Museums and Collections (MA)


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Arts and Culture (MA)

In the MA Museums and Collections at Leiden University you will learn about the ethical, political and practical dilemmas that affect museums today.

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Why study Museums and Collections at Leiden University?

This master's programme will equip you with the skills and knowledge to play a key role in the future of museums and cultural institutions. During the programme you will examine how the social functions of museums and collections have developed in the past centuries, and how they are now changing rapidly under political and economic pressure. You will become aware of the increasing overlap that exists between the traditional tasks of museum curators, departments of education, and management. You will come to understand the complicated etical and legal issues concerning 'contested' museum objects and the debate on restitution of acquisitions from the colonial period.

Learn more about the study programme

Explore the impact of current issues on museums and heritage

You will gain an understanding of the impact of globalisation and the changing geopolitical relations on the status of cultural heritage, including political, ethical, legal and museological aspects. You will study these issues within the context of the history and theory of collections and the cultural politics of museums and heritage.

Check the entry requirements

Access unique resources

Access unique resources at the expansive range of major museums, collections, libraries and research schools within easy reach of Leiden University. At the end of the programme you will be ready for an exciting career in a range of roles in institutions including museums, galleries, (art) libraries and archives, as well as in the media sector or within journalism.

Find out more about the career prospects

Museums and Collections degree

Museums and Collections at Leiden University is an accredited degree programme. After successful completion of this programme, you will receive a master’s degree in Arts and Culture and the title Master of Arts (MA).

Why Leiden University

Leiden University offers ambitious students a world-class environment in which to reach their potential.

A top-ranked university

Leiden University's Faculty of Humanities consistently ranks in the top 30 humanities faculties in the Times Higher Education (THE) world university rankings. At Leiden University learning incorporates the latest research and resources found nowhere else in the world, such as those of the Leiden University Library. The Library's collections include over 100,000 prints, 12,000 drawings and 30,000 portraits as well as the oldest museological photo collection of the Netherlands.

An ideal location for the study of museums and collections

Leiden University offers you one of the best locations from which to explore and study museums and collections. Leiden is home to 13 museums, including Rijksmuseum Boerhaave, Museum De Lakenhal, the National Museum of Ethnology,  and the Siebold House. Our location close to the major European cities of The Hague, Amsterdam, Antwerp, Brussels and London brings you also within easy reach of some of Europe’s most famous museums, galleries and exhibitions.

World-class expertise

The Leiden University Centre for the Arts in Society (LUCAS) is a leading European centre for research and teaching in languages, literature, art and culture. The MA in Art and Culture makes full use of this centre’s unmatched academic range, global network, and student-centred focus, with a high-level of individual supervision and the option to customise programmes to meet personal goals.

An outstanding start to your career

Our reputation as a centre of excellence means that your qualification is respected by organisations worldwide. Our graduates enjoy successful careers thanks to their broad and global mind-sets, specialised and in-depth knowledge, and strong critical-thinking skills. The success of our alumni speaks for itself. Our graduates are equipped to solve the challenges facing society now and in the future.

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About the programme

Learn the newest insights from the researchers who uncover them.

During the Museums and Collections master's programme you will learn learn to think creatively about sustainable, broad-based solutions to the multiple challenges and issues facing museums today.

The programme consists of 60 EC, to be completed in one year. Part-time students complete the programme in 1.5 years, and have a course load of 20 EC per semester. Courses are scheduled during office hours.

