A      7 February 2011 - 25 March 2011

Mid term exams   28 March 2011 – 1 April 2011

                 4 April 2011 - 27 May 2011
Lectures 2B
                 >>Spring holiday: 30 April 2011 – 6 May 2011

Exams            30 May 2011 – 15 July 2011

Practical information

Procedure for incoming students

1. As soon as the home university has informed the
   International Office of the names and addresses of the
   selected students, these students will receive further
   instruction on the application procedure, the required
   documents, the housing procedure, etc. This information will
   be sent by e-mail.

   The first information for incoming guest students contains:
   >     Academic calendar
   >     Application form law courses + learning agreement
   >     Information on the application procedure for housing
   >     Information on visa procedures
   >     Letter of acceptance (this letter will be sent by surface
         mail). Carry this letter with you in your hand luggage.

2. Students should apply for housing through the website of the
   Housing Office. Information on the exact procedure is given
   under “Accommodation”.

3. Students should return the following documents:
   >    Application form law courses + learning agreement
   >    Documents for registration at the faculty
   >    Application documents for visa procedure (if applicable)

   Information on the exact procedure is given under
   “Application form law courses and learning agreement”,
   “Registration at the Faculty of Law” and “Visa and residence

4. After we receive the documents under 3, the International
   Office will start the registration procedure and the student
   card and computer account will be processed. For students
   who need a visa to enter the Netherlands, the application
   procedure for visa will be started as soon as we receive the
   required visa documents.

5. In June an information package will be sent to the incoming
   students who will start their study period in Groningen in the
   first semester:
   >      Course list with exam dates
   >      Exam dates
   >      Detailed information on the introduction for
          international students
   >      Detailed information on the mentor system for
          international students

     This information will be given by e-mail. In June the
     information is also available on our website

6. After arrival, students should report to the International
   Office on the next working day. They will then get an
   information package, with their student card and email
   account. Also students will have to attend the compulsory
   University introduction programme for incoming
   international students on the 1st and 2nd of September 2010
   plus the Faculty of Law introduction programme in the
   afternoon of the 2nd of September. Furthermore, students are
   obliged confirm and ask permission of the program
   coordinator at the International Office to follow the courses of
   their choice.

     The introduction package contains, among other things:
     >    Study and Information Guide for exchange students
     >    Student card (if available)
     >    Information on the computer account (if available)
     >    The class schedule of the first semester
     >    Order forms for readers
     >    Information on the introduction meeting for law
     >    Emergency form
     >    Information on the law library
     >    Map of Groningen
     >    General information about Groningen

7. Other important things students should arrange after arrival
   >    A bank account (if necessary). It is possible for students
        to receive information and assistance from the Dutch
        bank ‘the Rabobank’ at the Information Market on the
        1st/2nd of September 2010.
   >    Residence permit (if necessary).
   >    Registration at the Town Hall.

   More information can be found under “Bank account”,
   “Residence permit” and “Registration at Town Hall”.

8. Before departure students should hand in a questionnaire.
   This questionnaire will be sent to the students before the end
   of their stay in Groningen. After returning the questionnaire
   the International Office will prepare the student’s transcript
   of records.

Application form law courses and learning agreement

As soon as the home university has informed the International
Office of the names and addresses of the selected students, these
students will receive an application form law courses and a
learning agreement. These documents will be sent by e-mail.
Applicants must complete the application form law courses and
should return it to the International Office before 1 June
(students who are planning to start their study in Groningen in
September) or 1 November (students who will begin their studies
in Groningen in February).

Because the list of law courses available to exchange students is
not ready until mid June, students have to return the learning
agreement as soon as the list of law courses will be published on
the internet (mid June). As soon as the list of law courses
(including the exam dates) is ready, students will also receive the
list by e-mail. To get an impression of the courses offered by the
Faculty of Law of the University of Groningen, students can check
our website for the course descriptions
of the current academic year.

After arrival students will have to discuss with the programme co-
ordinator at the International Office which courses they want to
take. Depending on the student’s proficiency in English, it may be
necessary to change the previously signed learning agreement.
Students should always inform the International Office and their
home university of any changes in their study programme.

