Deze opleiding

!Deze opleiding communiceert alleen in het Engels.
We tonen daarom de Engelstalige opleidingsinformatie.
This internationally-respected master's offers specialised knowledge on the most important aspects of modern and pre-modern Japan.

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typeregulier, 120 EC
start1 september
taalvolledig English
opleidingsduur2 jaar voltijd
numerus fixus17plaatsen
honoursheeft honours track
Taught by leading academics, the two-year Master's in Japanese Studies at Leiden University offers a multi-disciplinary approach to the study of East Asia and the region.

Leiden University has one of the oldest and most established centres of Japanese Studies in the Western world. A limited number of talented and highly-motivated students are accepted into this degree programme, ensuring each student receives a high-level of direct contact with lecturers, many of whom are top researchers in their fields. Your expertise will cover a comprehensive range of topics in modern and pre-modern Japan.

Japanese Studies is taught in an international classroom, where an outward-looking, interactive and stimulating approach to learning encourages students to become world citizens and first-class scholars.

You will develop important skills alongside your specialised knowledge, including sophisticated analytical and critical-thinking skills and the ability to independently conduct high-quality research.

  • Leiden University's Humanities Faculty was recently ranked 25th in the Times Higher Education worldwide ranking.
The Leiden Experience: Student City (Time Lapse)
The Leiden Experience: Why Humanities Matter
Japanese Studies
Geesteswetenschappen: Jouw vooruitzicht op werk

Waarom aan de Universiteit Leiden?

Leiden University offers ambitious students the latest knowledge and the freedom to develop their own area of expertise.
  • Leiden University's Humanities Faculty recently ranked 17th in the Times Higher Education worldwide ranking. You learn from scholars who are at the leading edge of Asia-related research in Europe, as well as experts from our many international partner institutions. At Leiden, we develop your intellectual potential so you can make a difference in your future career.
  • Leiden University is one of Europe's top research universities and an international centre of expertise. During your studies you get access to the unique resources of Leiden University, including its world-famous library and renowned collections of Asian artefacts, as well as a wider choice of courses from which to explore your areas of interest.
  • Our reputation as a centre of excellence means that your qualification is respected by organisations worldwide. Our graduates enjoy successful careers thanks to their mix of relevant professional abilities, specialised and in-depth knowledge, and critical-thinking skills.


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The curriculum of the two-year Master's in Japanese Studies comprises core courses, two semesters in Japan following courses, and an MA thesis.
The first semester of the programme is taken in Leiden and consists of the core courses 'Introduction to Asian Studies' and 'Thesis and Methods Class'. You will also take Advanced Japanese language courses and an elective course. You are free to follow a variety of academic courses known as Master Classes in Asian Studies and State of the Field seminars. The second semester of your first year and the first semester of your second year are spent in Japan, where you will follow courses at Japanese Universities. During your second semester in Leiden, you will continue to develop your language skills and study your chosen specialist area(s) in preparation for writing your MA thesis. The aim is that you will be able to integrate your language and academic skills to allow you to write your final thesis using primary sources in Japanese.

A detailed outline of the curriculum for the Master's in Japanese Studies is available on the e-Prospectus: Please note that this guide applies to the current academic year.

1e jaar For a detailed overview of the curriculum, please visit the e-prospectus:
Introduction to Asian Studies
5 EC
Thesis & Methods Classes
5 EC
Advanced Reading & Writing in Japanese 1
10 EC
10 EC
Advanced reading & writing in Japanese 2
5 EC
10 EC
Year in Japan A
15 EC
2e jaar For a detailed overview of the curriculum, please visit the e-prospectus:
Year in Japan B
25 EC
Thesis Tutorial 1
5 EC
Year in Japan C
5 EC
Thesis Tutorial 2
5 EC
MA Thesis
15 EC
Advanced Reading & Writing in Japanese 3
5 EC


taal van onderwijs100% en
onderwijsopzet15% zelfstudie
25% theorie
60% praktijk
excursion, group discussion, lecture, literature study, oral presentation, research, research project, research proposal, seminar, working group, self study
One of the central objectives of the MA Japanese Studies is that you master the Japanese language. Japanese Studies also capitalises on the range of academic expertise available at Leiden University. You will develop graduate-level competencies in Japanese History, Philosophy, Religion, Literature, Politics, Sociology, Anthropology and others.
study abroad
You will spend the second semester of the first year and the first semester of the second year in Japan at one of Leiden's partner universities.
honours-/excellence program Leiden Leadership Programme

The Leiden Leadership Programme (LLP) is an honours programme of 15 ECs on top of the regular master's curriculum. The programme consists of training courses, seminars and a practical assignment.