The structure of the programme is the following:

  • Practices and Debates (5 credits)
  • Two Research Seminars from Museums and Collections (20 credits)
  • Free Component (10 credits)
  • Thesis Seminar (5 credits)
  • Thesis (20 credits)

Requirements for graduation are:

  • Successful completion of courses, following the structure of the programme (40 EC)
  • Successful completion of MA Thesis (20 EC)

You will need to complete at least 45 EC within your field of specialisation:

  • Two research seminars from Museums and Collections (20 credits)
  • Thesis seminar (5 EC)
  • Thesis (20 EC).
  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Self-study
  • Field trips/excursions
  • Internship options
  • Thesis
  • Exams
  • Peer feedback and assessment
  • Essays, reports and final thesis
  • Oral presentations

During your studies in Arts and Culture you can take advantage of Leiden’s close proximity to a network of major museums, collections, libraries and research schools, giving you access to a range of unique texts and works of art. These include, among many others:

  • Museum Volkenkunde/Nationaal Museum voor Wereldculturen
  • Boerhaave Museum: The Museum for the History of Science
  • RMO: The National Museum of Antiquities
  • Lakenhal
  • Rijksmuseum Amsterdam
  • Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
  • Haags Gemeentemuseum
  • Mauritshuis
  • Museum Voorlinden
  • Fotomuseum

Latest research

All courses are taught by academics who are active researchers. Content is regularly updated to reflect contemporary academic debates and the very latest insights – in particular from the research conducted by lecturers on the programme.

Develop essential skills in reasoning and critical thinking, as well as advanced abilities in independently conducting high-quality scientific research and developing this data into an academic dissertation.

For a detailed programme, see the Prospectus. Please note that this guide applies to the current academic year, which means that the curriculum for next year may slightly differ.


Get the most out of your studies at Leiden University by taking part in our extracurricular activities.


Our student body is a close-knit community that includes students from all over the world. Throughout the year, activities are organised by both the programme and the Centre for the Arts in Society (LUCAS) that ensure this community continues to grow and thrive. Examples include:

Teaching generally takes the form of seminars and tutorials, with debates and discussions of the subject matter a key teaching tool. With classes kept deliberately small, regular and direct contact with lecturers and fellow students is part and parcel of learning at Leiden. You will soon know everyone by name, and they will know you. A personal mentor is assigned to you at the beginning of the programme to provide one-on-one academic support and advice throughout your studies.

Study abroad

Interested in adventuring further afield? At Leiden, you have the option to study for part of your Arts and Culture degree at one of our many partner institutes around the world. The International Office of the Faculty of Humanities can help you arrange a semester at another university for a taste of another Dutch city or a whole new culture, country, and continent.

Leiden Leadership Programme

Are you interested in developing your leadership potential? The Leiden Leadership Programme (LLP) is an Honours Programme specifically developed for ambitious master's students at Leiden University and the Delft University of Technology who recognise the importance of leadership abilities. The LLP offers in-depth training sessions, assessments, seminars, and the creation of a Personal Leadership Roadmap – a five-year plan for reaching and developing your leadership potential.

Study at the Academy of Creative and Performing Arts

The Academy of the Creative and Performing Arts (ACPA) is a research institute and part of the Faculty of Humanities. The ACPA offers education such as electives, and talent programmes such as the Practicum Artium (PA), which gives you the opportunity to study photography, graphic design or drawing, and the Practicum Musicae at the Royal Conservatoire The Hague, where you can study classical music, singing, early music or jazz. 
Find out more about ACPA.

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

What our graduates do

Your MA in Arts and Culture degree will qualify you for a wide range of professions in the public, private and non-profit sectors, including cultural institutions, publishing, media, and public relations, depending on the specialisation you have chosen. You will also be qualified to pursue a PhD and a career in academia.

Our Arts and Culture graduates are currently working with companies including Hoogsteder & Hoogsteder, Sdu Publishers, Valiz publishers, Primavera Press, the Repeat Group, Gavelers Auctioneers and Lyppens, and at art venues such as BAK Utrecht and museums including the Haags Gemeentemuseum, the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, and the Museum De Lakenhal in Leiden.

Examples of the diverse roles of our graduates include:

A Leiden University degree

Leiden University Master's graduates are sought-after employees at (inter)national organisations. Our graduates are known for their combination of robust academic training, in-depth and relevant knowledge, and critical, multidisciplinary approach to problem-solving.

