Q: How do I apply?

A: On this web page, you will find all the necessary information about our admissions procedure in 2 rounds.

All candidates for our bachelor programme first have to apply through Studielink. So, to start your application, from 15 November, go to the Studielink website: www.studielink.nl to read there and start your application according to the Studielink guidelines.

Once you registered for our programme through Studielink, you will receive automatic e-mails with information about the next steps in your application process.

- regular 1st round: consultation interview (for all EU/EEA applicants); alternative 1st round: submitting portfolio application online (for all non-EU/EEA applicants);

- 2nd round: entrance examination.

Following a positive assessment of your work during the 1st round, you can proceed to 2nd round.


Q: Is the consultation interview live or online?

A: The consultation interview is conducted digitally via Microsoft Teams and is designed to assess and discuss your potential suitability for our Academy through an interview with a tutor. During the interview you will show as much of your work as possible on camera. You will also be able to share documents via Teams during the interview to show digital work. You can create a PDF in advance with an overview of your work over the last few years.

Q. I’m not from the Netherlands. Can I still apply?

A: Yes, in principle candidates from all over the world can study at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie, provided they have sufficient prior education, have adequate command of the Dutch and/or English language and have successfully completed our admission procedure. All information about the admission procedure can be found on the website of the Gerrit Rietveld Academie.

Q: I’m now doing VMBO and would prefer to go to the Rietveld immediately after this, without doing an MBO course first. Is that possible?

A: No, you need at least a HAVO or MBO diploma (level 4) to study at the Rietveld Academie

Q: When can I start directly in a higher year? I’ve already studied at an art academy, do I still need to apply?

A: Yes. You are eligible for applicatoin to a higher year only if you have studied for at least 1 year at an art academy, university or higher professional education institution and have obtained your propaedeutic certificate/completed the 1st bachelor year of studies successfully before the start of your possible study at the Rietveld Academie.

But you have to complete both admission rounds successfully before you can be admitted.

Q: I don’t have a portfolio yet. Can I still be admitted?

A: If you have not made any visual work at all, it makes no sense to register for our admissions procedure. We assume that applicants have already developed their visual skills and talents in various media. It’s as if you were applying to the conservatory to study the piano: if you cannot play the piano at all, you won’t be admitted.

Q: I’m now in my final year of secondary school (high school graduation class). Can I apply now?

A: Yes. Our regular admission consultations run from November to February. You can therefore make an appointment for an admission consultation via our website. If you get through the consultation hour, you can take the entrance exam in March. If the result of the exam is positive, you will be conditionally admitted for the new academic year before the summer holidays.

Please note: You can only start your studies at the Rietveld Academie if you actually obtain your secondary school (high school) diploma before the start of the new academic year.

Q: What previous education do you need to apply? Do I have to choose a special package of subjects or profile in preparation for the Gerrit Rietveld Academie? 

A: No. Our prior education requirement is at least a HAVO or MBO diploma (at level 4). There is no specific requirement for the profile or subject package.

Q: If I have an MBO4 diploma or HAVO diploma, can I be admitted into a higher course year or receive credits for certain components?

A: In principle, you can only skip the Basicyear and be admitted into a higher course year if you have studied for at least 1 year at another art academy or university. If you start in a higher year, it is not the case that you can skip certain courses in that year because you have studied before. You must follow the full curriculum.

Q: What can I do to prepare myself properly for the admissions procedure of the Gerrit Rietveld Academie?

A: It is important that you build a portfolio of visual and/or design work that is as varied as possible. You should be able to show work in different media, so drawings, sketches, paintings, photography, graphic work, 3D work, design work, etc.

If, for example, you only take photos, and have not really worked with other media yet, the chances are that you will not be admitted because your portfolio is too one-sided.

In addition, it is important that you can show more than just work that you have made on assignment – for example, in school. We would like to see that you have developed or are experimenting with your own ideas. So make sure you can show as much of your own work as possible, in different media.

In addition, it is good to inform yourself about what is happening in the field of contemporary visual art and design. Visit museums and exhibitions to see what artists and designers are currently making. Get a good idea of what studying at the Rietveld Academie entails and whether that is really what you are looking for. Visit our open day on the last Friday in January and make sure you have read and viewed all the information on the website (including work by students from all departments). That way you can prepare yourself thoroughly for the admissions procedure.

See also these tips for your portfolio

Q: I do not live in the Netherlands and want to submit my portfolio, is this possible?

A: The deadline for submitting a digital portfolio for the Basicyear is 16 December, for all non-EU/EEA candidates. For entry into a higher year, the deadline is 1 March. All Dutch and other EU/EEA Basicyear candidates should book an appointment for the online consultation interview (1st admission round). If you have any questions about this, you can always contact Bureau Admissions at apply@rietveldacademie.nl to discuss the possibilities.

Q: I do not live in the Netherlands but would still prefer to participate in the online admission interview.  Do I still have to submit my portfolio?

A: No. If you make an appointment for the online consultation interview, you will show your work to the lecturer during the consultation hour. You are not supposed to submit your portfolio in advance.

Q: When are the entrance exams and how long do they last?

A: The regular entrance exams for the full-time bachelor (Basicyear) take place annually in March, with an additional round in April. The entrance exams for DOGtime take place in April, with an extra round in May. The entrance exams for entry into a higher year take place in May. The entrance exams themselves last 20 to 40 minutes.

