To be admitted to a higher education programme, you first need to contact the institution that offers the programme. They can tell you exactly which admission requirements apply to the programme of your choice.
The main requirement for admission to a bachelor’s programme is a secondary-school diploma at the appropriate level. This level is set by the institution.
In certain popular fields, the number of places is limited and quotas are set. There are also study programmes – in the arts for example – for which institutions set their own additional requirements
For admission to a master’s degree programme, you must have at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.
If you know which diploma the institution of your choice has set as a minimum requirement, you can check how your diploma compares to this on the Nuffic website.
It is essential that you speak, read and write English well. You must have passed an English language test. IELTS and TOEFL are commonly accepted, but institutions may accept other tests as well.
The required scores are at least 550 (paper based) or 213 (computer based) for TOEFL. For IELTS a score of at least 6 is required.
You can find language requirements for individual programmes or courses in the database of international study programmes.
Sometimes you are not yet eligible to the programme of your choice, but with a little extra preparation you could become eligible.
The Dutch higher education institution of your choice can provide you with a conditional letter of acceptance. Dutch immigration law then allows you to come to the Netherlands for a maximum of one year prior to your studies to follow preparatory courses and pass the examinations set by the institution.
After you have passed the examinations, the conditional letter of acceptance will be turned into a definite letter of acceptance. The factsheet 'A preparatory year before admission to a Dutch university' gives you all the information on this topic.