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South and Southeast Asian Studies

Students with disabilities

The university is committed to supporting and accommodating students with disabilities as stated in the university protocol. 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).

First Year

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

First Semester (Fall)

Premodern History of South and Southeast Asia 5
Kerncurriculum: Area Studies 5
Histories of Modern South and Southeast Asia 5

Religion: Choose 1 out of 3

Introduction to the Study of Islam 5
Introduction to Buddhism 5
Introduction to Hindu Religions 5

Elective Languages (10 EC):

Choose 1 out of 4

Hindi 1 10
Sanskrit 1 10
Tibetan 1 10
Indonesian 1 10
Academic Skills (South and Southeast Asian Studies)

Second Semester (Spring)

Nation, Community, Self: Questions of Culture in South and Southeast Asia 5
Languages of South and Southeast Asia: History, Context and Structure 5
State, Politics and Economy in Modern South and Southeast Asia 5
Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia: Seminar 1 5
Academic Skills (South and Southeast Asian Studies)

Elective Languages (10 EC):

Choose 1 out of 4:

Hindi 2 10
Sanskrit 2 10
Tibetan 2 10
Indonesian 2 10

Extracurricular Course

Second Year

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2
Living Histories: Locating Pasts in Southern Asia 5

Language

Choose 1 out of 4

Sanskrit 3 10
Hindi 3 10
Indonesian 3 10
Tibetan 3 10

Tracks (10 EC): choose one of the following tracks:

A: Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia (10 EC, choose one or two courses)
B: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia (10 EC, choose two courses)

Track A: Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia

Choose two of the following courses on offer:

Politics of Southeast Asia 5
Modern Media in SSEA 5
Culture of Tibet 5
Islam in Southeast Asia: The Basics 5

Track B: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia

Choose two of the following courses on offer:

Buddhist Art 5
Culture of Tibet 5
Iconography of South and Southeast Asia 5

Elective SSEAS

Choose one course from track A or track B of 5 EC.

Second Semester (Spring)

Seminar II: Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia 5
Core: Philosophy of science 5

Language

Choose 1 out of 4 (10EC)

Hindi 4 10
Indonesian 4 10
Sanskrit 4 10
Tibetan 4 10

Tracks (10 EC): continuation of the track chosen in the first semester (Fall):

A: Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia (10 EC, choose one or two courses)
B: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia (10 EC, choose two courses)

Track A: Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia

Choose one or two of the following courses on offer up to a total of 10 EC:

Anthropology and Sociology of Modern Day South-East Asia 10
Displacement and Development: Anthropological Perspectives on South Asia (10 EC) 10
The Indian Ocean World: Sailors, Scholars, Slaves 5
Islam in the Modern World 5
Tibet: State and Society 5
Literatures of South and Southeast Asia 5
Oral Traditions of South and Southeast Asia 5
Economies of South and Southeast Asia 5

Track B: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia

Choose two of the following courses on offer:

Tibetan Buddhism 5
Literatures of South and Southeast Asia 5
Oral Traditions of South and Southeast Asia 5
Hindu Myths in the Art of South and Southeast Asia 5
World Philosophies: India 5
Architecture: The Temple and the Stupa 5
Tibet: State and Society 5

Extracurricular Course

Philosophy and Practice: The theoretical underpinnings of practice in late Indian tantric Buddhism 5

Third Year

The third year offers the opportunity to fill out 30 EC (discretionary space) with a minor or electives: 15 EC during the first (fall) semester and 15 EC during the second (spring) semester. Students can opt to either choose one of the standard minors offered (if they stay in Leiden rather than spending the first semester abroad), do an internship or work placement (subject to compatability with the semester abroad) or, alternatively, compose a package from the elective courses on offer following their own interests. They should be aware, however, that the courses need to have a certain cohesion regarding their content. Students who opt to compose a package of their own choice are therefore strongly advised to contact the Coordinator of Studies and to get approval from the Board of Examiners before getting started to avoid problems afterwards. For this you can use the form on the website.

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

First Semester (Fall)

Study Abroad 30

Alternative programme in Leiden:

Students staying in Leiden must do one of the advanced language courses (Advanced Readings in Sanskrit Literature, Hindi Literature, Indonesian 5 or Tibetan 5 (10 EC) + one course from track A or B (5 EC). In addition, students also need to do 15 EC for their discretionary space in the first semester.

