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Which studies in The Netherlands have the highest dropout rates?

May 5, 2023
Student Retention

Among all university studies in the Netherlands, some degrees have a much higher dropout rate than others. In this article we will discuss the studies that have the highest dropout rate and what the possible causes are.


Medicine is one of the most popular studies in the Netherlands, but it also has the highest dropout rate. Research shows that about 20% of students do not continue after the first year of study.

A major reason for this may be that this study requires a lot of knowledge and the subject matter is very complex. There is also little room for self-study and a lot of time must be spent on internships and practical assignments. This can create a high workload and stress for students.


Law is another study with a high dropout rate. About 18% of students drop out in the first year.

This study requires a lot of reading and writing, and therefore can be perceived as tiring by students. In addition, students often have to work in groups and politically sensitive topics can contribute to stress.


Architecture has a dropout rate of about 14% in the first year.

A possible explanation for this is that this course of study is technical and mathematical in nature. Students who struggle with this can quickly become discouraged. Also, creative and original designs are in high demand, so the pressure to perform is high.

Computer Science

Finally, computer science also has a high dropout rate. About 12% of students drop out after the first year.

This study requires a lot of computer and programming knowledge, which some students may not have. In addition, this study can cause stress because many companies have increasingly high expectations for future IT professionals.

Do you have experience with any of these studies and want to share your story? Reach out to us!

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