Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

The Basic Civic Integration Examination is mandatory for applying for an ‘MVV’ (Regular Provisional Residence Permit). This enables you to show that you have knowledge of Dutch society and the Dutch language.

Yes, there are exam regulations, which you can find on the page Examination Regulations Basic Civic Integration Examination.

You can apply for an exemption if you unable to take the basic examination for medical or psychological reasons. You can do this at the Dutch embassy or representation in the country of origin or permanent residence. See for more information the website Can I be granted an exemption for a civic integration exam?.

Not everyone has to take the basic exam. If you would you like to know whether you can be exempted from the basic examination please contact the IND. For more information visit the website Can I be granted an exemption for the civic integration examination abroad?.

You will find all this information on this website. You can practise sample exams and order the self-study package here.

You will receive a response to your registration by e-mail within five working days. This e-mail also contains the payment request. This e-mail will be sent to the e-mail addresses you entered when you registered.

You can only change your registration by responding to the e-mail you receive from DUO after your registration. You can then indicate what needs to be changed. You cannot change your registration by filling in the registration form again.

The sponsor is the person who lives in the Netherlands and with whom you want to live in the Netherlands. This is usually your partner or child. It may also be a company or an organisation. Your sponsor does not have to be present when you take the exam.

No, you cannot pay in instalments.

If you no longer wish to take the exam, you must cancel the exam at DUO no later than 24 hours before the time of the exam. You can submit a refund request to DUO. You can do this by responding to one of the e-mails you have received from DUO, for example the proof of payment.

Once the payment has been received by DUO, you will receive an e-mail from DUO explaining how to make an appointment. This will also include your candidate number, which you can provide when making an appointment. You cannot make an appointment until you have received this e-mail.

You can take the exams on different days. In that case you will have to register separately for each exam section and pay separately for each section. You will need to make an appointment for each section separately at the Dutch representation.

You will need to contact the Dutch representation where you made the appointment. You can choose a different exam date in consultation with them.

You must at least bring with you a valid identity document: a valid passport or, if you do not have one, an identity card. You must also bring a recent colour passport photo. This passport photo must comply with the Dutch government requirements for passport photos on passports or ID cards. You will receive a confirmation after making the appointment. You must also bring the appointment confirmation with you.

You must take the civic integration examination in your country of origin or in your country of residence.

If your country of origin does not have a Dutch representation, you can take the exam at the nearest Dutch representation. You may need a visa for that country. Please contact the Dutch representative where you want to take the exam. If you do not speak the language of this country, we recommend that you bring an interpreter with you.

You will receive the results by e-mail at the e-mail address you have entered. If you also entered your sponsor's e-mail address when you registered, that person will also receive the results by e-mail.

Once you have passed all sections of the basic examination, you have one year to apply for a residence permit. If you wait for longer than a year, you will have to take the basic exam again.

The exam is confidential. It is not possible to view the exam.

The exam is divided into three sections: You must pass all three parts to pass the basic exam. The sections Knowledge of Dutch Society and Reading Proficiency are checked and assessed by computer. The Speaking proficiency section is checked and assessed by people. You are given a mark for each examination part taken. You will be given marks out of 10. A 1-5 is a fail. A 6 or higher means a pass.

DUO will send you the results by e-mail as soon as possible, but within eight weeks at the latest.

The speaking proficiency section is checked and assessed by people. The results are no longer immediately available for this reason. The entire exam used to be checked by the computer.

DUO will send you an e-mail containing the results. This e-mail also contains a pdf-file containing the e-mail with the results. You can print this file and attach it to your MVV application. You do not receive a certificate.

Each package contains a DVD of the film with the help language of his or her choice, the Dutch spoken film and six or seven other help languages. Each exercise package contains two DVDs, so both the NTSC and the PAL/SECAM systems are provided. See your equipment manual for the system that supports your DVD player and TV. You can also consult the country list. You can also try out both DVDs in your language to see which one gives a good picture. The film can also be viewed online via this website.

The actual exam is taken with a computer. The example Reading and Speaking proficiency exams are also taken via the computer. You can use the sample exams to experience how the actual exams will go. You can take the sample Reading and Speaking exams on this website. The sample exams are free of charge. You can practise with them as often as you like.

