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 of these universities in Luxembourg rank as some of the best in central Europe, albeit at a cost, and are worth considering for a bachelor’s or master’s degree.
Applying for a university in Luxembourg
Foreign students applying for admission to higher education in Luxembourg must have a secondary school certificate recognised by the Ministère de l’Education nationale. 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, so be sure to research courses and colleges you wish to enrol in. Foreign language test scores might be requested when wishing to study in a language that is not your native tongue, especially for those who did not attend primary or secondary school n Luxembourg.
University of Luxembourg
When studying in Luxembourg, the public university is the University of Luxembourg. It was set up in 2003, and was ranked as having a high international outlook agenda and consistently ranked in the top 200 of universities by the Times Higher Education. The university is research oriented in its academia, and has three campuses:
- Campus Limpertsberg: offers the Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance as well as the central administration units of the University
- Campus Walferdange: offers the Faculty of Language and Literature
- Campus Esch-Belval: offers the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, Arts and Education Sciences and the Faculty of Sciences, Technology and Communication
Each faculty offers bachelor, masters and doctorate degrees. Among its most recognised degree programmes are the Masters in Business and the Masters in Finance. The study period of the first two levels is five years, and the third usually lasts at least three years. Depending on the level of study and specialisation, each major and degree is taught 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 specialises in degrees on mathematics, physics, engineering, computer science and life sciences. Through its dual mission of teaching and research, the FSTC offers four bachelor and ten master programmes, as well as four vocational training departments. In Mathamatics undergraduates receive a bachelor’s in sciences, master students can go on to further their studies in maths or teaching professionals. Physics offer a similar undergraduate degree with a masters in condensed matter physics. Engineering adds an extra bachelor’s in the field,a long with master programmes in civil engineering, sustainable product engineering, durable development and energy engineering. Computer sciences offers degrees in information and lifelong information technology, as well as security systems. Life science includes a bachelor’s in science, masters in integrated systems biology and veterinary medicine, and other training in medicine, veterinary and biobanking.
In the Faculty of Law, Economics and Finance (FDEF)
FDEF research programmes are the norm in the law department and include Business Law, Civil Law, Criminal Law, European Private Law, European Public Law, FinTech & Digitalisation, International Law, Philosophy of Law, Space, Communication and Media Law and finally Tax Law. For masters programmes the focus is European, with degrees in European Economic and Financial Criminal Law, European and International Tax Law, European Private Law, Communication and Media Law. In Economics and Finance there are masters programmes in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Accounting and Audit, Banking and Finance, and Wealth Management. There is a three-year law doctoral programme, and economics and management programme, 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 Luxembourg 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, 15 Master degree programmes and three doctoral schools there is a variety of practices to study.
Bachelor programmes include psychology, science education, social sciences and cultural European studies such as English studies, French, German, European history and European philosophy.
Masters programmes are a long list of options: 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 finall a masters 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 programmes are offered: 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 programme 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 and prepares candidates for a PhD degree in social sciences (sociology, demography), educational sciences, psychology, economics and geography. Four research programmes are offered: Health and Behaviour, Social Inequality, Wealth and Income, Generations and Family Transitions in the Life course.
Other higher education options include The Sacred Heart University offering MBA programmes, 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 internationally renowned universities located close to Luxembourg offer additional opportunities for university study, including in Belgium, Université Libre de Bruxelles and Université Catholique de Louvain; in France, Université Robert Schuman in Strasbourg and Université Henri Poincaré in Nancy; and in 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 field of banking and finance. This organisation 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.