Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology (BSc)
Frequently Asked Questions
All the information you need is mentioned on our website. Nevertheless, we understand that you might have additional questions about the bachelor Cultural Anthropology or studying in Leiden. Hereunder you find a list with the most asked questions.
There are a few things that make CADS in Leiden unique.
First of all, there is a significant practical side to our bachelor’s programme in the form of a fieldwork project. For the second-year course Fieldwork NL, you will conduct a research project with about three other students, for which you will spend three weeks doing fieldwork somewhere in the Netherlands. This is an accessible way of gaining practical experience in doing anthropological research during your bachelor’s programme.
Secondly, we have a specialisation in Visual Methods at Leiden University: in your third year you can optionally follow the course Visual Methods, in which you will learn to make your own documentary. We also have a master’s specialization in Visual Ethnography. What further that makes CADS at Leiden University unique is our Labour Market Orientation and Tutoring trajectory. In this three-year trajectory you are guided in your professional development and in preparing yourself for the job market.
Finally, CADS at Leiden University is an international bachelor’s programme. In our lectures and tutorials, there is always room for questions and discussion, and the diversity of the students’ backgrounds and perspectives makes discussing the study materials even more interesting.
Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology at Leiden University provides you with many important skills that are desirable in the job market. After completing our study programme, you will have learned to think critically and transfer your knowledge to others; learned to analyse complex situations and looking at matters form multiple points of view; learned to conduct both qualitative and quantitative research, and have experience in doing so; and acquired specialized knowledge on one of our main themes (diversity, digitalization and sustainability) or another subject that has your personal interest (a specific region, for instance).
You will thus have a lot to offer to employers and you will have skills that are applicable in many different settings. Where you are going to work after your studies, depends on what you are interested in and what you specialize in. The main branches in which anthropologists come to work are governments, business, NGOs, museums, media/journalism or education/research.
At CADS at Leiden University, we have a trajectory in Labour Market Orientation and Tutoring, which runs through all three years of the Bachelor’s programme. In this trajectory, you are guided in finding out what your interests and skills are. Not only will you be guided in what choices you can make during your studies to lead you to the career you desire, you will also gain practical skills that are needed to apply for jobs (composing your CV, writing application letters, networking, job interviews). You can find more information on the Labour Market Orientation and Tutoring trajectory here. Also, if you are interested in what you can do after your Bachelor’s in CADS, you can read more about it here.
Our bachelor’s programme is taught in English. All lectures will be in English. Dutch speaking students can choose whether they do their tutorial groups, assignments and exams in English or Dutch. Exceptions to this rule are the courses Media Worlds and the third year electives: for these courses examination is only possible in English.
No, we do not have a maximum number of participants. As long as you both meet the admission requirements and the application deadlines you can start with our bachelor’s programme.
As part of the process of joining our bachelor’s programme, you are required to complete our online matching module. This is to make sure that this programme matches your expectations, interests and capabilities. Matching is a compulsory part of your admission and application procedure.
Via this online matching module you will familiarise yourself with the course materials and the methodology that are typical for this programme. Once you have completed the matching module, you will receive feedback about how well this programme matches your interests and capabilities.
Please note: The advice following your results of the matching module is not binding. Therefore, your performance on the assignments will not influence your chances of admission to the programme in any way.
Our bachelor’s programme is a full-time programme. This means that the programme will take approximately 40 hours of studying per week. About 12 of these 40 hours are contact hours, the other 28 hours consist of self-study. If you are planning to have a side job next to your studies, it is important to take this study load into account.
Within the programme in Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology you are encouraged to study abroad for a semester or do an internship, for instance in a museum, company or NGO. Our study-abroad and internship coordinator will help you make the right choices, give you practical advice and arrange for a staff member to act as your supervisor. Please note that internships are subject to university-broad regulations and limitations (which may have consequences in case of, for instance, a pandemic). Click here for more information on studying abroad.
Combining two bachelor’s programmes is an option. We would recommend you to initially start with just one programme, so you can focus on obtaining sufficient study credits to obtain a positive Binding Study Advice for this programme at the end of the academic year. After obtaining a positive Binding Study Advice for your first programme, you can start focusing on your second programme (in order to obtain a positive BSA for this programme as well), maybe combined with a few courses from your first programme. After obtaining a positive BSA for both of your programmes you can start combining courses from your second and third year of both of these programmes. The study advisers of both programmes can support you in making these study plans.
If you complete an academic bachelor's programme other than CADS you may apply for exemption from the 30 EC elective space of the 3rd year of CADS.
If you completed all or part of an academic programme within social sciences, certain first-year CADS courses might qualify for exemption (for instance statistics, or writing training).