  1. Click in the menu on 'Sample exams'.
  2. Choose the exam you want to take: Reading or Speaking.
  3. Read and listen to the explanation and instruction.
  4. Then you can answer the questions.

What do you need to view the sample exams?

  1. A computer or laptop
  2. An Internet connection

The questions used in the example reading and speaking exams do not occur in the actual exams. The purpose of a sample exam is that people can prepare for the actual exams. The advantages of that are:

  1. You can experience what it's like to take an exam on your computer.
  2. You are introduced to the various parts of the exams.
  3. You hear the different voices, accents, speech tempo, pauses, etc. in the example Speaking proficiency exam. When you take the actual examine you will be used to these aspects.
  4. The candidates are eventually given an estimate of their chances of success.

You can also prepare yourself with the Naar Nederland teaching package. This may be the case, for example, if your partner in the Netherlands and/or family members in the country of origin are going to help you with the preparations. This can be done by watching the film together and by translating all or parts of the film into your native language. In the same way, you can practice with the photo book that contains the questions that refer to the film and that are included in the actual exam in the Knowledge of Dutch Society section. These questions are also on audio CD. You can use the workbook, the sound files, the e-learning course and the sample exams to prepare for the reading and speaking exams. The first twenty lessons are easy to follow without a help language because of the many illustrations and instructions on the screen. You can follow the other lessons with the help of someone who does speak Dutch or one of the help languages. In some countries, courses are given in Dutch and there are even special courses to prepare for the Basic Civic Integration Examination. Another option is to take a short integration course or a course in Dutch in the Netherlands. If you have the opportunity to come to the Netherlands for a short stay, you could follow such a course or prepare yourself with your partner. Once you are sufficiently prepared, you can practice with the sample exams on this website. That way you’ll experience what it’s like to take the exam and get an idea of your chances of passing the actual exam.

Two versions of the help languages English and French are available: expurgated and unexpurgated. In the expurgated version, two scenes from the film Naar Nederland have been omitted: a scene of a same-sex marriage and a beach scene in which a woman is sunbathing topless. This is quite common in the Netherlands, but in some countries the possession of such material is considered a criminal offence. That's why an expurgated version has been made. The unexpurgated version of the video does contain these two scenes.

The reading proficiency exam tests the extent to which you have mastered Latin script and can read and understand written Dutch. The exam contains 44 questions. The reading proficiency exam consists of two parts:

  1. Reading and hearing words. You hear a word and use the mouse to make a choice from four written answer options. Or you read a word and choose from four spoken answers with the mouse.
  2. Reading texts. You read a text on the screen and are offered 2 multiple choice questions. You choose the right answer with the mouse.

No. You don't have to write.

Level A1 is described in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. The following applies to language level A1. Can understand and use familiar everyday expressions and very basic phrases aimed at the satisfaction of needs of a concrete type. Can introduce themselves and others and can ask and answer questions about personal details such as where they live, people they know and things they have. Can interact in a simple way provided the other person talks slowly and clearly and is prepared to help. These levels of proficiency are required for the Basic Civic Integration Exam abroad:

  1. Listening: I can understand familiar words and basic phrases about myself, my family and immediate concrete environment, when people speak slowly and clearly.
  2. Reading: I can understand familiar names, words and very simple sentences, for example on notices and posters and in catalogues.
  3. Speaking: I can interact in a simple way provided the other person is prepared to repeat or rephrase things at a slower rate of speech and helps me to formulate what I'm trying to say. I can ask and answer simple questions in areas of immediate need or very familiar topics.

The Knowledge of Dutch Society part examines your knowledge of the Netherlands. The questions and answers can be found in the self-study package Naar Nederland. To prepare well for this section you can do the following:

  1. Watch the film several times in the language of your choice, until you know the content.
  2. Then watch the film in the Dutch version.
  3. Practise by theme with the questions from the photo book, listen to the CD and look at the photos.
  4. Practice all the questions until you know all the answers well.
  5. Watch the film again in Dutch. Now that you know the questions, you will understand much more.
The preparation for the Knowledge of Dutch Society exam takes less time than the preparation for the two language exams. It is best to combine the preparation for all parts. The film Naar Nederland contains many words that also appear in the language exams. By frequently watching and listening to the Dutch spoken version of the film, you become familiar with the sounds of Dutch.

