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Basic Civic Integration Examination Abroad

Before you apply for the mvv, you must first take the civic integration examination abroad. This examination tests the Dutch language and society.

Who has to take the civic integration examination abroad?

You must take the exam, if you wish to live with your partner or spouse in the Netherlands. Also if your are a spiritual counsellor, you have to take this exam.

Where do I take the civic integration examination abroad?

You make the exam at a Dutch embassy or consulate general. You yourself, after registering at DUO, will need to contact the Dutch representation in the country where you want to do the exam. A list of embassies for taking a civic integration exam abroad can be found in the 'Overview of countries and cities for mvv application and taking civic integration exams'.

For more information,  refer to www.naarnederland.nl/en.  Or read the brochure Basic Civic Integration Examination Abroad.

     Did you pass the examination? Then you can only collect the mvv at the Dutch representation in the country of your nationality 
     or permanent residence. 

When can I be exempted from the civic integration examination ?

You do not have to take the exam in one of the following situations:

  • You are under 18 or you have reached your AOW pension age. The AOW pension age differs per person.
  • You have a valid residence permit and you want to change the purpose of stay.
  • You have lived in the Netherlands for at least 8 years during the compulsory school age.
  • You have the nationality of an EU/EEA country, Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, South Korea, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States of America, Vatican City.
  • You do not have the nationality of an EU/EEA country or Switzerland and you apply for verification against EU Law.

  • You have the status of a long-term resident EC in another EU country.

  • You intend to apply for a residence permit for a temporary purpose of stay.
  • You intend to apply for residence with a family member who has a residence permit for a temporary purpose of stay.

  • You intend to apply for residence with a family member who has a temporary or permanent asylum residence permit.
  • You have the Surinamese nationality and have at least finished primary school in the Dutch language in Surinam or the Netherlands.
  • You are going to work exclusively as a contemplative, internal officer or member of the board of a religious or ideological organisation.
  • You have one of the following diplomas, certificates or documents: 
    • A civic integration diploma issued under the Civic Integration Act.
    • A diploma State Exam Dutch as a second language (NT2), level I or II.
    • A  Dutch diploma or certificate of a university, professional or vocational education (hbo, mbo level 2 or higher) or secondary education (vwo/havo/mavo/vmbo). The education was taught in Dutch.
    • A diploma, certificate or document as set out above, obtained in a Dutch-speaking education system attended in Belgium or Surinam. You passed the subject of Dutch language.
    • A diploma, certificate or other document, obtained in a Dutch-speaking education system attended in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The diploma was obtained at a course designated by the Dutch Minister of OCW (Education, Culture and Science). You passed the subject of Dutch language.
    • A diploma of the European Baccalaureate awarded by the European School. The diploma (baccalaureate) consists of the subject of Dutch as a first or second language and you must have passed this subject.
    • An International Baccalaureate Middle Years Certificate, an International General Certificate of Secondary Education or an International Baccalaureate. As part of the education you attended an English-Dutch language course or a course International Baccalaureate including the subject of Dutch with you passed.

Are you sending the application by post? Please then enclose a regular copy or a certified copy of the diplomas or certificates. Never send the original by post.

What if I am not able to pass the exam?

You can be exempted from taking (a part of) the exam in case of special individual or medical circumstances. This means that you do not have to take (a part of) the exam (again).

Exemption in case of special individual circumstances

If you think you are unable to pass the exam due to very special individual circumstances, you state this in the form. You use the Appendix Civic Integration Examination Abroad (of the application form). You have to attach documentary evidence showing you are unable to pass the exam.

Exemption in case of medical circumstances

If you think that you are permanently not able to take the exam due to mental or physical circumstances, you report this to the Dutch representation. The Dutch representation will appoint a medical examiner who will conduct a medical examination. This examination costs money. The physician also fills in a medical questionnaire and sends the form to the IND. You will receive a copy of this. You attach this copy to your application form. The medical questionnaire may not be older than 6 months upon submitting the application.
Were you unable to take (part of) the civic integration exam or unable to make efforts to prepare for (part of) the civic integration exam due to physical or mental circumstances for a period of 3 years? You then can be granted exemption for taking (part of) the exam.
Do you not meet this requirement, but you do have a physical or mental impairment? In assessing your application for exemption, the IND will then also take in account other individual special circumstances.

Costs and preparation

The civic integration examination abroad costs €150. There is a self-study pack available that you can purchase to prepare yourself for the exam. You are not obligated to make use of the self-study pack. Further information on how to prepare yourself for the exam, can be found on the website Naar Nederland.


You may register for the civic integration examination abroad yourself, for your partner or for someone else. You can register for all 3 parts of the exams or just for one part. To register, you complete the digital registration form.

The results

The results will be known within 8 weeks. DUO sends the results by email. The email includes a PDF file with the results. In the PDF file you can read which parts of the exam you have passed. You have passed the basic civic integration examination when the PDF file states you have passed all 3 parts of the exam. You can include this PDF file to your application for the mvv. You will not receive a certificate from DUO.

If you fail (part of) the examination, you may register again. You have to pay the costs again. Parts of the exam that you did pass stay valid until you have all 3 parts of the exam.

What is the validity of the results?

After passing all parts of the examination, you have 1 year to apply for an mvv.  If you have been waiting for more than 1 year, then you have to take the examination again. You can find the issue date (datum afgifte) of the results in the PDF file that you received by email from DUO.

Passed the examination. Now what?

Having passed the examination, you may now submit the mvv application. You make a copy/printout of the letter informing you that you passed the examination. You attach this to the application to be sent to the IND.

Further integration in the Netherlands

The civic integration examination abroad is the start of your integration. Have you gotten your residence permit? And are you living in the Netherlands? Then you will do a civic integration course in the Netherlands. And after the course the civic integration examination. You are integrated when you have passed the civic integration examination in the Netherlands. 

For more information on civic integration in the Netherlands, refer to www/inburgeren.nl/en


Compulsory school age

​This is from the age of 5 until the end of the school year in which the child becomes 16 year old.

Kingdom of the Netherlands

The Kingdom of the Netherlands consists of The Netherlands, Aruba, Curaçao and Sint Maarten. And 3 special municipalities: Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba.

certified copy

A 'certified copy' is a copy of a record which has been affixed with an original stamp/seal by the issuing institution, thus proving that it is a genuine copy of an original document issued by that institution. For this you need to contact the educational institute where you earned your diploma or certificate​.