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

About the course

Benefit from an advanced grounding in the fundamentals of political analysis and advanced training in essential academic and professional skills. There are six specialisations and two cities from which to choose.

Choice is at the very heart of politics. War or peace, left or right, liberty or security, sovereignty or integration, consensus or conflict—choices matter. Choice is also key to your education. Choose an intellectually challenging programme in which you develop your knowledge and expertise in the study of politics. Choose a respected, selective programme that fits your future ambitions. Choose one of the six MSc specialisations in Political Science at Leiden University.

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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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All Available Videos:
Welcome to the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences Welcome to the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences 01/03/2017 10:55:15
Welcome to the Faculty of Social and Behaviou...
Leiden: our city Leiden: our city 01/03/2017 10:55:15
Leiden: our city
Tour of Leiden with a Leiden University student! Tour of Leiden with a Leiden University student! 01/03/2017 10:55:15
Tour of Leiden with a Leiden University stude...
MSc Political Science at Leiden University MSc Political Science at Leiden University 01/09/2017 11:05:28
MSc Political Science at Leiden University
Leiden University - Universiteit Leiden Leiden University - Universiteit Leiden 01/09/2017 11:05:54
Leiden University - Universiteit Leiden
Studying at Leiden University Studying at Leiden University 19/12/2017 11:47:32
Studying at Leiden University

Student Profile(s)

Danielle van Delden

The decision to come to Leiden University was actually a very simple one. The University has a great reputation, the master’s course focused on what most interested me, and with Leiden only 15 minutes from Den Haag, the international city of peace and justice, I would be surrounded with the day-to-day carrying out of what I was spending my days reading about. The simple geography of my studies provided opportunities that would not necessarily be found elsewhere.

For my undergraduate degree I had majored in Political Science and International Relations, and as a result I had a pretty clear idea of what to expect in terms of the course structure. However, simply sitting in classes with people from all around the world as the lone New Zealander was far more powerful than I had imagined. I was immediately surrounded by a wide range of opinions and perspectives, some very different to what I had heard at home, always resulting in complex and fascinating discussions.

The friendships that I have formed during my time in Leiden have been some of the most important parts of my time here, and in many cases are friendships that will last a lifetime. Getting involved in the OWL Orientation Week, as well student groups like Radiate, allowed me to meet other students outside of my course. It was in these relationships that we would together experience the Dutch traditions, things like Sinterklaas and Leiden’s Ontzet, as well as simply sharing the long days in the library or the triumphs and struggles of our studies.
Moving to the opposite side of the world to begin studying at Leiden was both one of the most terrifying and one of the best things I’ve ever done. There is something truly unique about living amongst and experiencing a different culture in this way, and I would readily recommend it to anyone wondering whether they should begin a similar adventure.


1. Non-EU/EEA students enrolling in a Leiden University master's degree programme starting February 2017 or September 2017.

All MA, MSc and LLM programmes that are mentioned on the website Master's programmes in Leiden are eligible for LExS, but note that some programmes have a start date in September only.

2. Students of all nationalities enrolling in the Advanced Master programmes in the list below starting February 2017 or September 2017.

Note that the programmes listed below have a September start date only, with the exception of Advanced Studies in Air & Space Law:

◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in Air & Space Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in European & International Business Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in International Tax Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in Public International Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in International Civil & Commercial Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in Law & Digital Technologies
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in European Tax Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in European & International Human Rights Law
◦Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in International Children's Rights
◦MSc in International Relations & Diplomacy

Additional requirements

1.In his or her prior academic education abroad, the applicant must have achieved excellent study results which are relevant for the programme for which the student wishes to enrol. As an indication, the student will be among the top 10% for the relevant programme followed abroad. We do not need proof of this, it is just to indicate the competitiveness of the scholarship.

2.The applicant will hold a non-EU/EEA passport and will not be eligible for support under the Dutch system of study grants and loans ("Studiefinanciering"; more information). This requirement does not apply to applicants who apply for a LExS for programmes mentioned under point 2 "For whom".

3.Scholarships will not be awarded to applicants who have already obtained a Leiden University master’s degree with the exception of students applying for a Master programme for which a specified previous Master programme or work experience is mandatory (the LLM advanced masters qualify as such).

4.Students who are granted a LExS must comply with and confirm in writing their agreement with the Rules and Regulations attached to the scholarship prior to the granting of the scholarship.

Value of Scholarship(s)



This scholarship is open to excellence international students.

Scholarship Amount

The Leiden University Excellence Scholarship programme has three awards:

•€ 10.000 of the tuition fee

•€ 15.000 of the tuition fee

•Total tuition fee minus the statutory tuition fee

The number and type of award of the scholarship depends on the budget available for each Faculty department. The type of award has no reflection on the students' academic level of excellence. Please be aware that the LExS is not a full scholarship.

Application Procedure

1. Fill in your online application for admission to Leiden University.

Deadline 1 October 2016 for all programmes starting in February 2017.

Deadline for programmes starting September 2017

•All programmes except law:
1 February 2017

•Law programmes:
1 March 2017

2. Upload all required documents.

3 Indicate clearly that you would like to apply for the LExS scholarship on the scholarship page. Please note that if you apply for more than one master's programme, you have to indicate that you apply for the LExS scholarship for all these programmes seperately.

4. Upload your letter of motivation for the LExS scholarship on the scholarship page.

5. Submit your online application.

6. Pay the application fee of € 100.

7. The selection committee of the relevant faculty will review the applications. Students are selected on the basis of academic merit.

8. All LExS applicants will be informed by the scholarship department of Student Educational Affairs about the outcome of the selection procedure.

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