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Middle Eastern Studies

Introduction

Pre-master programmes are not independent study programmes; therefore you cannot apply for admission to the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. The pre-master programme is meant to provide a solution for students who have applied for the Master’s programme in Middle Eastern Studies, but who, according to the admission committee, still have deficiencies to eliminate.

Once the Board of Admissions receives your online application for the programme, it will decide if you are eligible for admission. This decision depends largely on your academic background and skills: the various specialisations of the MA Middle Eastern Studies carry different entry requirements.

If you do not fully meet the set entry requirements, you will be required to “cure” this deficiency. If the deficiency is 15 EC or less, you may be allowed to do extra courses during your MA. Your MA will then consist of 65 – 75 EC (the regular 60 EC plus the required extra courses). If your deficiency is more than 15 EC, you will get admitted to the MA Middle Eastern Studies under the condition that you first successfully complete a so-called pre-Master’s programme.

During a pre-Master’s programme you will gain the knowledge and skills needed for successful participation in the Master’s programme. Depending on your educational background and the chosen specialisation, the pre-Master’s programme will constitute a course load of 60 EC (1 year) or 30 EC (1 semester). In general, students with a BA degree from a University of Applied Sciences (HBO) will have to do a pre-master of 60 EC, while students with a BA degree from an academic university will be looking at a pre-master of 30 EC if their BA did not include any relevant courses at all. The coursework of the pre-master will consist of a series of courses from the Bachelor tracks in Middle Eastern Studies. Upon successful completion of this programme, you will be granted unconditional admission to the MA Middle Eastern Studies.

Pre-Master programmes

The MA Middle Eastern Studies has one annual intake, in September. This means students can only begin the MA programme once per year. This has important implications for all premaster students who will need to complete their premaster (30 or 60 EC) before the start of the MA.

30 EC

Students may start this premaster (six BA-level courses, of 5 ECTS each) in the Fall semester OR the Spring semester.

EU/EER students are allowed to spread the course load over both semesters.

Please note that students from outside the EU/EER, who require a residence permit (due to rules and regulations of the Dutch Immigration Service, IND) will need to complete a 30 EC premaster within 6 months (either Fall or Spring).

60 EC

Students can only start this premaster (10 BA-level courses, of 5 EC each, and a pre-Master thesis of 10 EC) in September.

Please note that students from outside the EU/EER, who require a residence permit (due to rules and regulations of the Dutch Immigration Service, IND) will need to complete a 60 EC premaster within 12 months.

Tuition fee

Information on the tuition fee.

30 EC

Note 1: Semester 1 = Fall Semester starting in September; Semester 2 = Spring Semester starting in February.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Start in Fall Semester (September)

Obligatory courses

History of Contemporary Iran 5
Introduction to the Study of Islam 5
Kerncurriculum: Area Studies 5

Choose 1 from the following seminars:

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Ideology and Politics in the Middle East 5
Introduction to Israel Studies: Politics, History and Society 5
Islamic Law 5
Urban youth cultures of the Middle East 5

Choose 2 from the following seminars

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Diasporas and Minorities in the Middle East 5
History and Culture of Modern Turkey 5
Introduction to Israel Diaspora Relations: The Politics and History of a Complex Relationship". 5
Islam and Society 5
International Relations of the Middle East (BA) 5
The Living Quran 5

Start in Spring Semester (February)

Economies of the Middle East 5
History of the Middle East 2 (1500-present) 5
Islam in the Modern World 5
Rituals and Symbols of Islam 5
Modern Thinkers and Trends in Islam 5

60 EC

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Start in Fall Semester (September)

Obligatory courses

Academic Skills I Pre-Master 5
History of Contemporary Iran 5
Introduction to the Study of Islam 5
Kerncurriculum: Area Studies 5

Choose 1 from the following seminars:

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Ideology and Politics in the Middle East 5
Introduction to Israel Studies: Politics, History and Society 5
Islamic Law 5
Urban youth cultures of the Middle East 5

