Consultation Booking

Study in Netherlands Overview

The Netherlands is known as a beautiful and peaceful land with quaint streets and rustic village roads, always at the top of countries with large tourist arrivals in recent years. In addition, the Netherlands is also famous as a country with the world's top quality of education, attracting a large number of international students to study abroad every year.

                            The Netherlands is famous for being the land of tulip fields 

The Netherlands is a country that opens up many development opportunities for international students

Located in the heart of Europe, the Netherlands is 3 hours to Paris, 5 hours by train to the UK, 2.5 hours to Germany, 1 hour to Belgium. With its location in the center of Europe, it is very easy and convenient to move to other neighboring countries in the European Union. In addition, thanks to the largest port of Rotterdam in Europe, the Netherlands has become a large transshipment place for goods and obviously, the logistics industry has become quite a famous training industry here. Amsterdam and Rotterdam of the Netherlands are also home to many multinational representative offices, opening up many opportunities to apply for jobs and internships in the Netherlands.

The Netherlands has been in the Top 10 Happiest Countries in the World for many consecutive years according to Forbes Magazine in 2020, showing that the Netherlands deserves to be the ideal destination for students to realize their study abroad dreams, conquer new horizons and improve knowledge.

The quality of Dutch education is globally renowned

In the 2016-2017 school year, according to the Netherlands Education Promotion Organization (Nuffic), there were more than 112.000 international students from more than 160 countries studying in the Netherlands. Of these, more than 81,000 students are enrolled full-time, while the rest are enrolled in short-term training programs. The Netherlands has 14 universities and research institutes in the Top 200 of the World, and of those 14 universities, 7 are in the Top 100 of the World (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021). In 2020, the Netherlands ranked 9th on the ranking of Best countries for education by US News and World Report.

Dutch education meets almost all international requirements and is globally renowned for its outstanding quality of education. So degrees from Dutch universities guarantee job and start-up opportunities for students in any country in the world. In Vietnam, the Dutch degree is recognized by the Government. Before returning home, international students can bring their degrees to the Vietnamese Embassy in the Netherlands (at Javastraat 1, 2585 AA The Hague, The Netherlands), to affix the consular legalization, you can submit your documents to the State Offices of Vietnam to work.

The Netherlands has the most English-taught courses in the European Union

According to the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Information, in addition to the Dutch mother tongue, 95% of Dutch people are fluent in English. This means that international students who come here without learning Dutch can still live, study and work without any problems. For the 2020 academic year, the Netherlands offers more than 2.500 courses taught in English.

Although English is not the national language, Dutch universities have the most English-language programs in the Schengen area with more than 2.100 courses entirely in English for a wide range of careers to choose from. At the same time, the Netherlands is also a country where 95% of the population speaks English. This makes living, studying and working here easier and more convenient than ever.

Up to 13 Dutch universities are in the Top 200 of the most prestigious education rankings in the world

Many Dutch universities are currently ranked high in all three of the world's most prestigious education rankings, including Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities, QS World University Rankings and The Times Higher Education World University Rankings. According to The Times Higher Education World University Rankings in 2018, the Netherlands is one of the four countries with the most number of universities present in the top 100, including 13 Dutch research universities in the top 200. Specifically:

  • University of Amsterdam (ranked 59th)
  • Delft University of Technology (ranked 63rd)
  • Wageningen University and Research (ranked 64th)
  • Leiden University (ranked 67th)
  • Utrecht University (ranked 68th)
  • Erasmus University Rotterdam (ranked 72nd)
  • University of Groningen (ranked 83rd)
  • Maastricht University (ranked 103)
  • Radboud University Nijmegen (ranked 122)
  • The Eindhoven University of Technology (ranked 141)
  • Vrije University Amsterdam (ranked 165)
  • The University of Twente (ranked 179)
  • Tilburg University (ranked 195)

Attractive scholarships to study in the Netherlands

In addition to the internationally recognized quality of education along with a variety of English-language courses, moderate living costs and tuition fees, the scholarships are quite high from 30-70% of the tuition fee. The outstanding features make the Netherlands the first choice of many international students coming to study and research.

The cost of studying in the Netherlands is reasonable

The cost of studying and living for students coming to study in the Netherlands is low compared to other developed countries such as the UK, Australia, Canada, and the US. University tuition fees range from 8,000 EUR to 10,000 EUR.

