Discussion about the binding recommendation on continuation of studies

Discussion about the binding recommendation on continuation of studies


Will the binding recommendation on continuation of studies (BSA in short) disappear? Parties in the Dutch Parliament asked outgoing Education Minister Ingrid van Engelshoven all kinds of questions about the usefulness and necessity of the BSA. She has now provided an answer (in Dutch).


Like her party D66, she still appears to have difficulty with the BSA. The Minister thinks there are other options, such as the so-called ‘flow norm’ that some universities of applied sciences are experimenting with. In that case, students are not expelled, but they are not allowed to start the second year as long as they do not meet the norm.


The umbrella organisations of universities and universities of applied sciences think that these experiments are fine, but they want to retain the possibility of dismissing first-year students who do not obtain enough points, because they require ‘a lot of supervision time’.


The question is whether they will continue to find politicians on their side. Government policy could well become stricter. The Dutch Christian Democratic party (CDA) points to the course of events in the secondary vocational education (mbo) sector. There, the institutions are obliged to help their students find another course. Is that something for higher education?


The Minister does not immediately say no to that. There will soon be a report on the BSA in secondary vocational education and then we will see whether the obligation works. (HOP, Bas Belleman)



Editor in chief Saskia Bonger

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