If you’re looking to study in Luxembourg, here is a guide to higher education, including information on the few university options available.
Luxembourg has a somewhat limited number of universities on offer when studying abroad or as an expat. Higher education in Luxembourg comes down to the University of Luxembourg (a public university) and the Sacred Heart University (a private university). Both universities in Luxembourg rank as some of the best in western Europe, albeit at a cost; they’re worth considering for a bachelor’s or master’s degree.
Applying for a university in Luxembourg
Foreign students applying to a university in Luxembourg must have a secondary school certificate the Ministère de l’Education nationale considers valid. Bachelor courses in Luxembourg are available in French, German, English, and Luxembourgish, depending on the field of study. Some courses are only available in one particular language, however; research the programs that pique your interest. Foreign language test scores may be necessary when wishing to study in a language that is not your native tongue. This is especially the case for those who did not attend primary or secondary school in Luxembourg.
University of Luxembourg
When studying in Luxembourg, the public university is the University of Luxembourg. It was set up in 2003. The school ranks highly for its’ international outlook; as a result, the University of Luxembourg consistently ranks in the world’s top universities. The university is research-oriented in its academia.
The University of Luxembourg has three campuses:
- Limpertsberg: offers the Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance as well as the central administration units of the University
- Walferdange: offers the Faculty of Language and Literature
- Esch-Belval: offers the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Arts and Education Sciences and the Faculty of Sciences, Technology, and Communication
Each faculty offers bachelor, master’s, and doctorate degrees. Among its most recognized degree programs are the Masters in Business and the Masters in Finance. The study period of the first two levels is five years, while the third usually lasts at least three. Most programs teach in English, German, French, or most likely a combination of both. During the year, classes run from October to July. Here is a breakdown of the different areas of study available:
Faculty of Sciences, Technology, and Communication (FSTC)
FSTC specializes in mathematics, physics, engineering, computer science, and life sciences. Through its dual mission of teaching and research, the FSTC offers four bachelor and ten master programs, as well as four vocational training departments.
In Mathematics, undergraduates receive a bachelor’s in sciences; master’s students can further their studies in math or teaching professionals. Physics offers a similar undergraduate degree with a master’s in condensed matter physics. Engineering adds an extra bachelor’s in the field, along with master’s programs in civil engineering, sustainable product engineering, durable development, and energy engineering. Computer science offers degrees in information and lifelong information technology, as well as security systems. Life science includes a bachelor’s in science, master’s in integrated systems biology and veterinary medicine, as well as other training in medicine, veterinary, and biobanking.
In the Faculty of Law, Economics, and Finance (FDEF)
FDEF research programs are the norm in the law department. They include topics such as business law, civil law, criminal law, European private law, European public law, fintech, international law, philosophy of law, space, media law, and tax law.
For master’s programs, the focus is European, with degrees in areas such as European economic and financial criminal law, European and International Tax Law, European Private Law, Communication, and Media Law. In Economics and Finance, there are master’s programs in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Accounting and Audit, Banking and Finance, and Wealth Management. There is also a three-year law doctoral program, and economics and management program, of theoretical and practical training, providing a useful background for writing a thesis and adopting a broad scientific culture.
A bachelor’s degree is available in each section. Law undergrads work towards achieving to be a multilingual, versatile, open-minded legal expert capable of thinking in terms of global law and national law.
The Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Arts, and Education
This is by far the largest college department at the university. The Faculty brings together expertise from the humanities, linguistics, cognitive sciences, social and educational sciences. People from across 20 disciplines are working within the Faculty. With four bachelor’s programs, 15 master’s programs, as well as three doctoral schools, there is a variety of practices to study.
Bachelor programs include psychology, science education, social sciences, and cultural European studies such as English studies, French, German, European history and European philosophy.
Master’s programs are a long list of options such as: Drama, teaching, European governance, French communication, geography, gerontology, European history, language and cultural media, multicultural and multilingual context, management and coaching, mediation, modern philosophy, psychology, psychotherapy, social sciences, education sciences, and a master’s in literature.
Doctoral schools are divided by the three faculties
The Doctoral School in Educational Sciences offers an international and interdisciplinary postgraduate program leading to a PhD in education, history, sociology, psychology, and linguistics. To cover this disciplinary breadth, three different research programs are available: History, Theory and Sociology of Education, Learning, Cognition and Development, Multilingualism in Education and Society.
The IPSE Doctoral School; Identités. Politiques, Sociétés, Espaces provides doctoral training in three research themes of societal and academic relevance: Sustainable development, Intercultural studies and identities, European and international governance. The doctoral school offers an extensive postgraduate program leading to PhD degrees in geography, history, literature, philosophy, political science, and science of languages.
Lastly, the Doctoral School in Social Sciences develops international and interdisciplinary research excellence. It prepares candidates for a PhD degree in social sciences (sociology, demography), educational sciences, psychology, economics, and geography. Four research programs are also available: Health and Behaviour, Social Inequality, Wealth and Income, Generations and Family Transitions in Life.
Other higher education options include The Sacred Heart University offering MBA programs, the Technical School for arts and crafts (Lycée Technique des Arts et Métiers) which offers vocational training certificates in design animation and media operation, the School of Commerce and Management (Ecole de Commerce et de Gestion) which offers vocational training certificates in marketing, secretarial studies and management and the International University Institute (Institut Universitaire International) which offers a post-graduate degree.
Furthermore, several universities close to Luxembourg offer additional opportunities for university study. These include Belgium, Université Libre de Bruxelles and Université Catholique de Louvain; France, Université Robert Schuman in Strasbourg and Université Henri Poincaré in Nancy; and Germany, Trier University and Heidelberg University.
See also this useful PDF from the Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce on life in Luxembourg.
There are many opportunities in Luxembourg to improve your professional skills. There are institutes and schools providing job training in a number of fields. The Luxembourg School of Commerce (IFCC), the chamber of commerce training institute, provides training for businesses, particularly those in accounting, finance, marketing, management, human resources development, law, and taxation.
The Institut de Formation Bancaire au Luxembourg (IFBL) is specifically for training in the fields of banking and finance. This organization was set up by the bankers association.
The Chambre des Employés Privés (CEPL), the chamber of private employees, gives computer courses in law, management, and economics, as well as courses at university-level in management and new technology.
Lastly, there are also several language schools in Luxembourg, as so many different languages are spoken. It is considered important to perfect foreign language skills. The different schools offer special courses, usually in the form of night classes, available in French, German, Luxembourgish, English, Dutch, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.
Terms (French – German)
- Education: l’éducation – ausbildung
- Public: public – öffentlich
- Private: privé – privat
- Language: langue – sprache
- Primary: primaire – primär
- Secondary: secondaire – sekundär
- Higher: superiéur – höhere
- Bachelor: baccalauréat – abitur
- Doctorate: doctorat – Dr.