Choose 1 from the following seminars:

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Diasporas and Minorities in the Middle East 5
History and Culture of Modern Turkey 5
International Relations of the Middle East (BA) 5
Introduction to Israel Diaspora Relations: The Politics and History of a Complex Relationship". 5
Islam and Society 5
The Living Quran 5

Obligatory courses

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Economies of the Middle East 5
History of the Middle East 2 (1500-present) 5
Pre-master Thesis Middle Eastern Studies 10

Choose 1 from the following lectures

Fill out your preferences in the pre-Master form (see files on the right).

Islam in the Modern World 5
Modern Thinkers and Trends in Islam 5

FAQ

I want to do a pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. How do I enroll?

See above.

I have been admitted to the MA Middle Eastern Studies under the condition that I will first successfully complete a pre-master programme. How do I register?

If you have received a decision stating that you have not been admitted, but that you have to successfully finish an individual pre-master of
30 or 60 EC in the field of Middle Eastern Studies, you will receive further instructions from the Admission's Office on how to proceed with your registration.

From September 2020 onwards, the MA Middle Eastern Studies will no longer have a February intake. What are the consequences for me?

As students will only be admitted into the MA programme in September (2020) and no longer in February (2021), you may have to wait and de-register for one semester, if you have to do a pre-master and finish it in January (2020).

Can I spread a pre-master with a course load of 30 EC over two semesters?

As stated in the Course and Examination Regulation, art 5.2.1.c "The prescribed pre-masters/bridging programme must be completed within the nominal duration plus one semester (in case of a pre-master’s/bridging programme of 30 EC or less) or plus one study year (in case of a pre-master’s/bridging programme of more than 30 EC)."

If, for some reason, you need to spread your pre-master over a longer than the nominal period you can choose the courses you will take based on the e-prospectus. Make sure that the programme you compose consists of a good balance of 100-, 200- and 300-level courses and of lectures and seminars. Discuss your programme with the Co-ordinator of Studies for approval before you get started. After confirmation you can start the programme.

This is possible in most cases, but not if you are a student from outside the EU/EER and require a residence permit. This is due to the rules and regulations of the Dutch Immigration Service.

I am a BA-student at Leiden University and want to take classes in preparation for the MA Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. If you are already studying at Leiden University, you do not need to register separately, you can choose electives apart from your own BA-programme. If you want to take these courses as a kind of pre-master, you first need to discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies. If you do not discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA.

I am an MA-student at Leiden University and want to take classes in preparation for the MA Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. If you are already studying at Leiden University, you do not need to register separately, you can choose electives apart from your own BA-programme. If you want to take these courses as a kind of pre-master, you first need to discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies. If you do not discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA. As an MA-student registration in uSis for these (BA-)courses might not be possible. Int this case, the Departmental Administration might be able to help you with your registration. You can send them an email to the Student Administration. Make sure you use your umail account and give your student ID-number.

I am studying at another Dutch university and want to do the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. As a student of another Dutch University you need to register as a guest student. First contact the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies to discuss your program before you send in the required documents. If you do not discuss the programme with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA.

My Admission Statement states the following: "Your programme will be extended with the following: the applicant has to successfully finish BAcourses from the pre-master "Middle Eastern Studies" programme with a total of 15 (or 10 or 5) EC.” What does this mean?

This means that the Board of Admissions feels that you have a (minor) deficiency and that you will need to obtain 15 (or 10 or 5) ec of pre-master (=BA-) courses during the MA Middle Eastern Studies. The courses to take can be chosen from the courses listed under the pre-master. You are strongly advised to discuss with the Co-ordinator of Studies what coursese to take. You cannot graduate without successfully having finished the required courses.

How can I enroll for lectures, seminars and exams?

Registration through uSis is required. You need to register for lectures, seminars and exams separately. You can find your courses through the e-guide of the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. Registration is only possible after successful enrollment as a higher year student of the BA Midden-Oostenstudies.