Q: What is the pass rate of the entrance exams?

A: This varies from year to year. Out of a total of 1000-1100 candidates who apply for our Bachelor's admission procedure every year, about 25-30% are eventually admitted. If you take part in the entrance exam (second round of admissions), there is a good 50% chance that you will be admitted.

Q: Can I also enrol halfway through the academic year?

A: No. All students are admitted before September 1 and start their studies on September 1. We start the admission consultations 10 months before the start of the new academic year and we complete all regular admission rounds well before the summer holidays. You must therefore register well in advance for our admissions procedure.

Q: Can I apply for multiple study programmes?

A: All students follow the same programme in the Basicyear, the 1st year of study. Only at the end of the 1st year do students choose the department where they continue their studies. Candidates who want to apply for intake in a higher year must choose 1 specific study programme, direction or department for which they want to apply for admission.

Q: How long is the HBO course at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie?

A: Full-time study takes 4 years. In the Basicyear, the 1st year of study, all students follow the same programme. At the end of the 1st year, students choose the department where they will continue their studies in the 2nd year. They then study at the department for another 3 years before graduating.

Q: Can I also study part-time at the Gerrit Rietveld Academie?

A: Yes. In addition to the extensive full-time programme, the Gerrit Rietveld Academie also offers a part-time programme. Full-time studies last a total of 4 years. The part-time DOGtime study lasts 5 years, because the propaedeutic phase lasts 2 years instead of 1 year. After that, you can study Expanded Painting or Unstable Media part-time and continue studying for an additional 3 years before graduation, or move on to a department in the full-time degree programme and continue for 3 years before graduating.

Q: Do you have a campus with rooms for students?

A: No, there is no campus on the grounds of the Rietveld Academie, so you cannot get a room through the academy. The academy has only a limited number of rooms available for international students. If you have been admitted, you will receive more information about this.

Q: Can I apply for student finance for the study programme?

A: It is an HBO degree, so if you are eligible for student finance, you can apply for it. Students within the EU can also apply for student finance under certain conditions. For specific questions, see: www.duo.nl.

NB: The Preparatory course, the Orientation course and the part-time course (DOGtime) are not eligible for student finance.

Q: Can I get a scholarship from the Gerrit Rietveld Academie?

A: No. Unfortunately, the Rietveld Academie does not offer scholarships. Candidates who want to study here and need funding will therefore have to apply for a scholarship (in their own country) themselves. Only new non-EU/EEA students are awarded 6 (one-off) scholarships annually through the Holland Scholarship programme.

Q: Are the classes taught in Dutch or in English?

A: The courses offered at our academy are either in Dutch or bilingual. In our bilingual courses (like our bachelor program) the language of instruction is English. This means that the study and class materials and assessments are offered in English. If circumstances warrant this, bilingual courses may deviate from the language of instruction and switch to Dutch, as long as this does not lead to the exclusion of foreign-speaking students. These circumstances include: the language background of the teacher and the students present; individual contacts and personal assignments such as study guidance, internships and written assignments.

NOTE: Students who do not speak English cannot be admitted. Foreign students do not necessarily have to speak Dutch at the start of their studies. Of course, Dutch is useful if you live in the Netherlands for a longer period of time, but you can often get by in English as well.


Q: What’s the average age of the students?

A: The average age of the undergraduate students is 25. The average age of students in the 1st year of the full-time course is about 21. The average age of students in the 1st year of the part-time course (DOGtime) is about 33.

Q: Are there age limits for registration for the bachelor’s programme?

A: Due to the prior education requirement for an HBO programme of at least a HAVO or MBO4 diploma, candidates are at least 17 when they start the programme. Although there is no strict maximum age, students in the full-time Basicyear are usually no older than 35. Older candidates are better off opting for the part-time course (DOGtime).

Q: What facilities does the Rietveld Academie offer?

A: There are a number of general workshops (wood, metal, computer, graphics, CAD-CAM) and a number of departmental workshops. Click here for more information.

Q: Can I sit in on the classes for a day?

A: No. Unfortunately, it is not possible for us to organize guided tours and it is important that the lessons for our current students run as smoothly as possible.

Q: Do you have a campus with rooms for students?

A: No, there is no campus on the Rietveld Academie grounds. Students who are admitted must find their own rooms in (the vicinity of) Amsterdam. Student accommodation is provided by www.studentenwoningweb.nl and www.room.nl. Register here as soon as possible, as they have a waiting list of at least 2 years; registration is already possible if you are not studying yet. There are some rooms available through the academy for short stays, for exchange students and new foreign students. 

Q: Does the academy provide facilities for students with disabilities or impairments?

A: Students with disabilities or impairments may be eligible for adjustments. Here, the personal situation is considered and what adjustments are necessary and possible. Standard facilities such as an extra hour of examination time are not available at the Rietveld Academie, simply because we do not work with standard examinations. Candidates wishing to find out what provisions might be possible should contact the student counsellor mirjam.mazurel@rietveldacademie.nl.

Q: Are students covered by health insurance through the Rietveld Academie?

A: No, every student must have individual insurance. Students from the EU can usually use the European Health Insurance Card, through the insurance in their home country. Students from outside the EU will usually need to take out student travel insurance (e.g. AON or OOM). NB: this insurance does not cover costs for pre-existing conditions (e.g. a chronic illness or mental condition). If you use medication, you will need to bring it from your home country.