Binding study advice

Adjusted BSA norm 2021-2022

Due to the corona crisis, the fourteen Dutch universities have chosen to lower the BSA (binding study advice) norm by a range of 10-15% this academic year. For Utrecht University, this is a generic reduction of 7.5 credits, with the exception of programmes for which a different standard applies.

For most first-year students this means that they need to complete one major subject less in order to proceed to the next academic year. The lowered standard also applies to students who received a deferred BSA last year.

In addition, it remains possible to further adjust the BSA rules at the study programme level, if necessary, given the specific circumstances of that programme. As always, the existing regulations also offer the possibility of making an exception for individual students who have encountered difficulties.


At the end of the first semester (no later than 31 January), you will receive an interim study recommendation from the university. If you have not obtained enough credits, you will receive a warning. At the end of the academic year (no later than 31 August), a final recommendation will be given.

If you have not obtained enough credits, you get a negative binding study advice. This means that you will not be allowed to finish your degree or re-enrol for the same course.

De-enrolment before 1 February

If you request course de-enrolment before 1 February of your first study year, you will receive no negative binding study advice. It is the date of making your request that counts, not the de-enrolment date. So if you submit your request on 31 January, you will be de-enrolled as of 1 February and will not receive a negative binding study advice.

More information

You can find more information about de-enrolling via: Discontinuing in the first year after enrolling. All information provided by the DUO concerning the 1 February regulation also applies.