Leiden University

Leiden, NS

Leiden University

Leiden, NS

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International Profile

Be a part of it

For almost 450 years, students and lecturers from all over the world have come to Leiden University, the oldest university in the Netherlands. We’re a small-scale, international academic community where there’s room for personal contact and regard for your talents and opportunities.  

Learn from the best
Our academic staff includes many top scholars with an international reputation of excellence. You’ll have the chance to closely interact with Leiden’s scholars and thinkers, conducting your own research and exploring topics that are timely and relevant.

Look beyond your boundaries
Leiden University attaches great value to freedom of spirit, thought, and speech. The University is open to everyone who’s willing to get the best out of themselves. What binds us is the search for solutions to current global challenges, a search that we conduct with an open mind.  

Bachelor’s programs
As a university with a responsibility to society and to future generations, Leiden provides excellent research and teaching that make the world a safer, healthier, more sustainable, prosperous, and just place—at the local, regional, and global levels.

Are you interested in culture, history, language, international law, safety/security issues, human rights, human behavior, debate and ethics, politics, art and media, sustainability, health issues, diversity, liberal arts and sciences, and more? Leiden University likely offers a program that’s perfect for you.  

One university, two locations
In 1575, Leiden became the founding city of the University. Leiden offers a traditional, picturesque Dutch experience but also much more: wonderful restaurants and cafés, first-class museums, and venues for theater, music, and film. A bike ride to the beach or a stop at the Leiden University Sports Center will keep you fit, and joining the International Student Network will connect you to the social heart of the University. 

Our second location is in The Hague, the international city of peace, justice, and security. The programs and research taking place here reflect the themes that are important to this center of government and international diplomacy. The city hosts 160 international organizations and NGOs, including the International Court of Justice and several UN bodies. As the seat of the Dutch government, The Hague has a rich history that can still be savored today on the streets and squares near the Houses of Parliament and many other historic buildings.

Experience Leiden University anytime
Find out what it takes to become a student at Leiden University by visiting our website to learn more about our programs and admission requirements. We encourage you to utilize all of our online activities to see if Leiden University is the right place for you. Attend an online Open Day or Experience Day, try out a program through an Online Experience, chat with our students, watch a webinar or video, live chat with program faculty, find us on social media, or simply contact us with your questions anytime by emailing study@leidenuniv.nl.



Leiden University is placed in the top 100 in the world in leading international rankings.


Ranked 14th “Most Innovative European University” in 2019 | Reuters


Ranked 67th in the top World University Rankings for 2020 | Times Higher Education


Ranked 74th among global universities for 2020 | Academic Ranking of World Universities (ARWU)


Located in the NETHERLANDS, LEIDEN and THE HAGUE are home to Leiden University’s seven faculties. Leiden is a traditional university town overflowing with character, and The Hague is the stately international city of peace, justice, and security. Both cities are just a 20–30-minute train journey from the international airport, 30–40 minutes from Amsterdam, or a 20-minute bike ride from the beach!

Leiden At A Glance

Type of school: Public research university founded in 1575

Size of campus: Leiden University’s faculties are located throughout the beautiful and historic cities of Leiden and The Hague.

Number of students: 30,869

Number of faculty: 7,100 faculty and support staff members

Colleges, programs, and degrees: Archaeology; Arts, Media & Society; Cultural Anthropology & Development Sociology; Dutch Studies; English Language & Culture; International Relations & Organisations; International Studies; Linguistics; Philosophy: Global & Comparative Perspectives; Psychology; Security Studies; South & Southeast Asian Studies; Urban Studies

Leiden University College offers six majors in the Liberal Arts and Sciences: Global Challenges program (World Politics; International Justice; Global Public Health; Earth, Energy & Sustainability; Governance, Economics & Development; and Culture, History & Society), with many choices of minors.

Geographic diversity: Leiden University students come from over 130 nationalities worldwide.

International student services: A wide portfolio of international student services are offered, including Orientation Weeks, student counselors, the Career Zone, clubs and associations, the University Sports Center, the Fenestra Disability Center, the Housing Office, and study advisors.

International student Budget: 
• Academic tuition (2020–2021):
   - Non-EU/EEA citizens: $13,500–$16,500 USD* depending on the program 
   - EU/EEA citizens: $2,500–$5,400 USD* depending on the program 
• Monthly expenditures (including rent, groceries, some travel, books, and incidentals) range from $1,000—$1,400 USD* per month. 

Financial aid: The Holland Scholarship is offered to non-EU/EEA citizens and is a one-time award of $5,700 USD* in the first year of study. It’s a competitive merit-based scholarship. EU or EEA citizens are eligible to apply for a tuition fee loan from the Dutch government (see more information at www.duo.nl). 

Test score requirements: Admission requirements vary per diploma (admissible diplomas are listed on our website). International applicants who are non-native English speakers or without an IB diploma or diplomas from Canada (not including Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, Quebec, the UK, and the US) will be required to submit IELTS or TOEFL scores as part of the admission process. Most programs require a 6.5 IELTS or 90 iBT TOEFL score with the exception of Leiden University College, which requires a 7.0 IELTS or 100 iBT TOEFL score.

Application deadlines and fees: 
• Fall start:
   - December 1: Early Bird (Leiden University College)
   - January 15: Early Bird (Security Studies)
   - January 15: Psychology (Numerus Fixus)
   - January 15: International Relations & Organisations (Numerus Fixus)
   - April 1: Regular deadline for all other programs (non-EU/EEA)
   - May 1: Final deadline for programs with Mandatory Matching (Cultural Anthropology & Development Sociology, Security Studies)
   - June 15: Final deadline for all other programs (EU/EEA)
• Application fee: $60 USD* for Leiden University College; all other programs $120 USD*  

* All fees noted in USD are approximate. All fees are charged in Euro, so please visit our website for accurate fees and check for current exchange rates. 

An Inside Look

What students are saying about us...

  • “I like the interaction between students and lecturers in the tutorials. Those are small groups, so there’s more room for personal contact, which keeps you engaged. Also, thanks to those small groups, it’s easy to get to know people.”

    • Roxanne Hernandez
  • “I chose the Netherlands because of its high standard of education and because studying here is affordable. Leiden University is in the top 100 in the world. I like the fact that my campus was in The Hague, a city full of international organizations and NGOs.”

    • Dhwani Goel
      International Relations & Organisations
  • “Leiden University is a place where you’re free to express your opinions and are expected to be open to other people’s opinions. Everybody who attends ultimately wants to make the world a better place with the future jobs they’re aiming for.”

    • Akif Aliyev
      International Relations & Organisations
  • “The University offers a lot of support—for example, through study coordinators. My coordinator is very approachable and super helpful. I can always reach out if I have a problem.”

    • Ishana Durante-Bose