The British guide for applying to a Dutch University (and surviving)

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MrsSheldonCooper
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Right so because of higher tuition fees, more students are looking at university in the Netherlands because of how much cheaper it is and because we also like to be thrown out of our comfort zone As I might not be on this site any longer from September onwards, I've decided to make a guide about applying to Dutch universities for any future TSRians who plan to make the first step to studying abroad.

I'm currently holding an offer from the University of Amsterdam for Linguistics so I'm open for questions about the whole applying process. I'll try to cover everything though!

How do I start?
First you look up if Dutch unis actually have your course. Some universities word the degrees a little differently but if you just google Dutch unis you'll get a whole list of universities that may potentially have your course. When you do look them up, do make sure the course is in English.

Helpful link to find courses in English in the Netherlands: http://www.eunicas.ie/

Once you've done that, you make a Studielink account. This is like the Dutch version of UCAS and if you're an international student, you register without DigiD identification. You get given a username and once you make your account, you start making your application. You can choose upto 5 Dutch universities so you make 5 different applications. In your Studielink account, you get these mini emails confirming that unis have your application and the portal links you need to fill out applications. I'd personally advise applying early because the details are a pain to fill out. You can withdraw your applications whenever you like.

What documents do I need?

You'll need a copy of your passport, a motivation letter (so this is a personal statement but much more businesslike), your GCSE grades, your AS grades and your A2 predictions. I'm not sure about other universities but Amsterdam Uni required 6 qualifications from me (so 3 GCSEs at A-C grade and then 3 A2s). So it is super important you remember everything or your application lags behind.

How long does it take for them to give offers?

Depends on uni to uni but Amsterdam got back to me within 3 months (but this was mainly because there was a hitch in their application system and so my motivation letter was in the wrong format or something)

Can I apply for Medicine in the Netherlands?

Yes you can. The Dutch have a system for medical/dentistry applicants called "Numerus Fixus" where applicants are picked out at random but this only lasts for a certain time. So you quite literally have as much chance as anyone.

Do the Dutch have a Freshers week?

Yes they do but the name differs from uni to uni. Amsterdam's freshers week is known as Intreeweek (which takes place a week after results day) and international students are put together in groups and basically let loose in Amsterdam. Video for Intreeweek is down below!




What are the university holidays like?

This one differs from uni to uni but generally, summer holidays are like a month and a half, Easter holidays are literally a weekend, Christmas is 2 weeks and you get Dutch National holidays off!

Can I still be cheap if I go abroad?

When in the Netherlands, Lidl will be your best friend.

Do I get financial support?

Yes. You can get a tuition fee loan from the Dutch government and if you work a 56 hour job per month, you get about 1000 Euros and discounted travel.

What about housing?

The universities work alongside landlords to provide housing for students. If you're an international student, you're guaranteed accommodation. If you apply for Amsterdam University like I did, grab the first accommodation offer you get. It's so hard to get decent housing in Amsterdam because everybody wants to live there.

What Dutch uni is basically like Oxford/Cambridge?

Funnily enough, the Dutch aren't huge fans of league tables. If you want to check out the highest ranking universities in the Netherlands, look at QS World rankings. I'm not sure about what position Amsterdam Uni is in but I know it's ranked above Durham and Bristol.



wolfmoon88 Can you sticky this please? It'll be easier to see then


I'm tired at the moment so not that many questions are coming to mind but feel free to add on!


UPDATE- I won't be going to a Dutch uni due to personal reasons but I'm still open to questions!
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wolfmoon88
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(Original post by MrsSheldonCooper)
Right so because of higher tuition fees, more students are looking at university in the Netherlands because of how much cheaper it is and because we also like to be thrown out of our comfort zone As I might not be on this site any longer from September onwards, I've decided to make a guide about applying to Dutch universities for any future TSRians who plan to make the first step to studying abroad.

I'm currently holding an offer from the University of Amsterdam for Linguistics so I'm open for questions about the whole applying process. I'll try to cover everything though!

