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To study and become skilled over time, isn't that a joy?  
学而时习,不亦说乎?  

     - Confucius 孔子

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel

The primary focus of the Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) is research and academic reflection. The institute is a collaboration between Sichuan University, Renmin University of China and the VUB.  It is embedded within VUB, as an internal knowledge hub, ensuring similar quality standards, trust, and objectivity as the VUB itself. It pursues pertinence in research, language teaching, cultural exchanges, entrepreneurial attitudes, innovation and knowledge transfer. The institute is inherently based on the cooperation between universities, but also supports university, industry and government collaboration. It has the ambitions to carry out critical policy preparation to support research and consulting. Situated in Brussels, the Confucius Institute has a special focus on EU officers, representatives from international organisations and headquarters in Brussels, diplomats, and representatives from member states as well as NGOs. The Confucius is part of a worldwide network and receives support from the Chinese Government.

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel was established with 4 main purposes:

  • supporting academic research on contemporary China and the relationship between China and the European Union,
  • teaching Chinese language and a variety of cultural subjects at an academic and professional level,
  • bridging the differences between European and Chinese culture,
  • offering a platform for involvement of stakeholders of partner universities.

When I walk along with two others, I certainly have someone to learn from.
三人行,必有我师焉。

     -  Confucius 孔子

Chinese Language Teaching

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Chinese Mandarin language courses at the VUB Etterbeek campus in Brussels with the guarantee that: 

  • the teacher of the class is a native speaker
  • the language of instruction is English

Under certain conditions, the students also have the opportunity to join a partially funded language and culture summer camp in China

Group Courses

Group courses are organised for every students of every level: beginners, intermediate and advanced. Enrolment for the fall semester of 2017 is already open. Here is some more information:

  • Courses start on 25 September 2017 and end on 22 December 2017
  • Enrolment is complete after (1) you fill and sign the enrolment form and send it to vub-ci@vub.ac.be and (2) you pay the tuition fee.
  • the deadline for enrolment is 20 October 2017

Interested? Find out more about timetables, prices and enrolment.

There are a few general conditions related to the group courses:

  • Students can obtain a refund if they withdraw their enrolment within two weeks from the start of the lessons. The amount of 40 EUR is deducted from the refundable sum to cover the administrative costs.
  • An announced course can be cancelled if less than five students enroll for that course.
  • New students enrolling for the intermediate level are required to take a pre-assessment test. Contact us by email to schedule the pre-assessment test.
  • The purchase of course books and other didactic material is not included in the tuition fee.
  • If the course for which you enrolled is moved to another day, the tuition fee is refunded completely if the new planning does not fit you.
  • The summer camp is organised for a minimum of 20 students. Eligible candidates are between 18 and 30 years old. 

Private Courses

These are tailor-made classes that can be organised on request by email.

Your class will be scheduled based on the agreement between participant(s) and teacher. The tuition fee of 70 EUR per hour should be paid within ten days after you receive the payment request. The invoice is issued by the Confucius Institute. The class can be shared by a maximum of two students who agree on the same level and schedule. 

In case you are unable to attend a private class, a cancellation or rescheduling can be made at least 2 days in advance. If the cancellation is made less than 2 days prior to the course, a cancellation fee may be charged. If the private class is arranged for two students, cancellation should be agreed upon by both participants. 

Classes at the VUB

Monday 25 September, 17 U - 20 U

Chinese language Courses 2017-2018

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Chinese Mandarine language courses at the Brussels Engineering, Sciences & Humanities Campus (Campus Etterbeek). Some guarantees are made for these courses:...

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Chinese Mandarine language ...

Monday 25 September, 17 U - 18 U

Tai Chi Class at the VUB

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Tai Chi group courses for beginners at the VUB Etterbeek campus and the VUB Jette campus in Brussels....

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Tai Chi group courses for beg...

Friday 29 September, 09 U - 14 U

Seminar EU-China higher education research collaboration: Collective Leadership

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the EU-China Higher Education Research Center at VUB warmly welcome you to join the Seminar EU-China higher education research collaboration: Collective Leadership on 29 September 2017 at the VUB in Brussels....

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the EU-China Higher Education Resea...

Wednesday 4 October, 15 U - 17 U

The Beginning of Chinese Wisdom: An Introduction to the Early Chinese Philosophy

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel offers a general introduction course to the early Chinese philosophy from the perspective of comparative studies. Chinese philosphy has its own origin and categories. Tracing back the philosophical tradition to its beginning...

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel offers a general introduction course to...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

The beginning of Chinese Wisdom: An Introduction to the Early Chinese Philosophy

VUB-CI offers a general introduction course to the early Chinese philosophy from the perspective of comparative studies. Chinese philosophy has its own origin and categories. Tracing back the philosophical tradition to its beginning, the lecture examines different schools of...