Students of Leiden University are issued with binding study advice (BSA). This means you must obtain sufficient study credits in the first year of your Bachelor’s programme to be permitted to continue studying.
To be issued with positive study advice, you must obtain sufficient study credits in the first year of your Bachelor’s programme. At the end of year 1, you are expected to have obtained at least 45 EC out of 60 EC.
Will you obtain too few study credits as the result of exceptional circumstances, such as illness or student board duties? If so, the board of examiners must take this into consideration when issuing study advice. However, you must report your circumstances on time to your study adviser.
Itiwana is the study association of CADS. They organize many activities for CADS students, both study-related (such as lectures, trips to museums, film screenings and study trips abroad) and social activities (such as drinks, parties, first-year weekends and hitch-hike weekends). If you are a member of Itiwana, you can also buy your study books from them and get a special 14% discount. Becoming a member of Itiwana is completely without obligations, except for paying a small amount of contribution per year, which you can win back with the discount on your books.
Most CADS lecturers strongly advise to take written notes during lectures instead of typed ones, so for most classes you do not need a laptop during lectures. At university buildings you can use computers, also for working with statistics. However, it is very convenient to have your own laptop, so that you can write assignments and use the digital library of Leiden University anywhere you want. We do not use any computer programmes at CADS for which you need a specific kind of laptop.
Questions about application
The deadline for applying for 2021/2022 is 1 April 2021 for non-EU/EER students, and 1 May 2021 for EU/EER students.
You will be admitted if you are in the possession of:
- a Dutch pre-university education (VWO) diploma or
- a propaedeutic diploma from a University (WO) or
- a final Bachelor/Master diploma from a higher professional (HBO) institution or a University (WO).
Propaedeuse from a Dutch university of applied sciences
Have you obtained an HBO propaedeutic diploma? You then need to apply for admission using the online application portal. Students with an HBO propaedeutic diploma must have a passing final grade in mathematics on the written central state examination at HAVO level. Alternatively, students must obtain a mathematics exam at VWO level. For example by doing a Boswell exam in VWO mathematics A or C (see www.boswell-beta.nl).
Additionally, students with an HBO propaedeutic diploma must demonstrate proficiency in English (see language requirements below).
Colloquium doctum, which roughly translates as “learned discussion”, is a special admission procedure that you can apply for if:
- You do not have a (Dutch) 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 his bachelor’s programme.
Depending on your previous education you can be asked to take examinations in the following subjects:
- Mathematics C or Mathematics A VWO certificate (or equivalent);
- History VWO certificate (or equivalent);
- Sociology/Civics (maatschappijleer) VWO certificate or equivalent);
- English VWO certificate (or IELTS/Toefl English Proficiency Test result).
The colloquium doctum application deadline is 1 November, in the year prior to the start of the programme. The rest of the colloquium doctum application works the same as the application procedure described on this website.
You can be admitted with an equivalent of 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. If your diploma is not on this list you may still be admitted. You will receive more information on this once you have applied using the online application portal.
It is essential that you start your studies with a high level of English proficiency. When you apply, you have to submit proof of your proficiency, using one of the tests below.
Holders of the following diplomas are exempt:
- Full English-taught IB Diploma
- Dutch VWO
- At least 3 Cambridge A-levels
- National diploma from any of the following countries: USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia or Canada (except French-taught programmes)
- European Baccalaureate English Language 1
- Diplôme du Baccalauréat Général, OIB (English section); but only if your diploma/transcript mentions the OIB option and section
- Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife (Abitur); but only if English was included in the final year of Abitur
Accepted English proficiency tests
We accept the following tests and minimum scores:
- The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic modules only. Minimum overall score of 6.5 with at least 6 for every component;
- The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum scores is 90 with at least 20 for every component (internet based). Institutional TOEFL tests are not accepted;
- Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English/ Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English grade 180 with at least 169 for every component.
Exam results may not be more than two years old. See also the general language requirements.
If you decide to follow the first year tutorials in Dutch you are required to be sufficiently proficient in Dutch. If you do not have a secondary school diploma in Dutch you have to submit the Dutch TUL advanced certificate from the Academic Language Centre.
Further questions about admission?
If you have further questions about admission requirements, you can contact our Admissions Office.
In case of technical problems you can contact the Student Affairs Front Office.
If you have confirmed your participation in the programme, you can always withdraw your confirmation later on without any consequences. You can also wait to confirm your participation: you are not obligated to confirm your participation within two weeks. Do keep in mind that the deadline for paying the tuition fee is 31 August, so you need to make a definitive decision before that date.