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Coronavirus

International students

As an international student you may have many questions about the current situation, such as ‘Can I return to my home country?’ and ‘Will I still be able to start my course?’ On this page we try to answer as many questions as possible.

We are monitoring the situation every day will add to the information on this page as much as possible. However, the situation is increasingly demanding customised solutions. Therefore we advise you to always get in touch with the contact person at your faculty to discuss your specific situation.

We are following the travel advice of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
 

For international degree students

  • When will I receive an invitation from the immigration office to start my residence permit application?

    From Monday, 18 May 2020, the immigration office will begin sending invitations for residence permit applications to those students who have been at least conditionally admitted to study programmes by the relevant admissions office.

    If you have been at least conditionally admitted to your programme but haven’t received an invitation, please contact your admissions office to confirm that they have informed us about your conditional admission.

  • If it turns out that I have to take my first semester online, do I still need to apply for a residence permit?

    Yes, you’ll need to apply for a residence permit through the Immigration office of the UvA in order to be allowed to start your study programme at the UvA, even if your first semester turns out to be online only. By 1 July at the latest it will be clear for all programmes what classes will look like in the first semester. This should hopefully give everyone enough time to prepare for whatever outcome is relevant to them.

    Please note that having a Dutch residence permit is a legal requirement for being allowed to start your studies at the UvA. The IND will need to have approved your residence permit application before the start of your study programme.

  • Why do I need to apply for a residence permit if I don’t know yet when I will travel to the Netherlands?

    Please note that having a Dutch residence permit is a legal requirement for being allowed to start your studies at the UvA. The IND will need to have approved your residence permit application before the start of your study programme.

    Furthermore, the residence permit applications for students starting their studies as of 1 September 2020 will need to be processed as soon as possible, to avoid overloading the IND, embassies and consulates unnecessarily close to the start of the new academic year in September.

    Under normal circumstances, the residence permit application procedure takes about 60 days to be completed. Due to the pressures of the corona crisis, however, we expect the procedures to take longer than usual this summer.

  • Can I extend my residence permit online from abroad without have to go to the Netherlands?

    Yes, you can extend your residence permit online from abroad from three months before the validity of your current residence permit expires. You will be able to collect your new residence permit at the IND once it’s safe for you to travel back to the Netherlands.

    If your current residence permit will have expired by the time you need/are allowed to travel back to the Netherlands, you will need to request a return visa at the Dutch embassy/consulate in your home country in order to be allowed to re-enter the Netherlands.

  • Does de-registering from the municipality have any influence on my right to a residence permit if I am abroad due to the coronavirus situation?

    Yes, it does. As below, there are two possibilities. Please note that in both cases it is very important that you inform the immigration office of the UvA (immigration-sts@uva.nl) as soon as you de-register from the municipality so that you don’t lose your right to your residence permit.

    1. If you are abroad due to the coronavirus situation and are still following your courses online and are still registered at a Dutch municipality the IND will allow you to stay abroad for a maximum of 12 months before they will cancel your residence permit. The municipality, however, only allows you to stay abroad for a maximum of eight months. This means that you have to de-register with the municipality after eight months abroad. Please notify the UvA immigration office when you do.
    2. If you are abroad due to the coronavirus situation and are still following your courses online but are not registered at a Dutch municipality anymore, it is very important that you inform the UvA immigration office by sending a mail to immigration-sts@uva.nl, so that we can inform the IND that they shouldn’t cancel your residence permit for now. The other condition for the IND not cancelling your residence permit under this particular circumstance is that you have to register with the municipality as soon as you are back in the Netherlands.
  • Can you advise me on whether or not I should return home if I want to continue studying at the UvA this year?

    The UvA does not actively advise international degree students to return home (temporarily). We are making every effort to offer alternative (online) forms of education and (in the long term) assessment to all students. All faculties are making it possible to allow students to follow lectures online and (at a later stage) to take exams and tests online, these lectures and tests will be accessible remotely from locations in the Netherlands as a well as from other locations across the world.

