What is the application deadline for the Sciences Exchange Programme?

Application deadline for the Winter semester is: May 1st
Application deadline for the Spring semester is: October 1st

How do I apply?

After the faculty has received the nomination by your home university, you will either receive a link to our online application by e-mail or an e-mail requesting more information. You will also receive further instructions on the application process with this e-mail.

I want to apply for the Science Exchange Programme but my university is no partner of Utrecht University.

You cannot apply as an exchange student if your university doesn't hold an agreement with Utrecht University. In this case, please apply as a ‘free mover’ visiting student. For more information, please visit this website.

How does the application process go?

If the exchange application is complete, relevant materials are sent to the department involved for evaluation. Once approved by the department, an e-mail of acceptance will be sent to the student directly or via the online application in Osiris. Any rejected application will be announced via e-mail to the respective parties (to the International Relations Office of the partner institution and to the student) upon the declaration of the department’s conclusion. Applicants are not considered as accepted until they have received their official e-mail of acceptance with their student number included.

I have not heard from you and am anxious to know my status.

The application process can take up to 6 weeks to get a final answer. Your application is subject to approval by the department involved.

When does the semester start and end?

Semester 1 (Autum) will start in the first week of September (mandatory orientation by the faculty and university) until 31st of January.
Semester 2 (Spring) will start the first week of February (starting with a mandatory orientation by the faculty and university) until June 30th.


Where can I find the courses for Science Utrecht University?

Please look at this website for more information. 

Click on the English flag for the English site.
Bachelor = year 1 =1, 2 and 3, M = Master.
Language of instruction should be in English.

How can I select the courses?

The following codes are helpful for your search:
WIS% = Mathematics
INFO% = Computer Science
NS-% = Physics
SK-% = Chemistry
B-% = Biology
FA-% = Pharmacy

Take your own knowledge/level of expertise as a starting point. Check the contents of the course. And then check the timeslot – no overlap is possible. And please check also any remarks, as courses may have special vital information as to a different location (extra time and cost) or prerequisite knowledge.

For master Mathematics courses you can also check the following website: https://elo.mastermath.nl/
This is is nationwide programme, so courses may be taught at different universities! So there may be extra travelling involved.

Can I get reimbursement of extra travelling costs if the course is being taught outside UU?

Maybe. It is the students responsibility to check this with the instructor beforehand. 

Please note the following courses outside Utrecht University are not possible:

  • Stochastic and Financial Mathematics (SFM) programme, if not being part of the mastermath programme or at UU
  • Industrial and Applied Mathematics (IAM) programme
  • Experimental Physics when taught outside the UU
  • Theoretical Physics when taught outside the UU

Can I take courses outside the Faculty of Science?

Yes and no. If you are an exchange student from a Science UU contractpartner, you are requested to do 50% of the courses within the Faculty of Science. The remaining 50% may be done at a different Faculty of Utrecht University. But check the prerequisite knowledge of the course as there may be additional demands on the level, language etc.

There are not enough bachelor’s courses taught in the English language. Can I take master courses (as they are all taught in the English language) instead?

Yes you can. However, please consider that the level of course is much higher. So we will evaluate your application to see whether the level of the mastercourse is equivalent to your knowledge/level of expertise. Moreover, you need to do courses of at least 5 ects, as otherwise the scheduling may be causing problems.

How can I find out when the course takes place? Blocks + timeslots.

At bachelor level we give courses in blocks of 10 weeks. Two periods of 10 weeks is one semester. Two semesters are a full year. Roughly the following is applicable:
Block 1 = September + October + part November.
Block 2 = part November, December + January
Block 3 = February, March + part April
Block 4 = part April, May + June

Once you have selected a course, a specific timeslot is mentioned. The following is applicable:
A = Monday morning + Wednesday morning
B = Tuesday morning + Thursday afternoon
C = Monday afternoon + Tuesday afternoon + Thursday morning
D = Wednesday afternoon + Friday
No overlap is possible.

See also this website.

How can I find out when the course takes place? Schedule.

When you have selected a specific course on the UU Osiris website, you can simply select the tab ‘schedule’ and you will find the schedule of the course. From June onwards you can find the schedules of the first semester; from October/November the second semester is available (or look at the previous year).

How many courses should I take per semester?

You would need to follow 4 courses of 7.5 ECTS each to meet the requirement per semester. This is considered a full time study. Some exchange students take less courses, depending on the regulations set by their home university.

Will the courses differ from one year to the next?

There may be slight changes, or a course can be cancelled. Normally in June the first semester is published and you can see whether the course you picked will still be given in the next academic year.

For more info on FAQ incoming students, please see this website

English language

What is the level of English proficiency needed at Utrecht University?

We expect our exchange students to be proficient in the English language. Ask your home university coordinator whether you are required to take an English language test, or need to complete a language proficiency form. The following test scores indicate the level of English that is required:

  • IELTS, Academic Module. Minimum score: 6.5 overall band, 6 for writing. IELTS is the test preferred by Utrecht University.
  • TOEFL, Internet based. Minimum score: 83. Institutional scores are not accepted. The TOEFL institution code for Utrecht University is 9062.
  • Cambridge Certificates: Advanced English or Proficiency in English, minimum score C.
  • We don’t accept TOEFL PBT!
  • Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) level B2 for Bachelor courses and C1 for Master courses.

