The Security Studies programme is a three-year BSc degree. It is a full-time programme, which means that throughout your degree, you will study 40 hours per week on average. This is a combination of in-class hours and self-study.
First year of the Security Studies programme
After a broad introduction to security and safety in modern society, you will gain insight into different vulnerabilities and threats, the actors involved, and approaches to safety and security issues. You will study in detail two complex, real life case with local, national, regional and global dimensions: Syria & Iraq, and Fukushima.
- Read more about the structure and courses of your first year.
Second year of the Security Studies programme
You will learn about the strategies necessary to protect the vital interests in society and to ensure stability, welfare and prosperity. In doing so, you will study three security and safety challenges: Terrorism & Counterterrorism, Cyber Threats & Risk Management and War & Peace Building. You will also explore the underlying themes of Law and Security, Economics of Security and Governance of Security.
Third year of the Security Studies programme: going deeper or broader
The elective space in year three can be used to qualify for a specialised master’s programme, or as preparation for entering the labour market. You can choose to deepen your knowledge and skills via minors and electives run by the Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs and other faculties at Leiden University. Alternatively, you can register for a broadening minor at another faculty or university in the Netherlands or abroad. Year 3 also offers you the chance to study abroad or to do an internship at one of the many organisations in the security domain.
In the final part of the programme, you will further develop your research methods and skills before you work on your bachelor thesis. You will conclude the programme with a group project and an individual thesis.
Throughout the programme, you will gain and improve academic and professional skills, including:
- critical thinking, writing, communication, research and interdisciplinary skills
- teamwork, intercultural skills, organisational & leadership skills, citizenship, and reflection & lifelong learning skills.
In your first year, you will tackle these aspects in the Skills Lab under the guidance of your tutor. You will also receive training during courses, projects and while working on your final thesis.
Exploring, understanding, doing
At every stage, you will learn by ‘exploring, understanding and doing’ security. That means that, throughout the programme, you will aim to:
- Explore by identifying crucial events, stakeholders and the cultural and historical context of real-life security and safety cases
- Increase understanding by identifying relevant academic perspectives and applying them to these challenging cases
- Use your knowledge to assess and design strategies and solutions to security and safety challenges