Universiteit Leiden

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Security Studies (BSc)

Programme structure

Throughout your 3-year Security Studies programme you explore the effects of events (such as war or natural disaster), understand them via relevant academic perspectives, and actively design strategies and solutions to resulting security challenges.

At every stage of the bachelor programme Security Studies, you will learn by ‘exploring, understanding, and doing’ security. This means that, throughout the programme, you will:

  • explore by identifying crucial events, stakeholders and the cultural and historical context of real-life safety and security cases
  • increase your understanding by identifying relevant theoretical lenses and applying them to these cases
  • use your knowledge to assess and design strategies and solutions to security and safety challenges

Educational methods

As a Security Studies student, you can expect a full working week of about 40 hours. You will spend an average of 12 hours in-class and the rest of the time in independent study. You attend lectures focused upon a particular topic; the lectures are complemented by Course labs in which the material is discussed in greater depth and with more student input, for example in solo or group presentations.

Mentor system

At the start of your studies, you will be assigned to a mentor group, with a second-year or third-year Security Studies student as your mentor. 

During your first semester your mentor will provide you with practical information, such as how to register for exams. The mentor group will meet on a regular basis during the first semester, to discuss issues such as studying, exams, (digital) systems, the culture and community of the programme, potential choices to be made further in the programme, and student life.

Student support services

Besides the mentor, you will have a tutor during the first year, who will help you and other first-year students taking the first steps in academics, via the so-called Skills Labs. During the Skills Labs, you practice the necessary academic and professional skills in a small group. 
You have support beyond your studies too, from the dean of students or student psychologist. And if you experience chronic illness, physical or psychological disabilities or dyslexia you can contact Fenestra Disability Centre for personal advice before or early in your application process.

Binding Study Advice

The Binding Study Advice entails that you need to earn at least 45 out of the 60 study credits at the end of the first year to be able to continue in your second year. If you do not meet this criterion, you will not be able to carry on with your study at Leiden University. In formulating this study advice, any relevant circumstances, such as sickness or other personal factors, will be taken into account.

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