Leiden University Requirements

Rapenburg 70, 2311 EZ Leiden, Netherlands


  • Does this mean I will spend two more years in High School?

    Yes. But these two additional years will equip you with skills that will better prepare you for the future, whether it be; Kolehiyo, Trabaho or Negosyo!

  • Application Procedure

    Every student who wants to apply for a programme at Leiden University will need to start at Studielink, the national online registration system for students who want to follow a degree programme at a Dutch university. Afterwards, you can continue the online application process at Leiden University.

    Part 1: Apply for a programme in Studielink
     All students applying for a bachelor’s programme at Leiden University will need to start their application at Studielink  Studielink will be open for applications from 1 October.

    Part 2 : Online application at Leiden University
    If you are not automatically admitted, you must apply for admission via the Leiden University online application portal.

    Part 3: Student registration
    You’ve been admitted? Congratulations! Follow the steps below to register as a student of Leiden University:

    • Check in the online application portal (uSis) whether you need to submit any documents to meet your conditions of admission, if applicable. Instructions on how to do so will be provided in uSis.
    • Arrange tuition fee payment before the official start date of your study programme. You will receive instructions and information on payment methods by email.
    • International students should also go to our prepare your stay pages to find out about all the practical matter you should take care of before and upon arrival. For example arranging housing, applying for a visa/residence permit and taking out insurances.

  • Application Deadline

    15 October
    Colloquium doctum admission procedure

    15 January
    Bachelor’s programmes with limited quota

    1 April
    Bachelor’s programmes for candidates who need a visa, residence permit or accommodation via Leiden University Housing Office

    1 May (the early bird deadline is 15 January)
    Bachelor’s programmes with a compulsory matching module (Bio-Pharmaceutical Sciences, International Relations and Organisations, Physics, Psychology, Security Studies and Astronomy)​​​​​​​

    15 June
    Bachelor’s programmes for candidates who don’t need accommodation via Leiden University Housing Office andwho are not applying for a programme with a limited quota or compulsory matching.

    1 January (early bird deadline)
    1 April (regular deadline)

    Leiden University College The Hague

  • Admission via colloquium doctum

    Colloquium doctum, which roughly translates as “learned discussion”, is a special admission procedure that you can apply for if:

    • you do not have a diploma that grants university admission, and
    • you are 21 or older on the day that your proposed study programme commences
    As a colloquium doctum candidate, you have to sit a number of exams at Dutch pre-university level (VWO) to determine whether you have the required knowledge to participate in a university degree programme. If you are successful, you will only be admitted to the programme for which you initially applied – not to other programmes or other institutions. 
    Bear in mind that the colloquium doctum route can be very challenging, both during the admission procedure and once you begin your degree studies.

    The colloquium doctum admission procedure
    The colloquium doctum admission procedure is the same as the standard application procedure, so you can simply follow the steps in this guide.

  • Limited-quota program

    Because of their popularity, some bachelor’s programmes are oversubscribed. For these programmes a quota has been set for the number of students who may be admitted.  At Leiden University there are currently five so-called limited-quota bachelor’s programmes: 

    • Biomedical Sciences (in Dutch)
    • Clinical Technology (in Dutch)
    • Criminology  (in Dutch)
    • Medicine  (in Dutch)
    • Tax Law  (in Dutch) 
    A selection and placement procedure is also in place for these programmes. This means that even if you are admitted you are not guaranteed a place on the programme. You also have to be allocated a place via the procedures mentioned below. 
    Note that you must be proficient in Dutch if you want to participate in the selection procedures and that you can only submit two selection applications.
    Steps to take
    • 1 October 1 to 15 January  – registration and admission
      Apply to register via Studielink and submit an admission application via our Online Application System. 
      If you withdraw your registration request in Studielink before midnight on 15 January, you will not have used one of your two permitted selection applications.
    • 16 January to 15 April: selection procedure and ranking
      More information about the procedures and selection criteria can be found on the webpage of each study programme. On 15 April you will receive a ranking number via Studielink. The higher the number, the greater will be your chance of being offered a place.
    • 15 April to 31 August: places offered
      Places will be offered from 15 April. If a student withdraws or declines an offer, the place will be offered to the next student in line. This means that places will be offered continuously between 15 April and 31 August. If you are offered a place, you have 14 days to accept or decline it.
      Important: remember to check your email Inbox and Spam folders regularly from 15 April.                                                                       

  • Language Requirement

    You must be proficient in Dutch if you want to be admitted to Dutch-taught bachelor’s programmes.
    You must be proficient in English if you want to be admitted to all English-taught and most Dutch-taught bachelor’s programmes.
    For some bachelor’s programmes you also have to be proficient in other languages.
    Information on the types of exams accepted, exemptions and how to submit your exam results can be found in the language requirements below.

