See Regulations

Binding Recommendation (BSA)

regulations

Why the BSA?

A guiding principle in the vision of the University of Twente is that students are involved as partners in the set-up and execution of their education. The education is a product of the collaboration between the university and its students; a product that can only come to fruition when responsibilities and efforts are shared.
The UT offers students a challenging education but this can only be experienced as such if the student has chosen the correct study programme. Adequate student guidance, good matching and cooperation with the surrounding universities of applied sciences must ensure this. Whereas it is the UT’s challenge to offer well-organised education, so too can students be expected to show dedication and ambition.
Experiences of the various departments have shown that students who earn less than a certain number of ECs in the first year have little chance of completing the course successfully. With several programmes, it has also appeared that not passing or postponing certain subjects has a negative effect on the successful completion of a study. Students who find themselves in this situation appear not to have chosen the right programme or one in which they can achieve their full potential.
The main objective of the BSA is that students “find their right direction” more quickly.

Another aim of the BSA is to challenge students to perform well and get good grades from the beginning of their course of study. They must, however, be able to undertake extra-curricular activities, such as participating on a committee or helping organise a study trip.
If in the first year, a student completes 45 credits or more, he/she should be able to finish the programme on time. However, if the student is delayed despite sufficient effort, the reasons for this need to be seriously addressed. In other words, the BSA also places an obligation on the department.
Earning the standard number of ECs must be seen as the absolute minimum requirement. The goal should be to complete the B1 programme in the first year. Educational and exam programmes have been designed such that students are encouraged to achieve this and, with sufficient effort, should even be able to earn 60 ECs in their first year.

TER: Teaching & Education Regulation 2018-2019

Each programme has a TER which regulates the rights and obligations of students with respect to education, tests and examinations. The general rules and regulations surrounding the BSA are described below (Article 6.3 TER). 
A program can set additional requirements within the BSA. Whether these also apply to your programme, can be found in the programme-specific appendix to the TER. The TER can be found on the Education page of your programme.

Art 6.3 - Binding recommendation on continuation of studies (BSA)

  1. Each student receives a written recommendation on continuation studies at the end of the first year of enrolment on the programme. This recommendation is based on the student’s results. The student may be allowed to continue on the programme or may be required to leave the programme.
  2. An introductory interview will be held with each student before 1 November of the first year of enrolment on the programme.
  3. Each student will receive a preliminary recommendation on continuation of studies in week 52 at the latest of his first year of enrolment on the programme. This preliminary recommendation is not binding.
  4. Each student will receive a second preliminary recommendation on continuation of studies in week 10 at the latest of his first year of enrolment on the programme. This preliminary recommendation is not binding.
  5. Students who receive a negative preliminary recommendation on continuation of studies as referred to in paragraph 3 and/or 4 will be invited for an interview with the Study Advisor to discuss their study methods and a review of their choice of a degree programme.
  6. The institutional administration mandates the Programme Board to issue recommendations on continuation of studies, as referred to in paragraph 1.
  7. The final recommendation on continuation of studies, as referred to in paragraph 1, may involve expulsion from the programme if the student has completed less than 75% of study load in the first year of the programme. Results of exams and of tests that remain valid beyond the current academic year are counted to establish how much a student has completed. Any additional requirements are specified in the programme-specific annexe and as such, are discussed in the Programme Committee.
  8. Expulsion remains in force for a period of three academic years. A final recommendation on continuation of studies that involves expulsion is referred to as a binding recommendation on continuation of studies (BSA). Degree programmes may impose additional BSA requirements which must be included in the programme-specific part of the Teaching and Examination Regulations and which make abundantly clear in what other cases a positive recommendation on continuation of studies may be issued.
  9. Only the credits from study units in the first year of the programme count toward the threshold for the final recommendation on the continuation of studies. In case a student requests to transfers credits to the first year from courses taken in a different programme or institution, specific requirements for BSA are communicated to the students together with the decision on the student's request. These specific requirements may include passing specific tests.
  10. If a student terminates enrolment in the programme prior to 1 February of the first year of enrolment, no final recommendation on continuation of studies will be issued as referred to in Article 6.3, paragraph 1. If this student re-enrols in a subsequent academic year, then a final recommendation on continuation of studies will be issued at the end of that subsequent academic year. As termination of enrolment is seen:
    a. Submitting a request for termination of enrolment to the UT;
    b. Submitting a request for registration in a different programme at the UT;
    c. Starting studies a different institution with a ‘proof of paid tuition fee’.
  11. If a student transfers to another UT degree programme prior to 1 October, then the norm will not be adjusted as referred to in Article 6.3, paragraph 7. In all other cases, the provisions apply as referred to in Article 6.3, paragraph 7.
  12. The final recommendation on continuation of studies is postponed if a student transfers to another programme on or after 1 October. The final recommendation on continuation of studies will be issued no later than the end of the student’s second year of enrolment. The student is notified when the programme will issue the recommendation within 6 weeks after the transfer.
  13. Prior to receiving a final decision on BSA, students receive a warning. The time between the warning and the final decision should be sufficient to allow the student to meet the requirements of the program, if still possible. Students also have the right to a hearing with the Programme Board before the final decision (Higher Education and Research Act art. 7.8b, paragraph 4).
  14.  When considering a BSA involving expulsion, the Programme Board will take the student’s personal circumstances into account at the student’s request. The Programme Board will only take personal circumstances into account that have been reported to the Study Advisor as soon as can reasonably be expected following their onset.
  15. Personal circumstances include illness, physical, sensory or other functional disability or pregnancy of the student involved, extenuating family circumstances, participation in elite sports and membership on the University Council, Faculty Council, Programme Committee or a Category 3 board in accordance with the FOBOS Regulations.
  16. In consultation with the Study Advisor, the personal circumstances are to be reported to the Personal Circumstances Committee (CPO) and accompanied by supporting documentation.
  17. The CPO will assess the validity and severity of the personal circumstances and report its findings to the Programme Board and the relevant Study Advisor.
  18. The Programme Board will take the CPO’s findings into account when assessing the student’s request as referred to in Article 6.3, paragraph 13.
  19. If personal circumstances preclude the assessment of a student’s academic capacities, the final recommendation on the continuation of studies is postponed. The final recommendation on continuation of studies will be issued no later than the end of the student’s second year of enrolment. The student is notified when the programme will issue the recommendation within 6 weeks after the decision to postpone.
  20. The Programme Board’s decision regarding the BSA will make mention of the applicable appeals procedure.

