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Information is given below on the awarding of the "Distinctive feature of small-scale and intensive education" to AUC.

Background on the "small-scale and intensive education" designation

Per June 2012, AUC was awarded the “Distinctive feature of small-scale and intensive education" by the Dutch-Flemish Accreditation Council (NVAO) and was on this basis granted special approval by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science with regard to the selective admission of students and setting the level of tuition fees (in accordance with Articles 6.7, 6.7a, 6.7b and 6.7c of the Dutch Higher Education and Research Act (WHW)).

Small-scale, intensive and residential programmes can qualify for this distinctive status provided that they meet the following requirements (drawn up in accordance with the principles set out for distinctive features in Chapter 7 of the Assessment Framework of the Higher Education Accreditation System):

  • The teaching in small-scale and intensive programmes is considerably more intensive than that in standard programmes. Education is intertwined with extra-curricular activities so that an academic and/or professional community is created in which students and staff are much more closely involved with one another than is the case in standard programmes.
  • A feature of this type of programme is that the curriculum is inseparably connected to the social context, which facilitates the achievement of the attainment targets. In addition, there is a stringent admission procedure (including an individual intake interview) aimed at realising the optimal match between student and programme. In this respect, the focus is on academic and/or professional capacity and motivation.
  • The small scale of such programmes is an important condition for the creation and development of a high-level academic and/or professional community.
  • A recognisable educational environment including all related facilities is essential. After all, these programmes are intended for highly motivated and talented students. The learning outcomes realised by the students, the high level of the education provided and the success rates achieved should demonstrate that these programmes offer students an optimal education.

The fact that AUC fulfilled all these requirements and obtained this special status implies that it can select students (done previously under special WHW provision) and impose statutory tuition fees that are higher than those set down by law for standard programmes. The special status is subject to review as part of the regular accreditation cycle (every 6 years).

The enhanced tuition fee is used to support AUC’s mission “Excellence and Diversity in a Global City”. And in line with the requirements listed above, to support AUC as a small-scale, intensive, and residential programme that offers students an enhanced international learning experience at honours level supported by personal tutoring, to support the diversity of AUC's international campus community, including extra-curricular and social activities, AUC's scholarship programme (ASF), and to provide a high service level with respect to (international) career development.

Implications for AUC students eligible to pay the statutory tuition fee

  • Students who obtain a tuition fee loan from the Dutch government (collegegeldkrediet) can obtain the loan for the full amount of the statutory tuition fee for AUC, and not only for the amount for standard programmes. For more information on the tuition fee loan in general, students should consult the website of DUO (see link below).
  • Payment of the statutory tuition fee for AUC in instalments is possible, in accordance with the standard practices of the two universities (UvA and VU) with regard to allowing payment of tuition fee in instalments. It is usually only possible if you can pay by direct debit from a Dutch bank account. For information about the possibility to pay the VU in instalments, students should contact the VU Student Desk (see links below). For information about procedures at the UvA, students should contact the UvA Service and Information Centre (see links below).
  • If a student stops studying at AUC, then refunds of the statutory tuition fee for AUC also become possible in line with the standard practices of the two universities (UvA and VU) with regard to tuition fee refunds. For more details students should contact the VU Student Desk or the UvA Service and Information Centre.