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Introduction to Dutch Studies


Admission requirements

This course is open to all foreign students. It is compulsory for students in the BA programme Dutch Studies.


Language acquisition is one of the main objectives in the first year of the Dutch Studies curriculum. However, learning a language is far more interesting when you study the culture in the same time. The Department of Dutch Studies uses a broad definition of the notion ‘Culture’, and therefore a wide range of subjects are studied in our BA-program: linguistics, literature and (art) history.
This course aims at giving a first introduction to Dutch culture and society. It also offers a first taste of what it is like to study Dutch Studies. Many different subjects will pass in review: Geography – History – Population – Economics – the Multi-Cultural Society – the History of Dutch Language – Dutch as a World Language – Second Language Research – Dutch Literature.
To stimulate students to see more of the Netherlands than just Leiden and Amsterdam, an individual fieldtrip, rounded off with a City Report (2000 words), is part of the course.
Total Study load is 140 hours:

  • 25 class meeting (incl. test)

  • 35 class preparation

  • 25 individual field trip and city report

  • 55 preparation for the test

Exchange students or Study Abroad Students may extend their study load to 10 ects by reading an additional reading list. Please contact the coördinator in the first week. This option is not open to BA students of Dutch Studies.

Course objectives

After this course, students

  • have basic knowledge of various topics of Dutch Culture and Society

  • have a first impression of the field of research of Dutch Language and Literature

  • have basic knowledge of the city they visit for their City Report

  • are able to write a report


Friday 11.15-13.00.
See also the timetable of Dutch Studies

Mode of instruction

Individual field trip and City Report

Assessment method

City Report 25% (15% if you take this course for 10 ects).
Written test with essay questions 75%.


Blackboard is used in this course to:

  • give general and detailed information on the course

  • put course materials at student’s disposal

  • give sample questions for the test

  • communicate with students if necessary
    Please enroll in Blackboard.

Reading list

Reader – available at the Studiepunt Letteren.
Other materials available on Blackboard.
Harry Mulisch, The Assault (novel, translated in many languages).

Additional reading list for students who wish to take this course for 10 ects. Check the Blackboard site.


Via uSis

Registration other students

A la Carte.

Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.


Coordinator: Mrs. L. Winkelmolen
Study coordinator Dutch Studies: Mrs. I. Zagar


This course is compulsory for Dutch Studies students.