Brantly Hancock Moore

Graduated in Museums and Collections (MA Arts and Culture)

Brantly Hancock Moore

"In August of 2017, I joined the PhD program in Art History at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, focusing on medieval and early modern northern European collections and collecting theory. Leiden University exposed me to new perspectives and subject matter and, importantly in today’s political climate, the value of being a part of an international community of art historians that knows no borders. As Editorial Research Assistant for my advisor, I was able to work on a forthcoming edited volume of international scholarship, and in July of 2018, I will return to the Netherlands for a summer intensive course on material culture at the Rijksmuseum. Completing my MA in Leiden made me realize that the world can truly be my classroom."

Necessary skills

"I am certain that the critical thinking, organisational and communication skills cultivated during my MA programme were essential to my later success. The practical and social challenges of living abroad also equipped me with necessary skills in diplomacy and adaptability, key strengths for anyone entering the workplace - or academia."

Learning in situ

"The Arts and Culture programme offered the perfect mix of hands-on and theoretical study, and I benefited especially from the programme’s emphasis on independent study. Doctoral programs require a strong work ethic, intrinsic motivation, and the ability to work independently-- skills strengthened by my time in Leiden.

There was nonetheless ample opportunity for collaboration with my peers and professors, and I developed friendships with international colleagues that I am sure will last a lifetime. Learning in situ was extremely important for me: as an American scholar devoted to European art, I owed it to myself to come to the source, and so do you."

Lotte Poortman

gradiated in Art of the Contemporary World and World Art Studies, and Museums and Collections (MA Arts and Culture)

Lotte Poortman

"Last summer I graduated in two specializations within the Master of Arts and Culture in Leiden. My choice for these specialisations was based on interest developed in my bachelor Art History. By following these two programs, I was able to delve into Contemporary art and especially World art studies and also into the theory of Museums and Collections. "

Combine theory and practice

"My internship at Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen gave me the opportunity to combine theory and practice. As a project manager assistant I experienced first-hand how in 2017 the blockbuster exhibition Mad About Surrealism was established. Both my broad study program and my internship have given me the chance to become the director’s assistant at Stedelijk Museum Schiedam."

Wide range of tasks

"My job as director-assistant involves a wide range of tasks. I manage the director’s agenda and make reports of the meetings of the management team and the Supervisory Board. I am responsible for the archive, set up letters and I am intermediary for questions. After a month, I was given the opportunity to take on additional tasks, namely ICT and Human Resource. The talents I developed during my master program, namely critical thinking, communication skills, work independently and organizational skills in combination with the knowledge I gained from my internship have prepared me well for a job in the cultural field."

The graphs below are based on alumni data from the MA Arts and Culture 2016-2020. 

In which sector do students find jobs?

How successful are they in finding a job?

Career preparation

Find out how this programme exactly prepares you for your future career and check our career preparation activities.

The master’s programme in Arts and Culture at Leiden University will equip you with a range of important skills and knowledge that will help you thrive in your future career. Your specialised knowledge is complemented by highly-developed critical-thinking skills that can be applied to any issue, in any role.

Relevant professional skills and experience

Our emphasis on learning outside of the classroom is one of the ways in which we give our students a head-start in their future careers. We encourage you to network with practitioners during field trips, to work as an intern at an organisation, join an exchange programme, and sign up for extracurricular activities to acquire valuable practical skills and experience.

Many of our students choose to do an internship during their study. Internships are a great way to gain invaluable first-hand experience in your area of interest before you decide on making it a career. In recent years students from the Museums and Collections programme have been doing internships at the following organisations:

  • Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam
  • Museum Volkenkunde/Nationaal Museum voor Wereldculturen
  • Haags Gemeentemuseum
  • Museum De Lakenhal Leiden
  • Prince Claus Fund
  • Waag Society
  • V2
  • Het nieuwe Instituut
  • Museum Voorlinden
  • BAK Basis voor actueel kunst Utrecht
  • Rijksacademie voor Beeldende Kunst Amsterdam/Prix de Rome
  • Galleries in Leiden, Den Haag and Amsterdam

Our staff can help you identify both the career that is right for you, and the necessary steps to get you there. Our team at Humanities Career Service provide all Leiden University humanities students with professional advice and guidance on everything from internships and career planning to job applications. Humanities Career Service also organises regular workshops on topics such as effective interview skills and creating a successful CV.

