A top-ranked university

Ever since the university’s foundation in 1575, we have applied our efforts to developing, disseminating and applying scientific knowledge. Leiden University emphasises the need to continually strengthen our fundamental research and to focus on innovation, valorisation and academic entrepreneurship.

Recognised around the world

As a result of these research efforts, in addition to the quality of our teaching, Leiden University has earned its reputation as a leading university in Europe and worldwide. For many years, we’ve been among the leaders in Dutch university rankings and we currently feature among the top 100 universities worldwide in prominent international rankings. A degree from Leiden University is recognised around the world and can open the door to the international career you may aspire.

Overall ranking Leiden University


Most innovative university in Europe according to Reuters (first in the NL)


The Times Higher Education World University Ranking (THE)

101th - 150th

Shanghai Ranking

150 y2024 WUR badge contouren


QS World University

Even as a child I was fascinated by the universe. I often talked about it with my grandmother, and my mother kept me up to date with the latest news in the field. I can remember her telling me all about the first spacecraft that was sent to Pluto. Almost a decade later, I was watching live as the first images were sent back from the New Horizons. I got my first telescope for my 17th birthday; that was a real hit! 

In Curacao, where I was born, there are no degree programmes in astronomy. As luck would have it, my secondary school organised a preparatory study trip to the Netherlands. Once I was back in Curacao, I searched the internet for further information about degree courses in astronomy. Leiden Observatory is a top institute, and that’s what convinced me.

With one hundred percent focus and determination, I began the course I had always dreamt of. It wasn’t easy at first, and not being in a familiar environment took some getting used to. What’s more, I forgot to make time for my hobbies. Fortunately, I’ve picked up one of my hobbies again, writing. At the moment I’m writing for a youth magazine where I try to explain the concept of astronomy as simply as possible. It’s wonderful to be able to combine my passion for writing with my degree course!

Nashanty Brunken (23)