In certain situations it is possible for exchange students to follow
non-law courses with different faculties of the University of
Groningen. However, permission in necessary from the
International Office of the Faculty of Law, the student’s home
university and the International Office from the faculty offering
the course. Registration for such courses is only possible through
the International Office of the Faculty of Law.

Registration for examinations

The Faculty of Law does not have a registration system for
courses, only for written examinations. In order to participate in a
written examination every student is obliged to register.
The registration can only be done in the registration period.

More information on the registration procedure for exams will be
provided upon arrival, and can be found in the Study and
Information Guide.

Registration at the Faculty of Law

For students who send the required documents for registration to
the International Office at least six weeks before their arrival in
Groningen, the student card, student number and e-mail address
will be available upon arrival.

The documents required for registration at the Faculty of Law
> A clear copy of the (valid) passport or identity card
> Two passport-size photographs.
> Proof of medical insurance (can also be given upon arrival)

More information on medical insurance is given under “Health
insurance and third-party liability insurance”.

Students should keep in mind that their student card and details
of their computer account are only available upon arrival, if they
have registered in time. Students who register after their arrival
in Groningen should realize that it will take at least two weeks
before their student card and e-mail account will be available.


The University of Groningen is not a campus university. In
general Dutch students find their own accommodation
somewhere in town. Because of the tight (student) housing
market in Groningen, especially in September, foreign students
are strongly advised to book accommodation with the help of the
Housing Office.

Most exchange students will be housed in one of the international
student houses (single and double, fully furnished rooms, shared
kitchen, fully equipped, and bathroom facilities). The rent per
month ranges from approximately € 270 for shared
accommodation to € 370 for a single room. It is important to
know that the registration costs are € 300 and the deposit costs
are € 325. Paying the reservation costs is no guarantee for
accommodation in Groningen. If there are no more rooms
available in the international student houses, the Housing Office
will look for rooms through private accommodation agencies.
They have rooms available in different types of student houses
and the rent per month can therefore vary considerably. Most
agencies have a term of notice of one month and stipulate that the
room must be rented for a period of at least two months.

The website of the Housing Offices gives more information on the
types of accommodation and prices for accommodation. It also
contains information about the Housing Office, the procedures,
general conditions, rental agreements, etc. As you can see on the
website students can choose from different kinds of
accommodation. Students should realize that all these
descriptions are no guarantee that the rooms will be exactly as
stated. They are merely giving students an indication of the rooms

Students should also check the conditions of the rooms, since the
conditions for the private market and the international student
houses are different. Once a student has accepted a room and its
conditions, the student will have to stick to that.

If students would like to apply for housing through the University
of Groningen, they should fill out the application form for
housing on the internet ( It is very
important to fill in the form completely (including arrival and
departure dates). The name of the contact person for exchange
students is ms. Astrid van Dort.

After filling in the form students will automatically receive an e-
mail from the Housing Office that they have to confirm their
application. As soon as they do that, the International Office will
receive an e-mail to approve the application (this all happens
through the internet). As soon as the International Office has
approved the application, the form is sent to the Housing Office.
As from that moment, the Housing Office will make all further
arrangements concerning accommodation directly with the
student. Students need to make sure their e-mail address is
working properly, and should check their mailbox regularly: the
Housing Office will contact students by e-mail only.

If the International Office receives the application form later than
three months before the date of arrival, accommodation cannot
be guaranteed.

If students have to cancel their stay in Groningen, or if they arrive
later than the date they have indicated on the form, students
should inform both the Housing Office and the International
Office as soon as possible.

Housing Office
P.O. Box 546
9700 AM Groningen
The Netherlands
Telephone: +31 (0)50 365 7126
Fax: +31 (0)50 365 7139

Introduction programme

Before the start of the academic year there will be an introduction
for all international students. The compulsory part of the
introduction will be on 1 and 2 september 2010. More
information will be sent in June. Part of the introduction is the
official University of Groningen welcoming ceremony (with an
information market where all faculties will be present or
represented), a Faculty introduction programme on the 2nd of
September (in the afternoon) and the Introduction Weekend for
international students in Groningen, for those who registered.

