HomeEducationAbout our educationHighly skilled refugees

Highly skilled refugees

Get support on choosing a study

Are you a recognised refugee with a higher level of education in your country of origin? You are very welcome to study at the University of Twente (UT).

Before you start your application, please have a good look at the available bachelor’s and master’s programmes and then decide which one is the most suitable for you.

DigiD and BSN

When you receive your residence permit, you have to register in the BRP. After registration, you will receive a citizen service number, the so-called BSN. Everyone with a BSN can apply for DigiD. When you are a recognized refugee, we ask you to log in to Studielink with DigiD. This way, you can see your BSN number and the code of your refugee status. UT is also able to see your refugee status and will be able to act accordingly - the status will grant you some privileges. In Studielink, you can start your application for the UT study programme of your choice.

Application procedure

After you have submitted your application in Studielink, it will be forwarded to OSIRIS, our student registration portal. The Admission Office will then proceed to review your application. If you are over the age of 21, and you are not directly admissible, then colloquium doctum can be a solution. This is an admission test for prospective students who are not directly admissible to the bachelor’s programmes of UT.

If you apply for a bachelor’s programme, you will receive a decision within two weeks after you have completed your application. For a master’s programme the decision takes a little bit longer because the faculty has to decide about it as well. This can take up to six weeks. You will be notified by email.

As a highly skilled refugee with a higher level of education, you have to meet certain deadlines for your application. Please make sure you keep an eye on our deadlines, these are very important.

  • Application deadline (in Studielink as well as OSIRIS, including diplomas): 1 May
  • Deadline for a complete application (including IDW and remedying your deficiencies): 1 July
  • Offer of Admission accepted: 1 August
  • Submit certified hard copy: 1 September

For bachelor's programmes for which deviating deadlines apply, no exceptions to the registration deadlines will be made for refugees. For those programmes, you simply have to follow the deadlines that apply to non-EEA students (also the deadlines for fully completing OSIRIS registration and remedying deficiencies). Furthermore, the same applies to the Master's in Psychology with a specialisation in Positive Clinical Psychology & Technology.

Tuition fees

Recognised refugee students have the same status as Dutch nationals regarding tuition fees. They pay the same statutory tuition fee for enrolment in a bachelor’s or master’s programme as Dutch students. For tuition fees for the current academic year, please check the tuition fee web pages. This also applies if you are a student who currently holds a waiting document (“W-document”).


Any diplomas you have been able to take with you from your country of origin will be evaluated to see whether you can start with one of our study programmes. You must at least meet the following requirements:

Dutch language courses (NT2)

UT only offers optional Dutch language programmes on a higher level. Contact the UT Language Centre for information on these optional B2 programmes and preparation for the state examination. The StudieSuccesCentrum of Saxion offers language programmes on all levels: from beginners (CEF A0 level) to state examination II (CEF B2 level).

Finding a place to live

After you have signed your asylum seeker application with the IND, certain things will be arranged for you through COA. One of them is temporary housing in one of the refugee camps which are scattered around the Netherlands. If the application is favorable and you have been granted the asylum seeker status, you will be appointed housing wherever this is available and where COA believes would be a good match for you to live and work, or possibly study. However, housing has to be available and the municipality has to agree with your stay here. Should you have a letter of acceptance from the university, this could help.

There are many considerations for the municipality to consider your application to live here; your current status, whether you are single or married, are above 21 years old or not. Since each situation is different, this depends on the circumstances.

Useful links