Universiteit Leiden

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Frequently asked questions

Frequently Asked Questions

When and how must I send certified copies of my academic records to the university?

When you apply for admission to a degree programme using our online application system, you need only upload digital copies of your academic records. If you are admitted onto a study programme you will then receive an ‘Admission Statement’ by email. This statement will explain exactly which academic records (certified copies) must be sent to Leiden University’s Admissions Office by post and the deadlines for doing so.

- If you have a non-Dutch diploma:
Copies must be certified as genuine (i.e. bearing an original stamp and signature) by the registrar of your institution or the head of your department. They must be sent in a sealed institution envelope to Leiden University’s Admissions Office, either by you or directly by the institution. If you cannot meet these requirements please instead submit officially legalised or apostilled documents - see the information on legalising documents via the link below. Photocopies of certified/legalised copies are not acceptable, nor are copies certified by local municipal authorities.

If you are asked to submit a diploma but it will not be issued in time, please instead submit a complete certified transcript accompanied by an original statement from your institution confirming that you have graduated.

If the original documents are not issued in English, French, German or Dutch they should be translated by a sworn translator (or the institution itself) and attached to the original documents.

- If you have a Dutch diploma:
Certified copies of Dutch academic records may be sent to the Admissions Office directly by the issuing institution or by the applicant him/herself.

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Does Leiden University have a welcome or pick-up service for international students?

On certain dates before each semester, Leiden University offers a warm welcome service for newly-arriving international students. If you arrive on one of these dates, you can sign up for the welcome service at Amsterdam Schiphol airport, Leiden train station or the Hague Hollandspoor train station. You can also visit an information lounge with any questions you might have about post-arrival practicalities. You are highly advised to plan your arrival for a date during the warm welcome service.
  • For further information, and the dates of the next warm welcome service, please visit the welcome service page
  • If you have any questions about the warm welcome service, please send a mail to:  arrival@leidenuniv.nl

How long does it take before a decision on my application is issued?

It generally takes about 6 weeks from the date on which you are informed that your application is complete until you receive a decision. If additional information is required during the application process it may take a little longer. Please make sure your application is complete and is submitted as early as possible to help speed up the processing time.

Once a decision on your application has been made you will receive a formal statement from the faculty by email.


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Does Leiden University offer a (partial) tuition fee waiver?

Leiden University offers several scholarships which includes (partial) tuition fee waivers, such as, for example, the LExS scholarship. 

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Can a parent or sponsor provide the ‘proof of financial means’ for my visa/residence permit?

We are only able to accept bank statements in your own name, not that of a sponsor or family member. A letter from a friend/family member promising funds is also not sufficient.
The only evidence of financial means we are able to accept are:
• A bank transfer of your living expenses to Leiden University
• A bank statement in your own name
• A scholarship letter clearly stating your name

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How will I be notified about the decision on my application?

After Leiden University has received your complete application, it will be forwarded to the relevant faculty/department. Once the faculty/department has issued a decision, it will be indicated in the online application portal (uSis). You will receive an email notifying you once a decision has been made.

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What happens to applications received after the deadline?

We encourage students to submit their applications as early as possible. If we receive your application after the relevant deadline you will be asked whether you wish to withdraw your application or defer your application until the next possible start date. Only in exceptional cases will late applications be considered. Decisions concerning the processing of late applications are made on a case by case basis in consultation with the faculty in question.


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What are the estimated living expenses per month?

Via the link below you can find an up to date estimate of the amount of money you will require for monthly expenses, i.e. rent, insurance, living expenses, course books and local transportation etc.. How much money a student actually spends will of course depend on their lifestyle and spending habits.

Please note that if you need an “MVV” (visa) to enter the Netherlands and a residence permit to legally stay in the Netherlands, you will need to provide proof that you are financially able to cover expenses during the whole period of stay. 

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When and how will I receive my student card and LU card?

As a student of Leiden University you will need two different types of card: a student card and a LU card.

Student card
Your student card is your proof of registration as a student of Leiden University (or proof of enrolment). You will receive it by post at your Dutch address once you have completed all student registration formalities and paid your tuition fees. You will receive a new student card each academic year that you are registered as a student.

Your LU-card is your Leiden University ID card. It also serves as a print & copy card, library card and access pass. It remains valid for the duration of your studies and can be used as your alumni pass after graduation. You must request a LU card yourself. You will not receive it automatically. Your LU card will be sent to your Dutch address. If you do not (yet) have a Dutch address you can collect your LU card at the Student Affairs Front Office in Plexus Student Centre.

You can check whether the university has your correct postal address in Studielink or at the Student Affairs Front Office.

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Can I change or withdraw my housing request after I submit it?

  • If you notify the university Housing Office that you are withdrawing your request before the housing deadline, or before you have been offered accommodation, you can receive a refund of your housing fee. If you withdraw your request after these dates, the housing fee is non-refundable.
  • If you defer your studies, you can also request a deferral of your housing contract start date.
  • You can change your housing preferences, or submit a request for special facilities/adaptations, before the housing application deadline. After this date it will be very difficult to make changes.

In all the above-mentioned cases, always contact the Housing Office for assistance.

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