Expand your horizon in Holland.
The Netherlands is a country most commonly known for its wooden shoes, tulips, Amsterdam, Rembrandt and Van Gogh paintings. But behind these traditional perceptions of Holland there is a country with world-renowned research and researchers in the fields of science and technology, medicine, arts and humanities, and social sciences. Higher education institutes, recognised internationally for their wide range of English taught programs, are providing a new image of Holland.
Holland or The Netherlands
The Kingdom of the Netherlands consists of the Netherlands itself and the six islands of Aruba and the Netherlands Antilles in the Caribbean Sea. The country's formal name is 'Nederland', meaning 'low country', which refers to the fact that much of the land is at or below sea level. Today the Netherlands is mostly called 'Holland', referring to the names of the two western coastal provinces, North and South Holland, which were the most developed and wealthiest part of the country in the 17th century, playing a dominant role in the country's history. It has a population of 16 million people; a total area of 41,528 square kilometres and Amsterdam as its capital city.
Although a small country in size, Holland has a big international presence and exposure. It is the 15th largest economy in the world. Big multinationals including Philips, Heineken, KLM, Shell, ING Bank, Unilever and European headquarters of companies such as Sony, Sara Lee and Microsoft all have their base in Holland.
The Netherlands is also famous for its studies, research and innovation in the fields of medical science, technology, water management, and sustainable energy.
Why study in Holland?
Holland is a country that enjoys freedom of speech and thought, Eko Baskoro Harimulyo (19), Indonesia; BSc in Applied Life Sciences, HAN University of Applied Sciences.
The country's problem based learning system has also given it international acclaim
Holland offers more than 1,390 international study programs, of which 1,376 are taught entirely in English. This makes Holland the frontrunner in continental Europe (see www.studyin.nl for the database of International Study Programs and Courses).
High quality of education is achieved through a national system of regulation and quality assurance. The Times Higher - QS World University Rankings lists 11 universities in Holland among the top 200 in the world. The country's problem based learning system has also given it international acclaim.
Interactive teaching and teamwork makes the international classroom attractive for both Dutch and international students. Small classes also give the opportunity to communicate directly with the professor and the Dutch teaching style helps students develop their own independent opinions and creativity in their study and research.
Tuition fees compared to other countries is reasonable in Holland. EU students pay approximately €1,600. The tuition fee for non-EU students is generally higher.
Holland is a safe country when compared internationally. Violence and street crime is very low. People are helpful and almost everyone speaks English.
The Netherlands has two main types of higher education: research universities and universities of applied sciences.
There are 14 government funded research universities. The research universities focus on the independent academic study and research. However, many programs are specific profession oriented and graduates mostly work outside the academic world. There are about 206,000 students enrolled in research universities, (see www.vsnu.nl, The Association of Universities in the Netherlands).
The universities of applied sciences (hogescholen) are more practical oriented helping students acquire work experience through internships. There are 41 government funded universities of applied sciences, which enrol about 370,000 students, (see www.hbo-raad.nl, The Netherlands Association of Universities of Applied Sciences).
A third type of higher education is the five international education institutes that offer specialised and advanced programs directed only towards international students, (see www.pie.ihe.nl, The Platform for International Education).
All research universities and universities of applied sciences offer bachelors and Masters degrees. Doctorate (PhD) degrees are only offered by research universities and take four years. Only the Institute of Social Studies (an international education institute) offers PhD programs.