Thinking of the Netherlands may paint a picture of beautiful scenery laid with bright tulips, colorful houses, winding canals, impressive buildings, and wonderful nature. It is no doubt that many would not just want to visit the place but might also think of getting a degree there. By chance, are you one of them?

Not only is Dutch education high-quality and relatively affordable, but it is also quite accessible, owing to the many English-taught programs being offered. Besides that, the opportunities and cultures in the area are also a ground for the learning experience. Traveling and adventure won’t be missed if you study in this country. Here are some of the best English-taught universities in the Netherlands.

Top English-taught Universities in the Netherlands for International Students

1. University of Amsterdam

The University of Amsterdam is one of the best English-taught universities in the Netherlands. It was established in 1632, making it one of the oldest universities in the country. Besides being one of the Netherlands’ most prestigious institutions, it is consistently part of the top universities worldwide. More than 34,000 students make their way around the university every year, including thousands of international students.

Academic programs at the university are offered in either Dutch or English. For the undergraduate level, there are 22 English-taught courses: actuarial science, ancient studies, archaeology, business administration, business analytics, communication science, computation social science, cultural anthropology and developmental sociology, econometrics, economics, English language and culture, European studies, political science, psychology, sociology, and many other programs.

For the master’s degree level, the University of Amsterdam is among the European institutions with the most English-taught programs, offering around 179 of them. These programs include academic excellence track, accountancy, actuarial science and mathematical finance, art studies, asset management, bioinformatics and systems biology, biological sciences, biomedical sciences, business administration, business data science, chemistry and information.

2. Delft University of Technology

The Delft University of Technology is also commonly known as TU Delft. It is regarded as the oldest and largest technical university in the Netherlands and among the most prestigious academic institutions. It was established in 1842 and had its current name in 1986.

The university offers a variety of programs to its thousands of students. These courses may be taught in Dutch, English, or both. Some English-taught programs for the bachelor’s degree level are aerospace engineering, applied earth sciences, computer science and engineering, and nanobiology.

As for master’s degree students, they may choose from aerospace engineering, applied earth sciences, applied geophysics, applied mathematics, applied physics, architecture, urbanism and building sciences, biomedical engineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering, complex systems engineering and management, nanobiology, strategic product design, and more. There are also English Ph.D. programs available at TU Delft.

3. Utrecht University

Established in 1636, Utrecht University is an ancient public university. It is also a consistent top-ranking academic institution, earning its place among other premier universities worldwide. Furthermore, it also has Nobel awardees and other distinguished individuals as its alumni or faculty.

The university currently offers 58 undergraduate and 161 master’s degree programs. With Utrecht University being recognized as a top English-taught university in the Netherlands, 13 bachelor’s and 109 master’s programs are taught in English. These bachelor’s level programs are Celtic languages and culture, pharmaceutical sciences, economics, English language and culture, global sustainability science, history, linguistics, literary studies, media and culture, molecular and biophysical life sciences, philosophy, politics, and economics.

Some English master’s degree programs are applied cognitive psychology, arts and society, biology of disease, business informatics, biofabrication, cancer, stem cells and developmental biology, clinical psychology, comparative literary studies, drug innovation, economic policy, gender studies, game and media technology, law and economics, linguistics, theoretical physics, toxicology and environmental health. English proficiency is also sufficient to complete a Ph.D. program at Utrecht University.

4. Leiden University

Leiden University is another ancient and prominent Dutch educational institution, established in 1575. Its location in the city of Leiden places it near Amsterdam and the Hague. Besides its convenient position, it collaborates with other leading universities – Delft University of Technology and Erasmus University Rotterdam – to improve its education and research contributions.

There are many English-taught undergraduate programs at Leiden University. These include African studies, archaeology, heritage and society, international studies, linguistics, political science, psychology, security studies, South and Southeast Asian studies, urban studies, world archaeology, philosophy, liberal arts and sciences, international relations, and organizations.

Meanwhile, the master’s degree programs being offered include advanced computing and systems, air and space law, algebra, geometry, and number theory, ancient history, applied cognitive psychology, applied mathematics, art history, biomedical sciences, chemistry, classics, clinical psychology, computer science, international criminal law, international relations, law and finance, mathematics, molecular genetics and biotechnology. There are also Ph.D. tracks available that may be accomplished within four years.

5. Wageningen University & Research

Wageningen University & Research is another institution among the best English-taught universities in the Netherlands. This public institution focuses on technical subjects, engineering, life sciences, and agricultural research. The university’s history started in 1876 when the Agricultural College in Wageningen was taken over by the state. However, the Wageningen University & Research Center formation began in 1997.

The university offers 19 undergraduate options, and six are available in English. These programs are animal sciences, environmental sciences, food technology, international land and water management, soil, water, atmosphere, and tourism, a joint degree by Breda University of Applied Sciences and Wageningen University & Research.

On the other hand, the institution also has 30 English-taught master’s programs. Some of them are agroecology, animal breeding and genetics, governance of sustainability transformations, animal sciences, geographical information management and applications, aquaculture and marine resource management, geo-information science, biobased sciences, health management in aquaculture, bioinformatics, biology, biosystems engineering, information and communication technologies for development, consumer studies, molecular life sciences, earth and environment, organic agriculture, and many more. As for Ph.D. students, Dutch proficiency is only required if the final thesis is written in the said language; otherwise, English proficiency is needed.


We hope that you found this article on the best English-taught universities in the Netherlands informative and helpful. Make sure to also check out the Available Programs in Europe!

About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hyun is the founder at Global Scholarships. He has received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College as well as $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for his undergraduate degree and has been offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. Read more about his scholarship journey here.

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