For excellent Non-EU/EEA students enrolling in a Leiden University master’s degree programme and for excellent students from all nationalities enrolling in a Master of Law Advanced Programme or MSc in International Relations and Diplomacy.

For whom?

  1. Non-EU/EEA students enrolling in a Leiden University master’s degree programme starting February 2014 or September 2014 (All MA, MSc and LL.M programmes as mentioned on the website Master’s programmes in Leiden,  a number of programs have a start date in September only).

  2. All nationalities enrolling in the following programmes starting February 2014 or September 2014 (programs listed below have a September start date only, with the exception of Adv. Studies in Air & Space Law):

    • Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in Air and Space Law

    • Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in European and International Business Law

    • Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in International Tax Law

    • Master of Laws: Advanced Studies in Public International Law

    • MSc in International Relations and Diplomacy

Additional requirements:

  1. In his or her prior academic education abroad, the applicant must have achieved excellent study results which are relevant for the programme for which the student wishes to enroll. As an indication, the student will be among the top 10% for the relevant programme followed abroad

  2. The applicant will hold a non-EU/EEA passport and will not be eligible for support under the Dutch system of study grants and loans (“Studiefinanciering”; more information)

  3. Scholarships will not be awarded to applicants who have already obtained a Leiden University master’s degree

  4. Students who are granted a Leiden Excellence Scholarship must comply with and confirm in writing their agreement with the terms and conditions attached to the scholarship prior to the granting of the scholarship.

Scholarship Amount:

The Leiden University Excellence Scholarship programme has 5 awards:


Covers the tuition fee minus the home fee* and an allowance of €10,000 for living costs


Covers the tuition fee minus the home fee*


Covers 75% of the tuition fee


Covers 50% of the tuition fee


Covers 25 % of the tuition fee

The number and type of award of the scholarship depends on the budget available for each Faculty department. The type of award has no reflection on the students’ academic level of excellence.

* The tuition fee will be reduced to the amount of the home fee. Students who have been awarded a Platinum or Gold award still have to pay the home fee themselves.

Application procedure for February 2014 / September 2014 intake (the application for September 2013 is closed).





Fill in your online application for admission to Leiden University

Deadline 1 October 2013 for programmes starting in February 2014.


Upload all necessary documents


Indicate clearly that you would like to apply for the LExS scholarship on the scholarship page


Upload your letter of motivation for the LExS scholarship on the scholarship page


Submit your online application


Pay the application fee


All LExS applicants will be informed by the scholarship department of Student Educational Affairs.

Mid November 2013 for the February 2014 intake.

Letter of motivation

To apply for the scholarship, you should write a letter of motivation (in Word) of a maximum of 500 words, in which you indicate why you believe you should be considered for this scholarship. The Word document should then be attached on the scholarship page in your online application for the master’s programmes for which you are applying.

It is possible to submit applications for more scholarship programmes simultaneously. However, it is not possible to obtain more than 1 scholarship from Leiden University for the same study programme. (terms and conditions pdf))

 If you have already submitted your online application for admission to Leiden University, but would still like to apply for the LExS scholarship, we kindly request you to submit the LExS motivation letter to the Scholarships department (e-mail) before the deadline.

Selection process

The Faculty selection committee will review the applications. Students are selected on the basis of academic merit.

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs Leiden Excellence Scholarship


The student is responsible for submitting a complete application, according to the steps described under 1A-F by the aforementioned deadline. Leiden University cannot be held responsible for late and/or incomplete applications.

Please note

Students should be aware that the LExS is not a full scholarship. It is necessary to find additional funding to be able to finance their study and stay completely.

One of the requirements for being granted a residence permit in the Netherlands is that students must submit proof that they have sufficient financial means to finance their study period in the Netherlands. Leiden University advises a budget, not including the tuition fee, of approx. €10,000 to €14,000 per year to cover the costs for rent, insurance, living expenses, course books and local transportation. How much money students actually spend will of course depend on their life style and spending habits.


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