FAQ about Incluusion courses
Applying for a course:
No, asylum seekers are accepted too. This is the main purpose of the Incluusion program; to offer UU courses to use the waiting time in a fruitful manner. Therefore, asylum seekers, students with a refugee status, and rejected asylum seekers are all welcome.
Please note that Incluusion cannot guarantee admission to a course. The course teacher decides whether a student is accepted to the course. He/she will take into consideration the following requirements, which you can demonstrate on the intake form and that we will talk about during the intake interview.
An academic background
You need to have an academic background that fits the content of the chosen bachelor course. However, you do not need to have a finished bachelor or master degree in order to apply. There are sometimes also course-specific requirements, such as a background in a similar field or specific pre-requisite knowledge. You can explain how your background suits the course you want to follow on the intake form and during the intake interview.
Sufficient level of English language
We only offer courses in English. The usual level required by the UU is between B2 and C1, depending on the course. You also need to be able to write academically, if the course you want to apply to includes written assignments and papers. You do not have to submit an English test when you apply for an Incluusion course. During the intake interview your level of English will be assessed. Incluusion does NOT offer English language courses. If you are interested in following English courses, then the ‘English Academy for Newcomers’ is the right choice for you.
Strong motivation and time
You need to be willing and be able to commit for the whole duration of the course. A bachelor course at the UU lasts 10 weeks. From most of our students, we hear that following an Incluusion course for the first time is a full-time job. You should minimally (!) reserve 20 hours a week for your course.
It differs greatly per course how many contact hours (= classes at the university) you will have. For most courses, you will come to the campus twice per week to attend lectures and seminars. The rest of the time will be dedicated to group work, and studying, assignments, preparing for the next classes and/or exams.
Attending Restart Training: If you are a new student, you have to attend a two-day preparatory training organised by Incluusion. Learn more about Restart
Other than that, we expect what we call the two C’s: Commitment and Communication.
Commitment: it is expected that you attend the course in full; participate actively during the lectures, do your homework/assignments, dedicate enough time to studying and try to finish the course with a grade. You are expected to commit at least 20 hours per week to the course, including lessons and self-study. For most Incluusion students, following a bachelor course at the UU is easily a full-time commitment (considering getting to know the new education system and adjusting to new learning and assessment methods).
Communication: it is very important that you communicate with your teacher and with us during the course. Especially if you are having a hard time, we want to hear about it. Perhaps there is something we can do to help you. And if you are not able to finish the course, for instance because you are suddenly busy with your procedure, please let us and your teacher know immediately.
The academic calendar of the UU consists of 4 study blocks each year. There is a separate registration period for each block. You can check our page with information on the registration procedure to see when the deadline of the next block will be.
During the summer Incluusion also offers courses from the Utrecht Summer School. Keep an eye on our website to check when the registration for these summer courses starts and ends.
Once the teacher has accepted you in the course, we can provide you with a letter of acceptance to prove that you (will) follow a course at the UU. Please note that if you drop-out of the course after you received the letter of acceptance, we will need to inform COA accordingly.
You can first ask the COA if they can cover your expenses. COA has to pay for your travel costs if you already have a status and are living at an azc that is over 10 km away from Utrecht. If you have a status and are already in social housing, you can ask your case manager at the municipality (gemeente) to pay for the travel costs.
If you are a client at the Foundation for Refugee Students (UAF), you can apply for travel funds through your UAF student counselor. Make sure you discuss this with them in advance.
We advise you to sign up to UAF if you want to follow an Incluusion course. There is usually a waiting time of a few months before you become a client. The full list of requirements can be found on their website. The UAF can help you with (financial) support in continuing your study and/or finding suitable employment.
We have a very limited budget available (mostly for people without a status) to pay for their travel expenses, if the COA/Gemeente/UAF cannot pay for it. During the intake we inform you on the amount that can be covered by us. This amount differs per block.
You can apply for one course per block. If this goes well, you are definitely allowed to sign up for another course in the next block. The intake procedure will then be simpler, since we already know you.
You cannot sign up for more than one course per block. If you have trouble choosing between two courses, we can talk about your choice during the intake interview.
Incluusion offers many different bachelor courses each block. We cover most types of studies offered by the UU, except for the Medicine and Veterinary Medicine faculties. We offer some courses from the University of Humanistic Studies, which is also located in Utrecht.
During the summer period we offer courses from the Utrecht Summer School (USS). The USS is a collaboration between the UU, the University of Applied Sciences Utrecht, and the University of Arts Utrecht.
During the course:
We have several ways of preparing and guiding you:
- Restart: Refugees Studying - Academic Return Track. It is a two-day preparatory training. A deep dive into Dutch culture and the UU. Amongst other things, we talk about expectations from teachers and how to collaborate with fellow students. In the study year 2022/2023 Restart will start being compulsory for ALL students who want to follow a course through Incluusion. It will then replace the (much shorter) information meeting mentioned above.
- Buddy programme: see below!
