Netherlands has the honour of being the first non English speaking country that offered coursed taught in English to foreign students. Now nearly all courses taught to international students are in English and Dutch.

There are two paths to higher education in the Netherlands. To be admitted to a university, the students must have completed the 6 year secondary school education. If students only have a 5 year secondary school education then they have to first complete one year at a University of Applied Sciences.  Students with 4 year secondary education, have to spend two years at a vocational institute before being qualified for admission to a university. International students wanting admission have to get the secondary school equivalency. For students who do not qualify for either the university or university of applied sciences, spending one year preparing for entrance exams is an option.

The different types of institutes give different types of degrees or diplomas. For example, a Doctorate degree can only be acquired by studying at research institutes; Masters is available at all types of institutes and Bachelors at Research and Universities of Applied-Sciences. Institutes for international students offer post graduate courses designed for students of less developed countries.

Netherlands also offers fellowships to skilled workers in 62 countries to enhance competencies of governmental and non-governmental organizations. The staff member has to be nominated by the employer, and show that there is a need for the training. To ensure that the training is embedded the organization; the staff member has to return to the original job upon completion of the training.

For students only interested in short-term study courses, there is a large variety of summer programs available. Courses in Literature, Sociology and Art History give the students an opportunity to explore the country. Some programs also include study field trips.


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