Date of publication: 2016
Fees - first cycle (euro): min 0 - max 836
Fees - second cycle (euro): min 0 - max 836
Fees - note: Around 70 % of students pay a maximum fee
Grants - note: Approximately 20% of students receive a grant
Need-based grant (euro): min 394 - max 4821
Merit-based grant (euro): -
National student fee Fee limits are set by the government of the French Community of Belgium. Fee levels depend on the student's financial situation. For the academic year 2015/16, the maximum fee is EUR 836, the intermediate fee is EUR 374 (for students not receiving a grant but considered as lower income) and there are no fees for those students receiving a grant.
There are some differences in fees between universities and non-university higher education institutions. Until 2017 nonuniversity higher education institutions can charge complementary registration and administrative fees in addition to registration fees, but the total amount cannot exceed EUR 836/year. Those complementary registration and administrative fees range from EUR 0 (for grant holders) to EUR 179 depending on the type of programme and the financial situation of students; they apply to all students. These fees will continuously decrease until 2017 when they will cease to exist.
Students from outside the EU have to pay additional specific fees. For programmes organised by university colleges and arts colleges, the additional specific fees (droits d’inscription spécifiques) are fixed by law: EUR 992 for professionaloriented programmes and EUR 1 487 for academic-oriented programmes in the 1st cycle; EUR 1 984 for programmes of 2nd cycle. For programmes organised by universities, the law stipulates that the maximum amount should not exceed 5 times the registration fees. In practice, universities (through the Interuniversity Council) adopted harmonised amounts. Those amounts differ depending on the country of origin of the students (2). The complementary registration and administrative fees mentioned in the previous bullet remain applicable to non-EU students.
(2) Exact amounts are available here: http://www.ulb.ac.be/enseignements/inscriptions/frais-etudes.html
Student grants Public grants in academic year 2015/16 are available for low income students. However, students over 35 years of age registered in the first year of higher education do not receive any public grant. Students must apply for this financial benefit each year. The amount granted ranges from EUR 394 to 4 821 per year depending on household income.
LoansLoans are available for families with at least three dependent children. Very few (less than 0.01 %) take out a loan (2014/15).
Tax benefit for student's parents Heads of family receive tax benefits which depend on the number of dependent children and other relatives (including students enrolled at higher education institutions having no income). The tax-free minimum earnings threshold is increased by EUR 1 500 for one, 3 870 for two, 8 670 for three, 14 020 for four and + 5 350 for each subsequent child.
Family allowances Family allowances from EUR 90.28/month depend on the number of children. They are in principle received by the mother of the child while the student is in education or training, until the age of 25. The student should have no professional activity other than a student job and work no more than 50 days during the year. However when the student is not living with or supported by her/his mother, family allowances are paid to the parent, relative or legal guardian who actually supports the child. Responsibility for family allowances was transferred from the federal level to the regional level (to the Flemish Community, the German- speaking Community, the Walloon Region and Common Community Commission for the Brussels-Capital Region) in 2014.