Universiteit Leiden

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PhD Graduate School of Archaeology


PhD candidates spend most of their time conducting research. However, teaching is another skill you might wish to acquire or further develop as an academic.

Teaching opportunities

Many PhD candidates at Leiden University are asked to teach during their commission. This may be in tutorials, practical classes or lectures. Teaching should preferably not be done in your first nor last year. That said, you should take advantage of the opportunity to teach, because teaching is a valuable asset to your CV (also if you pursuit a non-academic career). You can have the classes you want to teach included in your Training and Supervision Plan, but be sure to discuss this with your supervisor(s). This way, teaching becomes an integral part of your PhD project.

Please note that to teach is not an automatic right for PhD candidates. It depends on the teaching schedules, availability of classes, staff members, etc.

Contract PhD candidates can only teach if the conditions of the grant provider allow this. Please discuss this with your supervisor(s).

External PhD candidates are not allowed to teach, unless they have been appointed to do so by a separate teaching contract.

Basic Teaching Qualification ‘Light’ (BKO light, or ‘Deelcertificaat’)

The BKO is a mark of quality used by all Dutch universities. It serves as a reliable frame of reference with respect to your didactic skills.

In view of the limited time available to PhD candidates for acquiring teaching experience within their PhD appointment, it is hardly possible for PhD candidates to complete a full BKO track. For more information on the BKO ‘light’ (Deelcertificaat) procedure, please see the university information on the website.

Last year the Leiden University Executive Board decided to offer PhD candidates the opportunity to complete a teaching certificate that covers some elements of the BKO final attainment levels. PhD candidates who have completed this certificate (BKO Light) will be given recognition for having partially completed the BKO track. The details of this university-wide teaching qualification are currently being further developed.

To teach and be taught

ICLON, an interfaculty unit within Leiden University, offers a didactic training course for PhD candidates: Introduction to teaching for PhD candidates. More information can be found on the ICLON website. Before applying for a ICLON course, please contact your Institute management for approval. Some Institutes also offer didactic courses for PhD candidates.

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