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PhD in Netherlands: Top Universities in Netherlands for PhD, Scholarships for International Students, Cost of Studying PhD and Job Opportunities

Yocket Editorial Team

PhD education Netherlands is a general choice for many international students looking to tap into this culture of open-mindedness, modernization and international exchange of ideas. Doing a PhD in the Netherlands permits international students to conduct autonomous research in the field of study under the supervision of skilled faculty at the university. At the end of research for a PhD in Netherlands, students present their paper or thesis in front of a panel of experts.

The majority of PhD students in the Netherlands have an employment contract with the institution where they will be conducting their research. A PhD in Netherlands for Indian students lasts for a minimum of 4 years. This is comparatively due to the employment status as a doctoral researcher and the additional teaching and directorial responsibilities. So, in this blog, we will be deliberating PhD programs in Netherlands, PhD scholarships in the Netherlands and much more about PhD education Netherlands.

Table of Contents:

  1.  Why Study PhD Programs in Netherlands?
  2.  Top Universities in Netherlands for PhD
  3. Eligibility Criteria & Admission Requirements for Universities in Netherlands for PhD
  4. Documents Required for PhD in Netherlands for Indian Students
  5. Application Process for Universities in Netherlands for PhD
  6. Cost of Studying PhD in Holland
  7.  PhD Scholarships in Netherlands for International Students
  8. Career Options after PhD in Netherlands

Why Study PhD Programs in Netherlands?

All PhD programs in Netherlands are part of a graduate school or research school. Research schools are partnerships between multiple research universities and research institutes, while graduate schools are organised within universities. The following benefits of PhD in Holland are:

  1. Coursework is Limited: PhD Education Netherlands is a research-only program. Some universities in Netherlands for PhD have started doctoral schools, which require students to take several courses. Some of these courses are linked to:
  • research skills
  •  others are associated with preferred field of study.
  1.   Dutch PhD is highly regarded: Study PhD in Netherlands is highly regarded because of the high academic standards. Once your thesis is permitted for publication, students will attend the event of their research and be awarded the PhD at a rite immersed in tradition.
  2. People Treat their PhD Like a Job: International students who apply for PhD in Netherlands treat their PhD like a job with comparatively steady hours. It may also be a requirement that you are in your office between firm blocks of time. University buildings incline to have opening and closing hours.
  3. You Are a University Employee: Getting hired as a university employee is relatively common when your PhD is funded by a research project. There are many benefits to being hired as a university employee, including employee protection, social security, building up retirement savings etc.

Top Universities in Netherlands for PhD

A doctoral program in the Netherlands is a research-focused third-cycle qualification, as defined by the Bologna process. There are various universities offering PhD programs in Netherlands, and some of them are:

  1.       University of Amsterdam
  2.       University of Groningen
  3.       Maastricht University
  4.       Radboud University
  5.       Leiden University
  6.       Delft University of Technology

So, these are some of the universities in Netherlands for PhD programs, Let’s know it in detail.

1. University of Amsterdam

The University of Amsterdam’s thriving PhD program provides the excellent groundwork for engaging in high-quality teaching and research. Research accepted by the UvA’s academic community ranks among the best globally. The university seeks to bid on an inspiring international educational environment where staff and international students can optimally advance their talents.

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Science, Economics and Business

Average Tuition Fee

13,300 EUR/ year

2. University of Groningen

The Groningen Graduate School bids an excellent program for postgraduate study at the University of Groningen. The students are offered a comprehensive PhD training program, including the career outlooks series, which helps students prepare for further career opportunities. The researchers will receive professional guidance from their promotor and supervisor. 

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Economics and Business, Arts, Behavioural and Social Science, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Engineering

Average Tuition Fee

11,766 EUR/ year

3. Maastricht University

At Maastricht University, PhD students are respected as full-fledged research community members. There are three ways to get a PhD degree at the university, i.e., enrol in a PhD training program, apply for a paid PhD position, obtain external funding, & pitch your idea. The PhD programs mainly focus on education, training and supervision to empower students to become excellent researchers. They will also have the opportunity to progress a broad range of academic skills.

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Psychology and Economics

Average Tuition Fees

4000                     EUR/ year

4. Radboud University

The Radboud University offers varied courses for PhD students to advance scientific skills and personal effectiveness and development. The research profile of Radboud University has two primary constituents: an academic and a societal profile. The academic profile covers the academic corrections in which the university is involved and the sub-disciplines in which it excels. The societal profile covers the societal themes the university is associated with through its academic research.

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Neuropsychology and Rehabilitation Psychology

Average Tuition Fees

12,500 – 16,500 EUR/year

5. Leiden University

It is the best university for PhD in Netherlands for international students. The Leiden University PhD program focuses on PHd students who dedicate a particular work time to scientific research on the theme of their professional practice. The centre helps them advance research plans, provide training, confirm that their study is in unity with the disciplines and graduate schools, and relates to the research of a potential supervisor.

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Computer Science, Chemistry and Mathematics

Average Tuition Fees

19,600 EUR/ year

6. Delft University of Technology

TU Delft Graduate School helps and trains doctoral students to become highly qualified, autonomous, leading researchers and skilled professionals. The PhD program is essential for preparing for the doctorate and your future career. It also ensures and enhances the growth of scientific quality along with the needed skill for interpersonal skills. After completing the PhD program, you will be awarded a Doctoral Education Certificate at the PhD Thesis Defence ceremony.

