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Engineering Education In The Netherlands

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2002 Annual Conference


Montreal, Canada

Publication Date

June 16, 2002

Start Date

June 16, 2002

End Date

June 19, 2002



Conference Session

International Engineering Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

7.483.1 - 7.483.10



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Paper Authors

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Otto Rompelman

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Maarten Uijt De Haag

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Jos Uyt de Haag

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Brian Manhire

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

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Session 1498

Engineering Education in The Netherlands

Maarten Uijt de Haag*, Otto Rompelman**, Jos Uyt de Haag***, Brian Manhire* *Ohio University, USA / **Delft University of Technology, NL / ***St. Jans Lyceum, NL


This paper presents an overview of higher engineering education in the Netherlands. The intent is to give the information necessary for a comparison of the Dutch engineering education system to engineering education systems in other countries, especially the United States of America. The discussion includes the following topics: the historical development of engineering education in the Netherlands; secondary education and the preparation of students for higher education; forthcoming changes in engineering curricula; university entrance requirements; student financial aid; student enrollment; and the international exposure of students while studying engineering.

1. Introduction

Engineering education was established before the Dutch industrial revolution (1870-1914) and has been important ever since. Development of various industries, the trading position of the Netherlands due to its fortunate geographic location in the Rhine and Maas delta, its enclosure by the North Sea, Belgium, and Germany (see Figure 1), and the development of the European Union have furthermore helped create a market for graduates of engineering schools.

The Netherlands is geographically about 40% of the size of the US State of Ohio with about 15.8 million inhabitants (compared to Ohio’s 11.2 million). Education has always been one of the top priorities for the Dutch which is obvious from the fact that about close to half a million people are enrolled as students in universities. Furthermore, about 24% of the Dutch population has completed a course of higher education [1]. Currently, the Dutch education system is undergoing many changes at both the secondary school level and in higher education. The former reform drastically changes the structure of the upper three classes referred to as the ‘tweede fase’ or second phase and the latter reform is a migration of the current curriculum system to an Anglo-Saxon system characterized by the presence of both a Bachelor program and a Master program.

Section 2 discusses the general education system in the Netherlands and section 3 gives a short history of engineering schools in the Netherlands. Section 4 describes recent developments in the secondary education system and the impact of these changes on the entrance requirements for engineering universities. Section 5 provides an overview of the engineering schools, their disciplines, enrollments, and curricula.

Proceedings of the 2002 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2002, American Society for Engineering Education

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Rompelman, O., & Uijt De Haag, M., & Uyt de Haag, J., & Manhire, B. (2002, June), Engineering Education In The Netherlands Paper presented at 2002 Annual Conference, Montreal, Canada. 10.18260/1-2--10346

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