Japanese Studies

Students of the specialisation Japanese Studies develop graduate-level competencies in Japanese language, history, philosophy, religion, literature, politics, sociology and anthropology. One of the central tenets of the MA specialisation in Japanese Studies is that you master the Japanese language.

Programme information

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One of the central tenets of the MA specialisation in Japanese Studies is that you master the Japanese language. However, language skills are a tool rather than an end in themselves. This MA programme therefore emphasises disciplinary specialisation.

Students of the specialisation Japanese Studies will be able to develop graduate-level competencies in Japanese History, Philosophy, Religion, Literature, Politics, Sociology, Anthropology and others.

This is a two-year programme. You will spend the second semester of the first year and the first semester of the second year in Japan. The remaining two semesters will be spent at Leiden.


Timetables and calendar

Prospectus: programme overview and course description

The Prospectus contains overviews and course details for all programmes in the Faculty of Humanities (and other faculties). The information in the Prospectus is updated annually, in June. Please consult the Japanese Studies section of the Prospectus for more information.

Application, enrollment and examinations

  • To enroll in a specific course or examination, use the Study administration system uSis.

  • This website is intended for students who are already enrolled in the programme. Prospective students looking for application information should consult unileidenmasters.nl.

Year in Japan

Every year Japanese Studies students are selected to attend a university in Japan, as part fulfillment of their MA degree. The Japanese Studies MA programme has agreements with the following Universities: Sophia, Rikkyo, Kyoto, Waseda, Doshisha, TUFS, Ritsumeikan, Kobe, Nagasaki, Yamagata, Tôhoku.

Read more about the Year in Japan.

MA thesis

It might seem far away, but you have to start thinking about your thesis from the very beginning. Each student must submit a brief description of their research interests by October 1 in the first year.

For more information on the MA Thesis, see the MA thesis protocol for Asian Studies.

Study advice

Every department (or degree programme) has a Co-ordinator of Studies (studiecoördinator). The Co-ordinator of Studies knows all the ins and outs of the programme and can help with any problems. Typical subjects to discuss with the Co-ordinator of Studies are: student progress (and delay) and exam regulations.

Graduation procedures

MA students who are ready to apply for their graduation should follow the graduation procedure. See the graduation website for more information about this procedure, the MA thesis, and how to deregister from Leiden University after graduation.

Teaching and Examination Regulations and Faculty Regulations

All the rights and obligations of students in the Humanities faculty are set out in regulations. The most important of these are indicated below. (The list is not exhaustive; more documentation on regulations may appear here in the future.)

  • Teaching and Examination Regulations state the contents of your programme and the specialisations within the programme.
  • Registration for lectures, tutorials and tests is obligatory: see the uSis registration procedure.
  • The Student Charter informs students about what they can expect from the University and what the University expects from them.
  • Regulations on plagiarism are in place, to counter any instances of malpractice. These regulations provide advice on how to use sources and citations.

Boards, committees, and co-participation

Students within the Faculty of Humanities, are represented in the following boards and committees:

  • the departmental Teaching Committee
  • the departmental or institute administration ór Institute Board
  • the Faculty Council
  • the Faculty Board

Another committee that is relevant to your studies, but in which students are not represented, is the Board of Examiners.

Contact and staff for Japanese Studies

Last Modified: 29-11-2016