Please check the following website for more information on the
Introduction Weekend: For international
students of the Faculty of Law an informal introduction meeting
will be held in the first lecture week. Students will receive more
information about the introduction for law students upon arrival.

Faculty registration

After their arrival, students should first contact the International
Office. When students report to the International Office they will
be handed an introduction package, which contains among other
things the student card and the e-mail password, the class
schedule of the first semester, order form for readers, information
on exam dates. Also some additional information on the ICT
facilities for students, the sports facilities, general information
about Groningen, a map of the city, etc. will be provided.

Bank account

The University of Groningen has a special arrangement with the
Dutch bank, the Rabobank (located at the Guldenstraat 12),
which should enable all international guests of the university to
open a bank account with the Rabobank. The Rabobank will also
be present at the RUG welcoming ceremony to provide more
details on/start preparations for opening you bank account.

Of course students are free to open a bank account at any other
bank of preference.

In order to open a bank account with the Rabobank students
should go to the bank (please make an appointment first) with the
following documents:
> Letter from the Rabobank
> A valid passport
> University of Groningen student card (or letter of acceptance)
> Officially verified address in the Netherlands (e.g. rental
    agreement Housing Office)
> BSN number, see under Residence permit

After the visit and the procedure to open a bankaccount the
student will receive an accountnumber. After about 1 or 2 weeks
the ATM-card will be ready and the student can pick up the card
at the Rabobank.

The Rabobank can offer the following package to international
guest students:
> A student bank account (free)
> Rabobank europas (free)

> Rabobank Internet Banking (free)
> Saving account (free)

The use of your Rabobank ATM card in the Netherlands will be
free of charge but if you use your Rabobank ATM card in a foreign
country then you will be charged 1 % extra.

Insurance via Rabobank

In addition there is the possibility to arrange your insurances at
Interpolis in a special studentpackage. This is a combination of
liability insurance and a fire and theft insurance. This insurance
will cost approximately € 6 a month. The consultants at the
Rabobank can provide the students with more information about
this insurance.

Entry visa

For a stay of up to three months

If the student has the nationality of one of the below-mentioned
countries the student does not need a tourist visa before they
leave for the Netherlands. International students who have the
nationality of all other countries and who are planning to study in
the Netherlands for less than three months do need to apply for a
tourist visa. You have to apply for this at the Dutch embassy or
consulate in your home country (or the country in which you
legally reside).

•   EU countries       •   New Zealand         •   Malawi
•   EER countries:     •   Japan               •   Malaysia
    -Norway            •   Monaco              •   San Marino
    -Iceland           •   Switzerland         •   Singapore
    -Liechtenstein     •   Andorra             •   South Korea
•   Australia          •   Brunei              •   Countries in
•   Canada             •   Israel                  Central and
•   United States      •   Jamaica                 South America

Students should keep in mind that once they have entered the
Netherlands on a tourist visa it is not possible to change their
status as a tourist to obtain a residence permit. This implies that
students who need a tourist visa for entering the Netherlands,
cannot decide after arrival that they would like to stay for a period
longer than three months.

Please check with the Dutch Embassy in your country to
make sure that you have the correct information!

Period of stay longer than three months

Every foreign student staying in the Netherlands for more than
three months must obtain a residence permit.

Students who are nationals of one of the European Union
countries, Norway, Iceland, Australia, Canada, Japan,
Liechtenstein, Monaco, New Zealand, the United States or

Switzerland and who are staying in the Netherlands for more than
three months can apply for the residence permit after arrival and
do not need to apply for an entrance visa.

