Degree from a non-Dutch university (2024)

This page outlines the step-by-step process for completing your application to a Master's programme at Utrecht University. Please read this information thoroughly before starting your application.

This is a selective Master’s programme. An applicant will be considered for admission to the Master's programme Mathematical Sciences if the applicant holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics or physics or computer science with a strong component in mathematics, comparable with a major part of the Utrecht University Bachelor's of Mathematics. Furthermore, the applicant can demonstrate a high level of knowledge and command of methods and skills in the relevant field.

Additionally we consider:

  • Motivation and talent (also on the basis of average grade and past studies progress);
  • General high level of professional and intellectual ability;
  • Command of the English language (see below).

Applicants should possess:

  • A solid basic knowledge of mathematics at the bachelor level, including single-variable and multi-variable real analysis, linear algebra (theory and applications) and probability. Moreover we require more advanced knowledge (comparable with second- and third-year courses in the Mathematics bachelor’s program of Utrecht University) of at least three of the following subjects: differential equations and dynamical systems, complex analysis, probability theory and statistics, numerical analysis, functional analysis, mathematical modelling, geometry and topology, algebra and number theory, discrete mathematics, optimisation and logic.
  • The ability to analyse mathematical problems;
  • The ability to understand, reproduce and apply mathematical theorems and proofs;
  • The ability to communicate findings verbally and in writing, in an appropriate mathematical manner.

Bachelor programmes that most likely meet the requirements are:

  • a BSc with a major in Mathematics
  • a BSc with a major in Physics, Computer Science, or Science,with a strong component in mathematics

English language requirements

  • IELTS, Academic Module(IELTS Online is not accepted). Minimum score 6.5 overall band, at least 6 for writing, speaking, listening and reading.
  • TOEFL, iBT. Minimum score 93, at least 24 for reading, 22 for listening, 20 for speaking, 20 for writing. Institutional scores are not accepted. The TOEFL institution code for Utrecht University is 9062.
  • Cambridge Certificate
    • ​Cambridge English C1 Advanced (CAE). Minimum score: 176 total, 169 writing
    • Cambridge English C2 Proficiency (CPE). Minimum score: 180 total, 169 writing

You are exempt from the English language requirement if:

  1. you obtained your previous degree from a Dutch Research University.
  2. you obtained your secondary school diploma or Bachelor's degree in Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, UK, USA or South Africa
  3. you obtainedanEnglish-taught International Baccalaureate (IB) DiplomaorEuropean Baccalaureate (EB) Diploma.

You can already start your application without having your English test results. Make sure that you include your test date in Osiris Online Application.

Selection procedure

The Admissions Committee reviews all requests for admission and selects students that meet the entry requirements. The Admissions Committee also assesses whether you will be able to successfully complete the Master’s programme within the set time frame. This means the decision on your application is based on a thorough analysis.

You will receive a written notification of the decision of the Admissions Committee. You will be notified if you still have to fulfill certain conditions.

You can contact the Programme Coordinator with questions about your eligibility.

Questions about the application procedure?

Please check ourFAQor contact theInternational Student Admissions.

Programme starts in September

Applications open

1 October

Application deadline for scholarship recipients

1 February

Application deadline for Non-EU passport holders

1 April

Application deadline for EU passport holders

1 June

Programme starts in February

Applications open

1 July

Application deadline for Non-EU passport holders

1 September

Application deadline for EU passport holders

15 October

All deadlines expire at 23:59 [CET/CEST] on the specified date. You must complete the application process (including submitting your application documents in OSIRIS Online Application and paying the application fee) by this time.

The following documents must be uploaded before the application deadline:

  • A scan of your diploma (if necessary with official translations)orProof of anticipated degree

  • A scan of your transcript(if necessary with official translations)

  • Motivation statement

  • Curriculum vitae / resume

  • Contact details of two refereesPlease ensure your referees fill in the required form prior to the application deadline.

  • A scan of your officialEnglish language testreport or certificate.

  • Passport copy

Visit Studielink and complete the registration process. You can find all information on how to use Studielink here. After completing your Studielink application, you will receive login details for OSIRIS Online Application within 2 working days.

Apply via Studielink

After submitting your application to Studielink, you will receive an email with login details for OSIRIS Online Application. Here you can upload all required documents, check the status of your application, enter contact details of your referee(s) and pay your application fee.

After you upload all documents in OSIRIS, International Student Admissions will verify them and send them to the Graduate School for evaluation. We strive to inform you of our decision within 20 working days.

Your admission letter will describe the next steps towards enrollment, and you will be asked to accept your offer. In most cases admission isconditional, which means you have to fulfill additional requirements such as sending certified digital copies or completing additional courses. These conditions, as well as the deadline, are clearly stated in your offer letter.

After accepting your offer, our Visa Office will guide you through the visa and/or residence permit process (if applicable).

When preparing your arrival prioritize the search for housing. Finding accommodation in Utrecht can be difficult and is often underestimated. Please note that if you have not found housing before the start of the academic year, we advise you to reconsider your enrolment.

