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COVID-19 update: This course will start online and continue on campus later. Read more

What will I learn?

In the Bachelor's in Security Studies you study 21st century security challenges and learn to devise strategic solutions for a complex world.

International terrorism, cybercrime, natural disasters and other issues affect the security and safety of millions each day. In Security Studies you learn to unravel security challenges by focusing on the political, historical and societal context in which they arise, as well as the effect of governance, institutions, and the media. You gain an academic perspective, and the ability to think critically about complex issues while taking all relevant factors of specific security challenges into account.

You study at Leiden University, one of the leading universities in continental Europe. The programme is located in The Hague, the international city of peace, justice and security.

This English-taught programme challenges you to combine critical thinking with a practical attitude and helps you to develop into an all-round, academically trained, highly employable security specialist.

* International community
* Interdisciplinary approach security and safety challenges
* Research-led and practice-oriented
* Three-step teaching philosophy: Explore, Understand and Do
* Combination of lectures and skills labs; where academic and professional skills are trained in small groups

Programme outline

At every stage of the Bachelors of Security Studies, you will learn by ‘exploring, understanding, and doing’ security. This means that, throughout the programme, you will:

  • explore by identifying crucial events, stakeholders and the cultural and historical context of real-life safety and security cases
  • increase your understanding by identifying relevant theoretical lenses and applying them to these cases
  • use your knowledge to assess and design strategies and solutions to security and safety challenges

After graduation

Graduates of the unique Security Studies programme at Leiden University are attractive candidates for a broad range of employers, in a field that is growing and offers excellent prospects for academically trained security strategists.

Your career prospects

Do you want to follow a full academic programme? After obtaining your bachelor’s degree you can continue with a master’s programme. Once you have successfully completed your master’s you will have earned the title Master of Science (MSc) or Master of Arts(MA). Your master’s diploma will increase your chances of finding a job or academic-level position.

Your future workplace will depend upon your interests, knowledge and skills, and on the elective choices you’ve made during your study. Students who complete this programme find themselves prepared for a wide range of sectors and occupations.

The Security Studies programme offers a broad range of future employment prospects in business, or at governmental or NGOs. Career opportunities include such positions as:

* Security Policy Officer at a government organisation
* Consultant advising public and private organisations on security
* Risk Manager at a public or private organisation
* PhD student in the security domain
* Strategic Advisor on security strategies at a public or private organisation
* Researcher in the security domain at a university

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs

Study options

Full Time (3 years)

Tuition fees
€10,716.00 (8,75,490) per year
Application deadline

Expected April 2023

More details

Start date

Expected September 2022


Leiden University Campus The Hague

Wijnhaven Building,

Turfmarkt 99, DP,



2511, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants can be admitted with an equivalent of a Dutch pre-university education (VWO) diploma. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic modules only. Minimum score of 6.5 overall; The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum score of 90 overall (internet based). Original test results should be sent directly by the Educational Testing Service, Institutional TOEFL tests are not accepted; Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English/ Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English (grade A-C) or CPE/CAE 180. Cambridge A-Levels in three general, academic subjects with grades A-C. Must have High School Diploma, College Preparatory programme with: A minimum GPA of 3.5/4.0, and Three College Board APs (grades 4-5) in different subjects (not accepted are: AP studio Art, AP Capstone, AP Research, or AP Seminar). When applying, please upload your SAT (or ACT) exam scores, College Board results and information on your schools accreditation. In exceptional cases, if sufficient AP scores and/or GPA cannot be submitted, SAT general scores > 1200 (or ACT composite scores > 28), may be taken into account.

For international students

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). The list of diplomas is available on the Leiden University admissions website.

IELTS (academic modules only) 6.5; TOEFL: 90; Cambridge English Exam - 180.

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


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