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What happens after admission?

Once you have been (conditionally) admitted to an English-taught programme at VU Amsterdam with your non-Dutch diploma, there are steps you need to take to make sure you complete your enrolment in time and do not miss out on any of our essential student services.

Make sure to check the step-by-step information below for deadlines and guidelines to help you complete your enrolment. Questions? Contact your International Student Advisor if you are applying for one of our English-taught degree programmes with a non-Dutch diploma or degree. Your International Student Advisor can help you with any questions you have about the programme, admission requirements, application procedure or practical matters related to being an international student studying at VU Amsterdam.

Please note: Different deadlines and steps apply to the Bachelor's programmes in Psychology, Computer Science and Biomedical Sciences. Check the website for programmes with a Numerus Fixus for more information. 

Are you applying for one of our Dutch programmes with a non-Dutch diploma? Then you can contact our Student Desk if you have any questions.

Steps after your admission - Bachelor

  • Deadlines

    Different deadlines apply to the Bachelor's programmes Psychology, Computer Science and Biomedical Sciences. Check the website for programmes with a Numerus Fixus for more information. 

    Deadlines for students who need a study visa or residence permit

    Check if you need a study visa.

    1. Accept your offer in your VU dashboard: confirm your participation in your dashboard* before 1 June in order to apply for a visa. Visa applications are possible from 1 April onwards.
    2. Complete admission: make sure to meet all admission requirements before the appropriate deadline. Students who need a study visa will need to meet the English language requirement 1 June. If you have a deficiency in one or more subjects you will have to eliminate these deficiencies also before 1 June.
    3. Finalise enrolment: finalise your enrolment by paying the tuition fee before 31 August.

    Deadlines for students who do not need a study visa/residence permit 

    1. Accept your offer in your VU dashboard: confirm your participation in your dashboard* as soon as possible as it will help us to know if you are planning to join us. 
    2. Complete admission: make sure to meet all admission requirements before 31 August.
    3. Finalise enrolment: finalise your enrolment by paying the tuition fee before 31 August.

    Deadlines for students who wish to apply for housing

    Please keep in mind that VU housing options are limited. VU Accommodation is assigned on a first paid, first served system based on the housing fee payment date. You can only apply for VU Accommodation after you have confirmed your participation in your dashboard*, so we recommend you to confirm your participation as soon as you have received the admission decision if you wish to make use of this service.

    VU Accommodation - How to apply

    *Note that it is only possible to confirm participation after you have eliminated any subject deficiencies.

  • Step 1: Accept your offer and apply for student services

    If you are informed that you received an offer from our university, you are one step closer to being admitted to your programme. There are three types of offers:

    1. Conditional offer: most applicants will receive a conditional offer. A conditional offer means that based on your previous education you are eligible for admission, but still need to fulfill one or more of the admission requirements in order to be fully admitted to the programme. This offer will become an unconditional offer when you have met all the condition(s) for admission before the appropriate deadline(s) stated in your offer letter, including submitting a certified copy of your diploma.

      For example: you receive a conditional offer which states that you still need to submit an English proficiency test with a sufficient passing score. Once you have successfully achieved the required results, you can contact your International Student Advisor. Your International Student Advisor will verify your scores and process this in your application file accordingly.

    2. Conditional offer with one or more deficiencies: if you receive this offer one or more deficiencies were identified in your prior education, meaning there are substantial differences between your education and the demands of the Bachelor's programme you applied for. Before you can continue with accepting your offer (confirming participation in your VU Dashboard), you will have to eliminate these deficiencies by the appropriate deadline. In practice this means you can only use our Accommodation and Visa services after you sent us your passing scores for the subject exams (excluding the English language test).

    3. Unconditional offer: Congratulations! You have met all the admission requirements and provided the Student Administration department with a certified paper copy of your diploma. To finalise your enrolment, the only thing left to arrange is the payment of the tuition fee

    Confirm your participation and apply for student services 

    Once you have been (conditionally) admitted you can accept your offer by confirming your participation in your VU dashboard. This will enable you to apply for Accommodation and Visa services. Note that if you have one or more deficiencies you can only apply for our services after you have eliminated them by passing your entrance exam(s).

    Deferring your offer

    If for any reason you are unable to start in the academic year that you have applied for, you may in certain cases be able to defer this offer of admission to the following academic year. In that case, you can withdraw your current application and reapply from October 1st onwards for the next year. Your application fee is valid for 2 years, which means you do not need to pay it again when you reapply next year. Please inform your International Student Advisor if you wish to defer your offer, so we can send you further instructions.

  • Step 2: Complete your admission

    In most cases, you will still need to send documents to complete your admission. This could be a certified paper copy of your diploma, the results of your English proficiency test and/or other specific test results such as the result of your Mathematics entry exam.