How do I start?
First you look up if Dutch unis actually have your course. Some universities word the degrees a little differently but if you just google Dutch unis you'll get a whole list of universities that may potentially have your course. When you do look them up, do make sure the course is in English.

Once you've done that, you make a Studielink account. This is like the Dutch version of UCAS and if you're an international student, you register without DigiD identification. You get given a username and once you make your account, you start making your application. You can choose upto 5 Dutch universities so you make 5 different applications. In your Studielink account, you get these mini emails confirming that unis have your application and the portal links you need to fill out applications. I'd personally advise applying early because the details are a pain to fill out. You can withdraw your applications whenever you like.

What documents do I need?

You'll need a copy of your passport, a motivation letter (so this is a personal statement but much more businesslike), your GCSE grades, your AS grades and your A2 predictions. I'm not sure about other universities but Amsterdam Uni required 6 qualifications from me (so 3 GCSEs at A-C grade and then 3 A2s). So it is super important you remember everything or your application lags behind.

How long does it take for them to give offers?

Depends on uni to uni but Amsterdam got back to me within 3 months (but this was mainly because there was a hitch in their application system and so my motivation letter was in the wrong format or something)

Can I apply for Medicine in the Netherlands?

Yes you can. The Dutch have a system for medical/dentistry applicants called "Numerus Fixus" where applicants are picked out an random. So you quite literally have as much chance as anyone.

Do the Dutch have a Freshers week?

Yes they do but the name differs from uni to uni. Amsterdam's freshers week is known as Intreeweek (which takes place a week after results day) and international students are put together in groups and basically let lose in Amsterdam. Video for Intreeweek is down below!




What are the university holidays like?

This one differs from uni to uni but generally, summer holidays are like a month and a half, Easter holidays are literally a weekend, Christmas is 2 weeks and you get Dutch National holidays off!

Can I still be cheap if I go abroad?

When in the Netherlands, Lidl will be your best friend.

Do I get financial support?

Yes. You can get a tuition fee loan from the Dutch government and if you work a 56 hour job per month, you get about 1000 Euros and discounted travel.

What about housing?

The universities work alongside landlords to provide housing for students. If you're an international student, you're guaranteed accommodation. If you apply for Amsterdam University like I did, grab the first accommodation offer you get. It's so hard to get decent housing in Amsterdam because everybody wants to live there.

What Dutch uni is basically like Oxford/Cambridge?

Funnily enough, the Dutch aren't huge fans of league tables. If you want to check out the highest ranking universities in the Netherlands, look at QS World rankings. I'm not sure about what position Amsterdam Uni is in but I know it's ranked above Durham and Bristol.



wolfmoon88 Can you sticky this please? It'll be easier to see then


I'm tired at the moment so not that many questions are coming to mind but feel free to add on!
Stickied Will add on a bit later if I see anything that needs adding on! Thanks for posting!
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by wolfmoon88)
Stickied Will add on a bit later if I see anything that needs adding on! Thanks for posting!
No worries! Feel free to tag other Dutch applicants on this thread too!
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Breward
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What a great thread. Thank you so much for all the time and hard work you put into collating all this information.

Please don't leave in September. It would be great to know how you get on and what tips/wisdom you could impart with us future Dutch uni students.

Questions: How much does a studielink application cost?
Did you have to have a skype interview or take any additional entry tests?
What type of housing have you been offered? Cost and distance from uni department? Is the accommodation furnished?

Thanks.
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by Breward)
What a great thread. Thank you so much for all the time and hard work you put into collating all this information.

Please don't leave in September. It would be great to know how you get on and what tips/wisdom you could impart with us future Dutch uni students.

Questions: How much does a studielink application cost?
Did you have to have a skype interview or take any additional entry tests?
What type of housing have you been offered? Cost and distance from uni department? Is the accommodation furnished?

Thanks.
Studielink doesn't cost anything. For some unis you will have to pay. I know for Leiden you have to pay though I'm hopefully going to be at Nottingham/Bournemouth in September but if I end up at Amsterdam I'll stay around for a month or two! You don't get interviewed unless you apply for a liberal arts college and there are no additional entry tests unless you need to prove you can speak English.

