The Netherlands is one of the European countries that is gaining in popularity among foreign visitors. The country provides numerous opportunities for teaching and learning. So, if you want to study in the Netherlands, find out which universities are the best for international students.
Many universities in the Netherlands are ranked among the top 500 universities in the world, according to the QS World University Rankings. The University of Amsterdam, for example, is ranked 55th in the QS World University Rankings for 2023. In this article we will be taking a look at the top 5 best universities in Netherlands for international students.
- Best Universities In The Netherlands For International Students
- 1. Wageningen University & Research (Wageningen UR)
- 2. University of Amsterdam (UvA)
- 3. Leiden University (LEI)
- 4. Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)
- 5. Utrecht University (UU)
- 6. Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)
- 7. University of Groningen
- 8. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)
- 9. Maastricht University (UM)
- 10. Radboud University (RU)
- Frequently Asked Questions
- How much does it cost international students to study in the Netherlands?
- Is it possible for international students to work in the Netherlands while they study?
- Is it necessary for international students to take a language course in the Netherlands first?
Best Universities In The Netherlands For International Students
The best universities were picked based on their research capabilities, reputation, accreditation, and international student population. As a result, the following are the top 10 universities in the Netherlands for international students:
1. Wageningen University & Research (Wageningen UR)
Tuition fees for international students: €9,000
The Wageningen University & Research is a public research university specializing in life and social sciences. Wageningen University & Research has been the best university in the Netherlands for the past 15 years and is leading worldwide in agricultural sciences, plant sciences, food science, and environment and ecology. Wageningen UR carries out field-based research in over ten institutes in food safety, livestock, dairy farming, economic analysis, and more. They collaborate with the government, non-profit organizations, and international institutes.
Wageningen UR achieved its goal of becoming carbon neutral in 2015. The university’s dedication to the living environment extends to its whole community, and students will surely experience a holistic perspective of education.
2. University of Amsterdam (UvA)
The University of Amsterdam is a public research university and the largest in the Netherlands in terms of enrollment. This top university in the Netherlands for international students comprises seven faculties: social and behavioral science, humanities, economics and business, law, science, medicine, and dentistry. It is the highest-ranking European institution in Social Sciences. International students in UvA have over 200 English-taught programs to choose from, one of the broadest offers in Europe.
UvA stands for cutting-edge research in European studies, Brain and Cognition, Global Digital Cultures, and Humane AI, to mention a few. Aside from academic excellence, UvA’s extensive library and museums contain special collections on the history of Europe and the world. UvA’s location in the beautiful city of Amsterdam caps a rewarding academic experience.
The University of Amsterdam also offers a very attractive tuition fee for international students. The tuition fee for international students ranges between €2,000 and €7,000 per year depending on the program you choose.
3. Leiden University (LEI)
Leiden University is the oldest higher education institution in the Netherlands. LEI is best known for its dedication to the social sciences and is high-ranking in history, arts & humanities linguistics, pharmacology, archaeology, public policy, and several others. LEI’s research leads in many fields, including life sciences, natural sciences, international law, and astronomy.
LEI was established in 1575 to reward the town of Leiden with their resistance against Spanish invaders. It lives by the motto ‘bastion of freedom’, which stands for diversity and inclusiveness in the modern-day. Indeed, the university promotes liberty of knowledge and welcomes international students from over 120 countries every year.
Leiden University tuition fees for international students are €7,975 per year for undergraduate degree programmes.
4. Erasmus University Rotterdam (EUR)
Erasmus University Rotterdam is a leading university in the Netherlands, especially with clinical medicine and social sciences. Its Medical Center is the largest university medical center in the country. Business & economics courses are also renowned in the university. Financial Times ranked EUR among the top business schools in Europe. Furthermore, the university has seven faculties offering quality education in the health sciences, health policy, economics, law, behavioral science, history, and philosophy.
EUR is a multicultural environment with international students comprising 20% of the student population. Its overall initiatives include international collaborations, smarter choices for better health, and increased contribution to cities.
The tuition fee for non-EU/EEA students varies between €2,060 – €9,900 per academic year. However, there are some scholarship schemes available for international students to help them pay for their studies at Erasmus University Rotterdam.
5. Utrecht University (UU)
Utrecht University, one of the best universities in the Netherlands for international students, is a research university known for its innovative approach to teaching and research. It is the most influential institution worldwide in climate and ecosystem research. Furthermore, UU aced subject rankings where it placed in the top 10 worldwide. These subjects are Veterinary Science, Pharmacology, Reproductive Biology, Public Administration, and Geography. Research in UU focuses on open societies, dynamics of youth, sustainability, and life sciences.
From 1636 to this day, UU stands by its motto gleaned from Malachi 4:2. The verse means to be enlightened by the sun. Indeed, the university moves towards horizons through curiosity, optimism, and determination to contribute to the worldThe tuition fee for international students is €9,800 for the academic year 2019-2020. The tuition fee covers the cost of all courses, materials, and examination fees.
