Why Leiden?

Founded in 1575, Leiden University is the oldest university in the Netherlands. Leiden University is one of the Founding Members of the League of European Research Universities (LERU), an important organization the members of which are evaluated against very high standards of academic excellence. The group of LERU Founding Members includes the universities of Oxford, Cambridge, Geneva and Edinburgh. Leiden continues to score high in the various world-wide rankings of universities. It has brought forth many world-famous scientists and Nobel Prize winners, including Spinoza, Einstein, Lorentz and Kamerlingh Onnes. Many of our researchers have published articles in top international scientific journals, including Nature and Science.

What else makes Leiden so special?

Strong emphasis on the quality of education and research

Research and education are closely connected at Leiden University. This means that teaching is often done by top researchers and it means that our students get acquainted with research right from the start. In our teaching, we offer a variety of teaching formats (lectures, work groups, practicals, and individual supervision) and use modern ICT tools and blended learning to support our teaching.

Highly qualified teaching staff

Leiden University courses are taught by professors and assistant professors, and generally not by PhD and post-doc students

International reputation

Not only do research and education in Leiden enjoy a prominent reputation internationally, Leiden students have many opportunities to conduct part of their study abroad, and each year close to a thousand international students come to study in Leiden.

Academic Freedom

Academic freedom is one of our core values and we stimulate our students to think independently, keep an open mind and form judgments based on the collection and interpretation of data in their discipline while taking social, scientific and ethical aspects into account.

Our programmes are unique

Currently there are 9 English-taught programmes and over 40 Dutch-taught programmes at the university. However, all disciplines are represented in our offerings: Humanities, Social and Behavioural Sciences, Law and Medicine (LUC), Science, and Archaeology. Many of our programmes are interdisciplinary, in addition to our Liberal Arts programme at the Leiden University College.

International classroom

Our programmes bring together students and lecturers from around the world who have obtained international training, experience and exposure. They bring an international and multi-cultural perspective to their studies. This, combined with the fact that all teaching and discussions will be in English, that we offer cross-cultural courses, and that you can study abroad for a semester, ensures that your training will be truly international and fitting in a global world.

Individual attention for students

In these bachelor’s programme, teaching is on a smaller scale.

Student Support

Leiden is known for its system of Student Support which ensures intensive and individual support to all students during all three years of the bachelor’s programme.

University as integral part of the city

In Leiden, the university is in the heart of the city. The faculties are all within walking distance of the Central Station, and most are in the historic city centre. The city has a warm and friendly atmosphere and its canal-lined streets abound with attractive cafés and terraces where you and your fellow students can gather after lectures to continue your discussions in a relaxed social environment. For those students in The Hague, it’s location was chosen as it is the City of International Peace and Justice and those themes are integral to the studies there and student life/career opportunities.

Leiden through the eyes of
The international faces of Leiden University
Leiden through the eyes of our students.
Read their stories