Higher Education and Graduate Employment in the Netherlands

Jim Allen, Petra Boezerooy, Egbert de Weert, Rolf van der Velden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Higher education in the Netherlands comprises the university sector and the sector for higher vocational education (Hoger Beroepsonderwijs or HBO). They developed under very different historical circumstances and are based on different
There are 13 universities, nine of which provide teaching and conduct research in a wide range of disciplines in arts and sciences. Three (technical) universities offer courses mainly in science and engineering subjects and one is specialised in
agricultural sciences.
The HBO sector was established in the late 1960s when colleges for higher vocational training were upgraded. Major reforms in this sector resulted in the amalgamation of more than 400 smaller institutions oriented towards specific professional fields into large institutions providing a wide range of vocationally-oriented courses, with a standard period of study of four years. Today, there are some 65 HBO institutions providing theoretical and practical training with a clear
vocational orientation. They have an important societal task of transferring and developing knowledge for the benefit of the professions in both the industrial and service sectors.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-219
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean journal of education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2000


  • METIS-100472
  • IR-58493


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