Universiteit Leiden

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Welcome to Leiden University

You are about to start your studies at Leiden University. Make sure you are well prepared and get your studies off to a good start.

Changes due to corona measures 

Some of the facilities and activities mentioned below may be changed or adapted due to corona measures. Click through to the webpage of the facility or activity in question to find the latest information. 

Also take a look at the Studying in times of corona website. Here you can find up-to-date information about online study and other matters that might be slightly different at the moment. 

This academic year, education will take place partially online and partially on campus. Learn more about what your upcoming year will look like in the film Blended Learning at Leiden University

To arrange before your studies

An introduction week is the best way to get to know your new city, student life and your fellow students.

Adapted programme due to corona measures
As a result of the corona situation, alternative programmes have been arranged that will consist of both online and on-location activities. Of course, the organisers will make sure that all the necessary precautionary measures are in place. 

Read more about introduction weeks  

As a student of Leiden University you’ll receive a student account (ULCN account). This gives you access to the university’s systems and work stations. You'll first need to activate your ULCN account.

Read more about ULCN accounts

Your LU card is your university ID card. It gives you access to a range of facilities. Make sure to request your LU card before starting your studies.

Read more about the LU card

You can enrol for courses and exams via uSis or at your education administration office.

Read more about course and exam enrolment

Make sure you know where you have to be and when on your first day.

Read more about schedules and classrooms

Find out which study materials you will need and how to obtain them.

Read more about books and study materials 

Familiarise yourself with the facilities and services

As a first-year bachelor’s student you will be assigned a student as a mentor and a lecturer as a tutor to help find your way around the new city and degree programme. The tutor groups consist of ten to fifteen students.

Read more about mentors and tutors

Find out about the IT facilities and other services that you can make use of when studying online. 

Here, on the student website, you can find a wide range of practical information about your studies. By selecting your programme when logging in, you can view information that is relevant to you. Find out how to get the most out of the student website

Changes due to corona measures

Also take a look at the Studying in times of corona website. Here you can find up-to-date information about online study and other matters that might be slightly different at the moment. 

Your student card is your proof of registration as a student of Leiden University.

Find out how and when you will receive your student card

All the details of your studies are recorded in uSis. From your first registration as a student until your graduation.

Read more about uSis

Brightspace is Leiden University’s online learning environment.

Read more about Brightspace

In the Prospectus you can find information about the courses within your study programme.

Take a look in the Prospectus

As a student of Leiden University you will be issued with a university email address: uMail. All correspondence from the university will be sent to this address. You can set up your uMail account so that all mails will be forwarded to your own email address.

Read more about uMail

The indispensable app for Leiden University students. Here you can find all your personal study information in one place. Log in once and access your schedule, results, available computers and university news anytime and anyplace.

Download the app

Learn about the guidance and advice services for students. 

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Get more out of student life

By joining an association you'll meet lots of people and get more out of student life. As well as student and study associations, there are also a range of social associations in Leiden and The Hague, for example sports, religious or cultural associations.  

Read more about associations

As a student of Leiden University, you have access to a wide range of affordable sports via the University Sport Centre (USC) in Leiden and The Hague.



Further information

For further information, advice and tips, watch the Get Started at Leiden University YouTube playlist

Welcome at the Faculty Governance and Global Affairs. All information you will need to start with your studies, you will find on the programme's tab.

Is there no information yet, or did you not find an answer to your question? Please contact the co-ordinator of studies.

Preparations FGGA Minors

Not a student at Leiden University, but do you start with one of our minors? Click on your minor and find more information about your schedule, Usis, Brightspace, the student website and more.

Information for new students

Below you can find a short introduction to the most important matters that you have to deal with as a student from Leiden University. Please click on the relevant link for more information. Also, when you are on the university website always click on the tab page of your programme when there are more tab pages.


The student portal (this website) basically shows you all information that you need as a student, like current information about the study programme, direct links to relevant systems, consultation hours study advisers, time tables and news. For some programme specific information you need to log in with your ULCN-account (see right below) or indicate which programme you are following when you go to the student portal. Some of the links below are also part of the programme specific information.

The ULCN-account is your Leiden University account with which you can have access to all university systems. It consists of your student number preceded by an ‘s’ and the password you received from Leiden University.

uSis is Leiden University’s student administration system. You can for instance find your official grades and personal time table in here. You can also enroll for courses and exams and submit (administrative) requests for exemptions and elective space. You can have access to this system by using your ULCN-account (see above). If you have questions you can take a look at the FAQ uSis. If you need help with enrolling for courses, please go to this webpage. You have to register with your ULCN account first.

