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OUNL's Master Degree in Free Software


Learners from the Open University Netherlands (OUNL) may register for one or more courses in the FTA. Supervision and examination is performed by the participating institutions in the joint course programme of the FTA.

After completing courses at the FTA, learners can use these as part of the study programme they are following, which is currently arranged for electives learners can choose in the Master of Computer Science (or in more detail in Dutch). They can also bring these in in the free space (electives) in the Bachelor of IT (if complying with the prior knowledge requirements of individual courses). This goes under the general arrangements for "Aanschuifonderwijs" as contained in the OUNL Study Regulations; see also Recognition of FTA modules at OUNL (PDF). Learners who wish to use this option need to submit this request to the Faculty Review Committee.


Since the examination procedures for FTA modules form an integral part of the course, it is not possible to obtain credit for these modules in any other way than by participating in the course.

  • FTA modules may demand prerequisites that are not automatically fulfilled for every OU student. It is the student's responsibility, when registering for an FTA course, to check that he or she satisfies the prerequisites.
  • For students in the OU master programme Computer Science, at most two FTA certificates will be recognized within the general electives area ("gebonden keuzeruimte algemeen"). Starting Sep. 1, 2011, the maximum number of certificates that can be so recognized will be increased to four. The modules GNU/Linux basic, Free Software Utilities, and Software Architecture cannot be recognized under this rule.
  • For students in the OU bachelor programme Informatica, at most five FTA modules will be recognized within the free choice area ("vrije ruimte"). The module Software Architecture cannot be recognized under this rule.
  • In the above cases, the general rules for external modules ("aanschuifonderwijs") as stated in the Education Rules ("Onderwijs- en Examenregeling") apply.
  • To obtain recognition in the above cases, students should contact the Faculty Examinations Committee ("Facultaire Toetsingscommissie").
  • The module Software Architecture can be recognized as a replacement for the obligatory course of the same name in the OU master programme Computer Science. This necessitates application of the exemption procedures ("vrijstelling"), as described at, and requires a payment of € 149.
  • The grading system adopted by the FTA is identical to the one in use at OU; therefore no conversion of grades is necessary.
  • Recognition of FTA Certificates at OUNL is valid at least until 8 years after the course has been run at the FTA.

This information is also available in Dutch.

Master programme

Here you can download the OUNL's Master of Science Computer Science programme details where credits and FTA recognition is specified (valid 2011-2012).

The OU.NL aims to offer a full time Masters Programme in Free Software in the near future; the FTA should form an essential part of that programme.

The Dutch educational system also has provisions for a free master programme, like a customised programme a learner can propose to the exam commission of a university. See more for how this works at the Open University Netherlands at OUNL Free Master Programme.