Universities in Belgium
Universities in Belgium are all from good quality (we know as we met when we were both working at the European University Association in Brussels). Every main city has at least one. Recently a lot of universities merged under pressure of the government. You will now find campuses from different universalities in different cities.
In a university you can get a bachelor degree followed by a master. It is still common practice in Belgium to go for your master. Originally, universities gave `licenciat` degrees, and colleges would give graduate degrees. With Bologna this all changed. You can now also get a master in some colleges.
For the international reader from the UK and the US and maybe other countries: college in Belgium is higher education after secondary school (high school) and you are only eligible to follow this with a full degree. In practice, this means you have had 6 years of primary school and 6 years of secondary school.
The degree is basically the only entrance requirement. Entrance exams are usually not required (there are exceptions as medical school etc…) but you will also not be allowed to follow classes without this degree. Even when you are brilliant and you’d pass the entrance exam, they would not allow you!
There aren’t bad universities in Belgium. Whatever you choose is good. Good practice is to go for a known professor and that differs every now and then for every study direction.
Following some international lists the University of Leuven is the most prestigious followed by the university of Ghent. Those are indeed the two most famous universities in the country, but they wouldn’t dare to say they are better than the rest. Education in Belgium is strictly organized and the ministry of education submits quality control constantly.
Below a list of the universities in the country. The first name in bold is the international name of the university. The second name is the local name in the local language.
Catholic University of Leuven (K.U.Leuven)
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven
Catholic University of Louvain (UCL)
Université Catholique de Louvain
Facultés Universitaires Saint-Louis (FUSL)
Ghent University (UGent)
Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB)
University of Antwerp (UA)
University of Liège (ULg)
Université de Liège
University of Mons (UMONS)
Université de Mons
University of Namur (FUNDP)
Facultés Universitaires Notre-Dame de la Paix à Namur
Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)