UM wants this year too: starting on a master’s without a bachelor’s diploma

UM: at least 48 last-year credits must have been gained

04-03-2021

MAASTRICHT. Maastricht University wants to uphold the flexible transition between the bachelor’s and master’s study for next year too. Rector Rianne Letschert said to the University Council last week that they were waiting for the minister to approve. That approval is expected by mid-March.

If the minister says yes, third-year bachelor’s students who have acquired almost all credits – a minimum of 80 per cent, or 48 of the 60 ECTS – may embark upon their master’s programmes in September. Just like last year. This relaxation of the rules has again to do with the COVID-19 crisis. Normally, a student can only start a master’s programme after the bachelor’s diploma is in hand.

Almost three quarters of the 480 students who were allowed to continue on to a (pre) master’s last year, have meanwhile acquired their bachelor’s diplomas, says Ellen van der Aar, policy advisor for education and student affairs. She expects that the others will complete their preparatory study programmes in the coming months. “Most of them encountered the delay during the initial months of COVID-19 in spring of 2020. They are now catching up on that.”

This group was able to appeal to a study advisor for extra supervision. Among other measures, a plan of action was drawn up to plan both study programmes. The faculties are also keeping an eye on how they are doing.

Should a small number unexpectedly not make the finishing line for their bachelor’s on time - “they are still suffering from the COVID-19 crisis”-, then there are two options, Van der Aar explains: “Either they continue on with their present course of two programmes alongside each other, or they first finish the bachelor’s and then return to the master’s.” This is also up to the minister.