Universiteit Leiden

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World Archaeology (BA)

Admission requirements

Do you want to apply for the bachelor’s programme Archaeology at Leiden University? First, check the admission requirements.

The admission requirements for the bachelor’s programme are:

You are directly admissable with

  • a Dutch pre-university education (VWO) diploma or
  • a final diploma from a Dutch university of Applied Sciences (HBO)
  • a Research University (WO) first year certificate or degree.

The following groups are not directly admissable

  • Prospective Dutch students with a propaedeutic diploma from a University of Applied Sciences (HBO). You will have to apply for admissions. You will also need an average grade of 7.0. Moreover you will need a 7.0 for English on your HAVO exam.
  • Prospective students without a Dutch pre-university education (VWO) diploma. Our admissions Office has drawn up a list of common non-Dutch diplomas that generally meet the minimum academic requirements. Additionally a good level of English proficiency is required. Specific requirements can be found under 2. Language requirements.

Aside from your application through Studielink, you will also need to send in an application through the online application portal of Leiden University. See for more information Part 2 of the Application procedure.

If your diploma does not meet these requirements you may still be admitted, on condition that you sit additional exams. You will receive more information on this once you have applied. 

It is essential that at the start of your programme you have a good level of proficiency in written and spoken English, as the programme is taught in English, and you will have to do all your studying and writing in English.

You do not need to provide proof of your level of proficiency if you:

  • have obtained a Dutch VWO diploma, or a Dutch HBO propedeuse with a Dutch HAVO diploma with a minimum degree of 7 in English;
  • have completed your education in Canada (English-taught programme), the USA, the UK, Ireland, New Zealand or Australia;
  • have obtained an (English-taught) International Baccalaureate or an EB (European Baccalaureate) diploma with English as language 1

If the above does not apply to you, you will have to provide proof of your proficiency, by means of one of the tests below. You have to register for the test yourself. The test results are valid for two years. Leiden University accepts three kinds of official tests:

  • IELTS: Academic modules only. Minimum overall score of 6.5 and component scores of 6.0.
  • TOEFL: Minimum overall score of 90 and component scores of 20. Original test results should be sent directly by the Educational Testing Service. The TOEFL institution code for Leiden University is 0504. 
    We are able to accept the TOEFL Special Home Edition™  for admission due to the coronavirus situation. Institutional TOEFL tests are not accepted;
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English/ Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English. Minimum overall score of 180 and component scores of 169. 

Please note: Exam results may not be more than two years old. See also the general language requirements.

Colloquium doctum, which roughly translates as “learned discussion”, is a special admission procedure that you can apply for if:

  • you do not have a diploma that grants university admission, and
  • you are 21 or older on the day that your proposed study programme commences

As a colloquium doctum candidate, you have to sit a number of exams at Dutch pre-university level (VWO) to determine whether you have the required knowledge to participate in a university degree programme. For Archaeology the courses you need to pass are: Wiskunde A, Engels, and Geschiedenis. If you are successful, you will only be admitted to the programme for which you initially applied – not to other programmes or other institutions. 

Bear in mind that the colloquium doctum route can be very challenging, both during the admission procedure and once you begin your degree studies.

The colloquium doctum admission procedure

The colloquium doctum admission procedure is the same as the standard application procedure, so you can simply follow the steps under Application procedure. Be sure to check the colloquium doctum application deadline for your chosen programme, which can be found in the programme information. For the BA Archaeology this deadline is 15 October.

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