If you have to do additional BA-courses up to 15 EC alongside your MA programme, you will be registered as an MA student. This means you cannot enroll for these BA courses in uSis yourself. Contact the Co-ordinator of Studies, to discuss your choice and to arrange for the enrollment.

Where can I find my grades?

You can find your grades in uSis. Only the final grades of the courses will be displayed in uSis through “Self service” and “Course History”. Partial grades may be posted by the conveners of the courses in Blackboard.

Which steps do I need to take when I am about to complete the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies and would like to start my MA in the upcoming academic year?

As a pre-master (=higher year BA) student, you have to re-apply for the Master Middle Eastern Studies for the upcoming academic year. When you apply, you need not only upload the documentation you uploaded before, but, more importantly, also your decision letter regarding the premaster and, if available, your transcripts from the pre-master so far.

There is no need to provide new recommendation and motivation letters.

I have paid for a premaster course, but I am not able to pass/finish/take the course this year. Are there financial consequences?

There are no financial consequences, since premaster students pay once for each course. Therefore, it is also possible to get the credits for that course at a later moment, without extra payment.

I have been registered as a pre-master student, but have not been able to pass/finish/take (all) the required courses. What are the consequences and what do I need to do?

a. As stated in the Course and Examination Regulation, not finishing the pre-master within the nominal time allowed, will result in not being admitted to the MA. If there are special circumstances due to which you have not been able to finish the courses, you are strongly advised to contact the Co-ordinator of Studies as soon as possible to discuss what to do.
b. If you are a student from outside the EU/EER and require a residence permit, your residence permit may be cancelled and you may have to leave the country. If there are special circumstances due to which you have not been able to finish the courses, you are strongly advised to contact the Co-ordinator of Studies as soon as possible to discuss what to do.
c. If you can / are allowed to continue with the pre-master to get the required ECs, make sure that your registration as a pre-master is also continued. In the Netherlands students’ registration for a programme ends on 31 August of a given year. So if you started your pre-master in February, you may have to register again. If you started your pre-master in September, your registration will automatically be continued during the Spring semester. Contact Plexus if you have any questions related to your registration.
d. Contact your International Programme Officer (IPO) at the Admissions Office to inform him/her on the postponement of your start of the MA, ifyou have re-applied for the MA.

Start of your studies

Frequently asked questions about the start of the study Pre-Master Middle Eastern Studies

Does the department have an introductory programme?

Directions and map

Directions on how to get from Leiden Central Station to the Faculty of Humanities.
Most rooms are situated at the Witte Singel Doelen-Complex, the location of the Faculties of Humanities.

How do I get hold of my prospectus and lecture timetable?

You can find the courses for the academic year 2020-2021 and the detailed course descriptions in the e-Prospectus

Timetables

For information on the exam periods, (official) holidays, etc see the Academic Calendar.

Is there anything more I need to do to complete my enrolment?

If the Admissions Office sent you a conditional decision upon admission, please make sure that all documents, as listed in your admission statement, are handed in before 1 February. Only if you are a graduate from Leiden University, you do not have to hand in a certified diploma or statement regarding your graduation.

Registration for courses

Once your registration with Leiden University is complete and you have received your Student Identity Number, log in name and password, you will be able to enroll online through uSis. You will also have to enroll for courses in Brightspace.

Where can I buy my study books and study material?

To find out what books you will need for next year, you can visit the e-Prospectus.
Here you will find the course descriptions of the courses you will be taking, with the required literature.

Where do I go for any further information I may need?

General information on the programme is available at the Middle Eastern Studies (MA) website.
You will have to log in the first time you visit this page. Once you have done this your cookies will enable you to enter this page further without problems.

For questions related to more general issues of registration, housing and other practicalities around your coming to Leiden and Leiden University, please, refer to the university's FAQ base.

For any other questions you may contact the student advisor

Ms. Eli van Duijnen.