Haven't been offered it yet. That happens around May time
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Stevenzhao
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You should also mention that Numerus Fixus programs for the uni year 2017-2018 were only available till 15th of January. Additionally it's not completely random. I know for some programs that you have to take tests, personal statements, interviews, essays etc. which will increase your odds. At least what I know from my peers who applied for medicine, psychology, international business administration.
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by Stevenzhao)
You should also mention that Numerus Fixus programs for the uni year 2017-2018 were only available till 15th of January. Additionally it's not completely random. I know for some programs that you have to take tests, personal statements, interviews, essays etc. which will increase your odds. At least what I know from my peers who applied for medicine, psychology, international business administration.
Cool thanks!
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thomas65633
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(Original post by MrsSheldonCooper)
Right so because of higher tuition fees, more students are looking at university in the Netherlands because of how much cheaper it is and because we also like to be thrown out of our comfort zone As I might not be on this site any longer from September onwards, I've decided to make a guide about applying to Dutch universities for any future TSRians who plan to make the first step to studying abroad.

I'm currently holding an offer from the University of Amsterdam for Linguistics so I'm open for questions about the whole applying process. I'll try to cover everything though!

How do I start?
First you look up if Dutch unis actually have your course. Some universities word the degrees a little differently but if you just google Dutch unis you'll get a whole list of universities that may potentially have your course. When you do look them up, do make sure the course is in English.

Helpful link to find courses in English in the Netherlands: http://www.eunicas.ie/

Once you've done that, you make a Studielink account. This is like the Dutch version of UCAS and if you're an international student, you register without DigiD identification. You get given a username and once you make your account, you start making your application. You can choose upto 5 Dutch universities so you make 5 different applications. In your Studielink account, you get these mini emails confirming that unis have your application and the portal links you need to fill out applications. I'd personally advise applying early because the details are a pain to fill out. You can withdraw your applications whenever you like.

What documents do I need?

You'll need a copy of your passport, a motivation letter (so this is a personal statement but much more businesslike), your GCSE grades, your AS grades and your A2 predictions. I'm not sure about other universities but Amsterdam Uni required 6 qualifications from me (so 3 GCSEs at A-C grade and then 3 A2s). So it is super important you remember everything or your application lags behind.

How long does it take for them to give offers?

Depends on uni to uni but Amsterdam got back to me within 3 months (but this was mainly because there was a hitch in their application system and so my motivation letter was in the wrong format or something)

Can I apply for Medicine in the Netherlands?

Yes you can. The Dutch have a system for medical/dentistry applicants called "Numerus Fixus" where applicants are picked out at random but this only lasts for a certain time. So you quite literally have as much chance as anyone.

Do the Dutch have a Freshers week?

Yes they do but the name differs from uni to uni. Amsterdam's freshers week is known as Intreeweek (which takes place a week after results day) and international students are put together in groups and basically let loose in Amsterdam. Video for Intreeweek is down below!




What are the university holidays like?

This one differs from uni to uni but generally, summer holidays are like a month and a half, Easter holidays are literally a weekend, Christmas is 2 weeks and you get Dutch National holidays off!

Can I still be cheap if I go abroad?

When in the Netherlands, Lidl will be your best friend.

Do I get financial support?

Yes. You can get a tuition fee loan from the Dutch government and if you work a 56 hour job per month, you get about 1000 Euros and discounted travel.

What about housing?

The universities work alongside landlords to provide housing for students. If you're an international student, you're guaranteed accommodation. If you apply for Amsterdam University like I did, grab the first accommodation offer you get. It's so hard to get decent housing in Amsterdam because everybody wants to live there.

What Dutch uni is basically like Oxford/Cambridge?

Funnily enough, the Dutch aren't huge fans of league tables. If you want to check out the highest ranking universities in the Netherlands, look at QS World rankings. I'm not sure about what position Amsterdam Uni is in but I know it's ranked above Durham and Bristol.



wolfmoon88 Can you sticky this please? It'll be easier to see then


I'm tired at the moment so not that many questions are coming to mind but feel free to add on!
Good information!

