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

What will I learn?

Leiden University’s internationally-respected master’s in Japanese Studies offers specialised knowledge on the most important aspects of modern and pre-modern Japan.

Why study Japanese Studies at Leiden University?

Leiden University has one of the oldest and most established centres for Japanese Studies in the Western world – building on the country’s long and intimate relations with Japan. The two-year MA Japanese Studies programme, a specialisation of the MA Asian Studies, capitalises on this expertise in every way. Join a state-of-the-art and multidisciplinary programme taught by some of the leading academics in the field.

Customised knowledge and skills

A comprehensive range of topics in modern and pre-modern Japan combined with a flexible programme format mean that you can tailor your studies to your interests and career goals. Alongside your specialised knowledge, you will acquire sophisticated analytical and critical-thinking skills and the ability to independently conduct high-quality research.

Join a competitive programme and international classroom

A limited number of talented and highly-motivated students are accepted into this programme. Learn alongside inspired peers from around the world where small-scale classes allow every individual to share their ideas and engage fully in the content. At Leiden, every individual counts, which is why every student receives one-on-one support and mentoring from lecturers.

Study in Japan

Two semesters of your degree will be spent studying at a university in Japan, offering you a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to immerse yourself in Japanese culture, language, and society. Develop your fluency in Japanese and gain a host of skills and insights that will prepare you for real-world success after your master's degree.

Career prospects

Create a world of opportunities with a master's degree from Leiden University.

What our graduates do

Our alumni can be found working within Japanese multinationals such as banks, insurance companies, and government bodies. Others have followed paths into consultancy, management, journalism, PR and marketing, tourism, and education.

Some of the occupations of our graduates include:

  • Account Manager at Asahi Intec, a Japanese company that develops metal wire for medical applications
  • Analytics Assistant at Reed Elsevier, a provider of information services
  • Area Manager Asia at the Netherlands Council for Trade Promotion
  • Marketing Trainee at Wakibi microcredit, a provider of microcredit
  • Service Management Consultant at a company developing software
  • Junior Project Manager at Concorde Group BV, a translation agency
  • Coordinator, International Relations at Mima City Hall
  • Consular Officer at the Dutch Embassy in Japan
  • Translator and Product Developer at Kobe Bussan, a business supermarket
  • Corporate Banking Assistant at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ

Your qualifications

As a graduate of the MA in Japanese Studies at Leiden University, you are qualified for careers that require a high level of Japanese as well as highly developed analytical and information-handling skills.

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Humanities

Study options

Full Time (2 years)

Tuition fees
€17,716.00 (14,31,018) per year
Application deadline

Expected April 2023

More details

Start date

Expected September 2022


Leiden University

Rapenburg 70,



2311, Netherlands

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants need a BA or BSc degree (or equivalent) to be admitted to any of Leiden University’s master’s programmes. English-language proficiency: IELTS - 6.0; Toefl (internet based): 80 (component score: 20); Cambridge C2 Proficiency (CPE), or C1 Advanced (CAE): Cambridge component score of 169.

For international students

  • A copy of a valid passport or ID card
  • A copy of a Dutch residence permit (if applicable)
  • CV (résumé)
  • Language proficiency (if applicable)
  • Copies of diplomas and transcripts
  • Letter of motivation

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


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