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21+ entrance examination

The 21+ entrance exam is for students who are aged 21 or older and don't have a senior general secondary (HAVO), pre-university (VWO) or level-4 senior secondary vocational (MBO) education diploma.

Signing up for the 21+ entrance examination in the 2023-2024 academic year is no longer possible. Registration for 2024-2025 opens on 1 October 2024.

It may be that you've decided to take on studies later in life or that your profession up until now needed a different kind of diploma. In these cases, you can apply using the 21+ entrance examination. The exam makes sure you're ready to begin studies in your chosen subject, and that your level of Dutch or English is good enough to follow classes and submit assignments in that language.

It may be that you do not need to sit the subject exam for your chosen course. Please read our exemption criteria to see if this might be the case.

How the exams work

On this page you will find information on:

Please read the information below, and if needed, contact Student Affairs for more information.

How to sign up

Signing up for the 21+ entrance examination in the 2023-2024 academic year is no longer possible. Registration for 2024-2025 opens on 1 October 2024.

Documents needed to apply

During the sign-up process, you will be asked to upload the following documents:

  • A copy of a valid identity card
    • A passport, a drivers license, a residence permit or a foreign passport.

Those that want extra time or additional resources due to special needs or a disability will need:

  • A copy of a statement from a recognised professional indicating that you are eligible for exam time extension and/or additional resources.

Those that want to apply for exemption from the subject test will need:

  • A copy of the document showing why you are exempt from a subject exam. 

Start dates and process

The 21+ exam involves a subject test and a language test.  The subject test is for the area you want to study. The language test is to see if you have the level needed for the language your course is taught in.

Once you enrol, you will automatically be entered for both tests. It is possible you do not have to sit the subject test - see exemptions below.

Start date (Subject test)Registration deadlineWhich dates should i take into account?
Saturday 25 November 2023Sunday 12 November 2023View the flowchart(opens in new window)
Saturday 23 March 2024Sunday 10 March 2024View the flowchart(opens in new window)
Saturday 18 May 2024Sunday 5 May 2024View the flowchart(opens in new window)
  • If you don’t have to take a subject test, you still have to register for one of the registration dates. You will automatically receive an invitation for the language test(s).
  • All the information you need to take the test(s) will be in the email.

Language test dates

DateLanguage test
Thursday 27 June 2024Dutch, reading and writing
Friday 28 June 2024English, reading and writing
Thursday 25 July 2024Dutch, reading and writing
Friday 26 July 2024English, reading and writing

Receiving your results

  • Subject test: you will pass if you score 5.5 out of 10 or higher;
  • Dutch language test: you will pass with a mark of 5.5 or higher for Reading and 5.5 or higher for Writing (both components are considered separate tests);
  • English language test: You will pass with an average grade of 5.5 or higher. The average of both tests will be taken: the reading skills test makes up 60% of your final grade, and writing skills makes up 40%.

The Statement of Admissibility is valid for two consecutive academic years.

You can read more about what you can do if you fail, or if you wish to object to a result on the 21+ results page.


You do not need to take a subject test if you have a senior general secondary education (HAVO) or pre-university education (VWO) modular certificate for the subject being tested. You can request an exemption by sending a certified copy of this modular certificate and your list of final marks together with your registration. These documents must be uploaded together with your digital registration form.

Download exemption application form

Read more about exemptions.

Costs and how to pay

The 21+-entrance examination costs € 185. This sum is regardless of the number of tests * that you will sit (also in case of partial exemption) and includes any resits that you take.

For the test round of 18 May 2024 the costs are € 125. This sum is regardless of the number of tests that you will sit (also in case of partial exemption). With this round you are not entitled to a resit. Not for the subject test and not for the language test.

You can register twice a year. If you register for the second time, you will need to pay the full amount again, regardless of the number of tests that you will take.

How to pay

You can pay with iDEAL or by credit card (Mastercard and Visa). The participation fee must be paid before you register for the 21+-entrance examination.

Payment details: NL52DEUT0428925111, account name: Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, stating: kp 230105, 21+-, and your first name and surname.

Changing or cancelling a test date

Changing a test date

It is possible to change your test date to one later in the same academic year if it is requested in an email prior to the deadline for registering and deregistering.

If you want to change the test date after the deadline for registering and deregistering, it will only be possible if there are exceptional circumstances (e.g. illness, an accident, circumstances beyond your control involving public transport or weather conditions).

Changing your registration to a different academic year is not possible.

Cancelling a test

When registering for the 21+-entrance examination, the AUAS General Conditions of Sale for private clients are applicable.

  • Within two weeks of registration, the registration may be cancelled at no extra costs.
  • If you cancel after this period, the following applies:

Time of cancellation

Due amount

Up until six weeks before test€50
Between six and three weeks before test50% of fee
Between three weeks and one week before test75% of fee
One week before test100% of fee

In exceptional cases, the AUAS staff organising the 21+-entrance examination may decide to deviate from this cancellation policy (e.g. in case of exceptional personal circumstances).

Substantiated requests including documentation can be submitted via toelatingstoets@hva.nl

The education date referred to in Article 3 of the sales values concerns the date of entry for the 21+-entrance examination.


Questions about the 21+- entrance examination, the preparatory courses or the 21+- exams?

+31628533546(opens in new window)
Business days, 10AM - 4.30PM (not for phone calls and text messages)
+31 20 595 1405(opens in new window)
Business days, 9.30 AM - 1.30PM)