Learning outcomes

 Students enrolled on the Master [120] in European Studies course are working towards becoming experts in the European public policy with the ability to thoroughly and critically analyse contemporary political phenomena and current political changes, to explain these and act within, for and on society, having formed an understanding of and ethics relating to public service.

The European dimension is playing an increasing role in socio-economic activities, law-making and the political issues of the Member States while impacting increasingly, directly or indirectly, on the lives of European citizens.
The aim of the Master in European Studies programme is to prepare graduates for employment in positions related to this European dimension. They will be working as advisors, representatives, analysts, managers with EU bodies and institutions. They will be expected to adopt a critical and analytical attitude to Europe, based on the knowledge and analytical elements required for an understanding and assessment of the European integration process. More specifically, this Master’s programme prepares students to work in the fields of public administration (European, national, regional and local), the representation of interests, consultancy and the think tanks that are associated with the European institutions, or in diverse spheres of economic and social activity requiring European studies.

On completion of the decidedly multidisciplinary Master in European Studies programme, graduates will be better able to implement analytical strategies so as to better understand the European integration process and intervene appropriately. They will be able to:

  • display a command of and use in-depth and specialist knowledge of the European integration process in its economic, political, politico-institutional, historical and legal dimensions and of the different levels of the exercise of political power;
  • expertly assess, using appropriate analytical tools and critical detachment, all aspects (economic, political, politico-institutional and legal) of the European integration process both internally and externally and its outlook;
  • comprehend and develop an interdisciplinary and critical view of global issues for the EU, including energy security, sustainable development and the anticipated responses to the economic and financial crisis;
  • adopt a stance in debates within the EU, building a science-based, structured and critical line of argument.

Through their choice of focus, students undertake specialist training geared either towards European policies, scope and methods, and the management of European issues, or towards Europe in the world and the role of the EU as a global player in international relations in the age of globalisation.

Aware of the responsibility that goes with the role of expert, graduates will have adopted a critical academic attitude, enabling them to make decisions completely independently, with civic and ethical values and public service being core concerns. They will have adopted a continuous development approach enabling them, as professionals, to demonstrate expertise and the ability to adapt and evolve positively in their socio-professional environment.


On successful completion of this programme, each student is able to :

CG1. Develop political understanding and action: develop an understanding of and ethics relating to public service.

CG1.1. Identify, analyse and understand the political issues of a given situation.
CG1.2. Adopt a stance in debates and negotiations in defence of the interests of the institutions and organisations they represent.
CG1.3. Incorporate the ethical dimension and the “in the public service and for the common good” dimension into the political debates and actions.

CG2. Position their analyses and/or actions in a multi-level perspective.

CG2.1. Identify the different institutional levels.
CG2.2. Demonstrate in-depth and specialist knowledge (depending on the choice of focus) of the different political and institutional systems and political issues at international, European and Belgian level.
CG2.3. Compare the different political and institutional systems, both national and international.
CG2.4. Identify the various government and non-government stakeholders (social movements, interest groups, citizens, etc.) and demonstrate an in-depth knowledge of their positions.
CG2.5. Analyse the interactions between the different stakeholders, from the relationships between political parties and states to the role of non-governmental organisations.

CG3. Adopt a robust and interdisciplinary approach to analysing complex political, economic and social situations

CG3.1. Demonstrate in-depth specialist knowledge (theories, fundamentals, phenomena) of political sciences, according to the focus chosen.
CG3.2. Demonstrate in-depth knowledge of the key basic principles of the human and social science disciplines related to political sciences according to the focus chosen: law, history, geopolitics, sociology and economics.
CG3.3. Pertinently and robustly apply the data analysis (qualitative and quantitative) and diagnostic tools in social and political sciences to provide a better understanding of the complexity of “political life”.
CG3.4. Apply and leverage these tools and knowledge to analyse the issues/questions specific to political sciences (according to the focus chosen).


CG4. Apply their politico-institutional knowledge to advise on political action in a specific sector or area (according to the focus chosen).

CG4.1. Demonstrate an understanding and knowledge (for the focus chosen) of the issues unique to the different sectors of political life (environment, family, humanitarian, etc.).
CG4.2. Explain and analyse specific contexts and situations:
  • Analyse the different regional geographic areas.
  • Evaluate political action by sector or area.
  • Use robust analytical and diagnostic tools.
  • Apply a robust comparative approach.

CG4.3. Advise on “political” action in the broad sense of the term, demonstrating expertise and applying policy advice skills (influence and lobbying strategy, strategies and tools for political communication, negotiation/mediation and marketing).
CG4.4. Contribute to the analysis and/or design of management strategies for real-life political situations, according to the focus chosen.