Art 6.4 – Recommendation on the continuation of studies: multiple degree programmes

If a student is enrolled in multiple degree programmes and meets the BSA threshold for one of the programmes, then the student will not be required to meet the threshold for the other programmes.

TER: Teaching & Education Regulation 2019-2020:

The Dutch version is leading. This is a translation.

Article 6.3   (Binding) Recommendation on continuation of studies

1.   Each student receives a written recommendation on  the continuation of his studies within the programme   at the end of the first year of enrolment in the degree programme concerning, except for article 6.4. This recommendation is based on the student's study results and may be positive or negative recommendation, in compliance with articles 6.4 and 6.5.

2.   The issue of the study recommendation as referred to in paragraph 1 has been mandated to the programme board by the institutional administration.

3.   Results of completed module parts that remain valid beyond the current academic year are counted when issuing the study recommendation.

a)  Only the credits from module parts in the first year of the programme that issues the final recommendation count for determining the number of credits.

b)   Exemptions granted to the student for modules or module parts of the first year count for determining the number of credits.

c)   The programme board may set down subject-specific requirements which must be met. These requirements are included in the programme-specific appendix[1].

4.   The final recommendation as referred to in paragraph 1 may involve expulsion from the programme, if the student in the opinion of the programme board is not deemed suitable for the degree programme because the student has passed fewer than three modules, and

-     the student has passed in total less than 75% of the study load of the first year, or

-     the student has passed 75% of the study load of the first year, but does not meet the subject-specific requirements (as referred to in paragraph 3c of this article).

A final recommendation on continuation of studies that involves expulsion is referred to as a binding recommendation on continuation of studies (BSA).

5.   In its deliberations on attaching a rejection to a binding recommendation, the programme board will take into account the student's personal circumstances at his request. The programme board will only take into account in its deliberations personal circumstances that have been reported to the study adviser by the student as soon as can reasonably be expected after they arose.

a)   Personal circumstances are understood to be illness of the person involved, a physical, sensory or other impairment of the person involved, pregnancy of the person involved, exceptional family circumstances, top-level sports of the person involved and the membership of the university council, faculty council, programme committee or a category 3 or 4 board in accordance with the FOBOS arrangement.

b)   The personal circumstances must be submitted to the Personal Circumstances Committee (CPO) in consultation with the study adviser. This report must be substantiated with items of evidence.

c)   The CPO assesses the validity and seriousness of the personal circumstances. A report in respect thereof is submitted to the programme board and the relevant study adviser.

d)   The programme board takes the judgement of the CPO into account in its handling of the student's request.

