nl en

Politicologie: International Relations and Organisations (Den Haag)

Political Science, global affairs and the dynamics of international cooperation and conflict.

The international, English-taught 3-year programme of IRO is part of Leiden University’s Political Science curriculum and is based in The Hague, the city in which politics and international relations converge.

In this specialised bachelor’s programme you'll address transboundary issues from a social sciences point of view. IRO has a strong focus on diplomacy and current world problems, with particular attention paid to the role of major powers such as China, Russia, the USA and the EU, and organisations such as the IMF, NATO, UN, and the World Bank.

It is the right choice for you if you are fascinated by political science, global affairs and the dynamics of international cooperation and conflict. Themes such as war and peace, poverty, refugee crises, humanitarian cooperation, nuclear weapons reduction, and globalisation are covered in detail.

Practical Information


Where can I find information about my choices in my academic career, for IRO and onwards?
In whatever phase you are of the programme, these are the options for you to find the answers to your questions related to study planning:
1. Brightspace Page “2122-HS Academic Career Support IRO” – all students are enrolled for this, you can find it under “My Courses” in the section “2122 Full Academic Year”
2. Plenary Information Sessions/Q&A’s - Throughout the academic year, you will be invited for a plenary information/Academic Career Support sessions during which you can ask questions about (adjusted) study planning, study strategies or extra-curricular challenges in your programme. The dates and meeting links (Zoom) can be found on the Brightspace page under Calendar.
3. IRO Newsletter online (umail) An online newsletter will be sent out each block to share links, dates and important information.
4. One-on-One meetings (either online or on campus) with your study adviser to discuss your personal situation or specific questions that cannot be answered by the options 1-3


Year 1 online Mentoring/Info sessions:

  • IROrientation – first plenary meeting before classes start: Monday 30 August 2021, 14:00 – 18:00 in Wijnhaven building

  • Block 1 | Monday 20 September 2021 | 13:15-14.15 | The Do’s and Don’ts in IRO

  • Block 2 | Monday 15 November 2021 | 15:15 - 17:00 | Keeping up in the first semester

  • Block 3 | Monday 21 February 2022 | 15:15 - 17:00 | Making choices for your IRO future

  • Block 4| Monday 25 April 2022 | 15:15 - 17:00 | Reflect and flash forward

Year 2 online Q&A/Info sessions – Making Choices for IRO Year 3

  • Monday 14 February 2022 | 17:15 - 18:00

  • Monday 14 March 2022 | 13:15 - 14:15

  • Monday 11 April 2022 | 17:15 -18:00

  • Thursday 28 April 2022 | 13:15-15:00

Year 3 online Q&A/Info sessions – What’s next? Support on planning for your next steps after IRO

  • Thursday 3 February 2022 | 15:15-16:15

  • Thursday 17 February 2022 | 11:15-12:15

  • Thursday 10 March 2022 | 11:15-12:15

The links to these meetings will be provided in the Brightspace page HS-2122 Academic Career Support IRO, under Calendar


Both first year students and students re-sitting courses from last year will be registered for all courses and work groups in semester 1 by the Student Services Centre (SSC – As of semester 2 (block 3 & 4), first year students can register themselves via uSis.
Second and third year students register for classes themselves in both semesters in Usis. You can find the dates below.
In the week before your classes start, you can find your class schedule (lectures and workgroups) in Usis or in My Timetable. If you need to retake previous courses, your schedule will be taken into account. Once registered, changing to other work groups is not possible.

Block 1: Thursday 15 July 2021, 13.00h – until 5 days before the 1st class session
Block 2: Thursday 15 July 2021, 13.00h - until 5 days before the 1st class session
Block 3: Wednesday 15 December 2021, 13.00h - until 5 days before the 1st class session
Block 4: Wednesday 15 December 2021, 13.00h - until 5 days before the 1st class session

For transition regulations, please check the Course and Examination Regulations OER


You can find additional course information and materials (textbooks, articles) in the Prospectus as well as in the Brightspace page of the course. Your instructor will communicate with you in Brightspace via your umail account. Make sure you have access to this account before your classes start.