Any tips on how to go about writing a good motivation letter, as you say its supposed to be more business like wondering if you could elaborate?

Thanks
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by thomas65633)
Good information!

Any tips on how to go about writing a good motivation letter, as you say its supposed to be more business like wondering if you could elaborate?

Thanks
Thanks

Be pretty upfront on what you want to gain from the course and why you want to do the course in the first place. And defo mention what you'd do with your degree in the future!
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RamocitoMorales
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(Original post by MrsSheldonCooper)
What Dutch uni is basically like Oxford/Cambridge?

Funnily enough, the Dutch aren't huge fans of league tables.
That's because it'd be pointless. The Dutch universities are virtually all of the same level with some minor fluctuations from field to field. I think that this is partly because students are filtered long before they apply for universities in their schooling system and their polytechnics (the "hogeschools" haven't become ex-polys yet.

The important thing to bear in mind is that UvA, Utrecht, Leiden, Groningen, VU, Nijmegen are your "comprehensive" unis. Delft, Eindhoven and Twente are the three technical unis. Then Erasmus is reputable for economics related studies, Wageningen works very closely with industry and I don't know too much about Maastricht and Tilburg.
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teenhorrorstory
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Medicine and Dentistry applicants given offers at random?? Whaattt
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by teenhorrorstory)
Medicine and Dentistry applicants given offers at random?? Whaattt
True story.
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teenhorrorstory
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(Original post by MrsSheldonCooper)
True story.
I remember briefly looking at Dutch unis, but since I wanted to study Law there'd be no point doing a law degree there as I'd have to do the GDL to practice in UK. I guess I'm better of doing Law here anyway
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by teenhorrorstory)
I remember briefly looking at Dutch unis, but since I wanted to study Law there'd be no point doing a law degree there as I'd have to do the GDL to practice in UK. I guess I'm better of doing Law here anyway
I know my uni do European Law.. But they don't do British. Well good luck with whatever uni you end up at. I'm sure you'll smash it.
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by faisal_islam)
Pointless, since 80% of dutch undergrads are in dutch.
Really? I had no idea that in the Netherlands, where Dutch is the official language would have most of its unis in Dutch!

How mind blowing.
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faisal_islam
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(Original post by MrsSheldonCooper)
Cool story.
It's true though. You are better off applying at MSc level, though why would you, given some of the best universities in the world are in the UK.
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by faisal_islam)
It's true though. You are better off applying at MSc level, though why would you, given some of the best universities in the world are in the UK.
For a Master yes. But you do get Bachelor's degrees that some people find more appealing.

Amsterdam University is above Bristol and Durham in rankings. It's not like there's bad unis in the Netherlands.
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wolfmoon88
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(Original post by faisal_islam)
It's true though. You are better off applying at MSc level, though why would you, given some of the best universities in the world are in the UK.
(Original post by faisal_islam)
No need to talk down to me. Makes you look cheap.
Just putting it out there, that having a global outlook and branching into other areas of the EU other than the UK would be beneficial both for personal and career development... especially if you can pick up another language like French, German or Dutch in the process. Btw the top universities in the Netherlands are as good as many UK universities and are world class as well.
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faisal_islam
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(Original post by wolfmoon88)
Just putting it out there, that having a global outlook and branching into other areas of the EU other than the UK would be beneficial both for personal and career development... especially if you can pick up another language like French, German or Dutch in the process. Btw the top universities in the Netherlands are as good as many UK universities and are world class as well.
No one can pick up another language at 18. Not fluently at least.

I do agree the Dutch have very good universities. But given Academia is in general written in English, the UK and US have the edge over the world because of that.
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MrsSheldonCooper
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(Original post by faisal_islam)
No one can pick up another language at 18. Not fluently at least.

I do agree the Dutch have very good universities. But given Academia is in general written in English, the UK and US have the edge over the world because of that.
In that case why are there university courses offering languages at beginner's levels to people? You can definitely pick up a language after 18. Just look at all the joint Languages graduates.
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