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Proof of language proficiency on enrolment

Students must provide proof of their knowledge of the language of tuition when they enrol. 

Proof of knowledge of Dutch

§1. Prospective students can provide proof of sufficient knowledge of Dutch as the language of instruction by meeting one of the following criteria:

  1. having a diploma of secondary or higher education where Dutch was the language of instruction;
  2. having successfully completed at least one school year of secondary education where Dutch was the language of instruction;
  3. having successfully completed programme units in higher education with at least 54 ECTScredits where Dutch was the language of instruction;
  4. having passed the entrance examination for doctors or dentists organised by the Ministry of the Flemish Government; 
  5. having obtained a certificate of continuing education “hoger onderwijs voor sociale promotie” where Dutch was the language of tuition;
  6. having passed the ‘Nederlands Staatsexamen Nederlands als tweede taal (NT2), Programma II’ examination;
  7. having passed a test set up in accordance with European Union reference level B2, particularly the Certificaat Nederlands als Vreemde Taal (CNaVT) – ‘Educatief Startbekwaam’, (Certificate of Dutch as a Foreign Language), (until 2014: the Profiel taalvaardigheid hoger onderwijs (PTHO) (Higher education language proficiency certificate)), and the Interuniversitaire Taaltest Nederlands voor Anderstaligen (ITNA – ERK B2) (inter-university Dutch language test for non-native speakers).
  8. Certificates and other proof of language tests may not pre-date the first enrolment by more than two years. 


§2. Each faculty may require a higher level of language proficiency for a specific programme. This will be mentioned in the programme description.

§3. The Interfaculty Department of Teacher Training can apply specific language requirements to programmes that fall within its responsibility, as outlined in article 41 §4.

§4. Exceptions to language requirements may be granted by the person responsible for the programme on the basis of an overall assessment.

§5. Each faculty has the discretion to decide that students do not need to submit proof of their knowledge of the language of tuition when they enrol for a postgraduate or advanced master’s programme. This will be mentioned in the programme description.

For an exhaustive list of these criteria, see the VUB teaching and examination regulations.

Several Dutch proficiency tests are organised by the Academic Language Center (ACTO) of the VUB: the CNaVT & ITNA. For more information please visit the ACTO website

Proof of knowledge of English

§1. Prospective students can provide proof of sufficient knowledge of English as the language of instruction by meeting one of the following criteria:

  1. having a diploma of secondary or higher education where English was the language of instruction;
  2. having successfully completed at least one school year of secondary education where English was the language of instruction;
  3. having successfully completed programme units in higher education with at least 54 ECTS-credits where English was the language of instruction;
  4. having successfully completed secondary education in Belgium;
  5. having successfully completed one of the following language proficiency tests corresponding to the Common European Framework of Reference with minimum level B2: 
    • TOEFL iBT with minimum level: 79; 
    • IELTS with minimum level: academic module 6.5;
    • ITACE with minimum level: B2;
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE), grade B;
    • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE), grade C;


Certificates and other proof of language tests may not pre-date the first enrolment by more than two years.

§2. Each faculty may require a higher level of language proficiency for a specific programme. This will be mentioned in the programme description.

§3. Exceptions to language requirements may be granted by the person responsible for the programme on the basis of an overall assessment.

§4. Each faculty has the discretion to decide that students do not need to submit proof of their knowledge of the language of tuition when they enrol for a postgraduate or advanced master’s programme. This will be mentioned in the programme description.

For an exhaustive list of these criteria, see the VUB teaching and examination regulations.

The TOEFL test and the ITACE for students is organized by the Academic Language Center (ACTO) at the VUB. 

Language test

§1. The Academic Language Centre (Academisch Centrum voor Taalonderwijs - ACTO) can test a prospective student who was unable to provide proof of sufficient knowledge of the language, according to the conditions stated on the website of ACTO.

§2. A student who changes his enrolment and wants to transfer to a programme that has different language requirements must take a new language test.