- Library Training: this training is offered a few weeks into the academic block, since that is the moment most students start working on papers. You will learn more about searching for literature at the UU.
- Coffee Check-in: a few times during the block the Incluusion team organises an open hour online. You can drop by, ask any questions you have, share positive experiences and possible concerns. It's an easily accessible way for us to stay in touch with you throughout the block.
As an Incluusion student you will have access to the UU library once you are enrolled. You will be assigned a Solis-ID (= student number) just like any other regular student. Therefore, you can use all services and facilities that are available to UU students. This means you can make use of the library to look up literature and loan books and articles. You can also work at the library (there are two locations: at the Utrecht Science Park and in the city centre), which might be nice if you’re living at a (noisy) AZC.
Students without laptops can borrow one of ours for the academic block.
If you have issues during the course with (for instance) academic skills or concentration/motivation, check out how the UU can help you in the next question.
Most courses include tasks like writing a paper/essay or collaborating with other students on a group project or presentation. This can be difficult, especially if you’ve (for instance) never done any group work before.
The Skills Lab of the UU offers help to Incluusion students for free. They offer workshops, courses and (individual) guidance for writing, studying and developing other academic skills. You can also get free writing tutoring or even study coaching.
They do have some paid courses, but many of their workshops and coaching are completely for free.
The Online Coaching Center (OCC) offers personal coaching for Incluusion students for free! The coaching can be about anything: from low self-esteem, trouble with motivation, to having difficulties collaborating with other students.
Please also feel free to reach out to us on Teams or through email if you have any issues throughout the course! We can then try to find a workable solution.
As an Incluusion student you will be matched with 1 or 2 buddies if you want to. Buddies are Dutch or international regular UU students who have volunteered as a buddy to help Incluusion students on their way. Your buddies can help you:
- By providing a social network at the UU: most buddies meet up with “their” student once every 2 weeks. You can ask your buddy anything about the UU, study life, Dutch culture, etc!
- With practical matters: such as finding the right buildings/rooms, how to use the library, using Blackboard (university system) and Teams.
- With education: for instance by sharing their own experiences. Keep in mind that the buddies usually don’t have the same study background as you, so they cannot help you with specific knowledge questions. However, they can help you think about how to tackle an assignment, how to organize group work, how to prevent plagiarism, how to make/give a presentation, how to contact the teacher if you have a question, etc.
Throughout the block Incluusion will organize several social events for buddies and Incluusion students. You can find the data for these events on this page.
If you're interested in the buddy programme, you can sign-up during the Restart training or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Nobody except the teacher will know that you are a refugee. We need to share your refugee background with your teacher for registration purposes. However, we always ask teachers to contact Incluusion students personally if they want to introduce you in the class. In this way, your privacy will be respected, and you can decide what you want to share and what you don’t.
After the course:
Incluusion students are always expected to participate fully to the course, including attending the lessons, handing in assignments, do presentations and take part in exams.
After completing the course successfully, Incluusion will send you a digital certificate in the shape of a signed email. There are 2 kinds of digital certificates that one can get:
- An attendance certificate if you follow 80% of the classes, you take part in assignments and exams, but you don't get a sufficient grade
- A graded certificate if you pass the course with a grade of 5.5 or higher.
These certificates are a useful asset to your CV. The experience of following an Incluusion course might familiarise you with Dutch academia, but it does not stand for official EC (European Credits). Following an Incluusion course also does not grant you access to a bachelor or master programme from the UU.
Incluusion does not offer paper certificates to avoid wasting paper.
You are allowed to follow several Incluusion courses, so you can directly apply for another course in the following block.
Through an Incluusion course you have had the chance to experience the Dutch higher education system, meet colleague students and teachers, and immerse yourself again in academic life. Therefore, it is a perfect introduction if you plan to apply to a bachelor’s or master’s programme at the UU later on.
You can get more information about applying to a bachelor or master programme by reading these frequently asked questions. If you need more information you can contact the International Students Admissions office through email@example.com. Be sure to mention that you are an old Incluusion student AND that you have a status: applicants with a refugee status do not need to pay the application fee that regular international students have to pay.
Important: students with a status can pay the lower EU-student tuition fee, instead of the non-EU tuition fee which is much higher.
The Incluusion Traineeship for refugees is a pilot at Utrecht University. Incluusion offers the traineeship to several refugees in different departments of the UU. The traineeship develops the trainees' skills in their field of work, increases their experience in the Dutch labour market, and is an opportunity to expand their network to obtain a paid employment contract after the traineeship.
(Old) Incluusion students are also allowed to apply to the Incluusion Traineeship.
Some other Dutch universities also offer programmes for refugee students:
The following only applies to (former) Incluusion students!
If you prefer working instead of studying, you can get help at the Career Services from the UU. They offer cv checks, can help you prepare for job interviews, and can provide feedback on your cover letter. They offer workshops, but also one-on-one coaching. Check them out: their services are free for Incluusion students (until 6 months after your last course)!