Political Science (Leiden), 2013-2014

The Leiden Master’s programme in Political Science: Conflict and Cooperation aims to provide its students with a deep and comprehensive understanding of political issues. The Leiden political science department has a long tradition of studying how political conflicts can be resolved in both national and international contexts, whether it is through Lijphart’s model of power sharing in divided societies, or through other institutional frameworks such as federalism. The programme will impart deep theoretical knowledge but also seeks to build bridges between theory and practice, for both national and international political issues and develop advanced academic and professional skills. Besides core courses on the theme of Conflict & Cooperation and Advanced Academic Skills, the programme offers elective seminars on a broad range of themes.

Preliminary Info

Students starting in September: read the information on this page carefully before continuing

In the first semester you should register for two seminars. Send your e-mail with the titles of the two seminars to onderwijspol@fsw.leidenuniv.nl as of Tuesday 13 August 10.00 a.m. and ultimately before Monday 26 August 4.00 p.m. E-mails received before 13 August 10.00 a.m. will not be handled.

Notice that: 1. Seminars have a maximum of 20 students. If fewer than 5 students register for a seminar, we cannot guarantee that it will take place. 2. Assignment to a seminar is on a first come first served basis. The time at which your e-mail is received by the secretariat is crucial. In case you cannot be assigned to your preference(s) due to capacity considerations, you will be contacted by the secretariat of Political Science.

In the week of 26 August you will be informed about your placement in the seminars. Ultimately on Thursday 29 August you will receive an email about this.

Start September

Welcome Meeting

On Monday 2 September 2013, from 10.15-11.00 hrs there will be a welcome meeting in room SA41 for all our new master Students in the Pieter de la Court Building (Faculty of Social Science). You are kindly invited for this meeting!!

Start February

Comp Reqr

Competence Requirements (Not for Leiden Political Science bachelors)

The Master Political Science Admissions Committee may request that the applicant demonstrates competency in Research Design & Measurement in the Social Sciences. You can find this on your Statement of Admission.

This competency should be demonstrated by completing the conversion course Research Design & Measurement in the Social Sciences. This conversion course will be offered by the Institute of Political Science and may be followed along with courses from the regular Master of Science programme. The full conversion course comprises 5 ECTS. This conversion course is not part of the regular curriculum of the Master of Science programme. Information on its contents and schedule is displayed in the link on the right hand side of this page.


Regulations for students from earlier academic years

  1. Students who have not successfully completed the course ‘Political Science: Approaches and Concepts’ (5 ects) must successfully complete the course ‘Conflict and Cooperation: the Classics’ (5 ects).

  2. Students who have not successfully completed the course ‘Colloquium’ (5 ects) of their specific specialisation must successfully complete the course ‘Advanced Academic and Professional Skills’ (5 ects).

Meer info

Core Modules

The Master Political Science offers two core modules: Conflict and Cooperation: Classics will address the kinds and forms of contemporary political conflict, the philosophical approaches to political conflict and the nature and effectiveness of political institutions in resolving political conflict. Major classic works in political science will be studied, including works by K. Waltz, S. Huntington and A. Lijphart.
The Advanced Academic and Professional Skills seminar aims at advancing the skills for various professions at an academic level, such as policy advisor, civil servant, or political assistant, whether in NGOs, interest groups, political parties or government and international agencies. The Skills seminar will focus on oral skills (effective presentation, argumentation and debating skills) and written skills (writing brief policy memos or advisory reports), which will be applied during the substantive seminars.

Specialization through Choice: Build your own Profile

The master program in Conflict and Cooperation allows students to specialize through their own choices of seminars. Through their choices students create a profile on political conflict and cooperation in national or international contexts. Through the seminars students will gain advanced knowledge on a variety of empirical or normative approaches in political science. Seminar topics range from civil war, ethics of war, economic conflict and regimes, and international organizations, to political conflict and the media, elections and coalitions in a national context and multiculturalism (see seminar themes below). Students may opt to complete the program with a thesis or an internship which includes a substantive research report.


Those opting for a thesis will follow the Thesis Seminar during bloc 3 and 4. In the Thesis Seminar students apply theoretical and methodological knowledge and skills to a theme related to conflict and cooperation in national or international contexts. A kick-off meeting with the Thesis Seminar instructor will take place in December, so that preparations for the thesis start during the month of January (designated for self-study). The thesis may take the form of a theoretical analysis, literature study, quantitative or qualitative empirical research, or a case study. Students write a thesis on the findings of individual research (length between 12.000 and 16.000 words).


The teachers that are mentioned in each course are appointed by the Board of Examiners to conduct examinations.

More information on grading, graduation and other information can be found on the website of Political Science .

More information on the entry requirements of the programme can be found on Masters in Leiden .