Moreover, studying in the Netherlands you will have the opportunity to receive scholarships from the Dutch Government such as the Orange Tulip Scholarship, the Holland Scholarship as well as tuition waivers and attractive grants from universities.

The Netherlands allows international students to do part-time jobs

  • During the study period: International students are allowed to work 16 hours/week
  • During public holidays: International students are allowed to work 40 hours/week
  • The average salary for a part-time job: 6-10 EUR/hour

Only 1 Dutch Visa for 27 countries in the European Union (EU)

Dutch international students can completely use 1 European Schengen Visa to travel to the remaining 26 countries in the European Union. The duration of stay in the EU countries (except the Netherlands) is maximum 90 days within 180 days (6 months) in a row.

Dutch international students can stay for 12 months after graduation – Orientation Year

International students apply for Orientation Year 1 month before graduation, do not require a job and are not required to work during the Orientation year. If you do not plan to apply for an Orientation Year in advance, you can reserve the Orientation Year within 36 months, that is, after completing the study program International students have the right to return home, provided they have not applied for Orientation Year, within 3 year can return to the Netherlands to apply for Orientation Year 12 months.



Education in the Netherlands is compulsory for children between the ages of 5 and 16. The language of instruction is mainly Dutch, but more and more schools teach in English. The Dutch educational program is very diverse. Children in the Netherlands receive 8 years of primary school; 4, 5 or 6 years of high school (depending on the program). After graduating from high school, you will be able to choose between continuing your apprenticeship or further study. The school system in the Netherlands has both public and private institutions at all levels of the Dutch education system.


Levels of Education



Education program

Early childhood education

2 – 4

3 – 4



Primary education


4 – 12



  • Formal Primary Education (BAO)
  • Special School for Elementary Education (SBAO)
  • Special School for all age groups Primary (SO & VSO)

Secondary Education


12 – 18


4 – 6

  • Vocational Intermediate (VMBO): 4 years
  • Higher Secondary Education (HAVO): 5 years
  • Foundation Program (VWO): 6 years

University education


2 – 4

  •  College Degree: 2 years
  • University of Applied Sciences (HBO): 4 years
  • Research University: 3 year

                                                        Dutch education system

The Dutch education system includes the following levels of education:

1. Early Childhood Education

Before entering primary school, children from 6-8 weeks to 4 years old can be at daycare or at playgrounds for children aged 2 to 4 years old. In addition, the Netherlands also has an early childhood education program, focusing on children from 2.5 to 5 years old who are at risk of being educationally disadvantaged.

2. Primary Education 

Primary education is offered free of charge in both public and private schools, usually lasting eight years. During the last year of elementary school, students have to take a test and based on that to choose a suitable high school.

Primary education is divided into 3 types of curriculum, including:

  • Mainstream primary education (BAO)
  • Special schools for primary education (SBAO)
  • Special schools catering for both the primary age group (SO & VSO)

3. Secondary Education

Secondary education is also offered free of charge in both public and private schools to all students under the age of 18. The high school system in the Netherlands can be said to be one of the most diverse and complex in the education system of schools in the world. There are three different levels of secondary education in the Netherlands including a 4-year system, a 5-year system and a 6-year system. Specifically include: 

  • Pre – vocational Secondary Education (VMBO): 4 years.
  • Senior General Secondary Education (HAVO): 5 years
  • Pre-university education (VWO): 6 years.

In particular, the VMBO training program includes 4 main learning paths:

  • Basic Vocational Program
  • Mid-Level Management Vocational Program
  • Combination Program
  • Theory Program 

With a 4-year and 5-year education system, after finishing high school, students will continue to study at a technical and specialized training school. As for the 6-year education system, it will help students orientate the programs and study methods in undergraduate and graduate education. It is thanks to the advantages of future career orientation for students that all of you have good jobs after completing your studies.

4. Higher education

There are two types of higher education in the Netherlands, including Smart Universities and Research Universities.


Smart Universities (Hogescholen)

Research Universities


  •  Bachelor: 4 years
  • Master: 1-2 years
  •  Bachelor: 3 years
  • Master: 1-2 years
  • PhD: 4 years

Learning models

Lean into practice, internships, learning real-world work skills with a focus on preparing for specific future careers.

Focus on learning and research. Entry requirements are usually higher than Smart Universities.


Low tuition fees from only 7.290 EUR (201.000.000 VND), scholarships up to 70%.