    Please make sure to include your student number in all correspondence via postal mail and email. Your student number can for instance be found in your admission letter.

    Certified copy of your diploma

    A certified copy means that the copy of the actual diploma needs to bear an original stamp and signature of an authorised person or institution or an employee of your high school or university. The stamp and signature indicate that it is a genuine copy of the actual diploma.

    Unless stated differently in your admission letter, you can send your documents by post to:

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

    Please note that only the original of the certified copy is accepted – we will not accept scans or copies because their authenticity cannot be verified.

    If your diploma is not issued in English, German, Dutch, French or Spanish, please also submit an English translation by a sworn translator.

    The deadline to submit the certified copy is on 31 August. We prefer to receive your documents 1 August to be able to prepare your enrollment in time.

    What if you are not able to get a certified copy?

    Read more on our Questions about my diploma webpage.

    How do I know whether the certified copy of my diploma / statement of graduation has been received?

    Unfortunately your International Student Advisor(s) can’t check whether postal mail has been received, but you can keep an eye on your VU dashboard. When the document has been verified by our colleagues from the Student Administration your previous education will be marked as 'verified'. Please keep in mind that this process could take some time, especially during the summer (around 2-3 weeks).

    English proficiency test results

    To meet the English language requirements of a programme you are asked to submit an English test certificate that meets the set minima for the study programme you're applying for. This test result has to be sent to your International Student Advisor per e-mail. After receipt of the scores we will verify your scores with the test centre and process them in your application status. Please see the instructions: Verification of your test scores.

    Deadline for submission:

    • Students who need a study visa or residence permit: 1 June
    • All other students: 31 August


    Mathematics and other subject deficiencies

    If your conditional offer states that you need to submit specific test results, such as a passing grade for a Mathematics exam, you will need to send a certified copy of the original exam certificate to the International Office by postal mail. If instead of a paper certificate you received an email with your results from the test centre, please forward this email to your International Student Advisor so we can verify your scores online.

    Please note: until we have received all documents, you will not be able to register for courses.

  • Step 3: participate in the VU Study Choice Check activity

    This step is not applicable for the selective programmes PPE and Law in Society.

    Completing the (online) Study Choice Check activity (not to be confused with the questionnaire) is compulsory for some programmes. For other programmes, this step is optional but highly recommended. If completion of the Study Choice Check activity is mentioned in your admission letter, please make sure to participate in this activity in Canvas. Invitations for participation will be sent out around springtime, so it won’t be possible to access the activity before this time. More information can be found on our VU Study Choice Check page and on the webpage of your programme.

  • Step 4: Pay the tuition fee

    Transfer the fee or arrange direct debit authorization in Studielink. The latter is only possible if you have a bank account from a bank in the SEPA area. The fee must be paid before 31 August 2023.

    Read more about the payment options.

    Please note: once you have entered your payment details in Studielink (step 1), it may take up to 24 hours before the correct tuition fee amount is calculated. Once this is done, you will receive an e-mail asking you to confirm payment. This confirmation will authorise the actual payment which should be made on or before 31 August 2023. Please contact the Student Desk if you require assistance.

  • Step 5: Arrange practical matters

    The International Office will help you to arrange practical matters such as picking up the keys to your room, opening a Dutch bank account, picking up your residence permit and registering at the municipality.

    More information about the arrangement of practicalities can be found on our When you arrive page.

  • Step 6: Check if your enrolment is complete

    You will receive a notice from Studielink when your student registration is complete. Only after having received this notice, you'll know you have met all requirements for a full student registration. Your status in Studielink will change to 'enrolled'. The deadline for a full enrolment is 31 August 2023. If you are not yet enrolled and do not know why, please contact your International Student Advisor for advice.

    Within one month of the enrolment being completed you will receive:

    • A declaration of registration (downloadable from your VU Dashboard)
    • A student card (if you have uploaded a jpeg. document of your passport format photo in your dashboard)

    Please note: being in the possession of these two documents is not required in order to follow classes. However, having a valid enrolment is required. To confirm your ID at an exam you can either use your student card or your ID/passport in combination with a paper version of the Declaration of Registration (available from the Student Desk once your status is enrolled).

    Other Important things to think about

    In addition to completing your enrolment, we recommend that you read the following information prior to starting your studies:

  • Step 7: Onboarding international students

    Are you getting ready to embark on a new and exciting chapter in your life by relocating to the Netherlands and enrolling at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam? Then this is where you should begin!

    Student onboarding is the process of getting you adjusted to your new study environment's practical, social, and academic aspects. We want to make you feel welcome and help you prepare well for your new study and living environment. Studies show that an effective onboarding programme enhances student engagement. It is expected that it will increase your level of involvement as well as your overall well-being.