The Humanities Career Service offers you various (online) workshops, webinars and info sessions. Check our overview of career activities

The Leiden University Career Zone is an online career portal that helps you to prepare for the job market. Here you can find information, tools and tips to help you gain more personal insight, learn about the job market, develop your application skills, plan your academic and professional career, find job vacancies and discover what the Career Service can do for you.

Join the Mentor Network to contact alumni with experience on the labour market and ask them for advice. More than 1200 alumni are happy to help you!

Jelle on finding an internship via Leiden University's Mentor Network

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Admission and Application

Find out how to apply for Museums and Collections at Leiden University by following our step-by step guide.

This specialisation is part of the MA Arts and Culture. If you would like to apply to this programme please first select the MA Arts and Culture (CROHO code: 60087) in Studielink and then select Museums and Collections.

Step- by step guide

The guide will give you the necessary help and guidance in submitting your application.

Instruction video

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Admission requirements

To be eligible for Museums and Collections at Leiden University, you must meet the following admission requirements.

Diploma requirements

The following diploma requirements apply for this programme:

  • A bachelor’s degree from a Dutch research university in Art History.
  • Holders of a comparable bachelor’s degree from a research university, equivalent to the level of a Dutch academic Bachelor’s degree, or who can demonstrate that they meet the requirements for such a degree, may also be granted admission.Or completed the pre-master's/ bridging programme. Contact the coordinator of studies.

N.B. Applicants with a degree from a Dutch university of applied sciences (HBO) are not eligible for admission to the Master’s and pre-master’s programme.

You should have knowledge and understanding:

  • of the history of art production in western and non-western cultures from Antiquity down to the present day and of different forms of art, architecture and design;
  • of form, function, content, material and technique of art works;
  • and the ability to give well-founded criticism to academic art-historical texts.

Language requirements

In order to successfully participate in this programme, you must be proficient in English. The following requirements apply:

  • IELTS:    7.0
  • TOEFL:  100
  • C2 Proficiency (former CPE) or C1 Advanced (former CAE) 185

A minimum score of IELTS 7.0 or TOEFL 25 is required for each of the four components.

For detailed information, including exemption criteria and methods of submission, refer to English language proficiency.

English tests accepted
Results may not be more than two years old! 

  • IELTS: academic modules only 
  • TOEFL: internet based
    • We do not accept TOEFL My Best ™ scores (multiple test scores combined). The sufficient score must be obtained in one individual test. Also not accepted are institutional tests such as ITP.
    • We are able to accept the TOEFL Special Home Edition™  for admission to the academic years 2020-2021 and 2021-2022.
  • Cambridge English Exam C2 Proficiency or C1 Advanced, depending on admission criteria

Please note: You do not have to submit proof of proficiency if you have completed your education in Canada (except French-taught programmes in Canada), USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand or Australia, or when you hold an International Baccalaureate, or for Dutch students, if you have completed VWO level English or an English taught bachelor at a Dutch Research University.

>> Go to the next step: Step 2: Check the application deadlines

Application deadlines

Application deadlines

  • If you need a visa or residence permit, you must apply for admission before 1 April.
  • If you do not need a visa or residence permit, you must apply for admission before 15 June.
  • If you need a visa or residence permit, you must apply for admission before 15 October.
  • If you do not need a visa or residence permit, you must apply for admission before 1 December.

Apply early!

If you don’t have a Dutch diploma that grants direct admission, you’ll have to complete a two-part application procedure:

You must submit your application via Leiden University’s application system (uSis), before the deadlines mentioned above. So don’t delay; if you haven’t registered in Studielink and activated your uSis account in time to apply by the deadline, you’ll miss out!