CG5. Disseminate pertinent political, economic and social information adapted to the targeted sector of the public and interact constructively with the different stakeholders involved in a given situation.

CG5.1. Communicate pertinently, both verbally and in writing, on complex topics/situations in political sciences:
  • Select the relevant information required to analyse and compare political situations.
  • Present the information in an accurate, structured, clear, precise and well-argued manner (demonstrating an ability to prepare reports, assessments, critical reviews, notes, etc.).
  • Adapt the communication (content and form) to the targeted sector of the public and to the intended purposes according to the communication standards specific to the context (popularising, etc.).

CG5.2. Communicate articulately in English, verbally and in writing, in a clear, coherent and well-argued manner on general matters or issues relating to the field of political sciences (level B2 of the Common European Framework of Reference).
CG5.3. Communicate, interact and negotiate constructively with various representatives, including colleagues, political decision-makers and target audiences.
CG5.4. Liaise and collaborate effectively within a team and network effectively with other agencies involved in a given situation.


CG6. Devise and implement a personal research project (thesis), adopting a robust and critical scientific and methodological approach, in order to conduct a detailed analysis of an issue related to political science (in the chosen field of study).

CG6.1. Define and explain a research subject, making sure that it is placed in the proper context.
CG6.2. Prepare a critical report on the literature relating to this subject, making active, critical and pertinent use of information tools and primary and secondary sources.
CG6.3. Construct and implement a robust and pertinent methodology in response.
CG6.4. Devise and carry out, if appropriate, a quantitative and/or qualitative empirical research project using suitable analytical tools.
CG6.5. Develop an objective analysis and the ability to summarise so as to enable the relevant parameters to be put into perspective and pertinent conclusions to be formed.
CG6.6. Demonstrate, in general terms, an attitude of critical detachment with regard to their own work and the knowledge and skills deployed.

CG7. Act as academics and critical and responsible players committed to continuous development.

CG7.1. Embark on a socio-professional practice using a well-founded academic approach (from a theoretical and methodological perspective) characterised by a reflective and critical attitude.
CG7.2. Work, make decisions and act independently and responsibly with regard to the framework, the work context and other people.
CG7.3. Be aware of their societal and civic responsibilities.
CG7.4 Maintain an attitude of critical detachment (to their knowledge, skills, limitations, achievements and actions) and of the continuous learning and development required to evolve positively in their socio-professional environment.

EE. Develop and acquire specialist skills related to the European Union with a view to filling the post of advisor, representative, analyst, manager with bodies or institutions within the European Union

EE.1. Master and critically apply in-depth and specialist knowledge relating to the European integration process:
  • the political and social theories explaining the European integration process;
  • economic, political, legal and historical knowledge related to European integration;
  • the major categories of institutional (European and national) and non-institutional collaborators participating in the European political arena and their interactions;
  • the organisational frameworks and decision-making processes at European level and their interactions with the national, regional and international levels;
  • the major operational and developmental dynamics of the EU;
  • the legal aspect of the functioning of the EU;
  • the multi-level dimension of institutional systems;
  • the analytical elements and tools required for an understanding and assessment of the internal and external dimensions of the European integration process.

EE.2. Develop a critical and interdisciplinary understanding of the representations of European integration, contrasting different models and paradigms of theoretical thinking on Europe.
EE.3. Understand the EU’s external action in various fields and analyse all aspects of its external relations (institutional, legal, external action assessment).
EE.4. Analyse, expertly and with critical detachment, changes to economic and social integration within the EU, its internal and external political aspects and immediate outlook.
EE.5. Understand and develop an interdisciplinary and critical view of global issues for the EU, including energy security, sustainable development and the anticipated responses to the economic and financial crisis.
EE.6. Adopt a stance in the current debates within the EU, building a science-based, structured and critical line of argument.
EE.7. Take into account the need to promote cultural diversity and dialogue between cultures within the EU.
EE.8. Represent the interests of civil society with regard to European institutions.
EE.9. Share their expertise on the functioning of European institutions with political, social and economic stakeholders at national, regional and international level.


EE-GSE On completion of the specialisation in ‘European governance and societies’, the student will have developed the following skills, according to the teaching units chosen:

  • ‘History, cultures and societies’ module: the student will have gained an in-depth knowledge of the mechanisms governing European society, in relation to human rights and values.
  • ‘EU external relations and global governance’ module: the student will have acquired expertise and a high level of skills in relation to the EU’s external action and to the role of the EU as a global player in international relations, in this era of globalisation.
  • ‘EU Governance and policies’ module: the student will have acquired expertise and a high level of skills in the management of European dossiers, focused on the EU’s internal policies and decision-making processes.