Aansluitprogramma's voor het hoger onderwijs

Boswell-Bèta Schakelprogramma

Are you considering taking courses here supported by UAF? Please note: do not register for courses through the website! UAF students are registered for courses manually. If you register through the website you accept the terms and conditions of cancellation: you will have to pay a penalty of €35,00 for cancellation of the course, if your cancellation is overdue the complete amount of the course must be repaid.

Welcome to the Boswell Bèta ‘Schakelprogramma’. This programme has been designed especially for refugee students in collaboration with UAF, the Lestbest language institute and the RISBO institute of Erasmus University Rotterdam. The Schakelprogramma prepares you for admittance to Dutch institutions of higher education.

Logo UAF, Lest Best, Risbo

The next Schakelprogramma starts September 2020. Please register for the Schakelprogramma and the forthcoming intake procedure by completing the registration form on the website of the basic year. The intake procedure takes place at the end of June. During the intake your level of Dutch, English and mathematics will be tested. In addition, your previous schooling is assessed based on your current diplomas and certificates.

Unfortunately, the UAF information event for all the Utrecht refugee programmes on 16 March was cancelled. Click here for a presentation of the Boswell Bèta Schakelprogramma as part of the UAF information event (only available in Dutch). The presentations of the other refugee programmes can be found on the UAF website. These presentations are in replacement of the UAF information event.

The Dutch Schakelprogramma consists of two parts: the basic year and the specialisation year.

The basic year

Enrolment in the basic year is possible in Utrecht (Boswell Bèta), Tilburg (Tilburg University) or Rotterdam (Erasmus University). You will automatically be placed in the basic year at an institution closest to your home town.

To visit the website of the basic year, click here.

The basic year offers subjects which are necessary for admission to any university or university of applied sciences:

  • Basic Mathematical Skills
  • Mathematics B
  • Study Skills
  • Dutch B1-B2 + NT2 exam training
  • English B1-B2 + IELTSexam training
  • 'Vaktaal'* / KNM* / ONA*

* Depending on the university or institution of enrolment.

For additional information about the basic year in the other two cities, please check:

Basisjaar Universiteit van Tilburg

Basisjaar Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam

The specialisation year

After having successfully finished the basic year you may register for additional courses at Boswell Bèta to gain entrance to technical or biomedical studies.

Technical specialisation

Physics is a requirement for most technical studies. This course can be completed during the basic year. That is why the preparation for a technical course takes one full year.

Please note: for admission to TU Delft you must pass the ‘Vaktaal’ course.

Biomedical specialisation

You need to do a number of additional courses for biomedical studies:

  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology (except for Pharmacy)

These subjects require a year in addition to the basic year. Preparation for a biomedical course takes two years in all.

Intake procedure

After your application through the registration form you will receive additional information no later than two weeks in advance of the intake. There are two rounds in the intake procedure. Round one consists of written tests in Dutch, English and mathematics. Once you have passed these tests you are invited to round two. Round two consists of four orals: in English, Dutch, and assessment of your previous education and motivation. After these two rounds a decision will be taken as to whether you are eligible for the programme.

N.B. The programme prepares you for admission to all universities (both academic and applied sciences universities).

Admission requirements

The Schakelprogramma has been designed for those refugee students who have (almost) finished secondary school in their country of origin, or who have already started higher education. On the day of the intake you must demonstrate that you have sufficient schooling in mathematics. In addition, you need to show your basic maths skills by taking a diagnostic maths test. A Dutch level of at least B1 and an English level of at least B1 is required.

Your performance in the basic year (attendance, motivation, completion of homework assignments, test results) will be closely monitored. Based on your performance a decision is made whether you are eligible for the specialisation year.


Depending on the courses you take, the Schakelprogramma lasts approximately between six months and two years. The courses are scheduled from Monday to Friday and if necessary on Saturday.


The Dutch courses are financed with a DUO loan.

For the science courses and English a UAF registration is mandatory if you want to have your participation in the programme financed. If you are unable to register with UAF, please contact us to look into any alternatives.

If you receive welfare from your municipality, ask your contact person for approval to take courses while retaining your welfare.


Please contact us at or call 030 430 0112 (10 am-5 pm) if you have any questions about your personal situation or the Schakelprogramma.

Refugee programme in English

If you are planning to take a bachelor programme entirely in English at a Dutch university, Boswell Bèta offers English courses in maths A and B, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. The courses are intensive and last for approximately six weeks, starting in June, July, October and April. One course is full-time, i.e. you can take only one course every term. To start a maths A/B/C course an English language level of at least B1 is required. For Physics, Chemistry and Biology your English level needs to be at least B2. Your Dutch level needs to be at least B1 to qualify for UAF registration. Registration at UAF is mandatory if you want to have your course funded.

The intake for the English programme is organised in combination with the one for the regular programme in Dutch. If you want to take part in the English programme, please register for the intake on the website of the base year. The programme’s next start is in September 2020.

During the intake procedure clearly indicate that you want to apply for an English bachelor programme. You must clearly motivate why the English programme is of extra value to you. A decision whether you are eligible for the English programme in Utrecht is taken in consultation with UAF.

Please contact us at or call 030 430 0112 (between 10 am and 5 pm) if you have any questions about our course programme in English.

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