Do you offer any courses in the Dutch language to improve my skills?

Babel Talen institute offers Dutch language courses.
The fees need to be paid by yourself. More information on the website.

Exams and Regulations

Can you tell me something about exams and regulations?

Each course has a different set of assessments, which may include essays, practicals, exams, group and individual work.

What should I do if I get sick and cannot take the exam?

Notify the instructor of the course. 


Can you help me in finding a room in Utrecht?

Yes and no. Utrecht is one of the most popular university cities in the Netherlands. Utrecht University cannot guarantee housing. We reserve a limited number of accommodations with a number of corporations. If this is fully booked, you will have to find accommodation on your own. More information can be found on this website.

Why is the rent so high in Utrecht?

Utrecht is a student city and there is a huge shortage of rooms. The rooms the SSH Housing Office offer are fully furnished and decorated. They include crockery, cutlery, cooking utensils, cleaning materials and internet connection. The rent for the accommodation comprises the basic rent and all additional costs. These costs include the standard use of gas, water and electricity to which are added the statutory costs (e.g. communal taxes), maintenance and de-preciation costs for use of the establishment.

One caretaker has been appointed for every 150 living units to deal with administrative issues and transfers. These costs are also included in the rent. All these extra costs amount to a total of about 150% of the basic rent. Consequently, the rent is relatively higher than that for unfurnished accommodation, but is still lower than the price proposed by commercial offices.

Furthermore, if the accommodation is used in a normal manner, you will have no unpleasant surprises afterwards. Should you use excessive quantities of energy, or damage the inventory as a result of negligence, the deposit may be used to settle these extra costs.

What are the average costs of living in the Netherlands?

During your stay in Utrecht you can expect to spend €800-€1000 a month on living expenses. You will find an overview on the UU exchange and visiting students website.


What is Osiris?

Osiris is our student tracking system, with all information about students, their results on courses, e-mail addresses etc. etc.

Do I get a studentcard?

Yes. You will need to upload a photo and change your address in Osiris in order to receive one and fill in the form.

Why do I need a studentcard?

You can use the student card for the library and other facilities. It may also be asked when taking exams, together with your ID.


I want to do a research internship. Can I do that at your University?

In principal yes. The availability of research projects is limited because of limited supervisor capacity, and a research project can only be done after obtaining the consent of a supervisor. It is not possible at the Department of Information and Computing Sciences and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

Is it necessary to have a bilateral agreement between my university and UU?

No, that is not necessary.

How can I find a project which is interesting to me?

Please look at our website.
Please click further at the specific group and see which research is interesting to you.

What kind of details are necessary to get an internship at your university?

We would like to know what you have done so far. So a CV or Transcript of Records may indicate this. Furthermore, which group do you prefer and why? Do you already have research skills that match the skills of the one of these groups? 

Please contact the relevant research group by giving information about yourself and include attachments. A motivation for that particular research group is the most important information.

What language skills are necessary?

Research is normally done at CEFR C1 level in the English language. You need to prove this. Please be aware that as part of your research assignment normally a presentation should be given and a paper should be written.

Insurance, Visa/Residence permit

Do I have to be insured when I come to Utrecht?

Yes, you do. Medical and personal liability insurance is mandatory. Please visit this website for more information.

Where can I find more information on Health Insurance?

Please visit this website.

Where can I find information on visa procedure in The Netherlands?

Please see this website.

Can you help me obtaining a visa?

Yes, we can. Please visit this website for more information.

When can I send all relevant papers to?

Your visa application is monitored by the Visa Desk of Utrecht University. You will receive information on further steps. If and when documents need to be send by post, you are notified of this.

Where should I send the visa forms to?

If and when you have received the request to send paper documents, and not before, you can send them to :

Utrecht University
International / Visa Office
Heidelberglaan 8
3584 CS  Utrecht
The Netherlands

How long will the procedure take?

It normally takes 2 – 4 weeks to get all relevant papers approved by the Visa Desk Utrecht University. It then takes another 2-4 weeks to get a visa from the IND in The Netherlands. Once approved by the IND, you will need to make an appointment at the Embassy in your country. This can also take 2-4 weeks. So start early! Any delay on your part will result in late arrival in The Netherlands.

I need a MVV visa to enter The Netherlands. Do I enhance my chances of my visa being issued on time if I start visa procedures both at the Embassy and through the International Office?

No, you do not. To avoid confusion, please apply only for a MVV visa through the University of Utrecht. It is faster, easier and more efficient.

General information

What is the difference between the Central International Office University University and Science International Office?

The Central IO UU is located at Bestuursgebouw, Heidelberglaan 8 and represents the whole university. The Faculty Science IO is located at Minnaert Building, Leuvenlaan 4 and represents only the Faculty of Science.

For more general information, go to the UU-website for exchange and visiting students.