Other deadlines

If you want to request accommodation via Leiden university Housing Office, apply early! Accommodation is allocated on a first-come first-served basis and there is limited availability, which means the Housing Office cannot guarantee accommodation. Submit both your application for admission and your housing request well before the deadlines. You don’t have to wait for a decision on your application before submitting your housing request. Read more about when to arrange housing.

If you want to apply for a scholarship, grant or loan, please bear in mind that different deadlines apply, and these deadlines can often be earlier. Deadlines vary per scholarship. Visit the scholarship website for more details.

>> Go to the next step: Step 3: Collect the required documents

Required documents

When you apply for admission, you’ll be asked to submit several documents.

Note: If you have a Dutch diploma that grants direct admission, you will generally not be asked to submit additional documents.


Required application documents

You’ll need to submit the following documents:

Please upload a copy of the page(s) in your passport containing your personal details and photograph. If you are from the EU/EEA, you can submit a copy of your identity card instead. Please upload copies of both sides.

If you are a non-EU/EEA national already living in the Netherlands, upload copies of both sides of your Dutch residence permit.

Your CV (curriculum vitae) must be written in English and should contain your basic personal data, as well as a clear overview of your educational and professional history to date.

You can apply for admission before receiving the results of your English language test. However, a sufficient result will then be a condition of your eventual admission. Of course, if you already have your English language test results, you can upload them directly.

  • Digital copies of diplomas and transcripts are initially required. Once you have been admitted, we will inform you how to submit certified copies.
  • The documents must be in the original language. If they are not in English, Dutch, German or French, they must be accompanied by official translations into one of these languages.
  • If you have not yet completed your current programme, state your expected graduation date and submit copies of all transcripts obtained to date plus an official list of subjects still to be completed.

Additional documents specific to Museums and Collections

You are required to upload additional information: 1) about your acquired knowledge, understanding and skills in the field of the Master’s programme you are applying for and 2) about your acquired general academic skills. You can upload this format Questionnaire Master Application.

  • You can check the programme specific requirements regarding knowledge, understanding and skills on the Admission Requirements page. 
  • The format includes the list of general academic skills which the candidate must possess in order to be admitted to the Master’s programme at the Faculty of Humanities.
  • You can contact the coordinator of studies for further questions about the questionnaire. 

>> Go to the next step: Step 4: Start your application

Application procedure

The application procedure is broken down into three parts.

Part 1. Application in Studielink

All students applying for a degree programme at Leiden University must start the application process in Studielink, the national online registration system for students wishing to follow a degree programme at a Dutch university. Studielink is open for applications from 1 October in the year preceding the academic year in which you wish to start.

  1. Go to Studielink and enter your details according to the instructions provided.
  2. Within two days you will receive:
    • an email with information on the next steps you'll need to take;
    • your university ULCN student account details (unless, of course, you already have a ULCN account)
    • the link to Leiden University’s online application portal (uSis)

Please note: If you wish to apply for a specialisation of a Master's Programme: First select the Master’s Programme in Studielink, then select the specialisation for which you wish to apply in Step 4 (Institutional Questions) in Studielink.

After receiving your ULCN student account details, log into Leiden University’s online application portal (uSis), using the link provided. Here you can view the status of your application, which will be one of two possibilities.

1. You can be directly admitted
If your (Dutch) diploma grants you direct admission, Leiden University's online application portal (uSis) will let you know. The portal provides an overview of what you have to do to complete your application, for example arranging housing, scholarships, applying for a visa/residence permit and insurances. Please follow the instructions carefully and proceed to step 3 Student registration.

2. You cannot be directly admitted: additional action is required
If you do not have a (Dutch) diploma that grants you direct admission, we will require additional documents to allow us to decide about your application. The online application portal (uSis) will tell you this and explain how to do so. See also Part 2: Admission to Leiden University.