Students from all other countries must hold an Authorization for
Temporary Residence (Machtiging tot Voorlopig Verblijf (MVV))
before entering the Netherlands. This is an entrance visa, which is
stamped into the passport by the Embassy. The MVV is needed to
enter the Netherlands and to obtain a residence permit in the
Netherlands. This MVV can be applied for at the Dutch Embassy
or Consulate-General in your country. Important: The MVV can
also be applied for by the International Office of the Faculty of

This will save the student quite some time and because of that it is
strongly advised to apply for an MVV through the International

In order for the International Office to be able to apply for an
MVV, the student needs to send the following documents:
> Copy of passport
> Certified copy of birth certificate
> An original bank statement, which holds the name of the
    student, the name and address of the bank and the bank
> If the student is being sponsored (even if this is done by its
    parents), we also need a statement from them that they will
    sponsor the student with at least 750 euros per month from
    the period September 2009 till September 2010 (please ask
    the International Office for the format of this statement)
> A copy of the passport of sponsor (if applicable)
> A statement of marital status
> A statement of not having a criminal record

Students should be aware that the bank statement needs to prove
that the student has enough money to live on during the study
period in the Netherlands. The monthly amount considered
adequate depends on your status. For international students the
monthly amount is € 779,96. Socrates/Erasmus exchange
students need to prove that they have €644,96 a month. This
amount was changed in August 2009. It is necessary that a
student has the bank statement before arrival in the Netherlands.

In order to obtain an MVV through this accelerated procedure,
Chinese students need to present a so-called 'Nuffic certificate'.
This is a document that provides an assessment of your English
language proficiency and of the validity of your diplomas and
degrees. This certificate can be obtained from the Nuffic in The

The procedure usually takes approximately six weeks. The costs of
the MVV and the residence permit will be reimbursed by the
International Office in Groningen after the residence permit has
been granted.

The fee for applying for an MVV through the Faculty of Law is €
250. The Faculty of Law will pay this fee for all its international
students. A student should be aware that the Faculty of Law will
only pay the fee if the student actually comes to Groningen! If
students decide not to come to Groningen after their MVV has
been applied for, they will have to pay € 250 to cover the fee.

Residence permit

EU/EEA students (i.e. students with EU/EEA

After arrival in the Netherlands, students with a EU/EEA
nationality should go to the local municipality (town hall). What
students need to do there, depends on how long they are going to
stay in the Netherlands. If the student is staying for just a short
period (less than four months), the civil servant at the
municipality will simply give the student a sticker in his/her
passport to prove that the student has reported. If the student is
staying for more than four months, they will also register the
student as (temporary) inhabitant of the city.

In this case, students may also apply for an EU/EEA residence
card. This is not compulsory, but it is highly advisable, as it will
make a number of things easier.

Registration as (temporary) inhabitant at theTown Hall means
that your personal data will be entered in the Municipal Records
Database. This will automatically generate a so-called BSN

number (social identification number), which you will receive
within 2-3 weeks after registration.

Note: the Rabobank will also need this BSN number for their files,
so as soon as you have your BSN number, please also inform the

Non-EU/EEA students (students with non-EU/EEA

Non-EU/EEA citizens who are staying in the Netherlands for less
than three months need to report to the local Aliens Police
(Vreemdelingendienst) within three days after arrival in the
Netherlands. The Aliens Police will put a sticker into the student’s
passport stating until which date the student may stay in the
Netherlands. This sticker is free of charge. The validity date will
correspond with what is mentioned on the short-stay visa, if

Students are obliged to apply for a residence permit if they are
citizens of a non-EU/EEA country and if they would like to stay in
the Netherlands for a period of more than three months. The
student will have to present a number of documents, pay a fee,
and if everything is in order the student will receive a residence
permit some weeks or months later which proves that the student
is residing legally in the Netherlands.

In order to apply for a residence permit, students need to fill in an
application form and hand it in to the civil servant at the
municipality. This application form will be handed to the student
upon arrival in Groningen. After filling in the application form
completely, students should go to the Immigration Desk of the
Municipality and hand in the envelope during their opening

Students will need to present:
> An MVV, if applicable
> A valid passport
> Two passport photographs
> Letter of invitation or student card
> Proof of adequate coverage health insurance
> Proof of sufficient financial means

> Proof of tuberculosis-check in the Netherlands (not applicable
  if you have the Israeli nationality, the Surinam nationality or a
  nationality listed in group I or group II)
> Statement of not having a criminal record

Immigration Desk Municipality is located at:
Gemeente Groningen
Kreupelstraat 3
9712 HW Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 367 70 00

Opening hours:
Monday (13.00 – 16.00 hrs)
Tuesday until Friday (9.00 - 16.00 hrs)
Thursday evening (18.00 - 20.00 hrs)

