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Security Studies

The Bachelor of Science programme Security Studies is the first academic BA programme in continental Europe focusing on contemporary security and safety challenges. It is a three-year, English-taught programme that combines theory, practice, and skills, within an interdisciplinary framework. The programme helps students develop into well-rounded, academically trained security specialists.

Security and safety challenges rank among the most pressing contemporary issues for individuals, organisations, businesses, and states. They must deal with both real and perceived threats at local, regional and international levels. These threats may include: international terrorism, organised crime, cyber incidents, civil unrest, urban riots and natural or industrial disasters. Both technological and social developments have led to a rise in the number of complex security and safety challenges, that may affect societies and people across the globe. Addressing these security and safety challenges requires an academic approach, a critical attitude and knowledge of all relevant factors related to specific security and safety challenges.

The Bachelor of Science programme Security Studies teaches students to analyse and address security and safety challenges. Using various theoretical lenses, students will learn how to unravel security cases by focusing on the political, historical and societal context, but also on governance structures, institutions and the role of the media. The programme employs a wide range of teaching methods to stimulate critical thinking in students, such as lectures, work groups, and excursions. Special attention is given to the development of academic and professional skills and the application of these skills to contemporary security and safety cases.

The Bachelor of Science in Security Studies is part of the Institute of Security and Global Affairs, and is taught at Leiden University’s Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs located in The Hague.

Year 1

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Semester 1

Introduction to Security and Safety 10
Skills Lab 1 5
Case study Syria 10
Skills Lab 2 5

Semester 2

Case Study Fukushima 10
Skills Lab 3 5
Research methods 1 5
Integrated Project 1 10

Year 2

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Semester 1

Vital Interests 10
Research Methods 2 5
Terrorism and Counter Terrorism 10
Law and Security 5

Semester 2

Cyber Threats 10
Economics of Security 5
War and Peacebuilding 10
Governance of Security 5

Year 3

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Semester 1

Elective space (see following tab) 5

Semester 2

Integrated Project 2 10
Research Methods 3 5
Thesis Security Studies 15

Elective space

Please find below all necessary information regarding the minors, exchange and internship.

Minors

Admission requirements
Students are required to obtain all 60 ECTS in year one by the time of application.

There must be no overlap with the BSc Security Studies content and only academic courses are allowed. This implies that courses offered by a university of applied sciences are not allowed. Additional requirements set by the minor or elective might apply.

The Board of Examiners has set the following additional requirements:

  • In principle, students are allowed to all electives they desire, unless they overlap with BSc Security Studies content.

  • The ECTS for the minor and/or electives should be obtained during the enrolment in the BSc Security Studies programme. This implies the following: * Students may not use ECTS obtained prior to their enrolment in the BSc Security Studies. * Students who are enrolled in a second bachelor’s programme may use ECTS obtained in their second programme.

Description
If you would like to deepen your knowledge and skills in a certain area, you can choose to do a minor or electives. A minor is a predefined set of courses worth 15 or 30 ECTS. An elective is a single course of another bachelor’s programme open to external students.

You can choose your minor or electives from FGGA, another faculty of Leiden University, or another university in the Netherlands.
You are allowed to choose almost all minors and electives at Leiden University, Erasmus University and Delft University and all official electives courses at Leiden University. The following minors are not available for Security Studies students:

  • Minor Security, Safety and Justice

  • Minor Global Affairs

In case you would like to do a minor or elective at another University in the Netherlands, you will need approval from the Board of Examiners.

The e-Prospectus: provides information on every minor of Leiden University.

Exchange

Admission requirements
To apply for a university-wide exchange programme, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You are registered as a student of Leiden University;

  • You have obtained at least 60EC of your bachelor’s programme;

  • Your average grade is 7 or higher;

  • You meet any additional requirements specified by your faculty or programme (these can be found under your faculty or programme tab).

