Leiden University

Leiden University

As a prestigious European research university, Leiden University plays a foremost role in academic research and teaching. High-quality academic research and teaching are crucial to a safe, healthy, sustainable, prosperous and just world. 

Top reasons to study here

  • The motto of Leiden University is: Libertatis Praesidium or Bastion of Freedom. A number of basic principles guide the University’s actions.
  • Our academics are guided by the highest ambitions of quality and academic integrity. We aim to instil this same academic attitude in our students.
  • The University bears a responsibility to society. It regards this as a responsibility not only to present generations but also to future ones.



Leiden University was the first university to be established in the Netherlands. William of Orange gave Leiden Academia Lugduno Batava in 1575, it is said in recognition of the city’s courageous resistance against the seige by the Spanish invaders.


  • Our teaching is characterised by individual attention for students, contact with diverse cultures and innovative teaching methods. Personal supervision and the binding study advice contribute to our success. Our teaching and research are closely interwoven.
  • We encourage our students to get the best out of themselves. Within our international and diverse student population we train our students to become world citizens who can make their own contribution to resolving the complex societal challenges of the future.


  • Leiden University is an internationally oriented, comprehensive University. Our scientific research and teaching inspire one another, and this cross-pollination shapes our contribution to society. With our research, we work to gain a fundamental understanding of the world and the people around us. 
  • In our teaching, we train our students to become analytical thinkers and critical world citizens who can apply this knowledge to make the world a safe, healthy, sustainable, prosperous and just place. Where possible, we endorse and apply the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.


You’ve graduated, and now what? Employability enhancement and the development of the skills and competences that are needed for the job market of the future are becoming increasingly important aspects of curricula at Leiden University.

Global Student Satisfaction Awards 2019

GSSA 2019

The Global Student Satisfaction Awards empower students across the globe to determine the best universities of 2019. By rating institutions on a scale from 1 to 5, on multiple studies-related questions, we found the top educators in the world.

Learn more about the Global Student Satisfaction Awards

University Ranking

QS World University Rankings by TopUniversities
128 -10
118 4
QS World University Rankings is one of the top international rankings measuring the popularity and performance of universities all over the world.
World University Rankings by Times Higher Education
67 1
World University Rankings is a vital resource that provides the definitive list of the world's best universities.
Academic Ranking of World Universities by Shanghai Jiao Tong University
82 -8
ARWU World University rankings is the first world university ranking. It ranks the world's top 1000 colleges and universities based on objective indicator.
Best Global Universities Rankings by U.S. News & World Report
89 -3
Best Global Universities Rankings by U.S. News & World Report presents all the top universities from the U.S. and 60 other countries around the world.


Housing services

  • The Housing Office offers accommodation for international students in Leiden and The Hague via DUWO student housing corporation.
  • Students with a disability: If you have a disability you may require additional facilities in your living environment. Finding suitable accommodation can be time-consuming, so please contact the Housing Office as early as possible for advice. 

Library services

  • University Library
  • Asian Library
  • Law Library
  • Social and Behavioural Sciences Library
  • Science Library
  • Van Steenis Depot
  • Wijnhaven Library, The Hague
  • Walaeus Library (LUMC)
  • NINO Library
  • KITLV Jakarta
  • NIMAR Rabat
  • Bibliotheca Thysiana
  • Academic Historical Museum

Student Life

Campus life

Leiden University also has a location in The Hague. Six of the University's seven faculties are now active at Campus The Hague.

Teaching and research in The Hague closely reflect the profile of the city – city of peace, justice and security – and the many other opportunities offered by the city. Our teaching and research at Campus The Hague centre on four key themes:

  • International law, peace and security
  • Politics, public administration and international relations
  • Urban issues
  • Health and patient care

The Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs is located exclusively in The Hague, as are our Leiden University College and International Studies, the biggest programme taught by the Faculty of Humanities.

Sports facilities

  • In Beehive, located opposite the Wijnhaven building, you can find our brand new sports facility, The Buzz.
  • The Buzz is equipped with the latest technology in the world of fitness: eGym. Combined with our functional- and cardio training equipment and group classes, we offer a complete fitness concept for students and employees of Leiden University.

Student clubs

  • Becoming a member of a student association is the best way to quickly feel at home in The Hague. You’ll soon get to know people and you’ll make new friends for life.
  • The Hague’s student associations: As a student city, The Hague is growing in stature and is gaining more and more student associations. But don’t worry if you’re not sure which one you should join. During The HOP introduction week you can simply drop by them all, talk to existing members and visit their parties. Or, to get a better picture, you could check them out online first.

Student Reviews

Quaint town and tough uni
Anonymous rated 4 out of 5 stars

The town is beautiful and there are lovely restaurants and bars. The university is highly ranked and has a good academic level. The exams are quite regular, however you get used to this and learn to just study throughout the course of the whole year. The teachers vary in how interactive they are; some give you extensive feedback where others don't tend to interact much...

Decent uni, nothing special
Anonymous rated 3 out of 5 stars

The university isn't state of the art, but also not bad. The facilities are fine, the subteachers are not always fully educated to teach what they are teaching, that is a big con.

Knowing my future
Anonymous rated 4 out of 5 stars

every abroad. I learned a lot! from medicine and pharmacy subjects to lab skills. However, this made me feel not specific and thereforfe I want to do a master in medicine and clinical research in UK since I tried many times here and it didn't work.

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