QS World University Ranking 2022


Type of University


Top PhD Courses

PhD in Engineering & Technology, Art Design & Architecture

Average Tuition Fee

11,000 EUR/ year

Suggested: Cheap Universities in Netherlands

Eligibility Criteria & Admission Requirements for Universities in Netherlands for PhD

To get admission to universities in Netherlands for PhD, international students need to fulfil the criteria and admission requirements. The following criteria are:

  1.       Master’s Degree
  2.       English Proficiency Test
  3.       Netherlands Student Visa
  4.       Additional Requirements

These are some of the PhD requirements Netherlands that students need to follow to get admission efficiently. Let’s know it in detail:

1. Master’s Degree

For a PhD in Netherlands, a standard necessity for PhD admission is holding a master’s degree in a relevant subject area. Due to Dutch PhD researchers’ students may also be required to experience other application processes and submit more documents than a distinctive PhD student.

2. English Proficiency Test

Being an international student, one needs to submit an English language test score to do PhD in Holland. It includes IELTS or TOEFL exam. The minimum score for the IELTS exam is 6.5, and the TOEFL minimum score is 90 (Internet Based).

3. Netherlands Student Visa

An international student who wants to do PhD in the Netherlands and outside the European Union and European Free Trade Area needs to apply for an MVV Netherlands student visa.

Documents Required for PhD in Netherlands for Indian Students

There are some essential documents required for PhD from Netherlands the following documents are:

  •       Official academic transcripts including copies of secondary school diplomas and other certificates.
  •       Valid Passport
  •       Letter of Recommendations
  •       SOP
  •       Sample of academic written work
  •       Updated CV (Including two references)

Application Process for Universities in Netherlands for PhD

Admission criteria for PhD positions are demanding, and potential students must have a solid background in the theory and techniques of their field and a recognised master’s degree. Admission for PhD in the Netherlands for international students involves various steps, which are discussed below:

1. Before getting enrolled for PhD in Netherlands, find a supervisor in your area of study from the college/ university that you want to apply for.

2. Once the supervisor agrees to support you as your guide for the PhD program, you will be required to submit an official application to the university.

3. After that, you may be asked to submit some essential documents, including your CV, contact details, personal statement, research proposal, transcripts and references.

4. Prepare a research proposal; it holds the key in the application process for PhD programs.

5. Submit a document of personal statement mentioning the reason for pursuing PhD program, what appeals you to the subject area and how your studies & work experience helped you to take up PhD education

6. Ensure that the references you have should be valid, as all the programs will ask for referees who can present details about your academic abilities and motivation.

7. In other cases, maybe the referee can be asked to provide a letter of reference in their own words.

Cost of Studying PhD in Holland

To study PhD in education in Netherlands includes the tuition cost & cost of living for international students.

Average Tuition Fees for PhD in Netherlands

The tuition fees will vary as per the PhD Course selected by the students to study at the top universities in the Netherlands. The average cost of studying PhD in the Netherlands is 6000 EUR - 20,000 EUR.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Netherlands includes various expenses such as:

Living Expenses

Estimated Monthly Cost

Health Insurance

120 EUR/ per month


500 - 1,000 EUR/ per month

Study Material

30- 65 EUR/ per month

Food & Groceries

180 EUR

Suggested: Cost of Living in Netherlands

PhD Scholarships in Netherlands for International Students

For PhD scholarships in Netherlands, there are 3 ways to fund PhD studies:

1. Fellowship or Grant: Most students interested in doing a PhD from Netherlands find funding in the form of fellowship or grant. After finding a fellowship, you will need to find a supervisor at a research institution willing to support you.

2. Sponsored by your Employer: Sometimes, it happens when you can afford to study PhD part-time while working. If you and your sponsor are interested in this option, you should contact the institution of your choice.

3. Employed by an Institution: It is one of the most preferred options by a student in the Netherlands to have an employment agreement with the institution where they will be conducting their research.

Career Options after PhD in Netherlands

After completing PhD in Netherlands, international students will need to apply for an Orientation Year residence permit. The student must be registered in the Personal Records Database, have a Citizen Service Number, and pay a fee of 174 EUR to be in the country for more than one year. Apart from it, students can also apply for long term residence in the Netherlands. Some of the career options after the PhD program are:

Job Options

Average Annual Salary

Associate Professor of Finance

79,069 EUR

Technical support specialist

43,449 EUR

PhD Graduate Lecturer

36,759 EUR


5,503 EUR

The Netherlands holds the research achieved by its universities in high esteem, and the country and its academics have an outstanding track record in world research. As a doctoral graduate from a Dutch university, you’ll be a researcher. So if that sounds great to you, connect with our Yocket professional and get guidance for your further career aspirations.

Frequently Asked Questions about PhD in Netherlands

How long does it take to complete a PhD in the Netherlands?

How much are PhD candidates paid in the Netherlands?

What are the popular PhD courses to study in the Netherlands?

Is PhD free in the Netherlands?

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