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Middle Eastern Studies

Introduction

Pre-master programmes are not independent study programmes; therefore you cannot apply for admission to the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. The pre-master programme is meant to provide a solution for students who have applied for the Master’s programme in Middle Eastern Studies, but who, according to the admission committee, still have deficiencies to eliminate.

Once the Board of Admissions receives your online application for the programme, it will decide if you are eligible for admission. This decision depends largely on your academic background and skills: the various specialisations of the MA Middle Eastern Studies carry different entry requirements.

If you do not fully meet the set entry requirements, you will be required to “cure” this deficiency. If the deficiency is 15 EC or less, you may be allowed to do extra courses during your MA. Your MA will then consist of 65 – 75 EC (the regular 60 EC plus the required extra courses). If your deficiency is more than 15 EC, you will get admitted to the MA Middle Eastern Studies under the condition that you first successfully complete a so-called pre-Master’s programme.

During a pre-Master’s programme you will gain the knowledge and skills needed for successful participation in the Master’s programme. Depending on your educational background and the chosen specialisation, the pre-Master’s programme will constitute a course load of 60 EC (1 year) or 30 EC (1 semester). In general, students with a BA degree from a University of Applied Sciences (HBO) will have to do a pre-master of 60 EC, while students with a BA degree from an academic university will be looking at a pre-master of 30 EC if their BA did not include any relevant courses at all. The coursework of the pre-master will consist of a series of courses from the Bachelor tracks in Middle Eastern Studies. Upon successful completion of this programme, you will be granted unconditional admission to the MA Middle Eastern Studies.

Students applying for the specialisations Modern Middle East Studies or Islamic Studies and required to take a pre-master programme are obliged to follow the programmes as described below. For the other specialisations a pre-master is not possible unless students have successfully finished at least two years of education in a relevant BA programme including a large language component (at least 60 EC).

Note, however, that as from September 2019 the MA Middle Eastern Studies will no longer have formal specialisations. If you apply for the MA starting from that date, only general entry requirements will apply.

Pre-Master programmes

You can start a pre-Master programme in September and February.

30 EC:

This track requires you to finish six BA-level courses, of 5 ECTS each.

60 EC:

This track requires you to finish a maximum of 10 courses, of 5 EC each, and a BA-eindwerkstuk (BA-thesis) of 10 EC.

Tuition fee

Information on the tuition fee can be found in the here.

30 EC

Note 1: Semester 1 = Fall Semester starting in September; Semester 2 = Spring Semester starting in February.

Note 2: On the 7st of September a special meeting will be organized for all prospective pre-master students. Time and place to be announced.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Start in Fall Semester (September)

Introduction to the Study of Islam 5
Kerncurriculum: Area Studies 5
History of Contemporary Iran 5
Politics, Ideologies, and Societies in the Middle East 5
Accentcollege: History and Culture of Modern Turkey 5
Diasporas and Minorities in the Middle East 5

Start in Spring Semester (February)

Economies of the Middle East 5
History of the Middle East 2 (1500-present) 5
Islam in the Modern World 5
Language and Identity in the Middle East 5
Rituals and Symbols of Islam 5
Modern Thinkers and Trends in Islam 5

60 EC

Note 1: Semester 1 = Fall Semester starting in September; Semester 2 = Spring Semester starting in February.

Note 2: On the 7st of September a special meeting will be organized for all prospective pre-master students. Time and place to be announced.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Start in Fall Semester (September)

Academic Skills I Pre-Master 5
Kerncurriculum: Area Studies 5
Introduction to the Study of Islam 5
History of Contemporary Iran 5
Politics, Ideologies, and Societies in the Middle East 5
Diasporas and Minorities in the Middle East 5
History of the Middle East 2 (1500-present) 5
Economies of the Middle East 5
Language and Identity in the Middle East 5
Rituals and Symbols of Islam 5
BA Thesis (Pre-master Middle Eastern Studies) 10

Start in Spring Semester (February)

Language and Identity in the Middle East 5
Economies of the Middle East 5
History of the Middle East 2 (1500-present) 5
Rituals and Symbols of Islam 5
Modern Thinkers and Trends in Islam 5
Academic Skills I Pre-Master 5
History of Contemporary Iran 5
Politics, Ideologies, and Societies in the Middle East 5
Diasporas and Minorities in the Middle East 5
Accentcollege: History and Culture of Modern Turkey 5
BA Thesis (Pre-master Middle Eastern Studies) 10

FAQ

I want to do a pre-master Middle Eastern Studies, specialisation Modern Middle East Studies/Islamic Studies. How do I enroll?