Registration at the Town Hall

Students, who plan to stay in Groningen longer than four months,
must be registered as a (temporary) resident at the Register of
Population at the Town Hall in Groningen. European Union
students should register at the Town Hall. All other students are
registered at the same time they apply for their residence permit.
For the registration the following documents are required:
> The application for the residence permit
> An official legalized birth certificate
> A legalized certificate of marital status; i.e.:
    -    a legalized proof of single status or
    -    a legalized marriage certificate or
    -    a legalized certificate of divorce

> Legalized translations of all (legalized) certificates in Dutch,
  English, German or French.

NB: Legalized certificates are: official documents certified by
    authorized government officials. The Dutch Embassy or
    Consulate General can give instructions concerning the
    legalization of documents. The legalization of documents
    needs to be done BEFORE departure to the Netherlands.

Health insurance and third-party liability insurance

In the Netherlands it is compulsory to have medical insurance.
Visiting international students are responsible for their own
medical insurance and third-party liability insurance during their
stay in Groningen. Adequate coverage for medical costs for the
entire period of their stay in Groningen is essential, and is a
requirement for obtaining a residence permit and for registration
at the faculty.

All foreign students have to arrange for their own health
insurance, third-party liability insurance and/or baggage
insurance. The University of Groningen will not accept
responsibility for medical costs or costs resulting from damage or
accidents caused by the guest student during his/her stay in the

Since 1 January 2006 there is a new health insurance system in
the Netherlands. As from this time, everyone who is a resident in
the Netherlands and/or is employed in the Netherlands must, in
principle, take a new basic health insurance policy. However, for
certain groups of people there are exceptions to this rule. One of
these exceptions applies to international students. Not all
international students are exempt from the new basic health
insurance policy.

International students under the age of 30 years, who
are not EU/EEA or Swiss nationals

Only students under the age of 30 years, who are in the
Netherlands solely for study purposes, are exempt from the
requirement to take out the basic health insurance. This group of
students should conclude a private health insurance (e.g. AON).

The phrase ‘solely for study purposes’ implies that the exemption
will not apply if you are an international student and you start a
part-time job, because then you will no longer only be a student,
but also an employee. This means that if you have a part-time job,
you will still have to take a basic health insurance policy.

International students aged 30 years or older, who are
not EU/EEA or Swiss nationals

If you are a student aged 30 years or older and you are not an
EU/EEA or Swiss national, you will be exempt from the
requirement to take out basic health insurance if your stay is
considered to be temporary. Your stay is considered to be
temporary if the maximum duration of your study is one year.
Since the duration of a study period abroad is normally not longer
than one year, your stay will be considered temporary. This
means that if you are 30 years or older and not an EU/EEA or
Swiss national, you do not have to take basic health insurance,
but you should take out a private health insurance policy (e.g.

International students who are EU/EEA or Swiss

If you are a student with the nationality of one of the EU/EEA-
countries or Switzerland, your age is not of importance for the
question whether you are required to take out basic health
insurance. The answer to this question is determined by the
nature of your residence in the Netherlands (temporary or
permanent). If your stay is temporary, all you need is an EU
Health Insurance Card. The EU Health Insurance Card is already
in use in many EU/EEA countries and replaces the E-111 as from
1 January 2006. For more information about the EU Health
Insurance Card, you can check

Your stay is considered to be temporary if the maximum duration
of your study is one year. Since the duration of a study period
abroad is normally not longer than one year, your stay will be
considered temporary, so the EU Health Insurance Card will be
sufficient insurance.

Health insurance and third-party liability insurance
through the University of Groningen

If necessary, students can arrange insurance through the
University of Groningen. For more information about this
insurance please check

More information on medical care is given under ‘Medical care’
and in the University’s Health Guide.

Student facilities


The University Library (UB) is situated in the centre of
Groningen. All students enrolled in the University of Groningen
and all staff members are entitled to use the library. The UB has
several reading and study rooms with a total capacity of 1600
seats. It is open every day, including Saturday and Sunday.

