Studying abroad can be daunting. Settling down in an entirely new scenario can lead to certain complications if one is unprepared before the visit to the country. For that matter, it is important to know the local customs and the ways of general living in addition to general academic practises relating to one’s university or school. That being said, there is no substitute to on-hands experience. This article will endeavour to help you get your bearings studying in Netherlands
Firstly, education in Netherlands is costlier than in some of the other reputed countries of EU. While students from EEU pay around 2000-5000 Euros per year, Non-EU students pay anywhere between 6000-20000 Euros per year, the latter figure being for some Master’s or Doctorate programmes. That being said, there are a lot of scholarships offered. In addition to private scholarships, Netherlands Fellow Scholarship aims to aid students from developing countries. Some other scholarships offer as much as 5000 Euros per year. However, given the quality of education imparted in Netherlands, there will be a lot of applicants. Ensure your GPA and transcripts stand out. Apart from that, here are some things you should about studying in Netherlands
Education in Netherlands is unlike in other English Speaking countries. Lectures are held not in traditional professor-student fashion, but as informal discussion groups, sometimes with students as few as 12 in a lecture. So, if you’re used to traditional methods of teaching, it is important you get used to this because when there are no lectures, you’re expected to indulge in study and peer discussions to hone yourself. Courses are held in English majorly leading to general transitional ease for students
It is not a myth that the Dutch love their bicycles. Everyone goes around on bicycles. In fact, there are special cycle paths and parking areas designated for bicycles. For that purpose, when you see a busy neighbourhood getting by on bicycles, don’t rush to buy one. While the cheapest option is to buy one from an outgoing senior, this is not always possible depending on when you reach Netherlands. Invest in a good bicycle by ensuring you take it for a test ride. Also invest in heavy duty locks and pay for a card there. Apart from that, high speed trains whisk you around Netherlands. You can purchase a card valid for a year
Food and Other Expenses:
Stores in Netherlands are open anywhere between 8 AM and 8 PM with times varying for the same store. Sundays are holidays. Since it can be quite confusing, it is strongly advised that a week’s plan be made and grocery shopping be done. It should also be noted that one should carry money more than what is needed because unanticipated expenses arise, such as deposits for rooms, train cards, bicycle rents. It is strongly dissuaded that you buy a new one without exploring other options first as they can be quite pricey. In case of shortage of funds, one can always approach bars and supermarkets as additional help for some pocket money
Life Outside College:
While Netherlands is a small country, people often call it with a misnomer Holland, which in fact is one of the regions on the west coast. Other regions include Amsterdam, Hague etc. Since bicycling is a famous pastime in Dutch, you can always explore the country side, the cobblestone studded bridges. The Dutch pride themselves on museums. You can purchase an annual museum card for about 600 Euros and tour the museums. There is an annual spring garden festival thrown there which is beautiful. Apart from this, there will be the college fests and other events which one can enjoy
The Dutch are bilingual wizards. At least three-fourths of the population is amazingly good at English. While it is advised to learn a few Dutch words to get by, there is no compulsion to learn the language in the first weeks of one’s stay there. Since most courses are also taught in English, a non-Dutch speaker doesn’t feel the strain.
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