Leiden University Scholarship 2020 for International Students (up to € 15,000)

Leiden University offers several scholarships to excellent non-EEA/non-EFTA students joining a full-time Masters Program. The university has been placed in the top 100 universities in the world by three major ranking tables. It ranked in top 50 worldwide in thirteen fields of study in the 2020 QS World University Rankings. Known for its historic foundations and emphasis on the social sciences, the university came into particular prominence during the Dutch Golden Age, when scholars from around Europe were attracted to the Dutch Republic due to its climate of intellectual tolerance and Leiden’s international reputation. As one of the most reputed universities, Leiden University is offering excellence scholarship to international students.

Leiden University International Scholarship

Recipients of the Leiden Excellence Scholarship may receive any of the three available levels of awards. Moreover, the scholarship is payable to the students for the duration of the study program. The scholarship constitutes:

  • € 10,000 of the tuition fee
  • € 15,000 of the tuition fee
  • Total tuition fee minus the statutory tuition fee

However, students should note that non-EEA recipients must still submit ‘proof of sufficient funds’ for their student visa/residence permit application.

Eligibility for the Leiden University Scholarship

Leiden University considers a student eligible for the Master’s Scholarships if their profile aligns with the university’s requirements:

  • Students must be of non-EEA/non-EFTA  nationals applying for the Master’s program at Leiden University:
  • Further, Students must demonstrate excellent academic results in their previous study program (s), relevant to the Master’s program they are applying for. As an indication, the student is amongst the top 10% of graduates in his/her previous study program. However, the students do not require to provide any proof as such.
  • Additionally, students must meet the eligibility requirements for the specified master’s program.

How to apply for the Leiden University Scholarship

Students must apply for the admission at Leiden University prior to applying for the scholarship. Students can apply for the Master’s program through the online application. Moreover, the applicants must follow the following procedure to apply for the 2020 scholarship at Leiden University.

  • Apply online for admission to a Master’s program at Leiden University and pay the application fee if applicable.
  • In the scholarship section of your online application, indicate that you wish to apply for a LExS (Leiden University Excellence Scholarship).
  • Upload your LExS motivation letter as instructed in the online application. Also, note that this PDF file must be of max. 500 words, in which you explain why you would like to be considered for the award.
  • Submit your online application, containing your LExS application, before the LExS application deadline.
  • If you apply for more than one study program and wish to apply for a LExS for each, indicate this clearly in each application and upload a LExS motivation letter for each.

Selection process

The faculty selection committees will nominate the recipients of Leiden University Excellence Scholarships and inform the Scholarships Team, up to 6 weeks after the LExS deadline. The Scholarships Team will then notify all LExS applicants of the decisions:

  • At the end of November – for the February intake.
  • At the end of April – for the September intake.


Applicants can apply for the Leiden University Scholarship for the Master’s programs starting in February 2020 until 1 Oct 2019. While applications for programs starting from September 2020 should be submitted by 1 February 2020.


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