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Who must complete the professional traineeship?

If you graduated from a recognised Dutch course in architecture, urban design, landscape architecture or interior architecture after 31 December 2014 and you wish to enter your name in the Dutch Register of Architects, you must first successfully complete the professional traineeship. Only persons who are entered in the register are permitted to use the titles of architect, urban designer, landscape architect or interior architect in the Netherlands.

I received my Dutch diploma before 1 January 2015. Do I have to complete the professional traineeship?

A transitional provision applies to graduates from recognised Dutch courses in architecture, urban design, landscape architecture and interior architecture. If you received a recognised Dutch diploma before 1 January 2015, you can apply for registration.

Does the professional traineeship also apply to graduates from Dutch academies of architecture?

Professional experience forms an integral part of the out-of-school curriculum at the academies of architecture. The academies have renewed their out-of-school curricula so that they reflect the standards set by the Professional Traineeship Regulation. An exemption therefore applies for students from the 2014 academic year on.

I received my diploma abroad. Do I have to complete the professional traineeship before I can enter my name in the register?

If you received your diploma outside the Netherlands and wish to enter your name in the Dutch Register of Architects, you may have to complete the professional traineeship. This depends on a number of factors, such as the discipline in which you graduated and the professional qualifications in the country where you received your diploma. You may have completed a comparable professional traineeship abroad. The best course of action is to email a clear description of your situation to You will then be informed whether you can enter the register, whether conditions such as the professional traineeship apply, and whether other additional costs will be incurred.

What does the professional traineeship involve?

The professional traineeship lasts approximately two years and comprises two elements: an individual track and an additional track. These elements form a single entity. The individual track involves gaining professional experience under the supervision of a mentor. You can gain professional experience in various places at home or abroad. The additional track involves professional traineeship modules.

Taken together, the individual and additional tracks lead to a coherent body of knowledge, understanding and skills that enables you to meet the required standards. These required standards form part of the Professional Traineeship Regulation. Your professional traineeship will be assessed by a committee with members from your own discipline. The committees are independent and advise the Architecten Register. They don’t assess the aesthetic qualities of your work, but the quality of your professional traineeship. 

How can I complete the additional track?

There are two possibilities: an integrated programme and an independent route. These two possibilities are described on the web page ‘How is the professional traineeship organised’.

If I graduated in numerous specialisations, do I need to complete the professional traineeship for each specialisation?

Specific knowledge, understanding and skills are, in principle, required for every professional discipline, and a professional traineeship must therefore be completed for each discipline. Please note that exemptions to this regulation can be made.

What are (professional traineeship) modules?

These are training events, courses and other gatherings that enable participants to increase or augment their knowledge, understanding and skills, and that offer space for reflection on the practical experience gained. Participants follow these modules in addition to their work. Starting point for modules is an average of at least 1 module per year, or at least 2 modules during your Professional Traineeship.

It is expected that an average of 4 hours a week is required to complete the modules for an integrated programme.

If you follow an independent route, you choose your own modules, so the time required cannot be predicted in advance.

For recognised modules, you can consult the Professional Traineeship page set up at the request of the Architects Register Bureau.

Where can I work?

You may work in paid employment, as an independent practitioner on your own projects, or in a freelance capacity for various employers/offices. You may work in various places, both in the Netherlands and elsewhere. You may also gain some of your work experience outside your particular discipline, for example in a related discipline or field of work. On your Employment Statement you indicate how, where and how much you are going to work (see Downloads).

You can also search for work opportunities on the Professional Traineeship page and on other websites that advertise job vacancies.

Can I take part in Europan without being registered?

Although you had to be entered in the Register of Architects to take part in Europan, this rule has changed after consultation between the Architects Registration Bureau and Europan Nederland. From 2015 on, a diploma from a relevant master’s course allows you to participate in Europan. Participating in Europan can even form part of your professional traineeship. Discuss this during your intake meeting with the committee.

I want to work part-time. How will that affect my professional traineeship?