Part 2. Admission to Leiden University

If you cannot be directly admitted, you must apply for admission via Leiden University’s online application portal (uSis). Please follow all steps below. 

In our online application portal (uSis) you can finalise your application by uploading the necessary documents and answering a few questions. This portal provides an overview of what you need to do to complete your admission application. Please follow the instructions carefully and make sure to include all the items that are asked for. We strongly recommend that you complete your application well in advance of the application deadline.

All applicants with an international degree must pay a non-refundable €100 application fee, which entitles you to apply for up to three programmes/specialisations in the same academic year. We cannot start processing your application until we receive this application fee, so please pay it as soon as possible. The online application system explains how you can pay it.

Can I be exempted from paying the application fee?
You do not have to pay the application fee if:

  • You are following, or have completed, a bachelor’s degree at a Dutch university (of applied sciences). 
  • You have previously registered as an exchange, bachelor’s, master’s or pre-master’s student at Leiden University.
  • You have previously been admitted to the same degree programme at Leiden University, but you decided to postpone your studies. This does not apply if you are applying for a different study programme or specialisation.
  • You have refugee status in the Netherlands (with a residence permit for asylum).
  • You are an Indonesian student applying for an MSc programme and have been given a “review letter” by the Leiden Science Indonesia Office. 

Exemptions cannot be granted for any other reasons.

After you have submitted your application, the online application portal (uSis) will, if applicable, ask you if you want to apply for student housing, a visa/residence permit or a scholarship. Be sure to make a careful note of the relevant deadlines for these options.  

After receiving your application fee payment (if applicable), the Admissions Office will check whether all the necessary documents have been uploaded and they will inform you by email whether any further items are required. The Board of Admissions of the faculty will then:

  • decide whether you meet the admission requirements for the programme; 
  • strive to issue a decision on your completed application within four to six weeks of the University receiving it.

Once a decision has been reached you will be informed by email. You can view your admission status in the online application portal (uSis).

There are three possible outcomes:

  1. You are admitted
    You have met all conditions for admission.
  2. You are conditionally admitted
    You will be admitted, provided that you meet certain conditions. These conditions will be specified in the online application portal (uSis).
  3. You are not admitted

The reason(s) for non-admission will be clearly stated in the online application portal (uSis). If you are informed that you have been (conditionally) admitted, you will have to take a number of additional steps.

If you are (conditionally) admitted, the Admissions Office will ask you to confirm whether you will join the study programme. You can do so in the online application portal (uSis).

1.    Go to ‘Application study programme’ in the online application portal (uSis).
2.    Open the ‘Confirm’ screen. Here you will see three options:

  • Yes, I want to study at Leiden University.
  • No, I no longer wish to study at Leiden University and hereby withdraw my application.
  • Maybe later; I do not wish to start this semester/academic year. I would like to receive further instructions by email.

The sooner the better
Confirm attendance as soon as possible, to avoid missing other important deadlines and information about your study programme.

Changing your mind
You can still change your mind if necessary, either in uSis or by contacting the Admissions Office master team.  

Deadline final decision 
Do you need a student visa or residence permit? You can only request one after confirming attendance. So make sure to confirm attendance before the visa/residence permit deadline

If you don’t need a visa or residence permit, the latest deadline for confirming attendance is before the start date of your study programme.

Part 3. Student registration

If you’ve been (conditionally) admitted, follow these steps to register as a student at Leiden University:

Check in the online application portal (uSis) whether you need to submit any documents to meet the conditions of your admission. Instructions on how to do so will be provided in uSis.

Arrange the payment of your tuition fee before the official start date of your programme. You will receive instructions and information on the available payment methods by email.

If you are an international student, go to the Prepare your stay page of our website for information about the practical matters you should take care of before and upon arrival. These include, for example, arranging housing, scholarships, applying for a visa/residence permit and insurances.

>> Go to the next step. Step 5: Pay your tuition fees

Tuition fees

Your tuition fee depends on a number of factors, such as your nationality and your previous Dutch higher-education qualifications.

