Differences between WO and HBO

Research university (WO) Higher professional education (HBO)
'Why' 'How'
Abstract, analytical skills, theoretical, asking questions.

Concrete, practical

The emphasis is on learning to look analytically and critically at the way a certain field can be approached Higher professional education trains for a specific profession. You apply your knowledge and work in a solution-oriented way
You learn to present convincing oral and written arguments and to draw conclusions from them The training is directed towards the acquisition of competences.
Research-oriented Teaching-oriented
A university has a research duty alongside its teaching duties. The most important duty of a university of applied science is to provide teaching.
Because lectures often also have research tasks, new knowledge and the process of academic research are dealt with in the lecture In addition, a great deal of attention is also paid to advisory work for business and institutions
Less supervision More supervision
Own initiative, self-discipline, independence. The contacts with students are often more intensive. There are usually more contact hours, including compulsory ones, such as lectures and work groups
Universities not only have small-scale tutorials and project,s but also lectures for large groups of students.  
Relatively high teaching speed Relatively relaxed teaching speed
You will be expected to be able to quickly process and understand the large amount of teaching material, often in English More time is spent on each topic
Placement or research Placement
You will round off your degree programme with a placement or a research project. You can go on a placement during the entire degree programme.
Professions less clear in advance Professions usually clear in advance
After finishing your degree programme you can usually choose from various possible professions in the fields of research, management, administration and policy After you finish, you will usually end up in a white-collar job.
Personnel ads often ask for an 'academic level of thinking' rather than for specific knowledge.