The Netherlands makes an excellent study destination due to its high-quality education. More than five universities in the country make it to the top 100 prestigious ranking institutions, such as Times Higher Education and QS Top Universities, annually. Moreover, its medical schools compete with some of the world’s top countries in Medicine education, such as the United Kingdom and the United States. In this article, aspiring international students will find out the best medical schools in the Netherlands.
Can Foreigners Study in Medical Schools in the Netherlands?
Yes, medical schools in the Netherlands accept international students. The University of Groningen offers a three-year Bachelor’s program in Medicine in Dutch and English. International students looking to apply to this university must meet the necessary qualifications for medical schools in their home country. Moreover, secondary education must be equivalent to the Dutch preparatory diploma, referred to as the VWO diploma, with qualifications in Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and English. To proceed to the Master’s program in Medicine, non-Dutch applicants must have a C1 level in the Dutch language.
What is the most prestigious medical school in the Netherlands?
The University of Amsterdam has the most prestigious medical school in the Netherlands. As the country’s leading provider of medical education, it is among the top 100 universities worldwide. Times Higher Education ranked it 60th in its 2021 World University rankings by clinical and health subject. Meanwhile, QS Top Universities placed it at 33rd for its Life Science and Medicine ranking 2020. Another prestigious ranking body, the Academic Ranking of World Universities or ShanghaiRanking, put it at 42nd for Clinical Medicine in 2020.
Best Medical Schools in the Netherlands
1. University of Amsterdam – Faculty of Medicine and Academic Medical Center
The University of Amsterdam Faculty of Medicine, established in 1950, merged with Binnengasthuis and Wilhelmina Gasthuis hospitals to form the Academic Medical Center (AMC) in 1983. It served as its research and teaching hospital, becoming one of the eight university medical centers in the Netherlands. Besides providing medical education, the Academic Medical Center contributes to global academic research while continuously providing top-notch patient care; therefore, the the University of Amsterdam ranks as the best medical school in the Netherlands.
The university offers a three-year Bachelor’s degree in Medicine, where students acquire early patient contact at the Academic Medical Center. Completing the Bachelor’s studies does not qualify students to practice Medicine as doctors. Thus the university offers the three-year Master’s program in Medicine. Both degree programs are taught in Dutch, though students should also have high English proficiency to read academic and medical literature.
2. Erasmus University Rotterdam – Erasmus MC
Erasmus University Rotterdam, founded in 1973, had its Faculty of Medicine training physicians and medical researchers while providing postgraduate courses. In 1998, the dean of the faculty and the university and Rotterdam University Hospital’s board executives met for the planning of the Erasmus University Medical Center. Erasmus MC opened in June 2002 and has served as the medical faculty of Erasmus University Rotterdam.
This top medical school in the Netherlands offers a three-year Bachelors in Medicine program taught in Dutch. Students learn through patient-oriented education, scientific research training, and emphasis on communication and attitude. The succeeding Master’s in Medicine program lasts for another three years, where students undergo extensive training in Erasmus MC to become qualified doctors.
3. Utrecht University – Faculty of Medicine
The Faculty of Medicine of Utrecht University, established in 1636, is one of the university’s founding faculties. It works together with the UMC Utrecht to deliver medical education and research, making the university among the best medical schools in the Netherlands.
The faculty aims to help students develop the Utrecht profile characterized by creative problem-solving, responsibility, communication proficiency, innovation, and collaboration. It offers a three-year bachelor’s degree in Medicine taught in Dutch.
Unlike other universities in the country, Utrecht University students undergo their first clinical internship in hospitals during their third year in the Bachelor’s program. This program also allows them to work closely with doctors, allowing them to apply learned theory and receive expert guidance.
After the Bachelor’s program, students proceed to the three-year Master’s program, also taught in Dutch. The first two years of the Master’s program place students in patient-centered internships in various areas such as gynecology, general practice, and pediatrics. The last year allows Master’s students to choose their training from specialist courses, such as Internal Medicine or Surgery.
4. Leiden University – Leiden University Medical Center
Leiden University, established in 1575, provides world-renowned medical education and is one of the best medical universities in the Netherlands. It aims to provide a global-oriented education interlinked with patient care and research. Students receive professional training and development to help them become lifelong learners.
With the university’s international outlook, students also learn intercultural skills and English proficiency. The university encourages students to pursue internships abroad and attracts international students from other countries to study in this highly esteemed university.
The Bachelor’s degree in Medicine is a three-year program taught in Dutch. Undergraduate students receive training at the Leiden University Medical Center, ensuring that research and patient care closely link with their education. Meanwhile, the Master’s in Medicine program also taught in Dutch for three years, provide more in-depth, clinically, and scientifically-driven education to aspiring doctors. During the entire duration of the Master’s program, students have mentor doctors to supervise their internships. Every year during their studies in the Master’s program, students also have the opportunity to pursue internships abroad.
5. University of Groningen – Faculty of Medical Sciences
The Faculty of Medical Sciences is one of the founding faculties of the University of Groningen, established in 1614. Another significant milestone in the university is Groningen University Hospital’s founding in 1797, which allows the university to provide both medical education and hospital services in the country.
The University of Groningen offers a three-year Bachelor’s degree in Medicine in English. This top medica school in the Netherlands allows non-Dutch-speaking international students to learn Dutch in-depth before entering the Master’s program in Medicine. The first two years of the Master’s program include up to 16 internships, while the last year allows students to pursue their specialization internship and complete a 20-week research project.
I hope that this article on the best medical schools in the Netherlands was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Medical Schools Category!