6. Delft University of Technology (TU Delft)
The Delft University of Technology is the Netherlands’ largest technological university. It began as the Royal Academy for engineering education of civil servants. Presently, it has over 40 technical-scientific disciplines organized into eight faculties. The subject areas of Civil & Structural Engineering, Architecture, and Mechanical Engineering rank among the top 5 in the world. The university’s research is characterized by its Delft approach, which means an interplay between teaching, research, and application disciplines.
TU Delft has one of the largest campuses in the world with an integrated bike network, parks, a flight simulator, a botanical garden, and more. This vibrant academic community is home to nearly 5000 international students.
The tuition fee for international students at this university is €2,910 per academic year while accommodation fee comes around €1,600 euro annually which can be paid as lump sum or monthly installments.
7. University of Groningen
The University of Groningen is the second-oldest university in the Netherlands and voted the best in the country, as reported by the Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU). This time-honored university has been providing quality education in a broad scope of disciplines. Humanities, economics, spatial science, natural science, and technology are some of its high-regarded study areas. Furthermore, the university delivers vital research in chemistry, astronomy, ecology, and material science.
This top university in the Netherlands blends its longstanding academic tradition with an innovative and global outlook. UG has one of the largest international communities with 6000 students from 120 nationalities.
Tuition fees for international students are about €4,500 per year for EU/EEA students and €11,000 per year for non-EU/EEA students.
8. Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU)
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam literally translates to “Free University,” which pertains to its independence from the State and the Dutch Reformed Church. Moreover, it also denotes the university’s open organization and substantial relationship to society. VU is organized into nine faculties of the traditional academic disciplines while outstanding in Clinical Health, Social Science, Life and Agricultural Science, and Business and Economics.
VU follows an interdisciplinary approach in its research, focusing on sustainability, information technology, and corporate social responsibility. The university offers 150 English-taught programs, including Computer Science, Business Analytics, and International Business Administration.
The VU University Amsterdam tuition fee for international students is €9,100 per year for Bachelor’s degrees and €6,600 per year for Master’s degrees.
9. Maastricht University (UM)
Maastricht University is the youngest among Dutch universities yet has established an international standing. It has been awarded ‘Distinctive Quality Feature for Internationalisation’ and placed 4th in the Times Higher Education Young University Rankings. Financial Times also included UM in the top 25 best business programs in the world. In specific subject areas, the university excels in Clinical, Pre-clinical & Health, and Business and Economics.
The university was established in 1976 primarily for medical training. Today, in addition to medicine, UM provides first-class teaching in psychology and neuroscience, arts and social science, economics, engineering, and law. Furthermore, research at UM focuses on innovation, quality of life, and issues of a globalizing world.
The tuition fees for international students are €16,000-€18,000 per academic year for Bachelor degree programmes and €19,000-€22,000 per academic year for Master’s degree programmes.
10. Radboud University (RU)
Radboud University Nijmegen is recognized as the best comprehensive university in the Netherlands for many years. It is also known for its prolific research output and scientific contributions. The first picture of a black hole was an accomplishment of this prestigious university. Physics is undeniably the university’s strong suit. Nonetheless, RU is also excellent in law, business, political science, sociology, and theology.
Radboud University provides full English Bachelor’s programs in many subjects. Some of them are Artificial Intelligence, Computing Science, Chemistry, Biology, American Studies, Language and Culture, and International Economics. In RU, you are guaranteed high-quality teaching and outstanding research opportunities.
The tuition fee for international students at Radboud University Nijmegen is around EUR 13,000 per year.
Frequently Asked Questions
How much does it cost international students to study in the Netherlands?
The cost of your education will vary depending on the type of school you attend (public or private) and where you live.
If you are from a non-EU/EEA country, an undergraduate program will cost between €6,000 and €15,000 per year, and a postgraduate program will cost between €8,000 and €20,000 per year.
On the other hand, you will be responsible for covering the cost of living, which includes books, lodging, food, transportation, and other expenses. International students in the Netherlands can expect to pay between €800 and €1,000 per month in living expenses.
Is it possible for international students to work in the Netherlands while they study?
Most international students work while studying in almost every country to help pay for their tuition and living expenses.
While pursuing their degrees, international students from EU/EEA countries or Switzerland can work without a work permit. You must obtain a work permit from your employer if you are from a non-EU/EEA country. During the academic year, you will be able to work up to 16 hours per week and full-time during breaks with the work permit (June, July, and August).
Is it necessary for international students to take a language course in the Netherlands first?
No. Many people in the Netherlands speak English as a second or third language. You’ll also find that many schools in the Netherlands offer English-language undergraduate and graduate programs. If you can communicate in English, you won’t have any trouble learning Dutch.
Taking a Dutch language class, on the other hand, will be beneficial, particularly if you plan to stay in the Netherlands after your studies.