MSc in Computer Science: Foundations of Computing


What will I learn?

In the Foundations of Computing specialisation you learn about the core concepts of computing, their applications in AI, quantum computing, parallel computing, and in verification and testing to ensure correctness of digital systems. Choosing for the Foundations specialisation will prepare you for any future development in computer science.

What does this master’s programme entail?

By focusing on core concepts that transcend the boundaries of various Computer Science fields, the Foundations specialisation prepares you for an inter-disciplinary future. In particular, you will learn to model complex software systems and apply automated proof techniques to verify their correctness, thereby increasing trust in digital systems. Using the power of symbolic computation, the specialisation teaches you how to tackle hard computational problems, as well as to realise reasoning for artificial intelligence. It also equips you with the detailed knowledge of concurrency required to analyse parallel systems, but also with knowledge about non-deterministic and probabilistic computational models. Finally, you will learn to harness the power of quantum computers, for solving problems more efficiently than with classical computers.

Why study Foundations of Computing at Leiden University?

The Foundations of Computing specialisation in Leiden offers a unique blend of state-of-the-art topics in Computer Science

LIACS hosts leading experts in quantum computing, as part of the faculty-broad Applied Quantum Algorithms collaboration.

The strength of the programme is the individual possibility for each student of studying other future-oriented topics in Advanced Computing Systems, Artificial Intelligence and Data Science.

The programme provides you with a thorough computer science background that will allow you to pursue careers in research or industrial environments, and will give you the ability to handle future technologies and to work across disciplines.

Career prospects

With an MSc in Computer Science you are well prepared for broad array of career prospects in research or industry. The master’s degree is an excellent stepping stone for pursuing a PhD degree.

With a Leiden degree in Computer Science you will have cultivated an analytical mind and a problem-solving attitude. Based on these qualities, you enjoy a wide variety of career opportunities, in research as well in commercial or industrial environments.


Your job perspectives with a master's degree in Computer Science are excellent and diverse. They range from software engineer to product manager, from researcher to IT-manager, and from engineering to financial applications, from business intelligence specialist to service manager or consultant. And the demand is constantly growing. With this education, 96.9% of all graduates have a full-time job, and they find a job within an average time of 1.3 months.

Which department am I in?

Faculty of Science

Study options

Full Time (24 months)

Tuition fees
€18,016.00 (15,91,941) per year
Application deadline

Expected October 2023

More details

Start date

Expected September 2023


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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