Are you looking for an extra challenge in addition to your Leiden master's programme? Are you adventurous enough to look beyond the borders of your own master's programme? The Leiden Leadership Programme may be just what you are looking for.

The programme gives you the opportunity to develop your leadership skills. You will follow seminars and courses, as well as carrying out a practical assignment for a company or organisation as part of a small, multidisciplinary team. Your lecturers will be leading academics and experienced professionals from the business sector.

Toelating en kosten


1 september 2020

aanmelding deadline : 1 april 2020
wettelijk tarief : € 2083 (€1042 in het eerste jaar)
niet-EU/EER studenten : € 18300


erkende certificaten
Good academic writing skills should be demonstrated by a Writing Sample. You should submit a 1,250 word essay as part of the admission process:

  • in this essay you must demonstrate a clear affinity with and specific knowledge of Asian studies in general and specifically in the field of the specialisation for which you apply,
  • specifically, the essay must clearly answer a research question, provide an argument that demonstrates a satisfactory understanding of the topic of the essay.

Good grades comparable with an average mark of at least 7.0 (Dutch grading system) for the entire bachelor's programme, and a grade for the bachelor's thesis of a 7.0 or higher (Dutch grading system)

Good grades comparable with an average mark of at least 7.0 (Dutch grading system) for the entire bachelor's programme, and a grade for the bachelor's thesis of a 7.0 or higher (Dutch grading system)

Knowledge of the nature and role of as well as the ability to analyse and report on academic inquiry in the humanities or social sciences. You must have fundamental knowledge of pre-modern and modern Japan, knowledge of japanological traditions and understanding of disciplinary-methodological issues. Sufficient command of Japanese (JLTP 2 level, with a maximum of level JLTP 1) is required.

A bachelor's degree from a research university, equivalent to the level of a Dutch academic Bachelor's degree, or demonstrate to meet the requirements for such a degree.
Prior education must include completed components at the bachelor's level (which may include the thesis) equivalent to at least 30 credits on at least three out of these six disciplines: history, art, culture, politics, society or economy of one or more East Asian countries or regions.

Your motivation should be demonstrated by a well-argued and structured motivation letter in which you indicate why you wants to follow the MA programme, and shows clear understanding of the content of the study programme, specifically listing two courses of the current study programme (from the e-Prospectus) and explaining why these appeal to you. The statement should be between 700 and 1,500 words.

studie kosten
bron: Universiteit Leiden
bedrag kostenpost
€ 10000levensonderhoudper jaar
inbegrepen in collegegeld

estimated monthly costs

bron: Nibud
350kamerhuur in Leidenrond het landelijk gemiddelde
172collegegeldop basis van € 2060 per jaar
80studieboeken en -spullen
77uiterlijkkleding, kapper, schoenen
132vrije tijdstappen, uit eten, vakantie
42vervoernaast de OV-kaart

€ 1218totale maandelijkse uitgaven landelijk gemiddelde is € 1181
Hiernaast staat een overzicht van de gemiddelde kosten die een uitwonende student heeft. Niet iedere student heeft met iedere kostenpost te maken. Het totaalgemiddelde is dus niet gelijk aan de optelsom van alle kostenposten.

Bekijk ook de uitgebreide toelichting: wat kost studeren?

Studenten en studentenleven


67 studenten volgen deze opleiding
76% daarvan is vrouw
6 eerstejaars gestart in 2017
67% daarvan is vrouw
27713 studenten aan de Universiteit Leiden
59% daarvan is vrouw
bron: StudieData


Tanuki organiseert feesten en borrels, filmavonden, excursies, lezingen en uitwisselingen met Japanners die in Nederland verblijven. En er is zelfs een eigen voetbalteam: TFC Banzai! Ook onderhoudt Tanuki contacten met het bedrijfsleven – altijd handig voor stages. De Tatanukiki is het lijfblad van de studievereniging en verschijnt zo'n zes keer per jaar, vol verhalen van medestudenten over hun verblijf in het buitenland, recepten en nog veel meer.

