Students warn about master’s degree admission rules

young, pretty female college student sitting in a classroom fullStudent organisations have written to education minister Jet Bussemaker and the Dutch universities’ association VSNU warning that the entrance requirements for popular master’s degrees are becoming too selective.

Universities are bringing in increasingly tough rules to allocate places on popular courses, the students say. For example, some have introduced a minimum bachelor’s grade of 7. Others require students to submit motivational letters and go through interviews or tests for a place.

In the letter the students say they question the future value of a ‘completed university bachelor’s degree if institutions start selecting based on results’.


Since the introduction of the bachelor’s and master’s system in the Netherlands, it is considered standard that all students go on to obtain a master’s degree. By contrast, in Britain only around 25% of students (including foreign nationals) take a post-graduate qualification.

Bussemaker has pledged to intervene if it transpires that students are finding it hard to get a place to take a master’s degree or that selection has had a negative impact on the quality of education.

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