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Exploring Higher Education in French-Speaking Belgium



The higher education landscape in French-speaking Belgium is renowned for its diversity, accessibility, and quality. This region boasts outstanding universities and schools of arts, providing educational opportunities ranging from Bachelor’s to PhD levels. The Wallonia-Brussels Federation has made a significant impact on scientific research worldwide, evidenced by several Nobel Prize laureates originating from this region. Notably, four Nobel Prizes were awarded for medicine, three for peace, and one each for literature, chemistry, and physics.


The responsibility for ensuring quality education lies with Wallonie-Bruxelles Campus, an organization operating under the authority of Wallonie-Bruxelles International and the Ministry of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation. This agency facilitates international students’ access to valuable information and guidance, supporting them in their pursuit of education in Belgium. The network of higher education institutions in the country comprises five universities, 19 university colleges, and 16 schools of arts.


Belgium places a strong emphasis on making higher education accessible by subsidizing a significant portion of the associated costs. This commitment results in relatively low registration fees while upholding the quality of education. Although the cost of living may vary by town, it is generally affordable in Belgium.


A unique feature of studying in Belgium is that all foreign students, including those from outside the European Economic Area, are permitted to work while pursuing their education. To be eligible, students must be enrolled at a higher education institution in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation and possess a valid residence permit. However, working more than 20 hours a week during the school term may affect residence permit renewal.


While many Master’s degree programs are available in English, it’s essential to note that the higher education institutions in the Wallonia-Brussels Federation predominantly use French as the language of instruction and daily communication. Choosing to study in this region offers an excellent opportunity for students to enhance their French language skills.


Notable universities in Belgium include Université catholique de Louvain (UCLouvain), Université libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Université de Liège (ULiège), Université de Mons (UMons), and Université de Namur (UNamur), among others. The higher education system in French-speaking Belgium provides a rich and supportive environment for students seeking diverse academic experiences.

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