Tuition fees are often higher than Smart Universities, scholarships are high but it is difficult to get scholarships.


37 schools

14 schools


Saxion, HAN, Stenden, Rotterdam, Inholland, Witterborg,...

Amsterdam, Utrecht, Radboud,...

                                   Table comparing two types of higher education in the Netherlands

 Degree levels at Dutch Universities for International Students

The Netherlands Foundation Program for those who have not yet qualified for the IELTS test:

Many students often have difficulty with IELTS scores, so they cannot complete the conditions to study abroad. Therefore, in order to create opportunities for international students to enrol in courses, Dutch universities have developed a foundation program, also known as a “foundation program” for incoming students from other countries without meeting the English language requirements to study abroad.

This preparatory course lasts 2-12 months. The main objective of this training program is to help improve English proficiency and prepare students for the IELTS test. The highlights of this course are:

  • Improve your knowledge of the subjects required for the basic course
  • Smoother transition from the current school to higher education
  • Help international students adapt to the new living and learning environment soon

Studying at a university in the Netherlands:

The process of finding out whether to study at a Smart University or a Research University also causes many students to hesitate in choosing. Most Vietnamese students, when deciding to study in the Netherlands, choose to study at Smart Universities for the reason that the curriculum is not as heavy as a Research University, good teaching quality and good job opportunities after graduation.


Number of schools

Degree level


Main target


Smart University







Economy, Healthcare, Fine Arts, Agriculture, etc

Provides the skills and competencies required for a job in a particular field. This means you will gain real, hands-on experience through internships in addition to classroom learning, working on projects and group assignments.

After earning a bachelor's degree, students can continue to enroll in a master's program or start working in their field of study.





Enhance your professional knowledge and expertise at the Graduate level. The focus is on further enhancing your professional competence, analytical skills and preparing you for management and leadership positions in a particular field.


Research University





Economics, Behavioral and Social Sciences, Languages and Cultures, Natural Sciences, Law, Health Sciences, etc

Provides academic and scientific skills associated with a traditional university program. And in most bachelor's programs, you'll take a course on research methods and a bachelor's thesis. After completing your bachelor's program, you can study for a master's degree or you can start working in your field of study.



There are a variety of training programs aimed at improving knowledge, master's research with scientific research programs, teacher training under master's programs.

Provides the necessary knowledge and analytical skills at the graduate level, so that you can do independent research in a specific field or in a multidisciplinary field.

                                          University training programs in the Netherlands

In addition, the Netherlands also has a number of other special education levels such as:

  • Special education and Practical training 
  • Vocational education
  • Adult education

According to statistics, the Netherlands is currently one of the countries with the largest number of international students studying in Europe at about 76,000 students and half of these come from European countries. This makes the Netherlands clearly one of the countries with the leading education in Europe as well as in the world.







Like many other European countries, higher education is supported by the government, so the cost that students have to spend compared to the excellent quality of education here is negligible. Because if you compare the quality of education, the Netherlands is not inferior to any other country in the world. Therefore, the cost of studying in the Netherlands is not expensive when compared to other studies abroad powers such as the UK, the US, Australia, etc.

In addition to having a moderate cost of studying abroad, the Netherlands is also a generous country with a variety of valuable scholarships for international students. It is this favor that will make your study abroad journey more convenient than ever.

What are the conditions to receive a scholarship to study in the Netherlands?

General conditions to apply for a scholarship to study in the Netherlands include:

  • Non-national students belonging to the European Community
  • Already enrolled in a full-time bachelor's or master's program at one of the participating Dutch universities
  • Students who have never attended any university in the Netherlands
  • Meet the specific requirements of the school you attend in addition to the following minimum requirements:

                 - For Bachelor Program: high school graduate, IELTS 6.0

                 - For Master's Programs: Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline, IELTS 6.5, GMAT/GRE depending on the major

In the Netherlands, there are many types of scholarships for international students at different levels of study. Here are some of the most popular scholarships with Vietnamese students:

1. Holland Scholarship

Holland Scholarship is widely known for international students outside the European Economic Area (EEA). This is a scholarship to study in the Netherlands co-sponsored by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science and nearly 40 universities with a value of 5.000 EUR each. This scholarship is open to students of both bachelor's and master's programs, awarded in the first year.

