The Liberal Arts and Sciences programme at University College Groningen educates ambitious and multi-talented students to develop creative and innovative solutions for the challenges of society.

The Liberal Arts and Sciences programme at UCG enables you to study a wide variety of academic disciplines and to build your own programme to fit your individual skills, interests and ambitions. Whether you're interested in physics or economics, psychology or philosophy, you can study a broad range of subjects whilst developing specialist knowledge in your major discipline. In the first year you will eplore the LAS disciplinary fields (Sciences, Social Sciences and Humanities) before choosing one of those fields as a major for your second and third year. You can also choose a free major. The programme focuses on interdisciplinary knowledge, and teaches you to apply creative approaches to complex problems in a series of integrative projects that address real-world societal challenges. You'll also study Research and Methodology courses (including logic, math and philosophy of science) and have the option for an international experience (e.g. study abroad) in your third year. The programme prepares you for Masters degrees and careers in many different fields including Business, the Arts, Scientific research, Governmental Organizations, NGO's, and more.

Study Programme

First year

The emphasis is on orientation and ideas, seeing and identifying problems and imagining solutions, and students learn to provide informed suggestions on how to contribute to the challenges of modern society. Continuous elements are the Skills & Projects line and the research and methodology courses, both of which help you to reflect on and integrate what you learn in the disciplinary subjects.

Courses in the first year of LAS: Core (30 credits)

  • Challenges of Modern Society
  • Research and Methodology
  • 21st century skills and group projects

Your choice (30 credits)

  • Sciences

Within the field of Sciences, courses include:

  • Introduction to Health & Disease
  • Introduction to Cell Biology
  • Kaleidoscope of Physics
  • Science Data /Data Science
  • Basic Organic Chemistry: Molecules & Reactivity
  • Pharmaceutical Roadmap
  • Human Anatomy & Histology
  • Linear Algebra
  • Mechanics and Relativity I
  • Systems View on Life
  • Astronomy for Poets
  • Social Sciences

Within the field of Social Sciences, courses include:

  • International Micro-Economics
  • Macro-Economics
  • Political Philosophy
  • Biopsychology: The Inner Person
  • The Social Environment
  • Law as Order
  • Law in an expanding world
  • Policy Making in the EU
  • Arts/Humanities

Within the field of Arts/Humanities, courses include

  • Introduction to Culture
  • From Paint to Pixel
  • Culture: Building Blocks
  • Philosophy 101
  • History: Beautiful Bodies
  • Media Theory & Practice
  • Technologies in Society
  • Linguistics
  • How Art Makes the World
  • Artivism
  • Understanding Bias

Second year

In the second year of the programme you will focus on one of the majors. Within these majors, there are several major specialisations available, like for example Health and Life Sciences, Physics of Energy (both within the Sciences major), Making Meaning (Humanities), or one of the major specialisations of the Social Sciences (Brain, Behaviour and Culture or Philosophy, Politics and Economics or Philosophy, Politics and International Business, or Philosophy, Politics and International Law.

In addition, you will continue to participate in interdisciplinary projects with students from other major specialisations. Courses in the second year:

  • Major courses (30 ECTS)
  • An Integrative Project (15 ECTS)
  • Research and Methodology: Disciplinary research and methodology (15 ECTS)

Third year

The third year focuses on working on advanced competences and skills to solve complex societal problems. Individualised specialisation and preparation for post-bachelor learning and development are offered through additional major and minor courses. In addition, students work individually on their Bachelor's thesis project.

Courses in the third year:

  • Minor courses (Minor: 30 ECTS) or Study abroad (30 ECTS)
  • Major Courses (15 ECTS)
  • Capstone Project or Thesis (Major 15 ECTS)

Programme options

Health and Life Sciences (specialization)

The Health and Life Sciences major orientation provides a comprehensive understanding of mechanisms underlying the normal development and function of humans, and of mechanisms causing disease.

It includes mandatory courses on the living cell and the human body, discipline-oriented research methods, and electives in topical fields grouped around general courses, system- and disease-oriented courses and interdisciplinary electives, all related to the research theme on Healthy Ageing.

Philosophy, Politics and Economics (specialization)

This programme offers a broad orientation on social phenomena, building on core ingredients of philosophy, political science and economics.

In the PPE major, students may choose to explore topics related to institutional design in general and sustainability in particular. Typical topics are history of philosophy, philosophy of science, ethics, logic, political science and international relations, microeconomics, markets and regulation and (international) macroeconomic theory and policy.

Brain, Behaviour and Culture (specialization)

The major orientation Brain, Behaviour and Culture offers a programme in psychology, cognitive sciences and culture studies, as well as closely related disciplines.