You will find below some tips to help you practise listening to and speaking Dutch.

  1. The Naar Nederland teaching package contains a comprehensive Dutch method for non-Dutch speakers. Follow the instructions in the book or in the manual.
  2. Try to practise regularly. Learning one or two lessons every day is better than learning five lessons in a row once a week.
  3. The exam is taken by computer. You can practise by speaking Dutch over the phone with your partner or with someone else who speaks Dutch. Ask your conversation partner to repeat something if you don't understand it and to correct you if your pronunciation is not correct.
  4. You can get used to the sounds of Dutch by watching and listening to Dutch television, movies or songs on video/DVD or cdio. This will help you to learn to listen well in Dutch and to pronounce Dutch properly.
  5. Watching and listening to the Dutch version of the film Naar Nederland also helps, as does practising with the 100 questions that belong to the examination section Knowledge of Dutch Society.
  6. Are you well prepared? If so, you can take the sample exam. Taking this sample exam will show you what to expect of the actual exam.

Below you'll find some tips to help you practise reading in Dutch.

  1. The Naar Nederland teaching package contains a comprehensive Dutch method for non-Dutch speakers. Follow the instructions in the book or in the manual.
  2. Try to practise regularly. Learning one or two lessons every day is better than learning five lessons in a row once a week.
  3. You can get used to the Dutch script by looking at a Dutch newspaper every day. Can you understand what an article is about? Try to recognize important words in the headlines. Perhaps there's a Dutch magazine you find interesting. Your partner can send you magazines or books. You can also view Dutch newspapers and magazines online.
  4. The reading comprehension exam is taken by computer.
  5. Are you well prepared for the reading proficiency exam? If so, you can take the sample exam. By taking this sample exam you know what to expect of the actual exam.

If you follow the Dutch language lessons in the package, you will learn to read, listen and speak in one go. At the same time you prepare yourself for the reading and speaking exams. Before you can start the real preparation for the language exams, you need to be able to read and write. The Dutch language is written in Latin letters, just like English, Spanish or Portuguese. In the first twenty lessons you will learn the Latin script and all Dutch sounds. You will learn how to turn the letters into words and how they sound. You will also get to know all kinds of Dutch words. Anyone who can already read and write in their own language and has a good command of Latin writing can start with lesson 21. We advise you to take lessons 1 to 4 and lesson 20 beforehand. Here you can practise the Dutch sounds and letters. In lessons 21-65 there are parts marked with an orange star that are especially meant for highly educated persons who want to integrate in the Netherlands.

If someone follows the Dutch language lessons in the package, he or she learns to read, listen and speak in one go. Before a person can start the real preparation for the language exams, he or she must be able to read and write. The Dutch language is written in Latin letters, just like English, Spanish or Portuguese. That is why the first twenty lessons are specifically aimed at learning to read and write. In these lessons a person learns all Dutch sounds and the Latin script. The student learns how to turn the letters into words and how they sound. A large number of photos, spoken instructions in the help language and clear instruction icons help with this. The glossary has been recorded in Dutch and in the help language. Even if a person cannot read in his own language, he or she can still learn the new words.

With this package you can prepare yourself independently for the civic integration examination. Everything needed to do the lessons and take the sample exams is in the basic package: a glossary, translated instructions, lots of illustrations and so on. But learning a language without putting it into practice is very difficult. That is why it is very important to talk a lot with your partner or others. Listen a lot to Dutch programmes on radio and television. Also use the film in the basic package to increase your vocabulary.

No. For the exam you must be able to read, listen and speak. In the workbook there are exercises in each lesson where you can fill in something. You can do that verbally. Higher educated people can write if they want to.

The exercises and the grammar blocks with an orange star are meant for highly educated people who would like to know more about Dutch grammar and who would like a bit more challenge in the exercise program.

No. You can learn Dutch with the workbook and the audio CDs. So you do need a CD player. The lessons in the workbook are the same as those in the digital exercise program. We do recommend that you use the computer program if you have a computer. That makes learning easier.

In some countries the use of YouTube causes problems or it is not possible to use YouTube at all. In that case you can watch the movies below (use Google Chrome as your browser).

