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MA Russian and Eurasian Studies

Leiden University Faculty of Humanities

Full time September, February MA Full-time: 1 year

About the course

The master's programme in Russian and Eurasian Studies draws on Leiden University's status as an international centre of expertise in the study of Russia and Eurasia. This programme explores Russia and the Eurasian world from the perspectives of language, literature and culture, or politics, history and economics.

Learn from leading researchers in the field

This one-year master’s programme explores Russia and the Eurasian world from the perspectives of language, literature and culture, or politics, history and economics. Leiden University's Faculty of Humanities has been studying Russia and the Slavic world since 1913. Scholars from around the world come to Leiden University to study and teach this fascinating field. During your studies, you will learn from our faculty members as well as

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Entry Requirements

A bachelor’s degree from a university, equivalent to the level of a Dutch academic bachelor’s degree, or demonstrate to meet the requirements for such a degree. Sufficient command of English (IELTS 7.0, TOEFL 100 (internet-based) or Cambridge English: Proficiency (CPE)). This language requirement does not apply if you have: completed your education in Canada (except Quebec), USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand or Australia, or an International Baccalaureate, or a Dutch VWO-diploma.

For more information about programme-specific admission requirements, click here:
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Course Content

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Student Profile(s)

Magdalena Lis

4832.jpg I chose Russian and Eurasian Studies because it is well known as an excellent and unique programme in the whole Netherlands. I graduated from both Inter-national Relations and Eastern Studies at the University of Adam Mickiewicz in Poznań, Poland, and this programme exceptionally complimented my bachelor-level education, offering a great opportunity to expand my knowledge about the post-Soviet space from the new perspective. This programme gives its students the opportunity to shape the focus of their education thanks to the flexibility in selecting study components. Available courses are broad and very comprehen-sive. I participated in classes on political economy, international relations, and present conflict in Ukraine and was pleased with the way they put emphasis on the current trends and developments, but still placed within historical and cul-tural context. The academic staff creates great conditions for learning, skilfully navigating discussion and always asking right questions. I especially enjoyed their personal approach, because it allowed me to develop in the areas that are the most interesting to me. Prior knowledge of Russian language is a benefit, because use of the Russian-language sources in research is encouraged and appreciated, but the programme does not offer a language course.

The application process was surprisingly easy. The admission process is run online. The website is clear and intuitive, and allows to save the progress at any stage, so it is possible to fill it up gradually. It is important to gather necessary documents in advance, since documents like the IELTS or TOEFL language certificate is required (with some exceptions). The programme is dedicated to people genuinely passionate about Russia and neighbouring countries. The motivational letter has to undoubtedly express the applicant’s interest and its specific aspects. The recommendation letters do not have to be written only by academics. Such a letter from the student organisation or NGO might emphasize soft skills, for instance dedication, ability to meet deadlines or outstanding research capabilities. It is important to keep in mind that the official documents such as university diploma have to be provided directly by the issuing institution. Luckily, the Leiden University has a great support system and answers all questions thoroughly both via e-mail and telephone. It also keeps candidates up to date and as soon as the process is finalised, informs about the outcomes.


Leiden Excellence Scholarship

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