2. Orange Tulip Scholarship (OTS)

The OTS scholarship to study in the Netherlands is a combination of Nuffic Neso Vietnam and 21 Dutch universities. The aim of the scholarship is to target excellent students from Vietnam and give them the opportunity to study and research in the Netherlands. The OTS scholarship budget is up to 500.000 EUR for more than 50 scholarships. With the application for the OTS scholarship, in addition to applying to study at the school, you also need to submit an application to the Nuffic Neso office in Vietnam.

3. Orange Knowledge Programme (OKP)

OKP scholarship (predecessor to this scholarship is NFP scholarship) for short courses from 2 weeks to 12 months and master courses from 1 to 2 years for some developing countries including Vietnam. This scholarship program aims to promote the development of capacity, knowledge and quality of individuals and organizations in the field of higher education, vocational training and other fields related to the priority topics in participating countries. This is a scholarship granted by the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs, considered the most competitive, with a limited number of schools and fields of study. The OKP scholarship has the highest value, the most competitive because this scholarship covers tuition, accommodation and travel expenses during the study period.

4. Talent Scholarship, Excellent Scholarship

This is a form of scholarship of the schools - directly managed by the school and related units. Each Dutch university also offers scholarships for international students. With scholarships from universities, which are the most easily obtained scholarships for international students because the competition is not too great, the conditions for receiving scholarships are also more comfortable and the number of scholarships is also more diverse depending on the school and subject of study. For this type of scholarship, you need to pay attention to the website of the school you want to attend to know how to prepare your application and not miss the scholarship application deadline. 

Check out some of the talented scholarships from Dutch universities below:

Name of schools

Scholarship Type

Undergraduate degree

Total value (EUR)

Total value (VND)





(~ 100% tuition)


HAN University of Applied Sciences

Orange Tulip Scholarship













Prestige Scholarship





Han Merit scholarship




Fontys University of Applied Sciences

Top Talent Scholarship





Saxion Talent Scholarship (STS)




Saxion University of Applied Sciences

Saxion Excellent Scholarship (SES)





Holland Scholarship





Orange Tulip Scholarship





Excellency Scholarship




Stenden University of Applied Sciences

Holland Scholarship





Orange Tulip Scholarship





Maastricht University

UCM Holland-High Potential Scholarship


100% tuition + living expenses


Orange Tulip Scholarship


100% tuition


Wittenborg University of Applied Sciences

Học bổng MBA




Wittenborg University Fund



500 – 3.000

13.800.000 - 82.500.000

Holland Scholarship




Orange Tulip Scholarship

Transfer to final year university or master

5.000 – 7.500

137.400.000 - 206.122.000

Rotterdam Business School

For students taking a pre-master's course




The Hague University of Applied Sciences

Susana Menendez Bright Future Scholarships (BFS)


100% tuition


World Citizen Talent Scholarship




Holland Scholarship




Orange Tulip Scholarship





Erasmus Rotterdam University

Joint Japan World Bank Graduate Scholarship


Tuition + travel expenses + living expenses


L-EARN for Impact Scholarship


10.000 – 22.000

274.800.000 - 604.600.000

Scholarship for Social Studies


30 – 40% tuition


Scholarship for Economics and Business majors


International students pay the same tuition fees as EU students


Holland Scholarship



5.000 – 15.000

137.400.000 - 412.300.000

Orange Tulip Scholarship

Master of Social and Urban Studies

Depends on the year


Zuyd University of Applied Sciences

Zuyd Excellence Scholarship

For eligible students, not receiving the 1st year Holland Scholarship Holland



                             Some types of talent scholarships from Dutch universities


Besides the strength of building a world-renowned high-quality education and a scholarship policy with special treatment for international students, the Dutch government also allows international students to work part-time while studying in this country to be able to cover study and living costs. This will help students have the opportunity to gain more experience, improve their soft skills and easily find a good job after completing the course.

Regulations on part-time work when studying in the Netherlands

International students studying in the Netherlands are allowed to work 10 hours/week during school and 40 hours/week during holidays and summer breaks. Doing a part-time job is also a great way for you to improve your Dutch language skills, making it easier for you to integrate into the culture here. However, when deciding to work part-time while studying in the Netherlands, international students need to find out information and arrange their time carefully and reasonably so as not to affect their studies.

If you are from Bulgaria or Romania, or a country outside the EU or outside the European Economic Area or Switzerland, there are certain rules that you must follow if you want to study and work in the Netherlands. Students need a permit and can only work up to 16 hours a week, or alternatively, you can work full-time during the summer months from June to August.

