Study in Belgium
Known as the heart of Europe, Belgium is a hub of international cooperation and networking, offering an enriching educational experience. According to the European Union’s Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions, Belgium is one of the countries with the highest quality of life in the European Union.
The country consists of three major regions, organized under a federal government: the French side (Wallonia-Brussels), the Dutch side (Flemish community) and the German community. This multicultural environment offers a lesson in tolerance, openness and determination.
Student information about cities in Belgium
Find the best information about what to expect when studying in top cities in Belgium. Read about degree course offers, career opportunities, student life, living costs, and more.
- Study in Antwerp
- Study in Brussels
- Study in Gent
- Study in Leuven
Belgium is situated at the crossroads of Europe, close to major capitals such as Paris, Amsterdam, London or Berlin. The country has three official languages: Dutch, French and German. English is also widely spoken, especially in Brussels.
As the centre of European politics and global business, Brussels is an ideal location to get an international internship or enrol in a business study programme. Universities in Brussels offer internationally recognized degree programmes centred on European studies in a variety of subjects. International guest speakers, focused on international cooperation, teach many of these courses.
20% of students (40% at doctorate level) enrolled in universities in Wallonia-Brussels are foreign students.
Belgium offers an excellent healthcare system that supports students. The Belgian authorities cover a high percentage of the cost of higher education.
Universities provide options that enable students to switch between fields of study or include training courses in their study programmes. This provides more flexibility and control over future career paths.
General application requirements
Depending on the location of the university, candidates must hold a high-school certificate that is recognised as equivalent in Wallonia-Brussels or Flanders in order to be admitted to bachelor studies. Students who hold a foreign high-school certificate must submit an application to obtain a recognition of equivalence.
Find more information regarding studies in Wallonia-Brussels
Courses in Medicine and Dentistry, Engineering and Management Sciences usually require a written exam in addition to the high-school diploma. Candidates for studies in Arts usually have to take a practical skills exam.
Find more information regarding studies in Flanders.
To be admitted to a Master’s degree programme, foreign student must generally hold an undergraduate degree in the same field. In some cases, the Admissions Panel of the institution may take into consideration previous professional experience.
Admission to doctorate studies is reserved for students who hold a graduate degree or equivalent.
Make sure to ask for admission information at the university you plan to attend. Some universities may include specific additional enrolment requirements.
Read the article about how to apply for a degree in Belgium.
According to the ranking of the Swiss Economic Institute, Belgium is the most globalised country in the world. The Programme for International Student Assessment ranks Belgium's education as the 19th best in the world.
As part of the Bologna Process, the Accreditation Organisation of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO) certifies study programmes in the Flemish region.
Languages of instruction
The three national languages are Dutch, French, and German. In general, the language of instruction at Belgian universities is dependent on the language of the local community where the institution is located.
Especially higher education institutions in the region of Brussels, offer a wide range of English-taught programmes or bilingual programmes. There are some Master’s and Advanced Master’s degree courses taught entirely in English. If you want to study abroad in Belgium, you can find English-taught programmes in law, economics, social and political sciences, management, arts, applied science, health science and more. Research-based programmes are also usually offered in English. Most universities offer course materials in the language of your choice, providing great opportunities to study abroad in Belgium,.
The majority of courses in Belgium are taught in French. It is usually necessary to pass a French language proficiency examination to enrol in a French-taught study programme. During the school holidays or throughout the academic year, higher education institutions organise French language courses targeting students coming from abroad. The majority of universities have a language centre, which organise courses in English or French as a foreign language.
English language preparation courses for studying in Belgium
Develop your academic English language skills in order to meet the English language requirements at universities in Belgium offering degree studies for international students. Choose an English language school anywhere in the world and pick your preferred English exam preparation course from diverse language course options.
Nationals of the Member States of the European Union (EU) and of the European Economic Area do not need a visa to reside and study in Wallonia-Brussels.
Non-EEA citizens need a visa or an authorisation to enter Belgium. Non-EEA students should apply for an Authorisation for Provisional Stay or Visa Type D, allowing them to stay in Belgium for a period longer than three months. For non-EEA students, the Authorisation for Provisional Stay is also commonly known as student visa. As a rule, you must apply for this visa at the Belgian Consulate or Embassy in your country.
When visiting the embassy or consulate you will need the following documents:
- Valid passport (with at least one year’s validity remaining).
- Permission to enrol at the higher education institution.
- Proof you can support yourself.
- Certificate of good conduct.
- Medical certificate.
- Recent passport pictures, signed on the back.
- Financial support declaration.
Find more details regarding the student visa for Belgium.