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Arts and Culture

In the Master’s programme in Arts and Culture, objects and the way they communicate with the public in past and present are key. A binding theme is the effect of works of art on the viewer. Our seminars focus on current debates in art history, for example on the ethics of collecting, the materiality of art, cultural transfer and how art interacts with current issues such as globalization and ecology. The seminars have an interdisciplinary approach and a global perspective. This ensures you become familiar with different methods and allows you to connect with other disciplines such as anthropology, natural sciences, theology and gender and international studies.

The MA in Arts and Culture in Leiden is unique in the Netherlands for the interdisciplinary range of subjects offered. Students may specialize in one of three tracks. These specializations vary in their specialist focus on different media and periods:

Click on “More info” below for more details about the programme or visit our website.

More info

Course objectives

  • to enable students to acquire academic knowledge, understanding and skills, and train them in the use of scientific methods in the field of Arts and Culture in general, and in particular with regard to the chosen specialisation;

  • to enable students to develop the following academic and professional skills:

  • independent academic reasoning and conduct,

  • the ability to analyse complex problems,

  • academic reporting;

  • to prepare students for an academic career and further education;

  • to prepare students for a career outside academia.


The structure of the programme is the following:

  • Practices and Debates (5 credits);

  • Two Research Seminars from the chosen specialisation in the master’s programme in Arts and Culture (20 credits);

  • Free Component (10 credits);

  • Thesis Seminar (5 credits);

  • Thesis (20 credits).

Full-time and part-time

The programme consists of 60 EC, to be completed in one year.
Part-time students complete the programme in 1,5 years, they will have a course load of 20 EC per semester. Courses are scheduled during office hours.

Requirements for graduation:

Requirements for graduation are:

  • Successful completion of courses, following the structure of the programme (40 EC)

  • Successful completion of MA Thesis (20 EC)

Students need to complete at least 45 EC within their field of specialization:

  • 2 Research seminars in field of specialisation (20 EC);

  • Thesis seminar (5 EC);

  • Thesis (20 EC).


The specialisations are:

  • Art, Architecture and Interior before 1800

  • Museums and Collections

  • Contemporary Art in a Global Perspective