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Academic Reading and Writing


Admission requirements

This course is only available for students in the BA International Studies programme.
Please note: this course takes place in The Hague. Traveling between University buildings from Leiden to The Hague may take about 45 minutes.


Academic Reading and Writing is a course in university-level reading and writing skills. The course covers the structure of academic texts, close reading of sources, summarising, citation and reference, identifying rhetorical aspects in a text or flaws in reasoning, developing a research question and thesis, finding and using textual evidence, organising ideas with clarity, compiling and referencing bibliographic material, and strategies for revision.

Course objectives

  • Read, analyse, and respond to assigned readings with an understanding of structure and mechanics

  • Employ quotation, paraphrasing, and summary

  • Employ correct CMS citation style.

  • Gather reliable and useful information for writing by conducting effective searches

  • Introduce, position, and integrate source material into the body of an essay

  • Demonstrate and apply knowledge of basic essay structure, including introduction, body and conclusion

  • Demonstrate ability to write for an academic audience

  • Improve the organisation and expression of arguments, evidence, and stance in writing

  • Students show intercultural awareness in giving and receiving useful (peer)feedback and offering and receiving constructive criticism.


The timetables are available through My Timetable.

Mode of instruction

  • In-person seminars

  • Online tutorial modules

Please note: Attending all tutorial sessions is compulsory. If you are unable to attend a session, please inform your Tutorial-lecturer in advance, providing a valid reason for your absence.

Assessment method

Assessment & Weighing

Assignment Percentage of grade
Mid-term exam 50%
Final exam 50%

End Grade

To successfully complete the course, please take note of the following:

  • Students must have a passing end grade to pass the course. Additionally, students must have a passing grade for both the mid-term and the final exam (5.50 or higher).


  • The mid-term and final exams can be retaken separately if either grade is insufficient. The re-sit for the midterm takes place in the mid-term week of semester 2; the re-sit for the final takes place in the finals week of semester 2.

  • There is no possibility to retake a passing grade for this course.

Retaking a passing grade

Retaking a passing grade is not possible for this course.

Please consult the Course and Examination Regulations 2023 – 2024.

Exam review and feedback

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organised.

Reading list

To be announced.


The programme’s administration office will register all first year students for the first semester courses in uSis, the registration system of Leiden University.

General information about course and exam enrolment is available on the website.

Registration Exchange

For the registration of exchange students contact Humanities International Office.



This course of ten tutorials covers both the first and second semester.

Passing this course is an additional requirement for a positive Study Recommendation at the end of the year. Please keep in mind that students are required to attend at least three of the four sessions in the second semester before they are allowed to take the resit assignment.