Dutch Minister of Education:

'Other EU members should work to attract more international students'

Europese Unie. Foto: Pixabay
Photo: Pixabay

The growth in the number of international students in the Netherlands has led to concerns about funding, accessibility, and student housing, observes Dijkgraaf in a position paper sent to the European Commission.

In his view, part of the solution should come from the EU as certain member states would benefit from hosting more international students, yet they don't offer many degree programmes in English. If they did, they would relieve popular student destinations such as the Netherlands.

Dijkgraaf wrote the paper because of the forthcoming launch of a new joint venture, the European Learning Mobility Framework, whose purpose is to improve the way that European countries coordinate the internationalisation of their study programmes with one another.

According to the minister, every country must come up with a tailor-made action plan and take stock of the local wishes. This would have to be partially financed by the EU.

Prior to that, Dijkgraaf shared his plans for getting a grip on the number of international students. If it were up to him, all students from abroad would be obliged to learn some Dutch and there would be a fixed number of students allowed to enrol in English-taught tracks. He also wants Dutch to become more prominent as a language of instruction. Last week, he participated in a debate on the topic with the Dutch Parliament.