Known for its high quality in education and research, international study environment, and competitive pricing, the Netherlands is home to 60,000 international students each year and has an impressive 8 universities in the global top 100 of the Times High Education World University Rankings 2015-2016.

Basic information

The Netherlands is located in North Western Europe and is bordered by the North Sea to the north and west, Germany to the east and Belgium to the south. The inland area is below sea level in some places, protected by coastal dunes and dykes. The capital of the country is Amsterdam, but The Hague is the seat of the King, Government and Parliament. Leeuwarden, in the North, will be a European City of Culture in 2018. The country has a population of 16.8 million, with a GDP of 49,000 billion INR, making it the 16th largest economy in the world. Key economic sectors include agriculture, chemicals, energy, as well life sciences, new and sustainable energy, high tech (Micro and Nano technology, ICT), and research and development. The official language is Dutch, while English is also widely understood and spoken. The Netherlands is a member of multiple international organisations including the EU, the Council of Europe, the International Monetary Fund, the World Health Organisation (WHO), and the World Trade Organisation (WTO).



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The Higher Education System

The education system in the Netherlands is known for its high quality in education and research, its international study environment and its competitive pricing. The Netherlands has the most English taught courses after the UK. The Netherlands is particularly popular with international students, and according to the latest statistics from UNESCO, it is a host country to nearly 60,000 foreign students each year – including almost 1000 tertiary level students from India. The Netherlands higher educational system is a dual system composed of two main types of regular higher education: university education and universities of applied sciences. Universities and universities of applied sciences award both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees. A bachelor’s programme at a university requires three years of full-time study (180 ECTS credits) to complete, while a bachelor’s programme offered by a university of applied sciences requires four years of full-time study (240 credits). Depending on the discipline, Master’s programmes at universities, universities of applied sciences and institutes for International Education, last one to two years (60-120 ECTS credits). Doctorate (PhD) programmes are only offered at universities and last at least four years. Depending on the programme, the tuition fees for non-EU residents are approximately 400,000 INR to over 1,000,000 INR per year. Living costs (inclusive of accommodation, food, transport and utilities) are in between 47,000 INR to 63,000 INR per month. The Netherlands has a very high standard of education and a total of 13 universities feature in the Global Top 400 of the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2015-2016, of which 8 – Wageningen University and Research Center (47), University of Amsterdam (58), Utrecht University (62), Delft University of Technology (65), Leiden University (67), Erasmus University Rotterdam (71), University of Groningen (74), and Maastricht Univeristy (88) – are ranked in the global Top 100. A database of 2,100 study programmes is available on the website of the Netherlands Education Support Office in India


The Huygens Scholarships Programme (HSP) is aimed at talented students who want to come to the Netherlands in the final phase of their Bachelor’s studies or during their Master’s studies. Study in the Netherlands can include research and/or practical training. However, HSP scholarships cannot be awarded to finance PhD studies in the Netherlands. Part of the total budget is reserved for students following programmes in Dutch studies. The HSP programme is administered by Nuffic (see below). Indian students may be eligible to study in Holland and Netherlands Fellowship Programme (NFP). Individual universities in Holland also provide their own scholarships for international students, including students from India. These include the Leiden University Excellence Scholarships, the Maastricht University High Potential Scholarships, Radboud Scholarship Programme, the University of Twente Scholarships, and the University of Groningen Talent Grant.

For Further Information

  • Dutch Universities:
  • Leiden University:
  • Saxion University of Applied Sciences:
  • TU Delft (Delft University of Technology):
  • Maastricht School of Management:
  • Wageningen University and Researh Center:
  • University of Amsterdam:
  • Utrecht University:
  • Netherlands organization for international cooperation in higher education:
  • Database of scholarships for study in the Netherlands:
  • Embassy of the Netherlands, 6/50 F, Shantipath, Chanakypuri, New Delhi-110027, India
  • Nuffic:
  • University of Groningen Talent Grant:
  • Study in Holland: comprehensive information on various aspects of study in the Netherlands.
  • List of Scholarships for International students:
  • University of Twente Scholarships:
  • The Radboud Scholarship Programme:
  • Maastricht University High Potential Scholarships:
  • Full listing of all higher educational institutions in the Netherlands:

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