The Naar Nederland package contains a login code for the online training program. To log in go to the page: Login e-learning. You can then log in in two ways: with the e-learning login code from the package, or with your self-made account. The first time you have not yet created an account, so you need to log in with your login code. Once you have entered the login code (=token) you can do two things: 1. Create an account Enter your email address and choose a password. The password must be entered twice. The advantage of creating an account is that you do not have to use the login code afterwards. From now on, you can log in with your e-mail address and your self-created password. You can create two accounts per code: a Student account and a Sponsor account. 2. Log in as This allows you to start the training program right away without creating an account. The next time you log in you will need the login code again. You should therefore note it carefully. You can choose to log in as a Student or Sponsor..

The student is you, the person learning Dutch. You complete the assignments in the online training program. Your progress will be saved in your personal profile.

A sponsor is someone who helps you with your learning process. This is often a partner in the Netherlands. The sponsor can log in remotely and view your progress and answers. The sponsor cannot complete any assignments himself.

With a personal account it is also possible to log in with the login code. These are two ways of logging in that remain active at the same time.

No, this is not possible. If you log in on a second computer with the same login code, the program on the first computer will be closed. It is then assumed that you have moved to another computer, for example. Your login will move with you.

No, this is not possible. The login code is strictly personal and linked to your personal progress and results. If a second person logs in with the same account, the program will close for the first person.

The online training programme is offered in the same languages as the total package. It is possible to choose from the following 33 languages: Algerian Arabic, Bosnian, Chinese, Dari, Egyptian Arabic, English, French, Hindi, Indonesian, Iranian Farsi, Iraqi Arabic, Cantonese, Kurdish*, Croatian, Lebanese-Syrian Arabic, Moroccan Arabic, Ukrainian, East Armenian, Pashto, Portuguese, Punjabi Indian, Russian, Serbian, Sinhalese, Spanish, Standard Somali, Standard Arabic, Tamil, Tarifit Berber*, Thai, Tunisian Arabic, Urdu and Vietnamese. * Kurdish and Tarifit Berber are spoken languages. The support therefore consists only of spoken audio.

It is possible to go through the training programme in three different ways. Which way you choose depends on your own level and literacy level. In the profile screen, the first screen you see when you log in for the first time, you can choose from the three routes. The first route is especially designed for non-western or non-western language users. You will receive extra lessons about the Dutch alphabet, Dutch sounds and the pronunciation of Dutch words. The second route is especially designed for users who have an intermediate level of education. The third route is especially designed for higher educated users. Route 1: In this route there are more basic exercises, more repetitions of instructions, but no additional difficult exercises. Route 2: This is the standard route, containing many basic exercises, but also additional difficult exercises. Route 3: In this advanced route you will find fewer basic exercises and more additional difficult exercises. You can always change your route by going to your profile and choosing a different one.

Click on your name to go to the profile screen. In this screen you can change your help language and your name and/or choose a different learning route.

It is also possible that you need to give explicit access to the Naar Nederland website. Go to the settings of your browser. Search for 'content'. Click on 'Add' next to 'Allow' and add the following website: https://www.naarnederland.nl. After that to turn the slider next to 'Ask first (recommended)' off and on again. Finish with the blue ball on the right. Now try to start the program again.

The correct playback and use of the DVD depend on the computer used and the software installed on it. The software on the DVD includes a supplied browser on which the exercise program can be played. It can be played on most computers that have a DVD drive. You also need a sound card and a microphone. For the installation of an application, you can consult the documentation of the PC and/or used software.

For Windows users: The program starts automatically when you insert the DVD into your DVD player. For Mac users: After inserting the DVD in your DVD player, click on the windmill icon in the Finder screen. For Linux users: Run the autorun file in the root folder of the DVD. In the comments of this file you will find additional instructions. Please note that it is important that you use Adobe Flash Player. If you are using alternative flash players such as Gnash, you must also install Adobe Flash Player.

Please note: The training program runs entirely from DVD and therefore needs some time to start up. The program is started as soon as the screen with an instruction film about the choice of language appears. If you have already chosen a language, the screen with the various lessons will appear.

Try to adjust the settings, or find someone who can help you.