International students can go directly to Job Agencies - job placement agencies in the city where you live to contact to find legitimate jobs. You need to ask the company/employer where you work for your work permit.

Students should note that the jobs are not through the Job Agency but negotiated and signed directly with the employer, receiving cash directly on the working day. These jobs often have lower wages and are not guaranteed, as well as risk affecting your student visa while studying. 

The income from part-time work is relatively stable

For the harvest work on the farms, they calculate the labor by the weight of the product. Most other jobs will be hourly. The income level is from 5-8 EUR while some other countries only pay 3-4 EUR. 

Part-time jobs in the Netherlands

Talking about part-time jobs, international students studying in the Netherlands can refer to some jobs such as:

  • Office cleaning
  • Waiters/Waitress in bars, pubs, clubs
  • Washing dishes, helping cooks in restaurants
  • Folding blankets, washing in the hotel
  • Harvest fruit on farms
  • Close the box and label the product
  • ...

Where can international students study in the Netherlands find part-time jobs?

The Job Agency in Dutch is called Uitzendbureau. Two popular companies are Randstad, which has a global office, and Undutchables, a smaller organization that helps non-Dutch speakers find work.

In addition to Job Agencies, international students can also find work at job fairs that take place several times a year organized by Dutch universities. Besides, you can also search for job information through the international office at the University.

In addition, the following job placement websites in the Netherlands are also a useful information channel to help you find the right job:


What should international students pay attention to when working part-time in the Netherlands?

EU students are allowed to work part-time in the Netherlands without a work permit and with no limit on the number of overtime hours per week. However, students outside the European Union will have to comply with separate regulations on part-time work.

About Work Permit

International students who want to work part-time in the Netherlands must have a work permit to be considered legal. Your employer will be responsible for obtaining your license and must be approved by the UWV Werkbedrijf licensing organization.

To apply for a work permit, international students must provide a copy of their student residence permit and proof of academic status at school. Applications will be processed within about 5 weeks.

International students studying in the Netherlands, if they work part-time without a permit, will be severely fined when detected.

Where a work permit is not required: if there is an internship in the course of study and the internship is part of the course. The school and the business owner will sign an internship contract, so you don't need to ask for permission.

• Exception for interns: If you are studying at a Dutch educational institution, and need to do an internship according to the requirements of your study program, you do not need to apply for a work permit. Your school and your employer only need to sign an internship agreement.

About Insurance

To be able to work in the Netherlands, international students must purchase Dutch public health insurance. This insurance is called Basis Zorgverzekering, to ensure your benefits when you have health problems as well as the Government will easily control the problem of international students' part-time work.

You need to know that as soon as you get a (part-time) job, you are obligated to buy basic Dutch health insurance. If not, you will be fined heavily.

About Income Tax and Social Security

When studying abroad in the Netherlands, international students will be automatically issued a BSN (citizen service number) equivalent to the social security number used to contact local authorities.

BSN stands for Burgerservicenummer, which translates to 'citizen service number'. The BSN is the equivalent of a social security number - a unique registration number for each citizen, used when communicating with government services. When you have a part-time job, your employer will need your BSN and insurance companies may also ask for it. When you go to register for temporary residence in your locality, students will be automatically issued a BSN. Your local town hall will send a letter confirming all of your personal information is on file and this letter will also mention your BSN.

International students will have to pay two taxes when working part-time in the Netherlands, these two taxes are used to pay you in the event of an accident at work.

  • Income tax on any money earned while studying in the Netherlands
  • Social Security tax on income earned each month

An important note for those of you studying in the Netherlands with a scholarship, that some Dutch university scholarships are also considered income and subject to tax.

What documents should be available when applying for a job?

  • Resident Permit (legal residence permit)
  • Sofi Number: search for Dutch students to find a job Sofi Number – a form of income tax administration. Every year, your income tax will be refunded once in April and May. Therefore, when working part-time, international students need to keep all tax-related documents.
  • Health Insurance (type of health-related document)
  • Student certificate of the school you are attending
  • Bank account number (they will pay you monthly through the bank account)
  • Passport (bring it along)

Just look for jobs that don't affect school too much.

Do not forget that the main purpose of students when studying abroad is to study and accumulate knowledge. Part-time work is just an extra part to help you cover costs as well as hone your soft skills, work experience, etc. So, don't let the part-time job affect your health and study time.