Belgium is situated in Western Europe. It is bound by France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the North Sea. The country’s topography is that of a large fertile low-lying plain. The capital of the country is Brussels. The population of the country is 10.8 million. There are two main language communities in Belgium: the Dutch-speaking Flemings in the north, and the French-speaking Walloons in the south. Brussels is officially bilingual. A third language community of German-speakers is located in the eastern part of Belgium. Often called the Essence of Europe, Belgium is both multicultural and multilingual. Flanders in the north, a flatland criss-crossed by canals, is proud of its mediaeval art cities, Antwerp, Bruges and Ghent. To the south in Wallonia, you will find the rolling hills of the Ardennes, countless castles, and the cities of Charleroi, Liege, Mons, Namur, and Tournai. The city of Brussels is one of the world’s great cosmopolitan capitals, home to both the European Union and NATO, as well as a wealth of international trade and finance companies.
In Belgium, the communities are responsible for making decisions on services for individuals, such as education. The Flemish Community is therefore responsible for education in the Dutch-speaking part of the country, whilst the Federation Wallonia-Brussels, is the governing authority for the French-speaking part of Belgium.
The colleges of higher education and universities have introduced the bachelor-master structure. Higher education organised according to the bachelor-master structure is still divided into two types of education: higher professional education and academic education. Higher professional education is restricted to bachelor courses and is only provided at university colleges. Academic education consists of bachelor courses and master courses. Academic education is provided at universities and at university colleges.