Universiteit Leiden

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Law and Society (MSc)

Check the admission requirements

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

In order to be considered for the Master programme Law and Society, you should possess (before the start of the programme)

  • a bachelor's degree from a recognised research university in law or social sciences (political sciences, public administration, sociology, cultural anthropology and development sociology or general social sciences) or a bachelor’s degree in law (LL.B) or
  • a bachelor's degree from a recognised research university in a multidisciplinary programme which includes courses in both law and social sciences subjects (i.e. some programmes in Liberal Arts and Sciences: the Politics, Psychology, Law and Economics programme of the University of Amsterdam; Urban Studies; International Studies etc.)

Check the Course and Examination Regulations (OER) and the admission requirements (Chapter 5) on the website

You cannot be directly admitted! All students with any of the above mentioned bachelor’s degrees from a research university (completed before the starting date of the programme) must register via Studielink and apply for admission via the online application portal (uSis) before the deadline.

Applicants with a higher professional education (HBO) degree are not eligible for admission. They can only start in the first year of the bachelor’s programme.

Proven English language proficiency, demonstrated by way of an English test IELTS academic (overall score of 6.5) with at least 6.0 for each of the four components or an equivalent result for a Toefl or Cambridge ESOL test (check the equivalent scores). Your test result may not be more than two years old.

You can apply to a programme before you obtain the results of your language exam (if you already have your results you can upload them directly in our online portal). If you are admitted, it will be on the condition that these results will meet the required levels specified.

The following requirements apply: 

  • IELTS Academic modules only, on paper or on computer: 6.5 overall, with at least 6.0 for each separate component score.
    • We do not accept IELTS Academic online.
    • We do not accept IELTS General Training, IELTS Indicator, or IELTS One Skill Retake
  • TOEFL internet based: 90 overall, with at least 20 for each separate component.
    • We are not able to accept The TOEFL IBT Home Edition™, except in the following situations only:
      You took the test before 1 Sept 2022 (and it is not more than 2 years old), or you are unable to take an in-person test on location because test centres are inaccessible or closed due to unsafe conditions in a country.
    • We do not accept the following types of test: TOEFL My Best™ scores (multiple test scores combined), TOEFL Essentials™  or institutional tests such as ITP.
  • Cambridge English Exam C2 Proficiency, or C1 Advanced (180), with a minimum score of 169 for each separate component.

Note that English test results may not be more than two years old.

You do not have to submit an English proficiency test if you have completed your education in the USA, UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia, Canada (except French-taught programmes in Canada) Singapore, South-Africa or Malta; or if you have obtained an English-taught International Baccalaureate™; or if you have completed a Dutch VWO diploma or an English-taught bachelor at a Dutch research university.

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

Requests for admission to the programme have to be submitted before the deadline determined in the Regulation for Admission. Requests for admission have to be accompanied by:

  • a full transcript of the results obtained during the bachelor’s programme; this transcript should contain the following information about all courses of the bachelor’s programme: name, number of credits, grade, date the course was passed;
  • a cv with information about prior education and extracurricular activities, in particular those who demonstrate an interest in the field of Law and Society, a broad, international outlook and/or communication skills;
  • a motivation letter in which the applicant explains why the student is interested in this programme and how this is demonstrated by courses completed during the bachelor programme and extracurricular activities (including work-experience) and elaborated on their plans for the future and the part the programme would play in these plans;
  • an essay in English on a subject concerning Law and Society of 800-1000 words.

The Board of Admissions evaluates the requests for admission. Only requests which are submitted before the deadline will be evaluated. The Board of Admissions evaluates the requests for admission on the basis of the documents provided by the applicants and determines if they meet the following criteria:

  • demonstrable interest in Law and Society, either on the basis of electives or courses taken during the bachelor’s programme and/or extracurricular activities, and the explanation of the applicant in the motivation letter; and
  • the capacity to write a well-structured, correct and coherent socio-legal essay.


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

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