The professional traineeship is based on a working week of 32 hours or more. Working part-time is permissible, provided you work at least 20 hours a week. The professional traineeship period will be extended proportionally if you work less than 32 hours a week.

What conditions must a mentor meet?

A mentor must be entered in the Register of Architects in your discipline for at least three years and also work in that discipline. A mentor does not have to work at the same place you do.

How do I find a mentor?

It is your responsibility to find a mentor. You may be able to arrange one through your place of education or through your place of work. You don't have to work at the same office your mentor does, but you have to work in the same discipline.

Do I have to work at the same office as my mentor?

This is not compulsory, although it does offer big advantages, simply because it increases the number of contact moments between the participant and mentor, thus enhancing the sharing of experience. But it is not a requirement. If, as a new graduate, you cannot find work at an office, and you choose to become self-employed, or if no mentor is available within your office, it is possible to be supervised and supported by a so-called ‘external mentor’.

Can I switch mentors during my professional traineeship?

Yes, but this must be communicated immediately to the Architects Registration Bureau. The Bureau Architectenregister reserves the right to put your traineeship on hold if you have no mentor for more than 3 months.

If you switch mentors please upload a completed evaluation form by your old mentor and a mentor statement from your new mentor on your personal page.

What are the tasks of a mentor?

The tasks and role of the mentor are described in the Professional Traineeship Regulation and summarised in the Mentor Statement. They include: the mentor assists the participant throughout the professional traineeship with advice and information related to professional practice in the widest sense.

Does a mentor have to offer a participant work?

That is not a requirement. If the mentor or the office where the mentor works can offer a participant work, they are of course entitled to do so.

I would like to become a mentor for individuals who wish to complete a professional traineeship. How can I go about it?

Applications from prospective mentors are welcome and can be posted on the Professional Traineeship page on the ArchiNed website. Please first read the conditions that a mentor must meet.

Can I start my professional traineeship while I am still studying?

You can only officially start your professional traineeship after graduation. Please read the information about conditions for professional experience on the page Professional experience and exemption.

How do I apply?

You apply through the Architects Registration Bureau. See the website page ‘Application for Professional Traineeship’. The bureau will assess whether the course you completed is recognised and makes you eligible to start the professional traineeship and enter you name in the Register of Architects.

Where and with whom do I conduct the intake meeting?

If you are following an integrated programme, the intake meeting takes place at the agency that provides the programme. If you are taking the independent route, you will have your intake meeting with the Professional Traineeship Committee at the Architects Registration Bureau. You always conduct your meetings with committee members from your own discipline. The committees are independent and advise the Architecten Register. They don’t assess the aesthetic qualities of your work, but the quality of your professional traineeship. 

In the case of both the integrated programme and independent route, your mentor must attend the intake meeting.

What does the professional traineeship cost?

For the integrated programme you pay a fixed fee for the entire professional traineeship period to the organisation that provides the programme. The fee covers the costs of supervision, the intake, interim and final meetings, and all necessary sessions and modules.

For the independent route you pay a fixed fee for the entire professional traineeship, the meetings with the Professional Traineeship Committee and a variable amount for the necessary modules. You pay the fees for the modules directly to the providers of these modules.

The total costs for the Professional Traineeship period meetings, starting from January 2020, are:

€1.200,- payed at once, or in three instalments of €410,-.


Where can I find the forms and documents that I need to complete in order to start?

The forms and documents for the independent route are available on this website. You can find the forms in the step-by-step description under the heading ‘How the professional traineeship is organised – independent route’. If you are already familiar with the step-by-step procedure, go directly to the Downloads page.

What happens if I cannot work for a period, or if I cannot find work?

If during your professional traineeship you are unable to work because of maternity leave or for another reason, or if you are temporarily out of work, then your official professional traineeship also stops temporarily. You must, however, complete your professional traineeship within six years.

Which meetings does my mentor have to attend?

Your mentor has to attend the start meeting and the interim meeting. The final meeting will be held with just you and the Committee; your mentor does not attend this meeting.

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