Jonas Konrad at Saxion University of Applied Sciences Deventer & Apeldoorn

ERASMUS Exchange Semester Report, Jonas Konrad

Sending institution: University of Applied Sciences Koblenz, Rhein-Ahr-Campus Remagen

Receiving institution: Saxion University of Applied Sciences Deventer & Apeldoorn

Date: 01.09.2014 – 15.02.2015


I was accommodated in a house in the centre of Deventer, the train station and the university building were within walking distance. I shared an apartment with four other exchange students from all over the world. Most of the time the atmosphere in the whole building was very comfortable, only at night is was sometimes very loud, because of the thin walls. Compared to German conditions the rent for the room was rather high but acceptable for 6 months.

In addition, the overall cost of living in the Netherlands are a bit higher than they are in Germany. Everywhere I went the Dutch were always very helpful and friendly to me, as well as all the other international students.


I attended a third year bachelor course, called the HBS semester. All courses where held in English (most of the time). Partly there appeared minor problems concerning the different English skills of the Dutch and the international students, but they were easily solved by the friendly and highly professional appearance of the teachers and students.

The first half of the semester took place in Apeldoorn, a city 20 km west of Deventer. We had to travel there by train, but I was no problem to get there. In the second half they changed the location and we had class in Deventer, what was more comfortable for the international students.

The courses where really interesting for me, but not to all other students, which were not interested in e.g. Management Accounting. So the overall motivation for some courses was really low, what made it a kind of hard to stay concentrated during the lessons. All courses where both, research- and application-oriented. The exams were ambitious, but not unfair. Both, teacher and students, were interested in the welfare of their international guests and always cooperative and helpful.

Although, I was a master student attending in a bachelor course, classes were always appealing, interesting and challenging me, too. Only the standard of knowledge among the international students was really different and partly far below the Dutch and German average, especially concerning the English and research skills.

Pros and Cons

A very positive thing was the very good atmosphere between the international and the Dutch students and I am glad that I was able to meet so many very nice people from all over the world. Classes where built up very appealing and the relationship between students and teachers was very good. Every lesson we got constructive feedback on what we did at home or during class. Also, my English got a lot better, because I was “forced” to speak English every day everywhere. Additionally, I learned some standard skills in Dutch and a lot about the Dutch and other cultures from all over the world and how everyday life is in the Netherlands. It is not very different from life in Germany, but they are living in a more casual and personal way.

A negative point was the (partly) low motivation of the Dutch students to follow classes in English, what seemed to be something they were not used to. Additionally, the different proficiency levels of the international students slowed down the progress in class.

It was too bad that most of the Dutch students lived in cities far away from Deventer, so it was not possible to meet them and most of the time I was together with other international students.

All in all I really liked my exchange semester in Deventer. Especially the personal contact with the teachers and the interactive built-up of the courses were two points I am often missing in Germany.