KU Leuven

Bioethics, M.Sc.

  • Application Deadline
  • 12 months
  • English
Health care professionals and those who are professionally interested in medical ethics find themselves increasingly confronted with moral questions and dilemmas. These complex issues challenge health care professionals on a daily basis. The Bioethics programme is offered at KU Leuven.


Lectures, small-group discussions, case studies, and research activities characterise this programme, which is capped with a publishable research paper. Then, return to your workplace with a better understanding of today's ethical issues. Or perhaps your future is on an institutional review board, a clinical ethics committee, or within a government agency, regulatory body, or medical association. Then again, perhaps you'll take up a teaching or research career. Or you may pursue a career as a clinical ethicist at a hospital or health care facility.


The program aims at dealing with the most important traditions in bioethics together with major contemporary movements, as well as the conceptual, methodological and practical issues in different areas of bioethics. The programme wants to pay specifically attention to European traditions in philosophy, theology and ethics.

Further the program supports the students in developing academic and professional competences needed to conduct research in bioethics independently. They are encouraged to participate in the scientific debate in the domain of bioethics. It intends to support students in critically analysing the literature, writing scientific articles and submitting papers to (inter)national conferences and journals. The program also intends to prepare the students to integrate their theoretical knowledge with requisite attitudes and skills, in order to be able to apply these in a professional and clinical context. The students will be able to participate in clinical ethics committees (CECs) and research ethics committees (RECs), to deal autonomously with complex ethical problems in the field of health care and/or research, to analyse these problems and to reflect on them, and to discuss ethical issues within a cross-cultural context.

Career perspectives

Graduates are presented with a diverse spectrum of professional possibilities.

At least one in three of the students thas has graduated from the programme have gone on to work on a research project or undertake a doctoral degree.

Many graduates return to their workplace with a better understanding of the ethical issues involved there. Some serve on institutional review boards or clinical ethics committees or find positions at government agencies, regulatory bodies and medical associations.

Others are employed as professors at universities or researchers at independent research institutes. Some graduates pursue careers as clinical ethicists at hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

The Bioethics programme is offered at KU Leuven.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Public Health Ethics and Ethics in Health Policy
  • Foundations of Bioethics and Principles of Clinical Ethics
  • Law and Healthcare
  • Ethics and Law in Biomedical Research
  • Ethical Issues in End-of-Life Care
  • Human Genetics, Ethics and Policy


          Are you professionally engaged in health care? Are you concerned with the moral questions and dilemmas you confront daily in your profession? If so, consider the Master of Bioethics programme. 

          Detailed Programme Facts

          English Language Requirements

          You only need to take one of these language tests:

          • Minimum required score:


            The IELTS – or the International English Language Test System – tests your English-language abilities (writing, listening, speaking, and reading) on a scale of 1.00–9.00. The minimum IELTS score requirement refers to which Overall Band Score you received, which is your combined average score. Read more about IELTS.

            Book IELTS
          • Minimum required score:


            The TOEFL – or Test OF English as a Foreign Language – offers a paper-based test (PBT). The final, overall PBT score ranges between 310 and 677, and is based on an average taken from the three test components (listening, structure, and reading). The writing part of this test is scored separately on a scale of 0-6. Read more about TOEFL (PBT).

          • Minimum required score:


            The TOEFL – or Test Of English as a Foreign Language – offers an internet-based test (iBT). The final, overall iBT score ranges between 0 and 120, and includes a scaled average from the four components (reading, listening, speaking, and writing). Read more about TOEFL (iBT).

          Academic Requirements

          • