International students in Dutch universities have been found to be three times more likely to drop out in their year than their Dutch counterparts.
Fhis is based on data by Education Inspectorate which reported that 17 percent of International students drop out in their first year. Conversely, only 6 oervent of Dutch students dropped out in their first year. However, those who stick it out are much s likely to obtain their diplomas without delays.
The dropout rate pattern is consistently evident among international students in subsequent years. Nearly 25 oervent of International students that commence university bachelor’s degree programs no longer study in the Netherlands four years later without obtaining a diploma. For Dutch students the drop out rate is 9 percent.
International students who continue their studies in the Netherlands are observed to perform well according to the Inspectorate. Those foreign students who continue beyond their first year are slightly more likely to obtain their diplomas eithout any delays compared to Dutch students.
Around 60 percent of Dutch students obtain a diploma within 4 years compared to 65 percent of international students from within the European Economic Area (EEA) and 61 percent from outside the EEA.
There were no inquiries by the Inspectorate as to why international students are more likely to drop out than students from the Netherlands, though homesickness and the challenge of getting used to an entirely new culture likely play a role.
In August 2022, the Annual International Student Survey reported that 59 percent of international students struggle with mental health problems, and 28 percent did not feel at home in the Netherlands. Over 35 percent also reported that they were struggling financially.