VUB-CI offers a general introduction course to the early Chinese philosophy from the perspective ...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

Traditional Chinese Religions and Contemporary Society

The course is open for undergraduate students, graduate students and everyone else who is interested in Chinese culture. The main purpose of the course is to introduce the functions of traditional Chinese religions in traditional Chiense society and rethink their roles in the...

The course is open for undergraduate students, graduate students and everyone else who is interes...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

Chinese language courses at the VUB Confucius Institute

The VUB Confucius Institute established Chinese language courses at the Brussels Engineering, Sciences & Humanities Campus....

The VUB Confucius Institute established Chinese language courses at the Brussels Engineering, S...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

Tai Chi group classes for beginners at Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering Campus

Join the Tai Chi group classes for beginners organised by the VUB Confucius Institute at Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering Campus...

Join the Tai Chi group classes for beginners organised by the VUB Confucius Institute at Bruss...

Learning without thought means labor lost; thought without learning is perilous.
学而不思则罔,思而不学则殆。

     - Confucius 孔子

Research and Innovation

The Confucius Institute at the VUB is also a research institute. As a part of the VUB, the Confucius Institute is governed by the same principle of free inquiry. The Confucius Institute at the VUB offers a neutral platform where independent and critical analyses of all subjects can be discussed.

As a research institution, the Confucius Institute has quite a few advantages at its disposal: 

  • Located in Brussels, the Confucius Institute at the VUB is embedded in a rich and international environment.
  • The institute has a strong connection with the EU headquarters in Brussels and its international politics and economic development.
  • As a bridge between Chinese and European culture, the institute plays a vital role in the EU-China High Level People to People Dialogue

The Confucius Institute at the VUB promotes research cooperation, mobility and information sharing. This includes sharing and exchanging viewpoints and ideas between European and Chinese researchers, decision makers, industry and governmental bodies, scholars and students.

Being geared towards contemporary China, also the different forms of university outreach in China and in Europe will be compared, studied and whenever possible put in practice: i.e. science communication, government policy studies, knowledge and technology transfer, creation of new economic and societal impact and collaboration with the non-profit sector.

Research by the Confucius Institute at the VUB

Every year, the Confucius Institute at the VUB writes out a call for proposals of research projects. Selected projects can obtain funding for up to 50,000 EUR to cover the expenses of (1) Personnel, (2) equipment, (3) specific office supplies and (4) activity expenses. The funding is always divided equally: 50% of the funding is provided by the promotor of the project, 50% of the funding is provided by the Confucius Institute at the VUB.

Real knowledge is to know the extent of one's ignorance 
知之为知之,不知为不知,是知也

     - Confucius 孔子

The Confucius Institute at the VUB further strengthens the cooperation between VUB, Renmin University of China and Sichuan University by establishing degree programs in related fields; promoting the cooperation with secondary and primary schools in various regions in Belgium; gradually integrating Chinese language courses and open courses for Chinese culture into VUB’s curriculum; and developing new courses and programs in related fields.

Credit Courses

Starting from the fall of 2017, the Confucius Institute at the VUB offers credit courses with the cooperation of the Arts and Philosophy Department. This Chinese minor includes Chinese language and culture courses for a total of 30 ECTS over two years. 

In the first year of the minor, two courses are offered: Chinese Language Profiency I & II, given by Prof. Dr. Zheng Mengjuan and Chinese History and Culture I, given by Prof. Dr. Li Bingquan. The language course aims to teach basic Chinese speaking, listening, reading and writing skills and to provide an insight in the nature of Chinese language. The Chinese History and Culture course will generate an understanding of China's history and culture through the lense of comparative studies and analysis from several perspectives.

In the second year, the scheduled courses are Chinese Language Proficiency III, Chinese History and Culture II and Chinese Language and Literature. 

Open Courses

Apart from the credit courses, the Confucius institute at the VUB also organises non-credit courses. These courses offer the opportunity for a wide and diversified approach to China's society, culture and history.

In the first semester:

The Chinese Religions Subject Course elaborates on the different religions in China from a historical and cultural perspective. A study of China's religions also uncovers a different experience of religion that is reflected in an attitude tolerance and inclusive diversity. The Chinese Philosophy Subject Course dives into the history of Chinese philosophy through a comparative method, showing the logic of thought in two differing systems. Where does Chinese philosophy take off and what are its core concepts? This and much more is covered in the philosophy course.

In the second semester:

The Chinese Environment and Development Subject Course offers one-time lectures on a hot topic in Chinese society: environmental pollution and the way to solve it. After an intro about the growing needs of the Chinese economy, the environmental impact on water , air and land is discussed. The last lectures focus on possible ways of managing the environmental problems. The Chinese Wine and Tea Culture Subject Course teaches the basics about two popular beverages in China with an ancient history. Wine and tea are analysed from different angles: manufacturing, history, cultural impact in past and present, brand creation with case studies, medicinal use and many others. Last but not least, a tea ceremony is organised to experience tea drinking and the ceremonial practice that surrounds it.