Description
BSc Security Studies students can study abroad during the first semester of their third year. A study abroad application must be submitted in the first semester of their second year. Details about the application procedure will be explained during information session for which all students will be invited and on a designated Facebook Group and Blackboard Module.

ISGA has several exchange partners (“Faculty partners”) that are exclusively for FGGA students. In addition, BSc Security Studies students can also apply for one of the 70+ exchange destinations of Leiden University. For an overview of all destinations students can consult the Study Abroad Website.

Going abroad during your master’s programme can be tricky for a number of reasons: not all host universities accept all students and some have strict admission criteria. The application procedure can also be very time consuming. Make sure to start gathering information as early as possible and discuss your plans with your international exchange coordinator well before the application deadline. You can find more information and contact details though the website.

Timetable
BSc Security Studies students can study abroad during the first semester of their third year.

Registration
Use both uSis and Blackboard to register for every course.

Register for every course and workgroup via uSis. Some courses and workgroups have a limited number of participants, so register on time (before the course starts). In uSis you can access your personal schedule and view your results. Registration in uSis is possible from four weeks before the start of the course.

Also register for every course in Blackboard. Important information about the course is posted there.

Remarks
There are different ways to get information. Every year, FGGA’s Exchange Office organizes a plenary information session. Students can also visit the office hours of the Exchange Officer or the International Programmes Officer of the University.

Internship

Admission requirements
Students should have obtained all 60 ECTS of year 1 of the bachelor Security Studies by the time they apply for an internship.

Description
Internships are an excellent way to confront theoretical knowledge with practical dynamics in the security and safety domain. Being an intern helps students to develop and train their professional skills. Students in the bachelor programme security studies may choose to do an internship during the elective space in their third year.

Internship activities with sufficient common ground with Security Studies can be performed at a public, semi-public of private organization. The student is responsible for finding an internship, and can make use of the ISGA network and the FGGA career services for guidance in the process of finding an internship.

The internship must be equal to 15 ECs which stands for 420 hours. These hours should be spend on participation at your internship organization, the internship report and meetings with the internship supervisor. Both fulltime and a part-time internships are possible, as long as the 15 ECs are met. Core activities during an internship should be at an academic/strategic level.

Next to activities carried out at the internship organization, students work on an independent academic reflection on a security or safety related topic present in your internship organization. The organization students work with should provide supervision, time and data in order to complete this independent academic reflection.

All forms, instructions and additional information about the internship are published on a special Blackboard page. Point of departure is an internship proposal written by the student and to be approved by the internship coordinator. This proposal must be submitted at the latest one month before the internship starts.

Students will only receive study credits if the internship is carried out during the elective space in the first semester of year 3.

Before and during their internship students are participating in several supervision sessions with their internship supervisor and fellow students at Leiden University.

Course objectives
Students will gain insights into the daily dynamics of an organization in security and/or safety domain

Students will assess their professional skills set and monitor personal learning path during their internship

Students will apply academic insights to empirical, real life challenges present at an organization in the security and/or safety domain

Students will practice to provide constructive feedback on other students’ university assignments

Timetable
Students will only receive study credits if the internship is carried out during the elective space in the first semester of year 3.

Mode of instruction

  • Internship activities at host organization

  • Several supervision meetings at Leiden University (in groups)

Course Load
420 hours spend on internship activities, supervision meetings and university assignments

Assessment method
Internship consisting of academic reflection, personal reflection and evaluation by supervisors

Blackboard
All forms, instructions and additional information about the internship will be published on a special Blackboard page.

Registration
Use both uSis and Blackboard to register for every course.

Register for every course and workgroup via uSis. Some courses and workgroups have a limited number of participants, so register on time (before the course starts). In uSis you can access your personal schedule and view your results. Registration in uSis is possible from four weeks before the start of the course.

Also register for every course in Blackboard. Important information about the course is posted there.

Contact
Study coordinator Lisette Planellas