    Proficiency in Dutch is only required for admission to Dutch-taught bachelor’s programmes.
    Exams accepted

    • Faculty of Science & Faculty of Medicine (LUMC): Dutch TUL intermediate exam or Dutch NII- Diploma (in Dutch)
    • All other faculties: Dutch TUL advanced exam from the Academic Language Centre
    • Holders of an International Baccalaureate diploma, with Dutch B Higher, Dutch A1 or Dutch A2, are exempted from an additional Dutch exam.
    • If you have a German Zeugnis der Allgemeinen Hochschulreife, different rules apply (you will receive more information upon admission).
    • Exemptions may be granted on the basis of other specific educational diplomas. The Admissions Office will let you know after receiving your application whether you qualify for an exemption.
    Proficiency in English is required for admission to all English-taught and most Dutch-taught bachelor’s programmes.
    Accepted exams Equivalent test scores
    You can find the equivalent scores for IELTS, TOEFL and Cambridge English tests in our English test score equivalency table
    Other exam criteria
    • Exam results may not be more than two years old.
    • Institutional exams, such as the ITP-TOEFL, cannot be accepted.
    • Chinese students who need a Nuffic certificate should take either an IELTS or a TOEFL IBT exam.
    You can be exempted from submitting one of the above-mentioned English exam results if:
    • You have an (English-taught) International Baccalaureate diploma, or a European Baccalaureate with English as language 1.
    • You completed your schooling in the USA, the UK, Ireland, New Zealand, Australia or Canada  (except French-taught programmes in Canada).
    • Exemptions may be granted on the basis of other specific educational diplomas. The Admissions Office will let you know after receiving your application whether you qualify for an exemption.
    In exceptional cases, students who otherwise qualify for an exemption but whose application documents cast doubt on their English proficiency may be asked to sit an English exam.

    Submitting your English exam results
    All English exam results must be uploaded in the online application system. Your results must be checked for authenticity by the Admissions Office before the deadline for applying for a visa/residence permit (if applicable), or before the start date of your programme. To make this possible, please do the following:
    • TOEFL exam: instruct ETS to send your original results report to Leiden University Admissions Office – institution code 0504.
    • Cambridge certificate: send your ID number and your “secret number” (check the Candidate Results Online service) to Leiden University Admissions Office.
    • IELTS: a scanned exam result is sufficient - no further steps will be required.
    Other languages
    Some bachelor’s programmes also require proficiency in other languages. Refer to the programme description for details.

  • Academic Requirement

    Automatic admission?

    Some Dutch diplomas grant automatic admission to Bachelor’s programmes at Leiden University. Check in the programme information whether your diploma grants you automatic admission. Generally speaking you cannot be automatically admitted, and must instead apply for admission, if:

    • You are an international student (you have a non-Dutch diploma).
    • You are a Dutch student without the appropriate VWO diploma (you have an international diploma or a VWO diploma that falls short of the applicable requirements, for example)
    • You are applying for a Bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts and Sciences: Global Challenges (LUC The Hague).
    Minimum requirements

    The minimum requirement for admission to any bachelor’s programme at Leiden University is a diploma that is at least equal to the Dutch pre-university diploma (VWO).  If your diploma does not meet these requirements you may still be admitted, on condition that you sit additional exams. You will receive more information once we have received your application for admission. 

  • Application Requirement

    Required application documents

    • a copy of a valid passport or European ID card
    • a Dutch residence permit (if applicable)
    • a CV (résumé)
    • a motivation letter: A personal statement explaining why you want to follow the programme, why you have chosen to do so at Leiden University, and what makes you think you are a good candidate. The statement should be between 700 and 1,500 words.
    • Copies of diplomas and transcripts
      • Digital copies are required initially. Once you have been admitted, we will tell you how to submit certified copies to the Admissions Office. 
      • Documents must be in the original language and accompanied by official translations if they are not in English, Dutch, German or French.
      • If you have not yet completed your study programme, state your expected graduation date and submit copies of all transcripts obtained to date.
      • International Baccalaureate students are advised to also submit their predicted grades.
      • European Baccalaureate students should indicate the subjects in which they will take their written and oral examinations.
      • Colloquium doctum applicants must also submit transcripts from any uncompleted study programmes.
    Language proficiency information
    You can apply before you obtain the results of your language exam. If you are admitted, it will be on condition of the result being good enough.

  • Bachelor's Admission and Application

    • Step 1: Check your bachelor's program
    • Step 2: Check the admission requirement 
    • Step 3: Check application deadlines
    • Step 4: Collect required requirement 
    • Step 5: Start your application
    • Step 6: Pay your tuition fee
    • Step 7: Prepare your studies at Leiden University 

Join thousands of students who trust us

Over 350 schools waiting for you. Apply now — it's free