Holland International Study Centre (Holland ISC or HISC) partners with top universities to offer international students a pathway to a wide range of degrees taught in English. It offers academic and English language classes to help students reach the level they need for a degree at one of its partner universities.

Students are guaranteed progression to their chosen university on successful completion of their pathway programme.

Why study at HISC?

  • Preparing for your degree with a pathway programme allows you to adjust to life in a new country in a supportive environment, surrounded by other international students;
  • You will have time to practice your English language and build confidence in your speaking ability before starting your degree;
  • You will learn study skills and knowledge specific to your chosen subject, while also getting used to the European teaching styles you will experience at a university in the Netherlands;
  • You will be guaranteed progression to your chosen university on successful completion of your pathway programme.


HISC is based in Amsterdam, a welcoming city home to more than 180 nationalities. Despite being the country’s largest city with around 800,000 inhabitants, it keeps a small town feel with cobbled streets and neighbourhoods that are easy and safe to explore. It is easy to get around on foot, by bicycle, or via public transport.

The ISC website provides useful information regarding student accommodation in Amsterdam.

Entry requirements

The requirements you need to join the three-term International Foundation Year vary depending on the university you are looking to progress to.

Generally, you need:

  • Good high school graduation grades or equivalent academic study (IGCSE/GCSE/O Level and IB Certificate are not accepted);
  • To be aged 17 or older.

For full details, please visit the ISC’s dedicated entry requirements webpage.


HISC offers one undergraduate programme with a choice of two subject routes:

  • The International Foundation Year, which is a three-term programme preparing you for undergraduate study in business-related degrees in Holland;
  • The Business, Economics and Social Sciences International Foundation Year, which prepares you for business, economics and social sciences-related degrees at a range of universities in Holland.

For full details, please visit the ISC’s dedicated Programmes webpage.

University partners

Holland International Study Centre partners with a range of top university partners across Holland, so that you can choose the degree course that fits you best. These universities specialise in specific areas, from business to social sciences, so you can choose one depending on your interests, your career goals, and whether you prefer a big city or a small campus university.

University partners include:

  • Hanze University of Applied Sciences, based in Groningen, offering practical, career-focused degrees;
  • Tilburg University, a research university based in the south of Holland offering top Business, Economics and Social Sciences degrees;
  • Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VU Amsterdam), a forward-thinking university based in Amsterdam offering top business and science degrees.

For full details, please visit the Holland ISC dedicated University Partners webpage.

Graduate prospects

Dutch universities have excellent links with multinational companies based in Holland. Many degrees offer work placements, and research projects are often connected to a particular company. As a university student you will have access to business networks, mentors and career advisors to help you prepare for your future career.

After you graduate, you are welcome to stay in Holland and look for employment with a post-study work visa. Fast-growing industries and universities linked to employers are waiting for you, and you can look forward to an exciting career.

For more information, please visit the ISC dedicated work after studying webpage.

What is a pathway programme?

A pathway programme prepares international students to succeed at university, developing their English and academic skills before they begin their degree.

Why study at Holland ISC?

Student testimonial

Hanze University of Applied Sciences

Tilburg University

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

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