The University Library is located at:
Broerstraat 4
9712 CP Groningen

Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 8034

The Faculty of Law has its own library on the second floor of the
faculty building (Harmony building, also in the centre of
Groningen), containing the textbooks, literature and journals that
are currently used in degree courses. It is open from Monday to
Friday, and has reading and study rooms available for law
students. For detailed information see the library’s website.

The Law Library is located at:
Harmonie building,
Oude Kijk in 't Jatstraat 26
9712 EK Groningen

Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 5663
Internet: (library)

In order to borrow a book or journal in one of the libraries
students will have to use their student card as a library pass. More
information is available at the library information desk. Students
are obliged to return borrowed books to the library before

ICT facilities

All students will get a university computer account. This account
will be produced after the registration at the university is fully
completed, see p. 21, ‘Registration at the Faculty’. With this
computer account students receive:
> Access to the faculty computers and the programmes installed
    thereupon and your personal saving space on the university
> Access to the electronic learning environment Nestor
> Access to your electronic mailbox
> The possibility to register for examinations and view the
    results of your examinations through ProgressWWW

Accounts are active as long as students are registered at the
University of Groningen.

The computer rooms for law students are located at:
> H 12.108 (16 computers), 1st floor Harmonie building
> H 12.207a (29 computers), 2nd floor Harmonie building
> T02 (30 computers), ground floor Turftorenstraat building
> Computer room Law Library
> Computer room University Library (also accessible for other

At the joint helpdesk of the Faculties of Law and Arts, students
can report defects, ask questions about the computers, request for
a new password, etc.

The Helpdesk is located on the first floor of the Harmonie
Oude Kijk in ‘t Jatstraat 26 (room H 12.101)
9712 EK Groningen

Important: Students should check their university e-mail account
regularly. All information from the university that is sent
electronically will be sent to this e-mail address! This e-mail
account can be used from any computer with access to the

Mentor system

The university-wide association ESN Groningen has set up a
student mentor system for the integration of exchange students
both at university and at faculty level. Dutch student mentors play
a particularly important role in the first weeks of the foreign
students’ stay in Groningen, but in many cases also after that.

ESN Groningen organizes activities especially for international
students and their Dutch student mentors, often in co-operation
with faculty-based associations. Exchange students will receive an
e-mail with information how they can register for a mentor.

ESN Groningen is located at:
Grote Rozenstraat 23
9712 TG Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 7176

Besides the university-wide association ESN-Groningen, the Law
Faculty’s student association JFV (Juridische Faculteits
Vereniging) organizes activities and excursions especially meant
for law students: e.g.: excursions to the Groningen court, a prison,
a law firm, and the Dutch Parliament in The Hague.

The JFV is located at:
Turftorenstraat 17
Telephone: + 31 (0)50 3635783
Fax: + 31 (0)50 3636947

Study support

Studying in Groningen and living abroad is a special and useful
experience, but it can be hard to find your way into the habits of
Dutch society and the educational system. The Centre for Study
Support and Academic Skills (SO, Studie Ondersteuning) is the
university’s centre of expertise for academic skills. The team
consists of six psychologists and a secretary. The centre’s aim is to
guide students of the University of Groningen through their
studies as smoothly as possible, for example by means of a wide
range of study-skills courses, training and workshops.

The Study Support Centre is located at:
Uurwerkersgang 10 (next to the Harmonie building)
9712 EJ, Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 5548
Fax: +31 (0)50 363 5539

The University of Groningen has developed a sound system of
student counselling and monitoring. At the central level of the
university, the Student Service Centre can advise students on
general questions related to studying in Groningen.

This office possesses a comprehensive information centre on
education in the Netherlands and abroad.

The Student Service Centre is located at:
Uurwerkersgang 10 (next to the Harmonie building)
9712 EJ Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 8004

At faculty level, the International Office can help students if they
have questions concerning the study programme. Student
mentors can assist students with practical matters.

In case of serious personal problems students can make an
appointment with one of the student psychologists.
Of course students are always welcome to contact the
international office, if they have any problems.
The student psychologists are located at:
Uurwerkersgang 10
9712 EJ Groningen
0031 (0)50 - 363 55 44

Language training

Facilities for learning almost all of the European languages are
available at the Language Centre of the University of Groningen.
The Language Centre of the University of Groningen offers
elementary and advanced courses in several languages.