    In view of the circumstances, some international diploma students may have returned (temporarily) to their home country and are therefore wondering whether they can follow the remaining part of the academic year’s educational blocks entirely online from their home country and, if necessary, in due course, also take exams remotely.

    The UvA wants to accommodate all students and staff as much as possible, those who decided to stay in the Netherlands and those who have made the decision to return to their home countries. Faculties are encouraged and supported in making it possible to follow lectures online for the forthcoming blocks and (if possible at a later stage) to take exams and tests online.

    If you have questions, please contact the education office of your faculty.

  • I want to continue studying at the UvA this year, as soon as on-campus education resumes. What should I do?

    If you temporarily return to your home country as an international diploma student, you can choose to remain enrolled and follow distance education (online).

    Any exceptions to this are on a programme by programme basis and all students will receive communications if that is the case; naturally this also includes international students who are now back in their home countries. You will receive such communications from your study programme.

    If the situation normalizes, we assume that all international diploma students will return to Amsterdam to participate in regular education (block 6) and possibly to catch up with the examination for block 4 in the examination week that has been added to the end of the academic year.

  • I want to deregister. Can I get a refund on the tuition fees?

    The UvA advises you not to deregister prematurely if you intend to continue your studies. The UvA is making every effort to offer alternative (online) forms of education to all students. If necessary, we will also offer alternative forms of testing and assessment. In short, we are doing everything we can, where possible, to prevent study delays for all students.

    International students who want to deregister from the UvA can submit a request for deregistration via Studielink. They will be refunded tuition fees from the moment of their deregistration in Studielink to the end of the current academic year.

  • I rent a house through UvA Student Housing. Is it possible to terminate my contract earlier because I’m returning home on account of the coronavirus outbreak?

    Yes, it is possible to terminate your contract earlier if you are renting with one of our housing providers. These housing providers are:

    • De Key
    • DUWO
    • The Fizz - Spartaan
    • OurCampus
    • Student Experience - Nautique Living

    Please note: XIOR Student Housing and The Student Hotel are not a part of UvA Student Housing. They have their own cancellation policy.

    You can contact your housing provider directly. UvA Housing has agreed that international students who are renting with one of the housing providers mentioned above can terminate their rental contract because of this crisis. The contracts can be terminated on the last day of the month, in the months April and May.

    Please note: some housing providers are very busy right now, so it may take longer for them to respond. If you are leaving before you receive a reply, follow the check-out instructions from the housing provider (e.g. leave your keys and make sure your room is empty and clean).

    More questions? Go to: www.uva.nl/housingquestions

  • Can I use UvA Student Housing when I return to the UvA?

    International Bachelor's and Master's students who return to the UvA in the next academic year and who had a contract from January 2020 to January 2021 can rent a room again, until the original end date (in January 2021).

    To ensure that you get a new room in September, please contact UvA Student Housing at the end of May at www.uva.nl/housingquestions

    Important:

    • Unfortunately, it is unlikely that you will get the same room.
    • If you do not contact us at the end of May, you will probably no longer be able to rent a room through UvA Student Housing.
  • I’m returning to Amsterdam. Are there houses/rooms available at the moment?

    Because many international students and staff are returning to their home country because of the coronavirus outbreak, accommodation/rooms are becoming available again. 

    These rooms can be rented for a fixed period of time (until February 2021 or summer 2021) and are furnished.

    If you are interested in renting one of these rooms, have a look at this webpage for more information

  • Do I still have to attain 50% of my study credits this year?

    By law you need to attain at least 50% of the credits of your study programme each year. We are aware that this may not be possible for you this year due to the situation surrounding coronavirus. The Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) has informed us that they will provide more detailed information on this topic soon. At the moment we do not know if they will show leniency to international students by adjust the 50% requirement.

    If you are worried about your study progress and would like to get in touch and discuss your options (also if you having problems studying due to the circumstances) please contact the UvA Immigration Office and they will forward your request to the student counsellors.

  • Will I keep my student visa if I return home?

    If you leave the Netherlands with the intention of returning at a later stage you don’t have to take any action (please do not terminate your enrolment!). As long as you follow online education (when offered) and take the online exams your residence permit will remain valid.

    If you leave and are definitely not returning please inform the immigration office so we can cancel your residence permit.

  • I am an out-bound Erasmus+ student. What do I need to do to retain the right to my grant?

    If your exchange has been postponed, cancelled, interrupted, or if you are continuing it online from a different country, you have to apply for a force majeure arrangement to retain your right to the Erasmus grant. That is because you are not able to satisfy the usual requirements set for Erasmus exchanges because of circumstances beyond your control (‘force majeure’).

    If you continue following online education in the host country of your exchange, you do not need to apply for a force majeure arrangement.

    Making a force majeure application – Degree students

    Degree student can apply for the force majeure arrangement here. We need two documents: 

    • A Statement - Declaration of Host University stating the start and end date of the exchange.
    • An email or letter from the host university stating that the exchange has been cancelled, if you received one.

    Please note: If you have already submitted the documents for the force majeur application via the general email address of the Central International Office you need to submit the documents again via the Canvas-page. We apologise for the inconvenience! You can use the link above.

    You can find a more comprehensive FAQ’s for Erasmus+ degree students here  

    Application for force majeure – Internship students

    Are you doing a placement or internship?  Please send an email to erasmus-sts@uva.nl, citing ‘Force Majeur Internship – [Student name]’ in the subject line.

    To process force majeure applications of internship students (including ACTA and AMC students), we need the following documents: 

    • A ‘Learning Agreement – After Mobility’ stating the start and end date of your internship or placement. Your Faculty International Office can provide you with a template of the ‘Learning Agreement – After Mobility’ form.
    • An email/letter from the host institution stating that the exchange has been cancelled, if you received one.

    Please send these documents in one email.

    You can find a more comprehensive FAQ’s for Erasmus+ and internship students here

For international exchange students

  • Can my exchange programme in the first semester of 2020-2021 go ahead?

    All UvA exchange programmes in the first semester of the new 2020-2021 academic year will be cancelled. This applies to both incoming and outgoing students in programmes such as Global Exchange and Erasmus+, including internship programmes.

    Do you have an (outgoing or incoming) exchange scheduled for the first semester? In that case you will be contacted by email on Friday, 15 May. Together we will look at possible alternatives. The options will vary per student, faculty and partner university, and could range from postponing the exchange, taking a minor, electives or a project course at the UvA or following online education at a partner university.

  • Will I keep my student visa if I return home?

    If you leave the Netherlands with the intention of returning at a later stage you don’t have to take any action (please do not terminate your enrolment!). As long as you follow online education (when offered) and take the online exams your residence permit will remain valid.

    If you leave and are definitely not returning please inform the immigration office so we can cancel your residence permit.

  • Do I have to take any action if I am continuing to follow online education?

    If you continue to follow online education you do not have to take any action. Your residence permit will remain valid until your programme has ended.

    If you wish to cancel your programme at the UvA please inform your exchange Office at your Home University or at the UvA. We will cancel your enrolment and residence permit.

  • Can I extend my residence permit due to a delay in my research or studies?

    If you have earned at least 50% of the credits needed to complete your study programme, you can apply for an extension of your permit. You can submit your application for a residence permit extension starting from 3 months prior to the expiration of your current residence permit. If, however, you have not yet reached the 50% threshold, you will need a valid reason to be exempted from this requirement. At the request of the Association of Universities in the Netherlands VSNU), the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science is currently discussing with the Ministry of Justice and Security about whether leniency can be applied for international students. At this moment, the UvA does not have further information on this.