Master of Science in EU-Studies

This Master's Programme familiarizes students with the policy of the European Union. A great deal of attention is paid to European decision-making processes (in particular the political dimension), as well as to external policy. The analysis of current developments is a common theme throughout the programme.

Master's Programme
1 year 60 credits
Faculty of Political and Social Sciences
About the programme
Programme summary
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After graduation


The Master of EU Studies offers insight into the evolutions and dynamics of European integration. The study programme also familiarizes you with the policy of the European Union and the way in which the Union really works. European politics has become increasingly important over the past half century:  the European Union leaves its mark on almost every policy area.

Much attention is paid to European decision-making processes, with a focus on the political dimension: who are the main players, what are their objectives, how much power do they have, how does the representation of interests take place, where is influence possible? Another theme that is widely discussed is external policy: how does the European Union behave in the world, at multilateral environmental conferences, in the World Trade Organization, in relation to the Global South? Interactive didactic methods are used such as role play, negotiation simulations, excursion, presentations and peer feedback.


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For whom

The admission requirements vary. Depending on your prior education, you are either able to enrol directly, or there are additional requirements.


Analysing current developments is a common topic in the programme: themes such as expansion, institutional issues, the relationship with neighbouring countries, the European Union's role in the world etc. are dealt with in depth. Various course units are set up in an interactive manner, and debates take place as well. The guest speakers who are invited in some course units establish the connection with practice. A visit to the European institutions in Strasbourg and Luxembourg is also planned as part of the study programme. By means of the Master's dissertation you prove that you are able to study and report on specific European problems in a nuanced and academically justified manner. The first semester features general course units. The second semester allows for a personal emphasis through your choice of major. Each major consists of a wide range of course units. The Major Specific EU Issues contains two options: either you will immerse yourself in two specialized course units such as: Tutorial: Decision-Making in the EU, European Trade Policy, European International Development Policy, Agricultural and Rural Policy - EU Perspective, The European Union's Neighbourhood Policies, European Criminal Policy, and European Economic Integration; or you sign up for a work placement in combination with one of these course units. During the work placement you put the theoretical insights from the study programme into practice in the European institutions themselves or in governments, organizations and companies that come into contact with the Union. The Major International Politics deals with various aspects of the international reality, including global governance and diplomacy.


The Master's programme offers the opportunity to study abroad. One possibility, among others, is the Erasmus+ programme. For more information, join one of our information sessions or contact the Faculty Internationalisation Committee. There is an annual excursion to the European Institutions in Luxembourg and Strasbourg, and optional participation in a Summer School at Sichuan University (China).

Work Placement

The work placement takes place in the second semester because it builds on the theoretical course units of taught in the first semester. Any work placement must be least 5 weeks and is taken up in combination with one specialized course unit in the first or second semester. A work placement abroad is also possible.

Master's Programmes in Teaching

In addition to the (domain) master described above, you can also choose a Master's Programme in Teaching (in Dutch: Educatieve Master). For more information, go to

Labour Market

Our study programme offers a solid preparation for the European Institutions' recruitment exams. Many graduates also succeed in obtaining a paid work placement position in the European Parliament or at the European Commission. However, the Master of EU Studies does not only prepare you for a career at the EU institutions themselves. Graduates also end up in national or regional administrations, in political organizations, in cabinets or research departments, where they are responsible for projects with a European or international aspect. Others choose journalism and specialize in European or foreign reporting. Still others find jobs in companies, in NGOs or in other interest groups trying to influence European decision-making. Lobbying is also central to the graduates who work at the numerous consultancy firms operating in the periphery of the European and international institutions. There are also graduates who go abroad and hold positions in international organizations or in one of the dozens of delegations of the European Commission. Those who took the Work Placement Major already have an additional advantage on the labour market. The programme provides an annual 'career event', in which students come into contact with alumni and are prepared for introduction into the labour market. More and more graduates choose to specialize further in EU studies and prepare a PhD. The programme, which responds to current developments, places a strong emphasis on creativity and a critical attitude among the students. The low unemployment rates among graduates prove that such an attitude is appreciated in a wide variety of sectors and positions. Nice to know: the European Commission awarded Ghent University the quality label "Jean Monnet European Center of Excellence".

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