Of particular interest for international students are the Dutch
courses, which are taught at four levels. From 9 August until 27
August 2010, an intensive language course in Dutch (level I and
II) will be organized for international students. The course is
given at the University’s Language Centre, and will also take place
in January 2011. The fee per course is approximately € 275.
For further information and application form, please check the
website of the Language Centre.

The Language Centre is located on the first floor of the
Harmonie building:
Oude Kijk in't Jatstraat 26 (room 1315/129)
9712 EK Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 5802
Fax: +31 (0)50 363 5886

University of Groningen
Language Centre
P.O. Box 716
9700 AS Groningen
The Netherlands


The University of Groningen has extensive sports facilities in the
northern part of town, which can be used by individual students
and student sports clubs. In order to do so, students have to
become a member of the General Student Sports Foundation
(ACLO). The ACLO is managed by students.

International students who would like to participate in sports can
get an ACLO sport card registration on their student card. This
costs approximately € 47. International Students who stay for a
period shorter than 3 months can get an ACLO card for free. To
become a member, students need to show their student card at
the information desk of the ACLO. The ACLO will be pleased to
inform students about the various possibilities.

The ACLO sports centre is located at:
Blauwborgje 16
9747 AC Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 4641
Fax: +31 (0)50 363 4648


The Cultural Student Centre (USVA) offers a wide range of non-
academic courses especially for students and the fees are adapted
to student budgets. Students can among others choose from
dance, drama, mime, photography, video or music courses.

The USVA is located at:
Munnekeholm 10
9711 JA Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)50 363 4670


Groningen has an enormous variety of restaurants: Chinese,
Italian, Israeli, Mexican, Greek, Indonesian, and Indian
restaurants, to name but a few. There is also the possibility to
dine in many cafes, where meals are served for a relatively low
prince (about € 12). The Faculty of Law has its own cafeteria,
where students can enjoy snacks and lunch. The cafeteria does
not serve hot meals.

Other useful information

Living and accommodation expenses

Expenses incurred by the average student are approximately as

>    Housing       € 325 a month
>    Food, etc.    € 300 a month
>    Insurance     € 40 a month
>    Other costs   € 85 a month
     Total         € 750 a month

> Bicycle      € 100
> MVV + residence permit € 438

Study costs (books, readers) will depend on the courses students
take. Exchange students are not required to pay tuition fees. For
more information please see:

Arrival and departure date

We advise exchange students to arrive well before the start of the
semester, so that they have the opportunity to arrange the
necessary formalities and get acquainted with the town and the
university. Before the start of the academic year there will be a
compulsory introduction for all international students. This
introduction will be on 1 and 2 September 2010. Also students are
required to report to the International Office the next day after
arrival and they will receive their welcome package, see p. 20.

When planning the journey to Groningen, students should keep
in mind that students arriving late are not guaranteed admission
to classes. The exam dates of all written exams are set and
announced at the beginning of the year.

Once the dates of the written exams are set, the dates of written
exams cannot be changed. Please take this into account when

planning your journey home. An early flight home is not accepted
as a reason for granting a special (written) exam arrangement.


Shops in Groningen are usually open from 9.00 to 18.00 hrs.
Supermarkets close at 20.00 hrs., sometimes later. On Monday
mornings many shops are closed. Most shops close at 17.00 hrs.
on Saturdays. On Thursday night shops are open until 21.00 hrs.
In general shops are closed on Sunday, however there are some
exceptions, see:

Public transport

The Netherlands has a very good network of public transport. For
students who intend to travel by train a lot, it may be worthwhile
to buy a “Voordeelurenkaart” card (off-peak discount pass). The
price is approximately € 50 for an annual season card. This gives
you a 40% discount on train tickets. It is valid during weekends
and from 9.00 onwards on weekdays. For bus services, cheaper
tickets can be obtained at railway stations and special ticket
offices. These tickets are called “strippenkaart” (tickets for several
rides). One “strippenkaart” contains 15 or 45 “strippen”.
International students cannot travel for free.