Languages on offer:

Hindi Literature 10
Advanced Readings in Sanskrit Literature 10
Tibetan 5 10
Indonesisch 5 10

Track A: Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia

Culture of Tibet 5
Displacement and Development: Anthropological Perspectives on South Asia (10 EC) 10
Modern Media in SSEA 5
Politics of Southeast Asia 5

Track B: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia

Buddhist Art 5
Iconography of South and Southeast Asia 5
Culture of Tibet 5

Discretionary space (15 EC)

Second Semester (Spring)

BA Thesis (South and Southeast Asian Studies) 10
Seminar III: Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia 5

Discretionary space (15 EC)

Extracurricular Course

Philosophy and Practice: The theoretical underpinnings of practice in late Indian tantric Buddhism 5

Meer info

Attainment levels Description of the programme Related master programmes/ pre-master tracks Regulations Study guidance Parttime and fulltime

1. Attainment levels

An overview of the attainment levels of the BA programma South and Southeast Asian Studies can be found in the Teaching and Examination Regulations

2. Description of the programme

The three-years bachelor programme South and Southeast Asian Studies provides students with a thorough knowledge of a fascinating and dynamic region. The emphasis lies on India, Tibet and Indonesia, but other countries in South and Southeast Asia will also be discussed. The approach in this regional studies programme is multidisciplinary and enables students to acquire knowledge about e.g. the languages, religions, art, culture and current politics of the region. A consistent emphasis is placed onlanguage as a windon on South and Southeast Asian Cultures. Students specialize in one of the following languages: Indonesian, Hindi, Tibetan, and Sanskrit.

Programme curriculum

The first year: propaedeuse
During the first year, the programme lays a foundation for studying various aspects of the region, including the history, culture and modern society in South and Southeast Asia. Students also choose a number of courses themselves: they opt for one of the four languages and for one of the three major religions in the region. An academic skill course, running throughout the year and followed in close conjunction with two topical courses, helps students to acquire the general skills they will need in order to complete the higher years of the programme. Furthermore, one course, “Area Studies”, will be taken together with other students of the Faculty of Humanities.

The second year In the second year, all students will take a course entitled “Living Histories: Locating Pasts in Southern Asia” in the first semester and “Seminar 2: Heritage of South and Southeast Asia”, “Seminar 2: Futures of South and Southeast Asia” or “Seminar 2: Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia” in the second semester, which follows on from the first year course “Seminar 1: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia”. The students, furthermore, continue studying the language they have chosen in the first year. The programme, moreover, offers a choice between two specializations: “Modern South and Modern Southeast Asia” and “Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia”. For two semesters, students attend lectures belonging to the chosen specialization. They also attend an elective course South and Southeast Asia during the first semester of the second year. This elective course can be either a course from the “own” specialization or a course from the other specialization. In the second semester, all students will take the course “Philosophy of Science” together with other students of the Faculty of Humanities.

The third year
During the first semester of the third year, students go abroad to gain more in-depth knowledge of the relevant language and region. There is an alternative programme in Leiden for students who are unable to go abroad. During the second semester, students attend “Seminar 3: Heritage of South and Southeast Asia”, “Seminar 3: Futures of South and Southeast Asia” or “Seminar 3: Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia”, courses which follow on from “Seminar 2: Heritage of South and Southeast Asia”, “Seminar 2: Futures of South and Southeast Asia” or “Seminar 2: Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia.”. In addition, each student writes a BA Thesis

Discretionary space
In addition, students take electives to fill the discretionary space of 30 EC. For those students following the semester abroad in the first half year of the teaching year, 15 of the 30 EC consists of discretionary courses taken at the host university. Students can choose to take courses from a completely different field (“broadening”). Students can also choose to take courses from the South and Southeast Asia programme (“deepening”). It is also possible to obtain a part of the 30 EC with an internship. More information (in Dutch) on the different electives and options can be found on the relevant website.

3. Related master programmes/ pre-master tracks

The bachelor diploma South and Southeast Asia Studies (SSEAS) gives access to the masters Asian Studies (60 EC).