Plagiarism is a violation of academic integrity that can have serious consequences for the perpetrator. To prevent plagiarism, all your written work is checked via Turnitin. Turnitin is an external tool that has been integrated in Brightspace to assess assignments/papers/etc. and to check for plagiarism. Turnitin provides instructors with the tools to provide specific personalized feedback and check similarity to other papers, bibliographic and online sources and grade assignments.


Note that some elements in the IRO programme require completion of specific courses (Study Abroad, Bachelor Project, Bachelor Seminar in Year 3) or a minimum GPA (Study Abroad, continuation with a Master programme) You can find information about prerequisites in the Education & Examination Regulations (OER) or contact your study adviser for further information (


The role of the Board of Examiners is to ensure that study programmes adhere to their Course and Examination Regulations. The Board of Examiners oversees all tests and examinations within the institute and determines whether students have acquired the knowledge and skills required for the awarding of their degree. As a Bachelor student, you will need to request approval for non-Political Science Institute elements in your programme such as your electives, Study Abroad courses, research internship and a minor at different university. If you are planning on taking electives next to your IRO courses you should always contact your Study Adviser to discuss study planning. If you want to have a short overview of for specific situations you would need to seek their
advice, please take a look at their FAQ

The Board of Examiners can be reached via:

Year 1

Programme components year 1 (60 EC)

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Block I

Introduction to International Organisations 5
Introduction to International Relations 8

Block II

Economics for Political Scientists 5
Statistics 1 - Description and Inference 5
Actors in World Politics 7

Block III

Global History 5
Statistics 2 - Applied Quantitative Analysis 5
Introduction to Comparative Politics 7

Block IV

Politics of the European Union 5
Introduction to Political Science 8

Year 2

Programme components year 2 (60 EC)

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Block I

Research Methods in Political Science 10
Comparative Analysis of Political Systems 5
Academic Skills: Research Design 5

Block II

Analyzing International Relations 5
International Political Economy 5

Block III

Contemporary Political Philosophy 5
Global Security 5
International Development 5
Academic Skills: Data Analysis 5

Block IV

International Law and Human Rights 5
Rational Choice Theory 5

Year 3

*Programme components year 3 (60 EC)**

1. Elective Space (30 EC)

2. Bachelor Seminar (10 EC, Block 1, 2, 3 or 4)

3. Bachelor Project (Thesis) (20 EC, semester 1 or 2)

More information about the programme can also be found on Brightspace page Academic Career Support

Vak EC Semester 1 Semester 2

Elective Space

Elective Space Year 3

Bachelor Project

Bachelor Project International Relations and Organisations 2021-2022 20
Bachelor Project POL/IP/IRO (online only) - Fall 2021 20

Bachelor Seminars semester I

Anarchism, Anti-statism and Anti-state Rebellions 10
Foreign and Security Policy of the European Union 10
Toleration: Concept and Practices 10
The Creation, Dispersion, and Recognition of States in World Politics 10
Challenges to European Integration and Scenarios for its Future 10
Global Governance and Multilateral Institutions 10
The Power of the Past: The Contemporary Relevance of Histories 10

Bachelor Seminars semester II

Political Myths and Realities: Lessons learned from Indigenous and Pre-historic Practice 10
Crisis Management 10
International Institutions and Security Governance 10
Media and Public Opinion in International Relations 10
Organizing, Managing, Analyzing and Interpreting Political Science Data 10
Politics of Memory 10
Sovereignty, Secession and Unrecognized States 10
The Politicization of European Integration 10
The Psychological Origins of Mass Politics 10
Political Psychology in International Relations 10
Democracy, Multiculturalism and Pluralism 10
Politics of Migration 10
The Politics of Africa: Development, Democracy, and Identity 10

Academic Career Support

Academic Career Support:

Your study adviser is an expert on all aspects of your study programme. Do you like the programme, but you would need some extra challenges? Are you experiencing academic difficulties and do you need to reduce the pace of your studies? Or are you falling behind in your studies due to personal circumstances? It is essential that you speak to your study adviser as soon as possible. He or she can advise you on the best course of action and, if required, support you in dealing with academic delay.
Consult the Brightspace Page “Academic Career Support IRO” for further details on your study planning during the 3 years of your programme.

Study Advisers
Ariane Berends – IRO students with surnames starting with A to F
Ignacia Levy – IRO students with surnames starting with G to O
Ester Blom – IRO students with surnames starting with P to Z