6.   Before issuing a binding recommendation, the programme board must first issue a warning to the student, while giving him a reasonable term to improve his study results, to the programme board’s satisfaction. Moreover, the student has the right to be heard by the programme board before the issue of a binding recommendation (WHW article 7.8b, paragraph 4).

7.   The decision of the programme board with respect to the binding recommendation on the continuation of studies states the possibility of filing an appeal. Objections are exclusively possible for a binding recommendation on continuation of studies and may be appealed within six weeks by lodging an appeal with the Board of Appeal for Examinations.

8.   If a  final recommendation on continuation of studies that involves expulsion has been issued to the student, he may not enrol in the same degree programme for a period of three subsequent academic years.

9.  If a student re-enrols in the degree programme concerned after the period referred to in paragraph 8 of this article, this enrolment is designated as his first-year enrolment and the concerning provisions of this paragraph apply in full.

Article 6.4   Termination of enrolment

1.   The degree programme is considered to be terminated if the student stops taking courses or any form of tests of the programme and:

a)   Submits a request for termination of enrolment to the UT, or

b)   De-enrols for the degree programme at the UT, while he enrols in another degree programme at the UT and thus transfers to the other UT degree programme, or

c)   Starts a study at a different institution with a ‘proof of paid tuition fee’.

2.      If in his first year of enrolment for the degree programme, a student submits a request to terminate enrolment through Studielink not later than 31 January and he is de-enrolled before or on 1 February and he does not re-enrol for the same degree programme in that same academic year, a study recommendation as referred to in paragraph 1 of article 6.3 will not be issued. If this student does re-enrol in the degree programme concerned, this enrolment is designated as his first-year enrolment.

3.      Students who are de-enrolled after 1 February for the degree programme at the UT, will receive a study recommendation as referred to in article 6.3 paragraph 1 from the degree programme they terminated.

Article 6.5   Postponing study recommendation

1.   The study recommendation as referred to in Article 6.3 paragraph 1 may be postponed if: 

a)   the student has enrolled in the degree programme on or after 1 October of the academic year concerned and on 31 August at the latest has not met the norm set in Article 6.3, paragraph 3, or 

b)   if personal circumstances preclude rendering an opinion on a student’s academic capacities at the end of the first year of enrolment in the degree programme, or

c)   the student transfers from one degree programme at the University of Twente to another on or after 1 October of the first year, whereby the student de-enrols for one degree programme (discontinuation in the sense of Article 6.4, paragraph 1 under b) and enrols in another degree programme.

2.   If the student, whose study recommendation as referred to in article 6.3 paragraph 1 has been postponed based on that article, re-enrols in a subsequent academic year in the degree programme concerned, then a study recommendation will be issued to him not later than the end of that subsequent academic year. The same norm as set out in article 6.3 paragraph 3 applies to this study recommendation. 

a)   The student whose study recommendation as referred to in Article 6.3 (1) has been postponed based on Article 6.5 (1)(a), will be notified in writing within 6 weeks of the date of enrolment before which date the degree programme will issue the final recommendation.

b)   The student whose study recommendation as referred to in Article 6.3 (1) has been postponed based on Article 6.5 (1)(b), will be notified in writing within 6 weeks of the date of enrolment before which date the degree programme will issue the final recommendation.

c)   For students whose study recommendation as referred to in Article 6.3 (1) has been postponed based on Article 6.5 (1)(c), the end of the second year of enrolment in the relevant programme applies as the new deadline for the final recommendation. The study recommendation is issued by the degree programme in which the student is newly enrolled.

For students who transfer to a different degree programme within the UT before 1 October, there will be no adjustment of the standard as stipulated in article 6.3 paragraph 3 and the study recommendation will not be postponed on the basis of transfer

[1]     Subject-specific requirements may not state that all module parts of a certain type must be completed. ‘The student must have passed all mathematics module parts from the B1 programme’ is not permitted, whereas ‘The student must have passed not less than three of the four mathematics components from the B1 programme’ is permitted.