The Brussels Diplomatic Academy

A Postgraduate Certificate Programme in China Business Development can be followed at the Brussels Diplomatic Academy which is also part of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. This programme equips students with a fundamentally multidisciplinary and very comprehensive ‘China training’ (including: basic Chinese, intercultural management, the Chinese economy, exporting to and purchasing and investing in China) of high quality, enriched by the hands-on experiences of academics and professionals actively engaged in China. For more information visit www.brusselsdiplomaticacademy.eu

Review what you knew to learn anew and you are fit to be a teacher
温故而知新,可以为师矣

     - Confucius 孔子

About us

The Confucius Institute at the VUB focuses on academic research on contemporary China and China-EU related topics following VUB’s principles of free inquiry, Chinese language teaching at the academic and professional level, and the interplay between European and Chinese cultures.

Research

The Confucius Institute at the VUB promotes research cooperation, mobility and information sharing. This includes sharing and exchange of viewpoints and ideas between European and Chinese colleagues, decision makers, industry and governmental bodies, scholars and students.

Being geared towards contemporary China, also the differet forms of university outreach in China and in Europe are compared, studied and whenever possible put in practice: i.e. science communication, government policy studies, knowledge an technology transfer, creation of new economic and societal impact and collaboration with non-profit sectors. 

All research is governed by the principle of free inquiry, critical analysis and objective analysis independent of any existing dogmas or religions. This principle gives researchers and students a neutral platform for discussion and dialogue and a place of diversity with a spirit of unity where everyone can feel home. 

Education

The Confucius Institute at the VUB endeavours to gradually integrate Chinese language and Chinese culture courses into VUB's curriculum, associated with ECTS-credits and to further develop courses and programes in related fields. Starting from September 2017, the Confucius Institute at the VUB offers an accredited Chinese minor within the Faculty of Arts and Philosophy with a total of 30 ECTS spread over the second and third year of the bachelor programme. 

Additionally, the Confucius Institute aims to provide Chinese language courses on different levels of education, which helps to create a complete chain for Chinese language learning. At present, Chinese language courses are offered to students from all six grades of the Basisschool Voskenslaan, a primary school in Ghent.

Language & Culture

The Confucius Institute at the VUB uses innovative teaching methods and makes use of a wide range of multimedia to give students a learning experience fit for the 21st century. The courses are designed for European students, combining interaction and opportunities for debate and oral practice with an introduction in the Chinese cultural background and the modern Chinese society. Special attention goes to the design of a Chinese online learning platform, to facilitate interactions among teachers and students. With respect for the diverse cultural background of the participants, the teaching methods will be supported by the VUB's EU-China Higher Education Research Center.

 

Listen carefully to the reasoning of others and leave out their words of which you stand in doubt, so you speak in caution about what you know with certainty. Then your mistakes will be few.
多闻阙疑,慎言其馀,则寡尤

     - Confucius 孔子

Events related to the Confucius Institute

Monday 25 September, 17 U - 20 U

Chinese language Courses 2017-2018

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Chinese Mandarine language courses at the Brussels Engineering, Sciences & Humanities Campus (Campus Etterbeek). Some guarantees are made for these courses:...

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Chinese Mandarine language ...

Monday 25 September, 17 U - 18 U

Tai Chi Class at the VUB

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Tai Chi group courses for beginners at the VUB Etterbeek campus and the VUB Jette campus in Brussels....

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel organises Tai Chi group courses for beg...

Friday 29 September, 09 U - 14 U

Seminar EU-China higher education research collaboration: Collective Leadership

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the EU-China Higher Education Research Center at VUB warmly welcome you to join the Seminar EU-China higher education research collaboration: Collective Leadership on 29 September 2017 at the VUB in Brussels....

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel and the EU-China Higher Education Resea...

Wednesday 4 October, 15 U - 17 U

The Beginning of Chinese Wisdom: An Introduction to the Early Chinese Philosophy

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel offers a general introduction course to the early Chinese philosophy from the perspective of comparative studies. Chinese philosphy has its own origin and categories. Tracing back the philosophical tradition to its beginning...

The Confucius Institute at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel offers a general introduction course to...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

Tai Chi group classes for beginners at Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering Campus

Join the Tai Chi group classes for beginners organised by the VUB Confucius Institute at Brussels Humanities, Sciences & Engineering Campus...

Join the Tai Chi group classes for beginners organised by the VUB Confucius Institute at Bruss...

Friday 1 January, 12 U

Chinese language courses at the VUB Confucius Institute

The VUB Confucius Institute established Chinese language courses at the Brussels Engineering, Sciences & Humanities Campus....

The VUB Confucius Institute established Chinese language courses at the Brussels Engineering, S...