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Physics - Faculty of Science - Leiden University

Physics (MSc)

Admission requirements

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

Diploma requirements

If you have a bachelor's degree in Physics (Natuurkunde) or a Physics-related programme from any research university in the Netherlands, you are eligible to apply.

For any of the five specialisations in “Research in Physics” admission is under the provision that you have in-depth knowledge, comparable to undergraduate courses of the Leiden Physics curriculum, with a theoretical and mathematical emphasis, including quantum physics, electrodynamics, statistical physics, and complex analysis.

Further on, please note that:
For the specialization Research in Physics, Cosmology, you must also have knowledge of “Physics of elementary particles” at undergraduate level.

The Casimir pre-PhD specialisation is an honour’s track that students can enter only after the first semester. For this specialisation the following admission requirements apply:

  • A grade point average of at least 7.5 in the first semester of the Physics programme.
  • Admission to the second year is on the condition that all courses of the first year (60 EC) have been successfully completed.

The Board of Admissions will assess whether your degree and background are sufficiently related to the Dutch BSc degree in Physics (and, if applicable, whether you meet the additional requirement for certain specialisations).

If you have a bachelor’s degree that does not meet the requirements specified above, you may be eligible for an individual bridging programme tailored to your individual background. If you have successfully met the requirements of the imposed bridging programme, you will be admitted to the master’s programme. 

For more information, please contact the Physics study advisor.

 

If you have a degree in Dutch higher vocational education (hbo) in Technische Natuurkunde, admission can be considered upon completion of a pre-master's programme.

The Board of Admissions will assess whether your degree and background are sufficiently related to the Dutch BSc degree in Physics (and, if applicable, whether you meet the additional requirement for certain specialisations).

If you have a bachelor’s degree that does not meet the requirements specified above, you may be eligible for an individual bridging programme tailored to your individual background. If you have successfully met the requirements of the imposed bridging programme, you will be admitted to the master’s programme. 

For more information, please contact the Physics study advisor.

If you have a bachelor's degree in Physics (Natuurkunde) or a Physics-related programme from a foreign research university with a level similar to Dutch universities, you are eligible to apply.

For any of the five specialisations in “Research in Physics” admission is under the provision that you have in-depth knowledge, comparable to undergraduate courses of the Leiden Physics curriculum, with a theoretical and mathematical emphasis, including quantum physics, electrodynamics, statistical physics, and complex analysis.

Further on, please note that:
For the specialization Research in Physics, Cosmology, you must also have knowledge of “Physics of elementary particles” at undergraduate level.

The Casimir pre-PhD specialisation is an honour’s track that students can enter only after the first semester. For this specialisation the following admission requirements apply:

  • A grade point average of at least 7.5 in the first semester of the Physics programme.
  • Admission to the second year is on the condition that all courses of the first year (60 EC) have been successfully completed.

The Board of Admissions will assess whether your degree and background are sufficiently related to the Dutch BSc degree in Physics (and, if applicable, whether you meet the additional requirement for certain specialisations).

If you have a bachelor’s degree that does not meet the requirements specified above, you may be eligible for an individual bridging programme tailored to your individual background. If you have successfully met the requirements of the imposed bridging programme, you will be admitted to the master’s programme. 

For more information, please contact the Physics study advisor.

Otherwise exceptional candidates without an adequate degree in Physics who have in other ways covered the appropriate material* in a demonstrable way (i.e., having taken exams)  will be evaluated on an individual basis.

Only exceptionally performing candidates are admitted to the MSc in Theoretical Physics and Physics and Cosmology programmes. The specialisation ‘Cosmology’ also requires knowledge of ‘Physics of Elementary Particles’ at undergraduate level.

* An appropriate study program should cover most of the following:

Math:

  • Multivariate calculus, ordinary and partial differential equations, complex analysis, Fourier transforms, special functions
  • Real and Complex vector spaces, linear transformations, orthonormal bases, basis transformations, quadratic and Hermitian forms, spectral methods

Classical Mechanics:

  • Lagrangian and Hamiltonian formalisms.

Special Theory of Relativity

Electromagnetism:
Electrical and magnetic fields, Maxwell’s equations; wave theory of light, propagation of EM  waves in media.

Statistical Physics:
Thermal equilibrium and equipartition theorem; entropy and microcanonical ensemble, free energy, canonical ensemble, partition functions, Maxwell relations; ideal gases, elasticity,  Hooke’s law; magnetization and magnetic susceptibility; Ising model; mean-field solution; macrocanonical ensemble, Grand free energy.

Quantum Mechanics:
Schrödinger equation, 1D stationary states, Hilbert space, 3D spherically symmetric systems, H atom, angular momentum, spin; including probability functions, operators, Dirac notation, eigenvalue problem; many particle systems; H-like atoms, Fermi-Dirac and Bose-Einstein statistics; blackbody radiation; fine structure, Zeeman and Stark effects; time dependent perturbation theory; quantum theory of radiation (Einstein coefficients).

Language requirements

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

  • IELTS: minimum 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 for each of the components Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking
  • TOEFL: internet based 90 (with a minimum component score of 20)
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE), minimum grade C

*Please note: You do not have to submit proof of proficiency if you have

  • An International Baccalaureate diploma (or other with English A);
  • A diploma of secondary or higher education completed in the US, the United Kingdom, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia or Canada (with the exception of French-taught education in Canada);
  • A diploma of an English-taught university degree programme completed at a Dutch research university;
  • A pre-university education (vwo) diploma;
  • A high school (or higher) diploma determined by SEA (Admissions Office) in an EER country, where English has been studied up to and including the final year of the programme, and where the level of English can be considered comparable to Dutch vwo (pre-university education).

For detailed information about which English qualifications are accepted, as well as the relevant exemption criteria, refer to English language proficiency.

 

The education component of this master's programme is taught in Dutch. All applicants that have not achieved a Secondary Education qualification in the Netherlands, have to demonstrate their Dutch communication skills. The level of Dutch is assessed through an advanced Dutch language exam. For more information about the exam: Admission Exam TUL Advanced. For the speaking (fluency) part of the exam, at least a 7.5 must be achieved.

Mind: after completion of the Education specialisation you obtain a qualifications to be a teacher in the Netherlands.

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

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