KU Leuven increasingly eyeing up non-European students


In order to stand up and be counted in the international academic world, you have to offer some fully English language courses. The University of Leuven (KU Leuven) has clearly understood this and intends to devote more effort to this in the future.

Exactly 398 students from the US started at KU Leuven in the 2018-19 academic year, a small rise compared to five years earlier. Of the non-European students, only the Chinese and the Indians have greater representation. A range of factors can explain this rising popularity. For example, they are paying a good deal less than they would in their own country for high-quality courses at a renowned university.

But there is still work to be done on that score. Currently, an edict from the Flemish authorities limits the number of bachelor courses offered fully in English to a maximum of 6%. At KU Leuven, this amounts to four in all: Business Management, Engineering Technology, Philosophy and Theology, compared to no less than 68 master's courses. Some of the top universities in Europe are doing quite a lot better on that front. KU Leuven is sounding out the relevant authorities on the issue of a broader offering of fully English language courses. This will be an essential requirement to get into the spotlight as an international university.