See above.

I want to do the MA Middle Eastern Studies, specialisation Arabic Studies/Israel Studies/Persian Studies/Turkish Studies, but my knowledge of the language is not sufficient. Can I do a pre-master?

The MA Middle Eastern Studies, specialisation Arabic Studies/Israel Studies/Persian Studies/Turkish Studies is only open to students with a BA Middle Eastern Studies, including at least 70 EC’s in the relevant language. It is not possible to cure deficiency in the language component through a pre-master programme.

I have been admitted to the MA Middle Eastern Studies under the condition that I will first successfully complete a pre-master programme. How do I register?

Do not register in Studielink as an MA Middle Eastern Studies student, but as a student of the BA Midden Oosten Studies, higher year. In the letter you receive from the admissions office you will find more information on this.

I heard that the MA Middle Eastern Studies will no longer have specialisations starting from September 2019. What are the consequences for me?

1) If you have to do a pre-master of 60 EC which you will start in September 2018, it means that you will, after succesful completion of the pre-master, start in an undivided MA in September 2019.
2) If you have to do a pre-master of 30 EC which you will start in September 2018, it means that you will, after succesful completion of the pre-master, can still start in the specialisation of your choice in February 2019.
3) If you have to do a pre-master of 30 EC which you will start in February 2019, it means that you will, after succesful completion of the pre-master, start in an undivided MA in September 2019.

Can I spread a pre-master with a course load of 30 EC over two semesters?

This is possible, you can choose your courses based on the e-prospectus, please note that you choose courses with a good balance of 100-, 200- and 300-level. Discuss the courses with your Co-ordinator of Studies for approval. After confirmation you can start the programme.

I am a BA-student at Leiden University and want to take classes in preparation for the MA Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. If you are already studying at Leiden University, you do not need to register separately, you can choose electives apart from your own BA-programme. If you want to take these courses as a kind of pre-master, you first need to discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies. If you do not discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA.

I am an MA-student at Leiden University and want to take classes in preparation for the MA Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. If you are already studying at Leiden University, you do not need to register separately, you can choose electives apart from your own BA-programme. If you want to take these courses as a kind of pre-master, you first need to discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies. If you do not discuss this with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA. Registration in uSis might not be possible, the Student Administration might be able to help you with your registration. Send an email to the Student Administration.

I am studying at another Dutch university and want to do the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. Do I have to register at Studielink and Leiden University separately?

Registration via Studielink is not needed. As a student of another Dutch University you need to register as a guest student. First contact the Co-ordinator of Studies of the MA Middle Eastern Studies to discuss your program before you send in the required documents. If you do not discuss the programme with the Co-ordinator of Studies, you might not have access to all the courses needed to prepare you for the MA.

My Admission Statement states the following: "Your programme will be extended with the following: the applicant has to successfully finish BAcourses from the pre-master "Middle Eastern Studies" programme with a total of 15 (or 10 or 5) EC.” What does this mean?

The student needs to obtain 15 (or 10 or 5) ec of pre-master (=BA-) courses during the MA Middle Eastern Studies. The courses to take can be chosen from the courses listed under the pre-master. Which courses will be taken will be discussed with the Co-ordinator of Studies. The student cannot graduate without successfully having finished the required courses.

How can I enroll for lectures, seminars and exams?

Registration through uSis is required. You need to register for lectures, seminars and exams separately. You can find your courses through the e-guide of the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies. Registration is only possible after successful enrollment as a higher year student of the BA Midden-Oostenstudies.
If you have to do additional BA-courses up to 15 EC alongside your MA programme, you will be registered as an MA student. This means you cannot enroll for these BA courses in uSis yourself. Contact the Co-ordinator of Studies, to discuss your choice and to arrange for the enrollment.

Where can I find my grades?

You can find your grades in uSis. Only the final grades of the courses will be displayed in uSis through “Self service” and “Course History”. Partial grades may be posted by the conveners of the courses in Blackboard.

Which steps do I need to take to start after I have completed the pre-master Middle Eastern Studies and would like to start my MA in the upcoming academic year?

