In May 2006 the Code of Conduct International Student in Dutch Higher Education came into effect. A revised version went into effect Jan. 1, 2024, replacing earlier versions. The changes concern the implementation of the Standard for Language Tests in the language overview of the Code of Conduct, the possibility of providing education based on an international legal regulation and the obligation to provide clear information on this matter, and the option to excuse in preparatory education.
The Code of Conduct is a joint initiative of the Dutch government and higher educational institutions. The result is an instrument of self-regulation. The Code of Conduct intends to contribute as a quality tool to the ambitions of the Dutch government and the educational institutions regarding internationalization as a means to turn the Netherlands into an attractive destination for knowledge and development. The Code was an initiative of the umbrella organizations of higher education: the VSNU, Vereniging Hogescholen, the NRTO and SAIL. Since 1 March 2013 SAIL no longer exists. The Code of Conduct contains agreements which (the umbrella organizations of) the institutions of higher education have developed to regulate the relationship with international students. The regulations are – for example – about the provision of information to international students and the minimum (language) requirements for admission to an institution of higher education.
According to Dutch immigration law, inclusion of an institution in the Register of the Code of Conduct is a precondition for attracting international students from outside the EU. On this website you can find the institutions that have signed the Code of Conduct, see Register.
The Rules and Regulations, which also can be found on this website, are an integral part of the Code of Conduct. In this document the competences of the National Commission are specified and it also contains provisions for the complaints procedure.
You can find the Code of Conduct and Rules and Regulations here.
Below you will find two short videos. In the first video is explained what the Code of Conduct in general means. In the second video the complaint procedure is explained step by step and who, when and why a complaint can be lodged by the National Commission. Educational institutions can place the videos on their websites to inform international students about the Code of Conduct.
The videos are produced by three students of the Hanze Hogeschool Groningen.