nl en

Public Administration: Pre-Master

Public Administration: Pre-master, 2019-2020

The purpose of the pre-master Programme is to eliminate deficiencies of students who cannot be admitted directly to the masters Public Administration (PA), or Management van de Publieke Sector (MPS; taught in Dutch)
This part of the e-Prospectus gives an overview of the pre-master courses offered by the Institute of Public Administration. The pre-master programme is not an independent study programme therefore you cannot apply for admission to the pre-Master.

Click here for the Dutch Management van de Publieke Sector pre-master


Dear student,

On behalf of the board and staff of the Institute of Public Administration from Leiden University we warmly welcome all new Pre-Master’s students! We organize a special welcome for new students on Thursday March 26th from 10.00 - 12.00 in room 348 (Wijnhaven building- Turfmarkt 99, Den Haag). You get an introduction to:

  • The Pre-Master’s programme for PA as a whole

  • One of the Pre-Master’s courses by one of our teachers

  • What the study advisers can do for you

  • What the Education Service Centre and the Board of Examiners can do for you

  • Things you need to know about the Pre-Master’s programme

  • Procedure from Pre-Master’s to Master’s

  • uSis, Blackboard, e-prospectus

  • Tips on how to study & Q&A

The meeting is useful for a good start of the Pre-Master’s, so we hope to see you there. If you cannot attend please ask a fellow student for his or her notes.

The general presentations are between 10 and 11 hrs. Immediately following an instruction on the course enrolment in uSis and Blackboard will be given in the computer room. This is not mandatory. However, if you decide to come, please bring your ULCN details along.

We hope to see you in March!

Kind regards,

Ms. Tineke Choi, MSc
Ms. drs. Jolanda den Heijer
Ms. Charlotte Rosalie MA

Study advisers Institute of Public Administration

Rules and information


The Pre-Master’s programme consists of 15 ECTS of courses. The Pre-Master’s programme runs twice per year; from late October to January (Block 2) and from late March to June (Block 4).
After you’ve successfully finished the Pre-Master you can continue in the Master’s for which you applied.

There is a link to the schedule on the right side of this page.

Only students who applied for admission to the Master’s and were admitted to the Pre-Master’s by the Admission Committee can follow the Premaster’s. The Pre-Master’s is not an independent programme to which you can apply. You can only apply to the Master’s programme.

There are two pre-master’s programmes:


In your decision on admission from the admission committee you can find which of the Pre-Master’s courses you have to follow before you can start with the Master’s Programme. Under the tab 'Courses' you can find information on the courses.

Did you receive a decision on admission where other courses are mentioned than those listed under 'Courses'?
Please contact the admission committee (only for this question. For other questions, please contact our study advisors)

Pre-Master’s: one chance only!

We encourage students to take all courses in their first semester. This gives them a good idea on what it is like to follow the Master’s programme and it gives them the option to retake courses in their second semester. Students who opt to spread the workload –for whatever reason- run the risk that they don’t have a good picture of pressure and pace of the Master’s programme and they have fewer options to pass a course successfully.

  • Students who start in September can retake the parts they did not pass in the second semester of that academic year.

  • Student who start in February can retake the parts they did not pass in the first semester of the following academic year.

Students who start the Pre-Master in 2018-2019 need to finish within one year. If they fail to do so, they cannot retake the Pre-Master’s or retake the course(s) you failed. Failing the Pre-Master’s also means that you cannot apply for another Master’s programme offered by this institute. An application for one of the other Master’s degrees will be refused automatically.


The Pre-Master’s is a fulltime study. Even though the Pre-Master’s has the duration of one block and contains 15 ECTS, the Pre-Master’s is difficult to combine with another study or (voluntary) work. We expect that the student has 40 hrs. per week available to study. Please ask yourself if you have this time to spend on your studies. If the answer is ‘no’, it might be better to postpone.

Since a lot depends on the Pre-Master’s, we recommend you to be well prepared. We notice that the Pre-Master ’s is often underestimated. If your previous education is Hbo (vocational) and this is the first time you study at a university or if you are a bit rusty, because it has been some time since you last studied we strongly recommend that you look into these study tips.

It is advisable to start studying from the first week on. The longer you wait, the more you have to catch up. Read the literature before and after the lectures!
Have you never studied in the Netherlands before? Please go through the tips for non-Dutch students.

Extra facilities due to disabilities such as dyslexia or a visual impairment

You might need more time to finish an exam or you might need to take the exam on a laptop due to a disability, like dyslexia or AD(H)D. If you need any kind of facilities you are advised to contact the study advisers. They can inform you on how to arrange this. Get in touch with them soon to ensure you have a relaxed start.

Your personal situation & unexpected events

If you have questions or need advice on your personal circumstances (if you are a caregiver or pregnant, etc) or if you are aware of something time-consuming during the Pre-Master ’s, e.g. a family-event, please contact the study advisers for a consult. Preferably before the start of the Pre-Master ’s, so that they can show all options to you.

If you contact them the study advisors can assist you to find solutions or to advice you on what steps to take. If you don’t contact them, they cannot support you. That might lead to a situation that you have no other options to finish the Pre-Master.

More information

If you have any further questions you can contact our study advisors.


Pre-Master’s students for the Master Public Administration (MPA) follow these three courses (15 ECTS):

  • Research in Public Administration (English) (5 ECTS)

  • Public Policy (English) (5 ECTS)

  • Public Management and Organisations ( English) (5 ECTS)

Click here for the Dutch Management van de Publieke Sector pre-master.

Course EC Semester 1 Semester 2
Research in Public Administration (SPOC) 5
Public Policy 5
Public Management and Organisations (English) 5