Degree from a non-Dutch university (2024)


What is the Dutch equivalent of a bachelor's degree? ›

Bachelor's degree (HBO)

HBO bachelor's degree programmes prepare students for a particular profession. Duration: 4 years (240 ECTS). Students with a VWO diploma are eligible to enrol in one of the intensive programmes that an increasing number of universities of applied sciences are offering.

What percentage of Dutch people have a university degree? ›

Overall, 38% of Dutch adults (25-64 year-olds) have a tertiary education, similar to the OECD average of 39%.

Are Dutch degrees Recognised? ›

Accreditation and Recognition

Since 2002 the NVAO (Netherlands and Flemish Accreditation Organisation) has been responsible for recognising all degrees in The Netherlands and Flemish-speaking Belgium. Every course is checked thoroughly upon its introduction and then once again every six years.

Is it difficult to get into Dutch universities? ›

Students who wish to study in the Netherlands require exams like IELTS, TOEFL, NT2, and CNaVT. These tests are necessary to obtain admission to Dutch universities and a student visa to the Netherlands. You will have to write other exams like GMAT and GRE when applying to specific courses.

Are American degrees recognized in the Netherlands? ›

By legalising a diploma that was issued by a competent authority abroad you can use it in the Netherlands. A diploma or certificate is usually legalised by adding a stamp or sticker called an 'apostille'. It shows that the document is genuine.

What is the Dutch equivalent of a master's degree? ›

The Dutch equivalent to a Master's degree is the Doctoraal (abbreviated Drs.), not to be confused with a Doctoral degree (a PhD). The Master's usually consists of around 60 ECTS (European credit points) for a one-year programme and 120 ECTS for two years.

Are Dutch universities prestigious? ›

Holland offers a good mix of traditional and modern institutions, and many universities in the Netherlands enjoy an immaculate reputation around the world, such as Wageningen, Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR), UvA University of Amsterdam or TU Delft.

What is the most popular degree in the Netherlands? ›

Business studies and administration most popular among university students. More than 46 thousand university (WO) graduates received a Master's degree.

Are the Dutch well educated? ›

The Netherlands ranks highly in many education fields. The World Economic Forum ranked the Netherlands at third place in its list of the most educated countries in the world, and the Dutch system is listed as one of the highest performers in the Pisa/OECD rankings for 15-year-olds.

Do US employers recognize foreign degrees? ›

International degrees recognized in the U.S.

Recognizing foreign degrees and qualifications is done at the state level, and each state has different requirements and processes. So if you want to work in the field you have a degree in, it's important to research the requirements for states you're considering moving to.

How do I validate my degree in the Netherlands? ›

If you want to enter the Dutch labour market using foreign credentials, you or your future employer may want to apply for credential evaluation using the Dutch international credential evaluation system (IDW). IDW compares your foreign diplomas or certificates with the equivalent Dutch diplomas or certificates.

How long is a Dutch degree? ›

Degree courses in the Netherlands

Dutch undergraduate courses can be studied both full and part time, and while course length depends on the subject, full-time degrees typically take three years to complete.

Do Dutch universities accept everyone? ›

Research universities in the Netherlands admit students whose prior education is deemed to be equivalent to the Dutch VWO diploma, such as those with the International Baccalaureate (IB) diploma, a US high school diploma with 3 to 4 AP exam scores of 3 or higher, 3 A-Levels with grades C or higher, the French ...

What are the disadvantages of studying in the Netherlands? ›

The Netherlands is more restrictive for international students working while studying. You are not allowed to work more than 16 hours per week in a part-time position, or you can choose to work full-time but only in June, July, and August.

Are Dutch universities stressful? ›

In January 2021 and November 2021, we repeated this measurement among more than twenty-two thousand students in total. The results of these studies indicate that mental complaints are common among Dutch students, which have become worse during the lockdowns of January 2021 and November 2021.

What is a Bachelor's degree in the Netherlands? ›

Most bachelor's programmes are structured around a first year (propedeuse), followed by the main phase of three years. The focus of the programmes is on providing you with the necessary skills and competencies for a job in a specific field.

What is the European equivalent of a Bachelor's degree? ›

Higher Education in Europe is based on the "LMD" degree structure – this stands for Licence (the French equivalent of a Bachelor degree), Master's, and Doctorate.

What is considered equivalent to a Bachelor's degree? ›

An associate degree is roughly equivalent to 18 months to four years of work experience in a related field. A bachelor's degree is roughly equivalent to four to eight years of work experience in a related field. A master's degree is roughly equivalent to 10 or more years of work experience in a related field.

What are the degree levels in the Netherlands? ›

Overview of Dutch diplomas
Dutch diplomasNLQFEQF
Dutch diplomasBachelor (WO)NLQF6EQF6
Dutch diplomasMaster (HBO)NLQF7EQF7
Dutch diplomasMaster (WO)NLQF7EQF7
Dutch diplomasDoctor (PhD)NLQF8EQF8
11 more rows

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