The major orientation starts with a choice between the courses 'Cognitive Psychology and Neuroscience' and 'Social Environment and Behaviour'. A core topic is the History and Philosophy of the Mind and Society. Students may choose among a wide range of themes within Psychology and related disciplinary fields such as Consumer and Economic Psychology, Social Influence, Organisational Change, Social Cognition, Neuropsychology, Cognition and Attention, Gerontology and Perception. The topics can be explored further in relation to the three research themes.

Philosophy, Politics and International Law (specialization)

Physics of Energy (specialization)

  • This major orientation covers physics with an emphasis on energy and sustainability.

The programme includes a broad spectrum of physics courses in topical fields related to e.g. magnetism, electricity, mechanics and relativity, thermodynamics and the structure of matter. Electives are offered in the fields of energy and sustainability.

Astronomy (specialization)

Theory and Philosophy (specialization)

Culture studies (specialization)

Politics, Philosophy and International Business (specialization)

  • Combine International Business courses with Philosophy courses to obtain a broad outlook on complex, international challenges.

A wide variety of societal problems require a political solution, have an important business component and present ethical dilemmas. The major specialisation International Business, Philosophy and Politics provides for an interdisciplinary approach to developing international corporate strategies.

  • Become a well-rounded individual who can address today's societal problems from different perspectives
  • Prepare for a career in international business by understanding the implications of matters such as ethical dilemmas and governance on international corporate strategies
  • Follow a specialisation that prepares you for Master programmes in International Business Management, International Economics and Business, Philosophy, Philosophy of the Social Sciences, International Organizations, etc.

Study abroad?

Study abroad is optional, but we highly recommend our students to do so.

About the University College

University College Groningen (U.C.G.) is based in the center of Groningen, a university city with over 50,000 students (roughly a quarter of the population!). As a U.C.G. student, you’ll be part of our community meaning you’ll live in housing together with your fellow U.C.G. students for the first year of your study.

Admission Requirements

English proficiency

Part of the entry requirements is your English proficiency. If you are not a native English speaker or hold a Dutch VWO diploma, you will need to provide proof of your English language proficiency. The following test scores are accepted:

  • IELTS overall band: 6.5
  • IELTS listening: 6
  • IELTS reading: 6
  • IELTS writing: 6
  • IELTS speaking: 6
  • TOEFL paper-based: 580
  • TOEFL computer based: 237
  • TOEFL internet based: 92

Previous education:

Your previous education will need to be equivalent to a Dutch VWO diploma with a score of 7/10. Accepted diplomas include:

  • UK - 3 A Levels at Grade B;
  • Germany - Abitur at Grade 2.0 or higher;
  • USA - 4 Advanced Placement Tests at Grade 4.0 or higher;
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma - 32 points or higher.

If you are wondering if your education meets the entry requirements, please contact us or look on our website.

Proficiency in maths:

In addition to being proficient in English, another minimum requirement for studying at U.C.G. is proficiency in Mathematics. We measure proficiency in Mathematics by having passed maths as a graduating course in your secondary education.

Written request and assessment interview:

In addition, we ask that potential students write a motivation letter or make a motivation video where they tell us what their motivations are to study Liberal Arts and Sciences and what their personal aspirations during their studies are.

Upon receiving your full application and motivation to study at U.C.G., you will be informed within 2 weeks whether you have been offered a place at University College Groningen. Because you will need to make an informed decision whether U.C.G. is your next big step, we would like to invite you to one of our monthly Offer Holder Days (dates t.b.c.). This day is your chance to visit the academic and residential campus of U.C.G., talk to one of the members of the U.C.G. Board of Admissions, meet our Student Association Cearus and experience Groningen by yourself with other U.C.G. Class of 2019 Offer Holders. (Alternative arrangements can be made for international candidates, but they are more than welcome to attend a U.C.G. Offer Holder Day).

Registration procedure

1 - Apply via Studielink and OAS (Online Application System) You need to submit your personal information, details of your prior education, and your video/letter of motivation.

2 - If you are made an offer you will be invited to visit U.C.G. at an Offer Holder Day (dates TBC) where you can talk with a member of the Board of Admission, meet our study association Caerus and experience Groningen. Check for further details

Tuition fees and application deadlines

EU tuition fees: € 2,083 per year

Non-EU tuition fees: € 12,350 per year

Application deadline: May 1st, 2019 (course starts August 1, 2019)

Program taught in:
  • English

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Last updated October 16, 2018
This course is Campus based
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2,083 EUR
2083 Euros EU - 12,350 Euros Non-EU
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