English information

    Welcome to the international page of the NVO, the Association of Educationalists in the Netherlands.

    The professional association

    NVO, the Association of Educationalists in the Netherlands, is a national professional association. It aims to assure and advance the quality of its member educationalists’ professional practice, and to represent their interests in a way that is recognizable. NVO’s members comprise over 10.000 academically trained professionals, supported by a permanent office in the city of Utrecht in the heart of the Netherlands.

    The profession of educationalist (‘pedagoog’) in the Netherlands

    In the Netherlands the profession of ‘(ortho)pedagoog’ (educationalist or remedial educationalist) is a discipline in its own right. Educationalists’ academic training is separate from that of psychologists and is offered by specific faculties at six universities. The ‘(ortho)pedagoog’ focuses on educational and developmental disturbances and learning and behavioural disorders. His or her subject includes the child, the parents, the school, and other professional or non-professional educators.

    Wide field of activity

    NVO members work in a variety of fields. The most important of them are:

    • education
    • youth care
    • disability care (for people with an intellectual, physical, sensory or multiple disability)
    • mental health care
    • research (particularly at universities or institutes of higher education)

    Members can maintain contact and exchange information on issues and developments in their specific field via networks that are linked to themes. A section of the membership have their own practice as educationalists, sometimes in combination with a position as employee in one of the above sectors. The NVO website features lists of names and addresses of independently practicing NVO educationalists who can be approached directly, for each region of the Netherlands.

    Professional code

    Monitoring the quality of professional practice is one of NVO’s key aims. The association has its own professional code, which all members are expected to abide by. The code describes the minimum conditions for sound professional practice. This ensures that clients, referring organizations, fellow institutions, employees, contractors and insurers know what NVO members stand for. NVO has an independent Supervisory Board and Appeals Board, which deal with complaints about the professional conduct of NVO members. While members who are the subject of complaints can count on NVO support, their actions are also critically assessed in relation to the professional code to which they are committed. The code and complaints procedures are public, and are available from the NVO website.

    >Professional code in English*

    *The contents of this document has been compiled with the utmost care. It is our commitment to be as current as possible. Despite the care it is possible that information is out of date or inaccurate.

    Professional competence registrations

    Quality assurance is one of NVO’s key aims. Your clients and their educators or supervisors are entitled to it. When you register as a professional educationalist (‘pedagoog’), it shows that you meet the quality requirements of the association, and that your competence is up to date and your content is up to standard. NVO holds an extensive registration system for professional educationalists. You can enter one of our registrations if you have successfully finished an accredited course. If you have not finished such a course, the content of your pre-education or competence will be tested by one of our committees. If you would like to register with us, you would need to become a member of NVO. Each registration has a periodical re-registration. Every five years you need to show that you have maintained your profession by development of expertise and work experience.

    >More information about the NVO registrations

    Professional competence profile of the remedial educationalist/psychologist in care provision for people with an intellectual disability

    This professional profile has been drawn up to clarify the services that can by supplied by remedial educationalists and psychologists working in salaried employment or independently in the provision of care for people with intellectual (and multiple) disabilities. This does not include care for people with purely physical disabilities or non-congenital brain damage, although people in the latter group are often admitted to institutions that provide care for people with intellectual disabilities. In some organizations the term behavioral specialist or behavioral scientist is used. This profile applies to academically trained remedial educationalists and psychologists, who have graduated from a Dutch university or who have completed an equivalent program in another country. The curricula of such programs in remedial education and psychologist should provide a broad basis with a depth of study that is sufficiently relevant to the field of work.

    Translated documents

    >Professional competence profile 

    Information, service and advice

    NVO organizes congresses, workshops and courses for members and non-members. The association has its own magazine, de Pedagoog, in which leading experts express their views on topical scientific and social themes related to upbringing and education. NVO brings out publications itself and also jointly with related professional associations and organizations. The NVO helpdesk provides information and advice to members on legal, ethical, professional and employment issues. The website has a generally accessible section including other information on the organization, professional code, complaints procedure, courses and registrations. There is also a section with notices and job vacancies, and a database in which visitors can search for an independently practicing educationalist. All information is available in Dutch, and a start has been made on a modest international page in English. The members only section includes members’ contact details and information on activities by the networks that enable the different professional fields to maintain contact.


    NVO supplies background information to the media on the work and profession of educationalist, and related issues. On request the association provides experts and spokespersons for interviews and radio or television programs. This service is in increasing demand from the media. In most cases, experts recommended by NVO speak in a personal capacity.

    Promoting members’ interests

    NVO promotes the interests of its members. In doing so, the organization consults with representatives of organizations or groups whose work relates to or affects the work of NVO members. These include the education, justice and health ministries, parliament, institutions offering postgraduate education, professional associations, health insurers and research institutes.

    International cooperation

    NVO has contact with sister organizations in various European countries, and aims to extend and develop this cooperation >International Society of Professionals in the Field of Special Education.


    NVO (office)
    Churchilllaan 11
    3527 GV Utrecht
    The Netherlands
    tel: +31 (0)30 – 232 24 07