    On this platform you will find an overview of all initiatives that are available and will help you prepare for your studies at VU Amsterdam. From the opportunity to take free online academic courses, to talking to current students, to interactive live sessions and academic workshops (and much more!).

     Go to www.vu.nl/onboarding

Steps after your admission - Master

  • Deadlines

    Please find the deadlines to complete your admission below.

    Deadlines for students who need a study visa or residence permit

    Check if you need a study visa.

    1. Accept your offer in your VU dashboard: confirm your participation in your personal dashboard on vu.nl* before 1 June in order to apply for a visa. Visa applications are possible from 1 April onwards.
    2. Complete admission: make sure to meet all admission requirements before the appropriate deadline. Students who need a study visa will need to meet the English language requirement 1 June. If you have a deficiency in one or more subjects you will have to eliminate these deficiencies also before 1 June.
    3. Finalise enrolment: finalise your enrolment by paying the tuition fees before 31 August.

    Deadlines for students who do not need a study visa/residence permit 

    1. Accept your offer in your personal VU dashboard: confirm your participation* as soon as possible as it will help us to know if you are planning to join us. 
    2. Complete admission: make sure to meet all admission requirements before 31 August.
    3. Finalise enrolment: finalise your enrolment by paying the tuition fees before 31 August.

    Deadlines for students who wish to apply for housing

    There is no specific deadline for the housing application but keep in mind that VU housing options are limited. VU Accommodation is assigned on a first paid, first served system based on the housing fee payment date. You can only apply for VU Accommodation after you have confirmed your participation in your dashboard*, so we recommend you to confirm your participation as soon as you have received the admission decision if you wish to make use of this service.

    VU Accommodation - How to apply

  • Step 1: Confirm your participation and apply for student services

    If you are informed that you received an offer from our university, you are one step closer to being admitted to your programme. There are three types of offers:

    1. Conditional offer: a conditional offer means that based on your previous education you are eligible for admission, but still need to fulfill one or more of the admission requirements in order to be fully admitted to the programme. This offer will become an unconditional offer when you have met all the condition(s) for admission before the appropriate deadline(s) stated in your offer letter, including submitting a certified copy of your diploma.

      For example: you receive a conditional offer which states that you still need to submit an English proficiency test with a sufficient passing score. Once you have successfully achieved the required results, you can contact your International Student Advisor. Your International Student Advisor will verify your scores and change your admission status accordingly.

    2. Conditional offer with one or more deficiencies: if you receive this offer one or more deficiencies were identified in your prior education, meaning there are substantial differences between your education and the demands of the Master's programme you applied for. Before you can continue with accepting your offer (confirming participation in your VU Dashboard), you will have to eliminate these deficiencies by the appropriate deadline. In practice this means you can only use our Accommodation and Visa services after you have taken care of the deficiencies. The same goes for our VUFP/HSP scholarships: you can only apply for them once any deficiencies have been eliminated.

    3. Unconditional offer: Congratulations! You have met all the admission requirements and provided the Student Administration department with a certified paper copy of your diploma. To finalise your enrolment, the only thing left to arrange is the payment of the tuition fee. 

    4. Conditional offer with multiple applications or multiple conditional offers: if you receive a conditional offer for one programme, you are still able to apply for other programmes within the application deadline. This will not affect your standing conditional offer. If you receive multiple conditional offers, you can amend your choice of which one to accept until 31 August. 

    Confirm your participation and apply for student services 

    Once you have been (conditionally) admitted you can accept your offer by confirming your participation in the application portal of your VU dashboard. This will enable you to apply for Accommodation and Visa services. Note that if you have one or more deficiencies you can only apply for our services after you have eliminated them.

    Deferring your offer

    If for any reason you are unable to start in the academic year that you have applied for, you may be able to defer this offer of admission to the following academic year. In that case, you can withdraw your current application and reapply from October 1st onwards for the next year. Your application fee is valid for 2 years, which means you do not need to pay it again when you reapply next year. Please inform your International Student Advisor if you wish to defer your offer, so we can send you further instructions.

  • Step 2: Complete your admission

    In most cases, students still need to send a few documents to complete their admission. This is mentioned in your admission letter. Examples are a certified copy of the diploma +  an English language test result (the latter can be sent by email).

    Please make sure to include your student number in all correspondence via postal mail and email. Your student number can for instance be found in the subject line of your admission letter.

    Certified copy of your diploma

    A certified copy means that the copy of the actual diploma needs to bear an original stamp and signature of an authorized person or institution or an employee of your high school or university. The stamp and signature indicate that it is a genuine copy of the actual diploma.
    Please note that only the original of the certified copy is accepted – we will not accept scans or copies because their authenticity cannot be verified.

    If your diploma is not issued in English, German, Dutch, French, or Spanish, please also submit an English translation by a sworn translator.

