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Skills Lab 1


Admission requirements

Mandatory course for students enrolled in the bachelor’s programme Security Studies.


The skills labs courses in year 1 of the bachelor program Security Studies aim to train both academic and professional skills. In Skills Lab 1 the focus is on developing learning skills and familiarising students with academic ways of working and thinking. Students will learn the basics of academic reading and writing, and will practice their public speaking, presentation and debating skills. The skills labs are highly interactive and require students to actively participate in a wide variety of in-class exercises.

Through the Explore-Understand-Do method, Skills Lab 1 also aims to bring about a deeper understanding of the corresponding core course ‘Introduction to Safety and Security’ by explaining, discussing and practising the course content.

In Skills Lab 1 sessions, students will become familiar with the entire program, the department staff and their fellow students, and will be able to find their way well within the university. Each student will also have a mentor meeting with their tutor.

Various assignments will be used to monitor and assess the students’ skills development and study progress. Students will regularly discuss and reflect on their progress with each other and their tutor.

Course objectives

After this course students are able to:

  • Recognise the structure of academic papers, identify the research question and summarise the core arguments of academic writings;

  • Use in-text citations and create a bibliography;

  • Differentiate between academic, non-academic and grey literature;

  • Recognize the ethical standards held by the academic community;

  • Employ critical thinking, teamwork, presentation and public speaking skills to explore and understand safety and security challenges;

  • Define and apply core concepts of the corresponding course ‘Introduction into Security and Safety’; and

  • Distinguish between the disciplines used in the program to study safety and security.


On the right side of programme front page of the E-guide Bachelor Security Studies you will find links to the website and timetables, uSis and Brightspace.

Mode of instruction

The course includes 14 lab sessions, which will employ various active teaching methods.

Attendance is mandatory.
Missing more than 3 sessions will lead to a fail.
Students who missed more than 3 sessions are not allowed to take part in the resit(s).

Total study load of 140 hours

  • Lab hours: 42

  • Self-study hours: 98

Assessment method

  1. 15% Participation
  2. 15% Written assignment
  3. 30% Written group assignment
  4. 15% Academic poster
  5. 25% Poster presentation

The grades for participation and assignments will be collected in a portfolio which makes up for 100% of the grade. The calculated grade of all portfolio parts has to be at least 5.50 in order to pass the course.

Students with a calculated grade lower than 5.50 for their portfolio are eligible for a resit of a maximum of 2 assignments. It is impossible to resit the 15% participation grade.

Transitional Arrangement
Grades obtained for this course in previous academic years are no longer valid in academic year 2020-2021.

Reading list

A selection of books and articles, to be announced on Brightspace.


Register for every course and workgroup via uSis.
Registration in uSis is possible from four weeks before the start of the course. Some courses and workgroups have a limited number of participants, so register on time (before the course starts). In uSis you can access your personal schedule and view your results.

Leiden University uses Brightspace as its online learning management system. Important information about the course is posted here.
After enrolment for the course in uSis you are also enrolled in the Brightspace environment of this course.


Course coordinator drs. Celesta Kofman