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I am over 21 years of age, and I do not have an admissible diploma. Can I apply?

In case you have a Dutch previous education but you lack an admissible diploma for a Bachelor's degree programme, you can participate in entrance examinations (colloquium doctum) for admission if you are 21 or older.

You then need to demonstrate that you are proficient at the level for admission by sitting tests at pre-university school-leaving examination level (VWO) and submitting the certificates awarded to you to VU Amsterdam. You should be 21 or older at the time you begin the degree programme. The tests you will need to pass depend on the Bachelor's degree programme you wish to follow.

When you have a non-Dutch previous education you can find information on this page. 

  • Which tests will I need to sit for the entrance examination?
    VU Amsterdam will send you an email informing you of the tests you must pass and the deadline. You may have to wait a few days before you receive this email.

    The following information only applies if you meet the colloquium doctum requirements. Students applying with a non-Dutch diploma follow a different procedure.
  • Available Tests offered in Dutch and/or English:
    - The available tests can be found here. Please note that the Online Mathematics Placements Test (OMPT) is not accepted for students that apply with Colloquium Doctum 21+. You can choose one of the other tests for the deficiency Mathematics. 
    - You can sit English tests at various locations.
    - You will need to be proficient in English at the following level:
      • VWO English language level or equivalent
      • IELTS (academic) 6.5
      • TOEFL paper-based test 580
      • TOEFL internet-based test 92
      • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) or the Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) with a score of A, B or C
      • VU English language proficiency test: TOEFL ITP
      • State exam vo pre-university school-leaving examination (VWO) level in English language and literature
  • What you also need to know:
    - More stringent requirements may be imposed on the English test for Bachelor's degree programmes that use a selection procedure. Consult the page for your degree programme to check whether more stringent requirements apply.
    - VU Amsterdam does not offer training or other courses to prepare for tests.
  • What do I do when I have passed the tests?
    - You send the certificate copies to us by post or bring them to the Student Desk. Certified test certificates bear a stamp and signature from an official institute to attest that the copy is the same as the original. The certificates can be certified by the administration of the institute that awarded the diploma or by the Student Desk. Bring the original and copy with you when you wish to have them certified by us.
    - You will be notified that VU Amsterdam has processed your admissibility on VUnet. If you repeatedly hear that your previous education cannot be verified, then call or mail the Student Desk.
  • How do I apply for the entrance examination?
    - You work through the step-by-step plan for applying for a Bachelor's degree programme for degree programmes with VU Study Choice Check or that use a selection procedure.
    - In Studielink, enter 'colloquium doctum' under the ‘previous education’ heading. The deadline for applying for the entrance examination is 1 May. This means that you must have completed steps 1 and 2 of the application step-by-step plan no later than 1 May. There is no guarantee that applications received after 1 May will be processed.
    - You must apply for your tests with the institutes that offer the tests. Fees may be charged for these tests. Pay attention to these institutes’ application deadlines, which may be earlier than the application deadline for the Bachelor's degree programme.

Would you like more information? You are welcome to call us:

Call us at the following number: +31 (0)20-5985020 (Mondays to Thursdays between 10:30 AM and 12:30 PM or between 2:00 PM and 4:00 PM, Fridays between 10:30 AM and 12:30 PM) or send an email to

If you need to submit a certified copy of your test results, send it to the following address:

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Student Administration
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
The Netherlands


For questions please contact the Student Desk.

The Student Desk will help you. Call us on +31 20 59 85020 (Mon – Fri: 10.30 – 12.30h and 14.00 – 16.00h).

Send an email to:

Are you currently a VU student? Ask your question through this form (log in with your VUnet-ID)