    What if you are not able to get a certified copy?

    The Student Desk of the Vrije Universiteit can also verify a (photo)copy of the actual diploma. Please bring the photocopy as well as the actual diploma as you visit the Student Desk.

    The certified diploma copy can be sent to the following address:

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

    Deadline receipt: 31 August at the very latest. We prefer to receive your documents before 1 August so we can prepare your registration as a student on time.

    If you've met all requirements to graduate but are still waiting for the diploma certificate, alternatively you can ask your university to provide a statement of graduation. This statement needs to note that you've met all requirements to graduate before the 1st of September. It needs an original signature, date and university stamp. The Student Administration reserves the right to reject such a statement if the document does not meet our criteria.

    How do I know whether the certified copy of my diploma / statement of graduation has been received?

    Unfortunately your International Student Advisor(s) can’t check whether postal mail has been received, but you can keep an eye on your VU dashboard. When the document has been verified by our colleagues from the Student Administration your previous education will turn green. Please keep in mind that this process could take some time, especially during the summer (around 2-3 weeks).

    English test result (TOEFL, IELTS or Cambridge Certificate)

    To meet the English language requirements of a programme you are asked to submit an English test certificate that meets the set minima for the study programme you're applying for. You can find all relevant information here, under the "Language proficiency Requirements" tab.

    How to share your English test results

    • For  IELTS or TOEFL test results, please upload your results in your VU dashboard while applying.
    • For verification of TOEFL tests please add our institution code before sending the report: 7947 and also upload your results in your VU dashboard.
    • For an online verification of your Cambridge test result please share your results with us through the Candidate Results Online website and also upload your results in your VU dashboard.

    In general, we do not need to receive the hard copy test results via postal mail if you share your results digitally. 

    Deadline for submission:

    • Students who need a study visa or residence permit: 1 June
    • All other students: 31 August

    Please note: until we have received all documents, you will not be able to register for courses.

  • Step 3: Pay the tuition fees

    Transfer the fees or arrange direct debit authorization in Studielink. The latter is only possible if you have a bank account from a bank in the SEPA area. The fees must be paid before 31 August.

    Read more about the payment options.

    Please note: once you have entered your payment details in Studielink (step 1), it may take up to 24 hours before the correct tuition fee amount is calculated. Once this is done, you will receive an e-mail asking you to confirm payment. This confirmation will authorize the actual payment which should be made on or before 31 August. Please contact the Student Desk if you require assistance.

  • Step 4: Arrange practical matters

    The International Office will help you to arrange practical matters such as picking up the keys to your room, opening a Dutch bank account, picking up your residence permit and registering at the municipality.

    More information about the arrangement of practicalities can be found on our Onboarding page.

  • Step 5: Check if your enrolment is complete

    You will receive a notice from Studielink when your student registration is complete. Only after having received this notice, you'll know you've met all requirements for a full student registration. Your status in Studielink will change to 'enrolled'. The deadline for a full enrolment is 31 August. If you are not yet enrolled and do not know why, please contact your International Student Advisor for advice.

    Within one month of the enrolment being completed you will receive:

    • A declaration of registration (downloadable from your personal dashboard on vu.nl.
    • A student card (if you have uploaded a jpeg. document of your passport format photo in your personal VU dashboard)

    Please note: being in the possession of these two documents is not required in order to follow classes. However, having a valid enrolment is required. To confirm your ID at an exam you can either use your student card or your ID/passport in combination with a paper version of the Declaration of Registration (available from the Central Student Desk once your status is enrolled).

    Other Important things to think about

    Once you're all ready to start your studies at our university, there is always a few things that are handy to know about. Here are a few tips:

    Other handy information: 

    • The Getting started brochure is full of practical information about your stay here like insurance, medical care, etc. 
    • Check your personal VU dashboard for an overview of all the important, practical and fun matters that will help you get your studies off to a great start! E.g: course registration deadlines, introduction activities etc.
    • Go through all the information on Onboarding page
  • Step 6: Onboarding international students

    Are you getting ready to embark on a new and exciting chapter in your life by relocating to the Netherlands and enrolling at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam? Then this is where you should begin!

    Student onboarding is the process of getting you adjusted to your new study environment's practical, social, and academic aspects. International students face challenges both within and beyond the classroom, ranging from unexpected language barriers to greater academic integrity requirements to assimilating into the campus culture. Our onboarding programme will teach you how to get the most out of your time at Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, both socially and academically. 

    On this platform you will find an overview of all initiatives that are available and will help you prepare for your studies at VU Amsterdam. From the opportunity to take free online academic courses, to talking to current students, to interactive live sessions and academic workshops (and much more!).

    Go to www.vu.nl/onboarding

Contact

For questions, please contact the International Student Advisor(s) of your faculty.