As a pre-master (=higher year BA) student, you have to re-apply for the Master Middle Eastern Studies for the upcoming academic year. When you apply, you need not only upload the documentation you uploaded before, but, more importantly, also your decision letter regarding the premaster and, if available, your transcripts from the pre-master so far.
There is no need to provide new recommendation and motivation letters.

I have paid for a premaster course, but I am not able to pass/finish/take the course this year. Are there financial consequences?

There are no financial consequences, since premaster students pay once for each course. Therefore, it is also possible to get the credits for that course at a later moment, without extra payment.

I have been registered as a pre-master student, but have not been able to pass/finish/take (all) the required courses. What are the consequences and what do I need to do?

a. You will have to continue with the pre-master to get the required ECs. Make, therefore, sure that your registration as a pre-master is also continued. In the Netherlands students’ registration for a programme ends on 31 August of a given year. So if you started your pre-master in February, you may have to register again. If you started your pre-master in September, your registration will automatically be continued during the Spring semester. Contact Plexus if you have any questions related to your registration.
b. Contact the Co-ordinator of Studies to discuss what (alternative) course to take to fulfil the requirements.
c. Contact your International Programme Officer(IPO) at the Admissions Office to inform him/her on the postponement of your start of the MA.

Start of your studies

Frequently asked questions about the start of the study MA Middle Eastern Studies and its pre-master.

Does the department have an introductory programme?
Directions and map
How do I get hold of my prospectus and lecture timetable?
Is there anything more I need to do to complete my enrolment?
Registration for courses
Where can I buy my study books and study material?
Where do I go for any further information I may need?

Does the department have an introductory programme?

Yes, we will organise a compulsory Introduction Day for the MA Middle Eastern Studies programme in Leiden on Tuesday, 4 September, 2018.

Programme Introductory Meeting MA Middle Eastern Studies, Tuesday, 4 September, 2018.

Time Activity Who Room
11.15 – 12.00 hrs Introduction University Library University Library
12.00 – 13.00 hrs Lunch Premaster, MA en Research MA Middle Eastern Studies students VRIESH4 / Café Noord
13.00 - 14.00 hrs Information on pre-master Premaster students VRIESH4 / 007

Directions and map

Directions on how to get from Leiden Central Station to the Faculty of Humanities.

Most rooms are situated at the Witte Singel Doelen-Complex, the location of the Faculties of Humanities.

How do I get hold of my prospectus and lecture timetable?

You can find the courses for the academic year 2018-2019 and the detailed course descriptions in the e-Prospectus. Find your programme under M(iddle Eastern Studies) to view all courses on offer.
The timetables are available on the website, https://www.student.universiteitleiden.nl/en/study--studying/study/educational-information/schedules/humanities/middle-eastern-studies-research-ma?cf=humanities&cd=middle-eastern-studies-ma#timetables-pre-masters,
Timetable 30 EC, https://www.leidenuniv.nl/letteren/roosters/rooster2018/fgw/lec/mes-pre-30-feb-S2.html, timetable 60 EC, https://www.leidenuniv.nl/letteren/roosters/rooster2018/fgw/lec/mes-pre-60-feb-S2.html

For information on the exam periods, (official) holidays, etc see the Academic Calendar 2018-2019.

Is there anything more I need to do to complete my enrolment?

If the Admissions Office sent you a conditional decision upon admission, please make sure that all documents, as listed in your admission statement, are handed in before 1 February. Only if you are a graduate from Leiden University, you do not have to hand in a certified diploma or statement regarding your graduation.

Registration for courses

Once your registration with Leiden University is complete and you have received your Student Identity Number, log in name and password, you will be able to enroll online for all courses (and later for exams) through uSis. You will also have to enroll for courses at Blackboard.

Where can I buy my study books and study material?

To find out what books you will need for next year, you can visit the e-Prospectus. Here you will find the course descriptions of the courses you will be taking, with the required literature.

Where do I go for any further information I may need?

General information on the programme is available at the Middle Eastern Studies (MA) website. You will have to log in the first time you visit this page. Once you have done this your cookies will enable you to enter this page further without problems.

For questions related to more general issues of registration, housing and other practicalities around your coming to Leiden and Leiden University, please, refer to the university's FAQ base.

For any other questions you may contact the student advisor, Ms. Eli van Duijnen.