The tuition fees for the academic year 2021-2022 are:

Tuition fee 2021-22: reduced tariff due to corona 
Due to the coronavirus situation, the government has reduced the tuition fee for the academic year 2021-2022 by an amount of 1,084 euro. This reduction applies to both the statutory and institutional tuition fee, and also for non-EEA students and students following a second bachelor’s or master’s programme. The tuition fee amounts you see on this website are the reduced tariff.

More information about tuition fees

The tuition fee for this programme is €1,084 for the academic year 2021-2022 (statutory fee).

This tuition fee applies if this is your first master’s programme and you are a national of one of the following countries:











Czech Republic






















The fee applies for both full-time and part-time study.

The tuition fee for this programme is €17,716 for the academic year 2021-2022 (institutional tuition fee).

If you are not a national of an EEA country, Suriname or Switzerland, generally speaking you will have to pay an institutional tuition fee. This fee applies for both full-time and part-time study. 

However, if, on the basis of your Dutch residence permit, you are eligible for student finance from the Dutch education agency (DUO) you are entitled to pay the statutory tuition fee. Information on qualifying residence permits can be found in the DUO nationality chart.

Please note! If you will be studying at Leiden University via a cooperation agreement, the fees quoted in the agreement will apply.

Only applicable to EU/EEA, Swiss and Surinamese nationals.

The tuition fee for this programme is €13,616 for the academic year 2021-2022 (institutional tuition fee).

If you are following a second Dutch master’s programme you will generally have to pay an institutional tuition fee that is higher than the statutory tuition fee. Some exceptions apply.

Consult the tuition fee flowchart for second master’s programmes to find out how much tuition fee you will have to pay.​​​​​

Less than 45 EC

If you are going to follow a pre-master's or conversion programme after completing a bachelor’s programme, and if the programme is less than 45 ECs, you will have to pay €19 per study credit (EC).

45 EC or more

For programmes of more than 45 ECs you will have to pay the statutory tuition fee. If the pre-master's or conversion programme is more than 60 ECs – and therefore longer than one year - or if you are going to follow courses that are not part of your conversion programme, you will have to pay the institutional tuition fee for the programme in question (see second study programme). These fees apply to students of all nationalities. 

Scholarships, grants and loans

Leiden University offers a wide range of scholarships for students from specific regions of the world, or for specific programmes. Leiden University also offers the Leiden University Excellence Scholarship (LExS), a programme specifically designed for non-EU/EEA students enrolling in a master’s programme. Find out more about scholarships, grants, loans and deadlines

If you are an EU/EEA or Swiss national and under 30, you may be eligible for a loan from the Dutch government to cover your tuition fees.

>> Go to the next step. Step 6: Prepare for your studies at Leiden University

Prepare for your studies

You’ve been accepted! Leiden University looks forward to welcoming you as a new student. Your next step is to prepare for your studies. Below you can find some tips to help you get a head start as you embark on your studies at Leiden University.

For international students

If you are an international student, a wealth of information can be found on the ‘Prepare your stay’ page of our website. This includes information about visas, housing, financial matters, what to arrange upon arrival, and much more.

For Dutch students

  • The ‘student website’ page on Leiden University’s student website contains information about practical aspects, introduction weeks and student associations. It’s also a handy source of study-related information and advice.
  • For detailed information about courses, schedules and reading materials, check out the Prospectus. 

Sign up for an introduction programme! It’s the best way to get acquainted with student life and the student cities of Leiden and The Hague. 

Your student card is your proof of registration as a student of Leiden University. It will be sent to you at your Dutch address as soon as you have registered as a student and paid your tuition fee. Alternatively, you can collect it from the Student Affairs Front Office. Read more about your student card here

As soon as you start studying at Leiden University you should apply for a Leiden University ID card, or LU-Card. It also serves as your library card, print & copy card and access pass. Read more about applying for an LU-card here.  