Each student gets a personal University e-mail account (U-mail). This is accessible as long as you have an internet connection. You can log in with your ULCN-account. Please note: the University uses only this U-mail address to inform her students. If you do not want to miss any important information, please forward your university e-mails to you private e-mail address.

You are supposed to carry your student card (which is also your proof of registration) and LU-Card with you at all times. You need the student card when attending exams and the LU-Card for printing/ making copies and when entering university buildings, the bicycle shed or borrowing books from the library.

Brightspace is the digital learning environment at Leiden University per 2020/2021. Brightspace replaces Blackboard. It could be that you hear or see the name ‘Blackboard’ here or there. Brightspcace is the digital learning environment where you can find extra information about all courses. There, you will get access to all recent information, like assignments, deadlines, articles that you have to read, pre-publication of grades etc.

Registration matters

Make sure that your registration in Studielink is complete before 31 August if you wish to start with the study programme from September 1st. If you wish to start in February, please complete your registration before 31 January.

You can enroll for courses and (re)exams through our admin system uSis (see above under ‘General’). Please go to this page for an explanation on how to enroll for courses and exams. You need to log in with your ULCN-account

Programme information

You can find your personal programme activities like lectures, tutorials (werkgroep) and exams in uSis. If you have enrolled correctly in uSis, the course or exam will also appear in your personal time table in uSis and you will be notified of all changes. If you have not enrolled yourself, but wish to learn about the schedule, you can also take a look at this web page. 

The academic year of the Faculty of Governance and Global Affairs is divided into two semesters. Each semester in its turn is divided into two blocks and each block consists of 8 weeks. You usually follow 3 courses per block: you follow lectures and/ or tutorials in the first seven weeks and the eight week will be closed with exams. After week 8 a new block with 3 new courses will start. January and June are meant for retakes.

You can find the literature that is required per course in the e-Prospectus (see below). You can get a discount for books from our study association B.I.L..

You can find all information about your study programme and courses in the e-Prospectus: course descriptions, literature, examination and teaching methods, time table, etc

You can find the examination method for each course in the e-Prospectus. The schedule for exams (dates and locations) can be found in uSis and on the student portal. If you are enrolled for a course, you will also be enrolled for the first exam. You have to register separately for a re-exam.

Grades from completed courses will be registered by the Education Services Centre (see below under ‘Organizations’) in uSis. Only grades in uSis are official (grades in Brightspace are not official).

Next to lectures (where all students sit in the lecture hall mainly listening to the lecturer) there are also tutorials in smaller groups, in which you will practice with theory and skills. The assessment will be based on exams and/or assignments, like papers and presentations.

Support during programme

If personal problems (of any kind) cause you to fall behind with your programme, you can contact the study advisers, student counselors or student psychologist (see below under ‘Organizations’). We recommend you to contact the study adviser first.

Studying with a disability usually costs extra time and energy. Perhaps extra support is possible for your situation. For advice please contact the student counselors.

Combining a study programme with top-class sport demands a lot of commitment and a good study plan. The student counselors for elite athletes can give you more information.


The Board of Examiners is responsible for the organisation and quality of exams. They can: grant requests for exemptions, grant requests for retakes, make arrangements for fraud, plagiarism etc.

You can contact the Education Services Centre (OSC) for questions about: course and exam enrollment, the time table and the registration of grades.

De Programme Committee (Opleidingscommissie, OLC) consists of academic staff and students. The OLC can give both requested and unrequested advice about all educational matters to the Programme Board and possibly also to the Faculty Board. If you have complaints or suggestions to improve the programme, please contact the OLC of your programme.

The study advisers are your first point of contact for advice and information about matters like the content and structure of the programme, programme and examination regulations, study plan and approach, but also if personal circumstances prevent your study progress.

You can go to the student counselors for questions and problems regarding study completion delay, legal position and regulations and financial matters.

Student psychologists can support you with personal problems that affect your study programme directly. Based on your situation the student psychologist will decide with you what the next best step will be.

The study association B.I.L. is the link between students and the Insitute. The B.I.L. offers the possibility to get to know your fellow students even better by organizing all sorts of activities, like lectures and company visits, but also parties. You can also get a discount for books if you become a member. 

Other facilities

In the libraries there are quiet places to study and you can make use of reference books. Furthermore, you can find all books, journals, and data bases that are in the possession of the libraries in the catalogue

You have access to university study spots , Wi-Fi, uMail, Blackboard, uSis and SURFspot with your ULCN-account. Click here for more information about ICT facilities.

There are several computer rooms in the university buildings where you can work. There are also both silent and non-silent places where you can study, work with other students or sit with your laptop and make use of the WiFi connection.

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