Op kamers in Leiden

31058studenten studerend
12630studenten woonachtig   
€ 350gemiddelde kamerprijs
kamer betaalbaarheid
20 m2gemiddelde kameroppervlak
kamer beschikbaarheid
bron: Nationale Studenten Enquête

aan het woord: studenten en docenten

Kevin Everts
Kevin Everts - Student Testimonial Asian Studies Leiden University

“I really got to know the language and the country”

“I've just graduated from the two-year Master's in Japan Studies. Having done the BA in Japan Studies, this was the most logical master's for me. I was still fascinated by Japan; I wanted to speak the language properly and really get to understand the culture...
It was my first time in the country; everything was so different, it was almost overwhelming. If you want to learn a language, the best place to do that is in the country itself; one of the strong points of this master's is that you get the chance to do just that. You need to have a reasonable command of Japanese, anyway, if you want to get to know the country. I also did fieldwork for my thesis while I was there. I'm researching the Japanese otaku culture: otaku is often translated as 'nerd'; it refers to the Japanese people who are mad about comic strips, animation, computer games, action figures and that kind of thing. They are often the butt of jokes, but I came to the conclusion that they are just particular types of consumers who have managed to create their own consumer environment, while at the same time remaining part of everyday society. I took an interesting course on consumerism, given by Professor Cwiertka, which was a good match for my thesis subject.

I have to say that the work pressure, particularly in the first semester, was very high. For many students, the step from BA to MA is tough. Every week there's so much to read and write for the core subjects, and at the same time the language subjects are becoming more intensive. If you have a small, close-knit group of fellow students, you can pull one another through, and once you've got over that threshold, everything starts to improve. It taught me to become more resilient to stress, so I'm much less likely to get panicked by pressure of work these days. I can really recommend this master's to students who have the grit to keep going and who want to make as thorough a study of Japan as possible.

Now that I've graduated, I'm hoping to find a job that has some connection with Japan. My preference would be for something in the business sector; it would be great to find a job in an internationally oriented company that does business with Japan. Importing innovative products from Japan to the Netherlands or Europe would be a good challenge. I'm confident that the skills I learned during my studies make me an attractive candidate for just about any company. There are not many people who have a good command of the Japanese language, and not only that, Japan is the world's third largest economy and has a leading position in the field of technology.”

lees verder ...
Christiaan Raaijmakers
Aya Ezawa


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1/4 Universiteit Leiden
Japanese Studies (120EC)
€ 350 gemiddelde kamerhuur
6 eerstejaars
66% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
2/4 Universiteit Leiden
Korean Studies (120EC)
€ 350 gemiddelde kamerhuur
6 eerstejaars
66% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
3/4 Universiteit Leiden
Asian Studies (120EC)
€ 350 gemiddelde kamerhuur
6 eerstejaars
66% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
4/4 Universiteit Leiden
Chinese Studies (120EC)
€ 350 gemiddelde kamerhuur
6 eerstejaars
66% vrouw
? uur contacttijd/week
disclaimer: bovenstaande cijfers en beoordelingen zijn aangeleverd door de opleidingen zelf. Wij kunnen de juistheid niet garanderen.

Feiten en / studie in cijfers


bron: Nationale Studenten Enquete
algemeen oordeel3.7
De Nationale Studenten Enquete is het grootschalige onderzoek van de overheid onder studenten in Nederland naar de kwaliteit van opleidingen aan hogescholen en universiteiten.
In 2015 hebben meer dan 280.000 studenten hun oordeel gegeven over hun studie en instelling.

Asian Studies: Japanese Studies (120EC) aan de Universiteit Leiden is beoordeeld door 15 respondenten. Gemiddeld waarderen ze de opleiding met 3.7 uit 5.

Na de studie

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Beroepsperspectief / arbeidsmarkt

Leiden University's Humanities graduates do very well in the job market. A master's degree enhances the career prospects of all bachelor's graduates, as does relevant work experience during your studies and choosing your electives strategically.
As a graduate of the MA in Japanese Studies at Leiden University, you are qualified for careers that require a high level of Japanese as well as highly developed analytical and information-handling skills. Our alumni can be found working within Japanese multinationals such as banks, insurance companies, and government bodies. Others have followed paths into consultancy, management, journalism, PR and marketing, tourism, and education.

Some of the occupations of our graduates include:

  • Account Manager at Asahi Intecc, a Japanese company that develops metal wire for medical applications
  • Analytics Assistant at Reed Elsevier, a provider of information services
  • Area Manager Asia at the Netherlands Council for Trade Promotionn
  • Marketing Trainee at Wakibi microcredit, a provider of microcredit
  • Service Management Consultant at a company developing software
  • Junior Project Manager at Concorde Group BV, a translation agency
  • Coordinator, International Relations at Mima City Hall
  • Consular Officer at the Dutch Embassy in Japan
  • Translator and Product Developer at Kobe Bussan, a business supermarket
  • Corporate Banking Assistant at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ


Studielijn Universiteit Leiden
T: +31 (071)5271111
Meer informatie?
Bezoek de website van deze opleiding.

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