4. Regulations

Binding Study Advice (BSA) For students who first registered as doing a major at Leiden University after 1996, the “Leiden study system” with Binding Study Advice applies. This system sets out requirements regarding the academic achievements of the first-year student, but also offers better guidance by way of the mentorship and study progress sessions with the coordinator of studies. The aim of this system is finding out as quickly as possibly whether the student is fit for the newly chosen studies and whether the studies fit the student. To receive a positive advice, the student should obtain at least 45 EC of the propaedeuse programme during the first year INCLUDING the following component: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia Seminar I. The board of examiners will provide two written recommendations during the first year. The board of examiners provides the first progress advice in January, which will be based on the achievements of the first semester. Students who end their enrolments before 1 February of the current academic year are no longer entitled to a study advice or a binding study advice. The second advice will follow no later than 15 August. Students who have obtained less than 45 EC will receive a binding negative advice. This means that the students in question are not allowed to continue the South and Southeast Asian Studies programme in Leiden. The limitation period for this rejection is four years. Naturally, personal circumstances will be taken into account, such as illness or serious family reasons. It is therefore important that students inform the coordinator of studies about personal problems in a timely fashion. The department keeps a file of every student with information that is relevant to the BSA. The student is entitled to examine this file (at the coordinator of studies’) and to add information to this file.

The programme imposes additional requirements regarding components that have to be completed for the first binding study advice being the following component: Classical Cultures of South and Southeast Asia: Seminar I.

5. Study guidance

During the first year, the students get intensive coaching by a mentor and a student mentor. The coordinator of studies co-ordinates the coaching and has more formal and individual conversations with the students if necessary. As of the second semester, the coordinator of studies discuss the organization of the curriculum for the next semester with each student individually.

6. Parttime and fulltime

The BA programme South and Southeast Asian Studies is offered as a fulltime programme only.

BA Thesis

Admission requirements

Successful completion of the first year (propaedeutics) and second year of bachelor’s programme in South and Southeast Asian studies

Description

Students themselves choose a supervisor for their BA dissertation from among the lecturers involved in the SSEAS programme. They do this in consultation with the coordinator of the third year, second semester seminar course ‘Heritage/Futures/Current Affairs of South and Southeast Asia’, which forms part of the framework in which the dissertation is prepared. A general introduction to the dissertation writing process is given in association with the Heritage/Futures/Current Affairs seminar close to the beginning of that course, and the choice of supervisor should have been made by the end of the third week of the second semester. Later in the course, students give work-in-progress presentations on their dissertations. During these presentations they obtain critical feedback from other students, from the seminar coordinator, and from any other contributing lecturer.
Dissertations will in principle be written in English. Permission to write in a different language may be granted by the Examinations Committee. Any application for such permission must be submitted at the same time as the supervisor is selected, and must take into account the necessity of finding a second reader (see below) who is also able to understand the language in question.
The main text of the dissertation should be approximately 8,500 words in length. The maximum length including notes, bibliography, and any appendices, is 10,000 words. Wherever possible, a reasonable quantity of source materials in Indonesian, Hindi, Sanskrit or Tibetan should be used in researching and writing the dissertation.

Course objectives

Elementary research skills, including heuristic skills
-Collect and select specialised literature using traditional and electronic methods and techniques;
-Analyse and evaluate this in terms of quality and reliability;
-Formulate a well-defined research problem based on this;
-Set up, under supervision, a study of a limited size taking into consideration the traditional and electronic -methods and techniques relevant for the discipline;
-Formulate a reasoned conclusion on the basis of this;
-Also make use of the acquired research skills outside the student’s own discipline.

Written presentation skills
-Explain research findings in a clear and well-argued way;
-Formulate an answer to questions concerning the discipline or a topic within it

  • in the form of a clear and well-structured written presentation

  • in accordance with the criteria set by the discipline

  • using relevant illustration or multimedia techniques

  • aimed at a specific target group.

The BA-thesis will be, amongst other elements, assessed on the following elements:

  • Knowledge and insight (contents, relation to the field)

  • Application knowledge and insight (methodology)

  • Reaching conclusions (interpretation, argumentation, conclusion)

  • Communication (writing skills, structure)

  • Learning skills (process)

Mode of instruction

Self-study under the guidance of a supervisor. Student and supervisor have at least four meetings during the writing process.

Assessment

To graduate on August 31, the student needs to hand a first complete version of the BA-thesis on June 1, at the latest (see form regarding appointments), to his supervisor. The final version needs to be in on July 1, at the latest.

Blackboard / webpage

Blackboard

Registration

No registration in uSis required for the Bachelor’s thesis.

Contact

Individual supervisor.