The question you should really be asking is, why shouldn’t you be studying in Belgium? Aside from its gorgeous historic monuments, castles, cobblestone architecture, beautiful art work, delectable food (including chocolate) and festivals, there are so many more draws to this European country.
Not only does Belgium have three native languages, but the people there are also quite fluent in English (making the transition easy for many people who speak English as a first or second language). Belgians are also known to be very friendly – which is always a huge plus when you are just arriving somewhere new! Fun facts set aside, Belgium is widely known as the heart of Europe and a hub for international networking. It is located in one of the most densely populated areas in the world. International students in Belgium will certainly be enriched with a well-rounded and cultured educational experience.
Cost of living and study in Belgium
The cost of living in Belgium is estimated at about 850 euro per month which covers the cost of food, accommodation, health care, books and leisure. Note that this figure is just an estimate and may either be higher or lower depending on the student’s lifestyle.
Here’s a breakdown of the estimation:
|Courses, books||35 €|
|Healthcare (insurance, medical costs)||20 €|
|Public transport||40 €|
|Miscellaneous (telephone, leisure …)||55 €|
|Or a total of around||850 €/ month|
Here are also a few examples of prices in Belgium:
|A newspaper (daily)||1.20 €|
|10 bus/tram/underground tickets||12.50 €|
|A sandwich||2.50 to 3.80 €|
|One entrance ticket to the Belgian Comic Strip Centre||6 €|
|A cinema ticket||8 €|
|A can of soft drink||1 €|
|A loaf of bread (800 gr)||2 €|
Tuition fees/cost of study
If you wish to study in a university in Wallonia-Brussels:
The basic tuition fees for one year of main studies for the academic year 2012-2013 amount to 835 euros.
In addition to the basic tuition fees, students from outside the European Union are required to pay additional fees. For the academic year 2012 – 2013, the amount of these fees varies between 1,923 euros and 3,845 euros.
The exact amount is stipulated to the student in the letter authorising him to enrol with the institution of his choice.
If you wish to study in a university college or art academy in Wallonia-Brussels:
The tuition fees vary according to the type of education (short or long study program) and the chosen year of study:
- for long study programs (undergraduate and graduate: Bachelor’s and Master’s): 455 euros for the final year and 351 euros for the other years of study;
- for the short study programs (undergraduate only: Bachelor’s): 228 euros for the final year or for a year of specialisation and 175 euros for the other years of study.
Additional fees may be applicable.
The admission requirements depend on the chosen academic level and field of study.
To be admitted to an undergraduate degree program (a Bachelor’s degree), you must hold a secondary school leaving certificate that is recognised as equivalent to the certificate of higher secondary education issued in Wallonia-Brussels. Students who hold a foreign certificate of secondary education must therefore submit an application to obtain a recognition of the equivalence of their secondary school leaving certificate in order to be able to gain access to the Bachelor’s degree study programs.
To be admitted to a graduate degree program (Master’s degree), the foreign student must generally hold an undergraduate degree (Bachelor’s degree, obtained generally after 3 years of study) in the same field. A personal or professional experience validated by the Admissions Panel of the institution according to a specific evaluation procedure can also be accepted to gain access to a graduate degree.
Holders of a certificate of higher education obtained abroad who wish to undertake a graduate degree in Wallonia-Brussels generally do not need to obtain a recognition of equivalence of their diploma from the Ministry of Federation Wallonia-Brussels.
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.
On the other hand, if you are a national of a non-Member State of the European Union, you may need a visa to gain entrance to Belgian territory.
You must contact the Belgian embassy or consulate in your country of origin in order to find out whether a visa is necessary.
List of top universities in Belgium
- Boston University, Brussels
- Gent University
- Brexgata University Academy
- University of Liege
- Thierry Graduate School of Leadership
- The International Management Institute
- University of Antwerp