In the Netherlands research is carried out by research universities, research institutes and by companies. Only the 14 research universities can award PhD-degrees. However, since other research institutes generally work in close collaboration with these universities, they can also provide positions to PhD candidates.
PhD positions in Holland are of high quality, therefore candidates have to meet high standards. It is important that candidates begin with a solid background in the theory and methods of their field. You will need to have a recognized master’s degree. Satisfactory knowledge of English is another requirement (IELTS score - 7 or TOEFL score 600/250/80).
Candidates from other countries generally choose to write their dissertation in English. This requires full mastery of English idiom and grammar. These language skills must be demonstrable before work on the dissertation begins. Given these considerations, the individual university will determine whether to admit the candidate.
Tuition fees for PhD programmes
Some Dutch institutions charge tuition fees for enrolment and supervision. Each research university has its own way of charging for the cost of supervision and access to laboratories and other facilities. Fees also vary from one discipline to the next, depending on aspects such as whether or not expensive equipment is required.
At www.euraxess.nl you can find all sorts of practical information useful for researchers (including PhD candidates) coming to Holland. You can read about immigration procedures, social security, taxation, healthcare insurance, etc. If you need an entry visa, you are advised to contact your institution to find out what to do in your particular situation.
Practical information about PhD in Holland