Student life

Your time at Leiden is about more than just studying. Some of your best experiences will stem from being a part of our lively and diverse student community, as well as from life in the beautiful city of Leiden.

Life in Leiden

Picturesque and the perfect size, Leiden is the ideal place to spend your university days. The Faculty of Humanities is located within the heart of the city, where dozens of cafes, shops and bars line its historic laneways and leafy canals. Small enough to run into familiar faces, but big enough to keep offering surprises – you will treasure your time at Leiden. And for adventures further afield, the major cities of The Hague and Amsterdam are a short train ride away, along with Schiphol Airport, which is just half an hour away by train.

Our study and student associations organise a huge variety of social, cultural, and study events to keep you busy all year round. You can also join the University Sports Centre, which offers scheduled group sports and fitness classes, amongst other activities.

Welcome and orientation programme

In August and February each year, Leiden University hosts the English-language Orientation Week Leiden (OWL), which welcomes both international and Dutch students. The OWL is an excellent way to get to know Leiden University, the city, and other students.

Study associations

Leiden University’s Faculty of Humanities has a number of study associations run by students and related to a particular department or programme. Study associations organise social activities such as informal gatherings, sports events, and parties, as well as study-related activities such as excursions and study trips.

De L.K.V. is the study association for Arts, Media and Society students, Art History students and Arts and Culture students. We organize a variety of art-related activities, like excursions, monthly drinks and travels. De L.K.V. is bilingual, which means both Dutch as International students are welcome! Being part of de L.K.V. means getting exclusive tours around museums, interesting lectures, pub-crawls and it is the perfect way to meet people with the same interests. De L.K.V. has a great mix of activities about art, culture, and media. Alongside these activities is a community of friendly people to welcome you with open arms!

Want to know more about de L.K.V.?

Check out our website ( ), Instagram page (de.lkv) and Facebook page (de L.K.V.)

Do you have a specific question?

E-mail us at

International Student Associations

Leiden has several student organisations that specifically cater for international students. These associations organise regular social events and activities that help create the strong sense of community that exists within our international student body. The main two organisations are:

International Student Network (ISN)
ISN Leiden is an international student organisation which hosts a range of activities and programmes. They also have a buddy programme which provides new students with the right support to assimilate into Leiden and the university.

AEGEE Leiden
AEGEE is a leading European student association with sister organisations in over 40 countries across Europe. AEGEE organises many activities in Leiden, from dinners and pool nights to boat trips and guest lectures. 

For an overview of all of our student associations, please visit our Student assocations page.

Humanities Master’s Buddy Programme

The Humanities Master’s Buddy Programme has been set up by the Faculty of Humanities to help all students who are new to the university to integrate quickly and easily into university life. You will be matched to a buddy who can help you out with your academic and practical questions. Additionally you will be able to attend fun monthly activities and make friends from all over the world.

For more information about the Buddy Programme, please visit the Humanities Buddy Programme page.

Information activities

Come and meet us at the Leiden University Master’s Open Day!

About our Master’s Open Day

Are you thinking about joining a master’s programme at Leiden University? Come and visit our online Masterweek! This event is your opportunity to learn everything you need to know about our master’s programmes and how they can help you reach your goals. Attend presentations, meet our lecturers, learn about the careers of our alumni and hear first-hand the experiences of students and graduates on life at Leiden University.


If you have a question, there are various ways to get in touch with us.

This website and our Frequently Asked Questions are the quickest ways to find an answer to many of your questions.

Questions about the Programme

Coordinators of studies
Ms. Pui Chi Lai & Ms. Laura Kouters
Phone: +31 (0)71 527 1691

Questions about the application procedure

Student Affairs Front Office
Phone: +31 (0)71 527 80 11
Email: Contact form
Or visit their website

Visiting address
Leiden: Plexus Student Centre
Kaiserstraat 25, ground floor
2311 GN Leiden
Monday till Friday between 11.00 and  16.00, Tuesday 11.00 to 21.00.