French-speaking Belgian universities: theoretical and scientific education

Spread throughout the Wallonia-Brussels Federation territory, the French-speaking universities of Belgium offer all their students quality education. The options are divided up into three main areas of knowledge:

  • science and technology;
  • human sciences;
  • health sciences.

Research at the heart of the French-speaking Belgian university education

In addition to in-depth knowledge of the chosen subject, the Wallonia-Brussels universities offer a solid general education, encouraging their students to study within a scientific approach. This is why the focus is firmly on research, both basic and applied. And it is this philosophy that makes the universities of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation institutions that are famous for the excellence of their research programmes and have earned them a remarkable reputation both in our country and beyond. As indeed is proven by the numerous Nobel prize winners who have come out of our institutions.

Enseignement supérieur

The French-speaking Belgian universities famous for their high quality teaching and their cutting-edge research!

Did you know? According to the QS World University Rankings and U-Multirank, the French-speaking universities of Belgium stand out for the quality of their teaching and the levels of excellence achieved through their research. Indeed, for the QS World University Rankings 2021, UCLouvain, ULB, ULiège and UMons are among the best Belgian-French speaking universities.

UCLouvain clarifies that it is thanks to its research that it has been able to obtain this exceptional result: “It is the university that has made the most progress and easily overtaken the world average (98th out of the 1,620 institutions analysed). This is acknowledgement of the work carried out and above all the discoveries made by the researchers of UCLouvain”.

Yvon Englert, former rector of ULB, testifies: "Belgian universities are very good quality universities, which rank very high in a ranking of the 1000 best universities in the world, whereas on our planet there must be 10,000 to 20,000 universities".


As for ULiège, it distinguishes itself by the international recognition of its training courses, which benefit from various renowned labels, a guarantee of their excellence and the multiple openings they offer to the professional world. "The testimonies of our graduates working in Belgium and abroad converge on this observation: the assets of their training at ULiège."

Finally, with regard to UMons, the criteria that assured the best results are research, regional commitment and the international dimension of the institution. It should also be noted that in January 2021, UMons was ranked in the Top 2% Scientists, the world ranking of the world's leading academic researchers and scientists in their field, published by Stanford University researchers. There are no less than 15 UMONS researchers who are among the top 2% of scientists in the world. 

How are university studies organised in French-speaking Belgium?

The French-speaking universities of Belgium offer long-term education programmes made up of two cycles:

  • a 1st cycle that takes the students up to a Bachelor’s degree level, i.e. its main aim is to prepare for the Master’s degree that follows (180 ECTS credits);
  • a 2nd cycle, leading to a Master’s degree (120 ECTS credits).

Some French-speaking Belgian universities also offer one-year "advanced” Master’s courses (60 ECTS credits): specific second cycle studies, complementing a prior Master's degree course.

3rd cycle studies are for PhDs and work preparing a PhD thesis.

Fancy studying in French-speaking Belgium? Find the best university for you!

The 5 French-speaking universities of Belgium are all recognised and subsidised by the Wallonia-Brussels Federation: 

Find out all about the other higher education institutions French-speaking Belgium has to offer: