Studying abroad

Would you like to say goodbye to Hasselt University’s auditoria for a while and live an experience abroad? Do you want to brush up on your language skills and discover a different culture? At Hasselt University you can! We encourage students to spend some time abroad. During an international study period or internship, you acquire an open worldview and develop a whole lot of ‘soft skills’ (independence, self-confidence, language skills, communication and social skills, …). In short, an experience abroad is an important asset on the globalised labour market.

During your studies

Hasselt University offers the opportunity to go abroad during your studies and follow courses at a partner institution.

General principles:

  • You study at a partner university that has a cooperation agreement with Hasselt University or your faculty.
  • Your internship abroad is integrated in your study programme (so not an extension of your study duration).
  • You will receive academic recognition for your study abroad. It will be mentioned on your diploma. You put together a study programme that you will follow abroad. This has to be approved by your faculty prior to departure.
  • Each faculty determines at which level (bachelor’s, master’s, PhD) and during which period a stay abroad is possible. Find out about the requirements with the internationalisation coordinator of your faculty.
  • As you have a diploma contract at Hasselt University, you won’t pay any tuition fees at the host institution
  • You will receive organisational and administrative support from Hasselt University and from the host institution

Step 1 - Candidacy

You can apply for a study abroad via your Student File (exchange section), where you can also find the destinations available to your study programme. Candidatures open in December. The submission deadline is 20 February at the latest. Every course has their own specific requirements for going abroad. If interested, contact the  internationalisation coordinator of your faculty for more information. You can also consult the manuals per course on this webpage.

Have you contacted the internationalisation coordinator and have you applied for an internship? Then proceed to step 2, applying for a scholarship.

Step 2 - Apply for a scholarship

For your international study period, Hasselt University provides different scholarships, both within and outside of Europe. You can apply for a scholarship at the International Office every year to finance your study exchange abroad. Apply for a stay within Europe, outside of Europe (including the UK and Switzerland), or both. There are strict deadlines for these applications:

  • 10 March for a scholarship application outside of Europe
  • 30 April for a scholarship application within Europe

Based on the quality of your scholarship application and your selection interview at the faculty, you will be awarded a definitive grant or not. There are several scholarships available. The International Office will inform you by e-mail about the grant that will be awarded to you. You can find more information about the possible scholarships below.

Erasmus+

Erasmus is part of the Erasmus+ programme of the European Commission. One of the main objectives of Erasmus is stimulating the mobility of students and lecturers in higher education between participating countries.

The European Commission granted the Erasmus Charter for Higher Education to both Hasselt University and tUL for the complete Erasmus+ programme period of 2021-2027. The Charter and the Erasmus Policy Statement can be consulted below:

Erasmus Charter for Higher Education UHasselt and Erasmus Policy Statement UHasselt
Erasmus Charter for Higher Education tUL and Erasmus Policy Statement tUL

All faculties of Hasselt University offer their students the possibility to go on an Erasmus exchange to study and/or do an internship abroad. This involves staying for a minimum of three months up to a maximum of one complete academic year in one of the participating countries (28 EU member states + Norway, Liechtenstein, Iceland, Turkey, and North-Macedonia). For more information about the possibilities within your study programme, please contact the internationalisation coordinator of your faculty.

The internationalisation coordinator of your faculty is—in consultation with your study programme—in charge of the selection of candidates and ranking the selected candidates. This ranking determines the order in which the Erasmus scholarships are awarded.

More general information about Erasmus+ and Erasmus is available on the website of the European Commission. Still have questions? Contact dios@uhasselt.be.

PCP

The goal of the Priority Country Programme is promoting student exchanges (bachelor/master) between Flanders and the following priority countries: Brazil, Chile, Japan, Morocco, Mexico, Russia, Turkey, the United States of America, and South Africa. Scholarships are provided for mobilities (study period and/or internship and/or research related to a bachelor’s or master’s thesis) from one month up to one year.

For more information:

Generieke beurs

The Flemish government awards a 'generieke beurs' for mobilities to countries outside of Europe to students studying at bachelor’s, master’s, or doctoral level. The mobility has to last at least one month (minimum of 5 ECTS credits) and at most 12 months. The scholarship amounts to 650 euros per month and there is an additional allowance for travel costs, as well as an additional amount (200 euros) for students from disadvantaged groups.

For more information, you can contact the International Office at dios@uhasselt.be

Travel grant

Hasselt University awards grants of 1.000 euros for study periods abroad that last at least 4 weeks. This study period should be part of a recognised course. For this experience you need the support and guidance of a Hasselt University promotor. Moreover, your study period should be linked to credits. It is therefore important to contact your faculty’s internationalisation coordinator if you are interested.

Duration and travel period?

You should stay at least 4 consecutive weeks at your internship location. There is no maximum length of stay. Important is that you return on 1 December of the year you request the scholarship, at the latest.

More info:

International Office: Niels Lambrichts

Have you been selected for an internship abroad and have you submitted your scholarship application? Congratulations! Then on to step 3, the preparation of your exchange.

Step 3 - Preparation

Before you start packing your suitcase, it is important to put the necessary administration in order. Follow the checklist below step by step before you leave.

Registration @ host institution

Hasselt University signs up all students at the host institution. This means that your host institution is made aware of your coming (=’nomination’). Once signed up, you will receive an email with all the information you need to register at your host institution (‘admission’ or ‘registration’). You will not pay any tuition fees at your host institution. Do also take a look at your host institution’s website and respect their procedures and deadlines.

Academic preparation

Learning agreement

When you study abroad, you are replacing a few of your Hasselt University courses with courses at the host institution. Therefore, it is necessary to draw up a study programme abroad (learning agreement). This document should be drawn up with your faculty coordinator and uploaded via your exchange file (student file). The learning agreement should be signed at least one month before departure (by yourself, your faculty coordinator, and the host institution).

Changes to the learning agreement

If changes to your learning agreement are necessary after your arrival at the host institution, contact your faculty coordinator at Hasselt University as soon as possible and submit a change request in your exchange file. One month after the start of your study period abroad at the latest, your modified learning agreement should be formally approved and signed (by yourself, your faculty coordinator, and the host institution). Do note: After this, no changes to the learning agreement are allowed (unless in exceptional cases of force majeure).

Transcript of record

At the end of your stay abroad, after completing your courses, you will receive your study results and a transcript of records from the host institution. The results you receive abroad will be converted to Hasselt University’s credit system. These results may differ from your final Hasselt University results. The conversion tables used to get your final results can be found in the faculty manual for outgoing students or you can contact your faculty coordinator for more information.

Scholarship administration

For your stay abroad, you will have been awarded a scholarship. To actually receive the scholarship, you have to finalise the necessary paperwork. This administration depends on the type of scholarship you receive. The International Office will inform you of this by email. Make sure you follow all procedures and keep to all deadlines, so you do not miss out on your scholarship.

Language preparation

When you go abroad, it is definitely useful if you can speak the language of the host country a little bit. The “Provinciaal Centrum Volwassenonderwijs Hasselt” (PCVO) has an extensive offer of language courses. Consult their website for their offer on modern languages.

If you are going to study at a host institution with an Erasmus scholarship, you are required to take a language test before departure. Erasmus+ has set up a tool for this, the Online Linguistic Support tool. Students will be invited by email to do the test.

In host countries, there are also often opportunities to take language courses. If you have to pay for this language course and it does not count towards credits, you can ask for a (partial) refund. To receive the refund, you have to upload the proof of payment or a certificate to your student file. This document should mention your name, the type of course, the duration and the dates of the course, the name and address of the organising institution, as well as the price.

Insurance

What are you insured for?

  • Hasselt University’s accident insurance continues to cover you during your stay abroad. This insurance covers physical damage that occurs DURING your study activities (e.g. falling down the stairs in your host institution, suffering an injury during lab activities, …). Every insured accident should be reported immediately. In this case, contact your faculty’s internationalisation coordinator as soon as possible.
  • Liability insurance: This insurance covers you if you cause damage to third parties by mistake, during activities related to your study (e.g. a fellow student sustains a small wound as a result of a mistake).

Which insurance do you take out yourself?

If you cause an accident, you can mostly fall back on your family insurance. Be sure to check with your insurance broker before departure.

  • Travel assistance insurance: Be sure to take out your own travel assistance insurance for additional guarantees such as baggage loss, repatriation, …
  • Family insurance: Make sure your own family insurance is up to date. You need it if you cause damage to third parties outside of your internship or study activities. Be sure to check whether you are also insured in the country where you will be staying.
  • Hospitalisation insurance: If you have a separate hospitalisation insurance, check what your coverage is like in your country of destination.
  • Health insurance: If there is no convention for medical expenses between your health insurance fund in Belgium and the country of your destination, nothing will be paid (back) by the health insurance fund in case you have medical expenses. This can differ from health fund to health fund. Check what your health fund’s coverage is like in the country of destination.

If you travel within Europe, you can apply for a European Health Insurance Card through your health insurance fund. With this card, you can have (part of) your medical expenses reimbursed by a health insurance fund in the host country, a member state of the European Union, or a country in the European Economic Area.

Accommodation

Do you live in student housing in Hasselt or Diepenbeek and do you want to rent out your room during your absence to another (foreign) student? Then contact the Student Facilities Office, but don’t forget to ask for approval from your landlord first.

Hasselt University does not reserve rooms for your stay abroad. You are responsible for your own accommodation on site. You can contact the international office of your host institution, their Erasmus coordinator, or you can check your host institution’s website. Fellow students from Hasselt University who have spent a study period at your chosen destination in the past could also help you out.

Passport/Visa

Check a few months before your departure whether or not you need a passport and a visa. Make sure your passport is still valid for a sufficient period of time. It is your own responsibility to apply for these documents in time.

Extra scholarship

Study grant from the Flemish Government

Students who are entitled to a study grant from the Flemish Community will receive it on top of their Erasmus scholarship. Make sure you submit your application on time.

Family allowance

When you register at Hasselt University, you receive a certificate to apply for family allowance. This is the only certificate that you must submit to your family allowance fund as an Erasmus student. Do not submit certificates from your host institution to avoid unnecessary problems.

Student with a functional disability

Are you a student with a functional disability? Know that you can also apply for education and examination facilities as an Erasmus student. How? Please contact the care coordinator via faciliteiten@uhasselt.be

Manuals

Have you been selected to go abroad for a study or internship period? On this webpage, you can find all information about the things you should arrange before, during, and after your study period abroad.

At the end of every manual, in the so-called ‘conversion tables’, you can see how the study results you receive at the foreign host institution are converted to your results at Hasselt University.

Step 4 - On site

Every partner organisation has their own procedure. You usually receive the extra information with practical to do’s on arrival before your departure, or on site. These to do’s often include:

  • Registration with your exchange co-ordinator and/or the host university’s International Office.
  • Registration with other central administration services at your host university. Don’t forget to ask for proof of your registration.
  • Registration with the police/municipality or city. In some countries, you need to register with the police or the local government.
  • Definitive study arrangement: pass on the definitive composition of you study activities to your exchange coordinator. They will make sure your examination board is informed.
  • Take exams.

Step 5 – Upon return

Upon return, it is important to report on your stay abroad. Depending on which scholarship you are awarded, you will have to write a report, submit airline tickets, upload or email your certificate of stay, fill out a survey, … You will have received this information before departure from the International Office. After finalising this paperwork, you will receive the remainder of the scholarship amount.

Your study programme/faculty may also ask for additional reporting.

After your studies

You can continue studying abroad after you finish studying at Hasselt University. The Flemish Government and the Rotary Foundation among others have scholarships on offer. More information can be found on the Students on the Move and Rotary websites. Would you like to continue studying abroad at a top institution after your master’s, while also putting Flanders on the world map? Then maybe the Fayat scholarship is worth looking into.