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Wageningen University and Research Centre

Wageningen University and Research Centre (also known as Wageningen UR; abbreviation: WUR) is a research and higher education concern which consistis of Wageningen University, the Van Hall-Larenstein School of Higher Professional Education, and the former agricultural research institutes (Dienst Landbouwkundig Onderzoek) from the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture. With its combination of knowledge and experience in higher eduction and research Wageningen UR aims to train specialists (BSc, MSc and PhD) in life sciences and through its research contribute actively to solving scientific, social and commercial problems in the field of life sciences and natural resources. Wageningen UR approaches national and international research topics from the perspectives of various disciplines, with an integrated approach and in close collaboration with governments, companies, stakeholder organisations, citizens, and other knowledge institutions. The research should pay attention to the balance between three priorities in society: economics, culture and nature.

It is based in the Dutch city of Wageningen.

Wageningen University

Wageningen University was established in 1918 and was the successor of the Agricultural School founded in 1876.

Wageningen University provides education and generates knowledge in the field of life sciences and natural resources. Wageningen UR aims to make a real contribution to our quality of life. Quality of life means to the university both an adequate supply of safe and healthy food and drink, on the one hand, and the chance to live, work and play in a balanced ecosystem with a large variety of plants and animals.

The university has about 6,000 students from 98 countries. Its core business are life and agricultural sciences.


Wageningen University was the first Dutch University or school that was allowed to use the ECTS label. This label is awarded by the European Commission and guarantees the quality of the study programme. An important consideration is that the University consequently applies the European Credit Transfer System; this promotes the mobility of students within Europe and prevents study delay. The label is a prestigious acknowledgment of the international character of the University. Out of 56 European applications in 2005, only 3 ECTS labels were awarded.

BSc programmes

Wageningen University offers 18 BSc programmes (2005-2006). The language of instruction is partly Dutch, partly English. For some BSc programmes the language of instruction is English. The programmes start each year in September, they last three years and consist of 180 ECTS credits. The programmes are in the field of economy& society, health, life sciences & technology, nature & environment, animals & plants.

Economy and society

  • Business and consumer studies
  • Economics and policy
  • International development studies


  • Health and society
  • Nutrition and health


Nature and environment

  • Soil, water and air
  • Forest and nature conservation
  • International land and water conservation
  • Landscape architecture and spatial planning
  • Environmental studies

Animals and plants

  • Biology
  • Biological Production Sciences
  • Animal sciences
  • Plant sciences

MSc programmes

Wageningen University offers a wide range of MSc programmes (2005-2006). The language of instruction is English. The programmes start each year in September, they last two years and consist of 120 ECTS credits. Most programmes offer various specialisations and possibilities for majors.

  • Agricultural and Bioresource Engineering
  • Animal Sciences and Aquaculture
  • Aquaculture and Fisheries
  • Bioinformatics
  • Biology
  • Biotechnology
  • Communication Science
  • Earth System Science
  • Environmental Sciences
  • European Masters Degree in Food Studies
  • Food Quality Management
  • Food Safety
  • Food Technology
  • Forest and Nature Conservation
  • Geo-information Science
  • Hydrology and Water Quality
  • International Development Studies
  • International Land and Water Management
  • Landscape Architecture and Planning
  • Leisure, Tourism and Environment
  • Management of Agro-ecological Knowledge and Social Change
  • Management, Economics and Consumer Studies
  • Meteorology and Air Quality
  • Molecular Life Sciences
  • Nutrition and Health
  • Organic Agriculture
  • Plant Biotechnology
  • Plant Sciences
  • Soil Science
  • Urban Environmental Management

PhD programme

The PhD programme is a four-year programme which consists of a research component and a smaller education component. To apply for a PhD position, the applicant must contact one of the Graduate Schools of Wageningen University. In order to guarantee adequate supervision, the research subject must fit in the research programme of a Graduate School. The four-year PhD programme consists of a research component (conducting research under supervision and writing a thesis) and a smaller education component (up to 15% of the total PhD time) Upon completion of PhD programme, the PhD student is expected to be:

  • Able to function as an independent scientist.
  • Able to integrate his/her own work in the theoretical framework of his/her discipline(s) in a broader area of research and able to communicate this in a scientific or general setting.
  • Competent in identifying priority areas of research and in formulating questions and experimental hypotheses pertinent to this research.

Research Institutes

The following research institutes are part of Wageningen UR :

  • Agricultural Economics Research Institute (LEI)
  • Agrotechnology & Food Sciences Group (AFSG)
  • Alterra - Research Institute for the Green World (ALTERRA)
  • International Institute for Land Reclamation and Improvement (ILRI)
  • Animal Sciences Group (ASG)
  • Applied Plant Research (PPO)
  • Central Institute for Animal Disease Control (CIDC-Lelystad)
  • International Agricultural Centre (IAC)
  • Plant Research International (PRI)
  • RIKILT-Institute of Food Safety

Van Hall-Larenstein School of Higher Professional Education

The Van Hall-Larenstein School was formed out of a merger of the Van Hall Instituut and Larenstein, School of Professional Education.

Van Hall Larenstein offers 14 bachelor’s degree programmes and 6 professional master’s degree programmes to a total of 4,400 students of 20 nationalities. The study programmes are mainly in Dutch.

Student activities and Associations

M.S.V. Alchimica is a study association for students of Molecular Life Sciences. For over 35 years it has been organising many different activities for its members.

CODON is a study association for students of Biotechnology and Bioinformatics established by the first students of Bioprocesstechnology on 16 September 1991. At that time the association carried the name "BiPS" which was later changed to CODON. The association's main language is English.

Nicolas Appert (study association) is the study association for the students of Food technology and Food Safety of both the University and the Van Hall Larenstein College. It was founded on September 6, 1962, and was named after the French food scientist Nicolas Appert.

Heeren XVII is the study association for the students of Agrotechnology and Agricultural and Bioresource Engineering. It was founded on April 1, 1965.

Genius Loci is the study association for the students of Landscape architecture and spatial planning. The name reflects the atmosphere of a certain place. It was founded on February 15, 1990 after the merger of two older study programmes.

Licere is the study association for the students of the MSc Leisure, Tourism and Environment. It was founded in 2006 and its name means 'Leisure time' in Latin.

Mercurius is the study association for the students of the BSc's Business and Consumer Studies and Economics and Policy and for the students of the MSc Management, Economics and Consumer Studies.

De Veetelers is the study association of students Animal Sciences (both BSc and MSc). The name means literally Animal Breeders and was founded in 1962.

Notable alumni

University pages

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