From Schiphol airport to Groningen

There is a regular train service from Schiphol railway station to
Groningen. The entrance to the railway station is signposted in
the arrival hall. A single second class ticket Schiphol-Groningen
costs about € 30. The train journey takes about 2,5 to 3 hours.

There is a direct train to Groningen every hour, but people can
also take the train to Enschede and change trains in Amersfoort.
Please make sure to change the section of the train bound for
Groningen. The rear section is bound for Leeuwarden, and will
disconnect in Zwolle. For more information please check the
website of the railway company

Dutch climate

The Dutch climate is characterized by cool summers and fairly
mild winters. In winter people will need a warm winter coat.
There may be cold spells in spring and autumn. Usually the
temperature varies between 5 and 15 degrees Celsius during those
months. In the summer months (June to September) people need
summer cloths, but also a raincoat.

Buy a bike

In Groningen everybody rides a bike. Students can buy second-
hand bicycles at several locations in Groningen: bicycle shops,
market, central train station. During the university introduction
there will also be possibilities to buy a bicycle. Every first Friday
of the month there is also a public bicycle sale hosted by the
Environment Service of Groningen. The public sale takes place
between 9.00 and 12.00 in the morning at the Oude
Boteringestraat 8, Groningen and from 7.30 on service numbers
will be handed out. Please always make sure to invest in a good

Medical care

General remark: for detailed information on medical care please
read the booklet “Health Guide”, which is in your information

If students have a medical problem which is not of immediate
danger they should first consult a “huisarts” (general practitioner
[GP] or family doctor). GP’s can be visited during consulting
hours, usually after making an appointment by telephone.

If treatment by a specialist is needed, the GP will refer students to
one. It is not customary in the Netherlands for a patient to make
an appointment directly with a specialist.

For the help of a GP at night or during the weekend, students call
for one by telephone. GP’s share duties after working hours, so
there will always be someone to help.

International students of the University of Groningen can go to
the “Academische Huisartsenpraktijk Groningen” in order to
consult a “huisarts” (general practitioner [GP] or family doctor).

Academische Huisartsenpraktijk Groningen is located at:
Oostersingel, entrance 47 (blue sign with orange letters)
9700 AW Groningen


Office Hours: Monday – Friday: 08.00-17.00

To make an appointment with a GP call before 12.30

Doctors Hakvoort, Saado, Talsma, van Wijngaarden

         Practice          (050) 361 50 10 (in English)

                            (050) 361 50 20 (in Dutch)

Emergency (office hours)          (050) 361 50 21

Doctors Dekker, Kocks, de Lange, van der Werf

         Practice          (050) 361 50 10 (in English)

                            (050) 361 50 30 (in Dutch)

Emergency (office hours)          (050) 361 50 31

Please take notice of the following:

> In the Netherlands it is not permitted to go directly to the
  hospital unless in cases of emergency; you should first consult
  your GP.
> Always bring the insurance card.
> In principle students are required to pay cash: regular
  consultancy ± € 25, consultancy by phone ± € 15, house call ±
  € 35; ask for the bill and get a refund from your insurance

  later. Students who have health insurance through the
  University of Groningen are not required to pay cash, because
  AON Insurances has an agreement with Academische
  Huisartsenpraktijk that the invoice will be sent directly to
> Clients will be registered at their first visit. In case of an
  emergency or night/weekend visit, always mention where you
  are registered.
> The GP will not always automatically prescribe medicine.
> In case of an emergency students should mention that the
  university has agreed with the GP’s of the Academische
  Huisartsenpraktijk that they will act as GP for international
  students of the University of Groningen.

If the GP is not on duty, please call the central GP service
“Centrale Doktersdienst “ in Groningen. Most likely you will be
asked to come to the Centrale Doktersdienst.

The Centrale Doktersdienst is located at:
Damsterdiep 191 c (not far from the University Hospital)
9713 EC Groningen
Telephone: +31 (0)900 – 9229

If students need a dentist, they can contact the information desk
at the Department of Dentistry for an appointment +31 (0)50 363
7505. Students are required to pay cash. Please check in advance
if dental care is included in your insurance! If so, ask for the bill
and get a refund from the insurance later.


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