Integration in the Netherlands

Integration in the Netherlands


Are you new to the Netherlands? Integration is a crucial step in settling down here. This process involves learning Dutch and understanding the local way of life. So, we will now guide you through the key integration aspects in the Netherlands.

Understanding the Integration Process

The integration process in the Netherlands is essential for newcomers. You need to learn Dutch and become familiar with living and working in the country. In addition, passing an exam is part of the integration process to demonstrate your understanding and readiness. Thus, you can settle in and ensure that you can actively participate in Dutch society.

The Integration Period

New residents have three years to complete their integration process. And, this period is the integration period. During these years, you can use the ‘Mijn Inburgering‘ platform. So you can check what you need to do and when to start integrating thanks to the platform. Also, this online resource provides detailed information and timelines for your integration steps, making it easier to stay on track.

Integration Acts: 2021 and 2013

If you fall under the 2021 Civic Integration Act (‘Wet Inburgering 2021’), you will receive a notification from DUO (Dienst Uitvoering Onderwijs). This notification will inform you about your integration requirements and the necessary steps. However, to receive this notification, you must have:

  • A ‘burgerservicenummer’ (BSN).
  • A valid residence permit.
  • Registration with your local municipality.

If you meet these criteria, DUO will send you the notification for up to eight weeks. If you do not receive it within this timeframe, contact DUO for assistance.

The Broad Intake and PIP

After you receive the notification, the municipality will schedule an interview and a test for you. This initial assessment is the ‘broad intake’. It includes an interview and a test known as the ‘leerbaarheidstoets’, which evaluates your existing knowledge and skills.

Following the broad intake, the municipality will develop a Personal Integration and Participation Plan (PIP) for you. This plan details the learning track you will follow. Also, it includes the exams you must take to complete your integration.

Starting Your Integration

After your PIP is set, DUO will send you another notification. This letter will specify the date you need to start your integration process. Adhering to this schedule is crucial for a smooth integration journey. So, keep track of all deadlines and requirements outlined in your PIP.

Learning Tracks

There are three main learning tracks for integration in the Netherlands:

1. B1 Track

The B1 track prepares you for employment, paid or voluntary, in the Netherlands. Within three years, you must pass language exams at proficiency level B1 (Nt2 State exam). If B1 proves too challenging, you can opt for level A2. In addition, you will need to pass knowledge exams. Your PIP or ‘Mijn Inburgering’ will list the required exams.

2. Education Track

The education track is suitable for younger individuals. It prepares you for secondary vocational education (MBO), higher vocational education (HBO), or university studies. However, within three years, you must pass language exams at proficiency level B1. On the other hand, you will need to complete knowledge exams. So, check your PIP or ‘Mijn Inburgering’ for the specific exams you need to take.

3. Self-Reliance Track

The self-reliance track is for those who find the education and B1 tracks too difficult. You will learn Dutch at proficiency level A1 and how to participate in Dutch society. While language exams are optional, knowledge exams are mandatory. This track concludes with an interview with the municipality. Your PIP or ‘Mijn Inburgering’ will specify the exams required.

Under the 2013 Act

If you are required to integrate under the 2013 Civic Integration Act (‘Wet inburgering 2013’), you will also receive a letter from DUO. This letter will inform you about the date you need to start your integration. However, to receive this letter, you must have:

  • A ‘burgerservicenummer’ (BSN).
  • A valid residence permit.
  • Registration with your local municipality.

Once these criteria are met, it can take another eight weeks for DUO to send the letter. If you do not receive it within this timeframe, contact DUO for assistance.

Under the 2013 Act, you need to take the language exams at proficiency level A2 within three years. In addition, you will have to pass knowledge exams. On the other hand, you can study on your own. Also, you can take a course at a school to prepare for these exams. So, use ‘Mijn Inburgering’ to check which exams you need to take.

Benefits of Integration in the Netherlands

Successfully integrating in the Netherlands brings many benefits. You will gain a deeper understanding of Dutch culture and society. Also, this knowledge makes daily life easier and more enjoyable. Speaking Dutch improves your job prospects and helps you connect with the local community. Moreover, it enhances your ability to navigate the Dutch healthcare system, education system, and other public services.

Tips for Successful Integration

Here are some practical tips for a successful integration experience:

  1. Start Early: Begin learning Dutch as soon as possible to make the process smoother.
  2. Utilize Resources: Take advantage of resources like community centers for guidance and support.
  3. Engage with Locals: Participate in local activities and events to practice Dutch and meet new people.
  4. Stay Organized: Keep track of your integration plan and adhere to deadlines to avoid delays.
  5. Seek Help When Needed: Don’t hesitate to ask for help from local authorities or support organizations if you encounter any difficulties.

NT2 Oefening: Your integration Companion

Integration can be challenging, but with NT2 Oefening, you have a companion in your Dutch integration journey. Nt2 Oefening offers the tools and resources needed to succeed in your integration exams and daily life in the Netherlands. With practice, instant feedback, and expert guidance, you can confidently navigate your new environment and embrace Dutch society.


Integration in the Netherlands is a significant step in starting your new life here. Follow the steps outlined and use available resources. So, you can navigate the integration process successfully. Remember, integration fulfills a legal requirement. However, it also enhances your experience in the Netherlands. Embrace the journey and take advantage of the opportunities that come with integrating into Dutch society.

Stay tuned for more in-depth guides on integration in the Netherlands. We will publish a series of blogs that cover various aspects of this important process.