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Bi-weekly Staff Seminar in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies


Admission Requirements

This course is intended and accessible for students admitted to the MA Middle Eastern Studies only.


Once every two weeks, a meeting of various lecturers and students is held. The objective of this seminar is to offer the student a platform to present the outline of the MA thesis and to discuss it with the lecturers and the fellow students. Moreover, this seminar might serve as a panel for guest speakers and staff members to share a number of findings in their current research with advanced students. Students are expected to share their own thoughts on future research with those present. They are also expected to actively participate in the debate. The seminar also intensifies the contacts between students and lecturers, and as such promotes the progress of the students in writing their thesis

Course objectives

The student learns how to lay down their thesis research findings in writing and how to present orally the results of their research. The students learns to participate actively in an academic discussion and to receive and formulate criticism. The student learns to meet deadlines.


See timetable.

Mode of instruction

For this seminar bi-weekly attendance and participation is required. Classes missed for a good reason (to the discretion of the conveners and to be discussed BEFORE the class takes place) will have to be made up with an extra assignment.

Assessment method

Active class participation and presentation of the research outline.


Blackboard will be used for internal communication.

Reading list

Hand outs.


Through uSis

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

Contact information

Dr. J. Schmidt
Prof. Dr. E.J. Zürcher


Dr. J. Schmidt is the convenor during the Fall semester; Prof. Dr. E.J. Zürcher is the convenor during the Spring semester.

Students with disabilities

The university is committed to supporting and accommodating students with disabilities as stated in the university protocol (especially pages 3-5). Students should contact Fenestra Disability Centre at least four weeks before the start of their courses to ensure that all necessary academic accomodations can be made in time conform the abovementioned protocol.

Academic Integrity

Students are expected to be familiar with Leiden University policies on plagiarism and academic integrity. Plagiarism will not be tolerated. If you submit any work with your name affixed to it, it is assumed to be your own work with all sources used properly indicated and documented in the text (with quotations and/or citations).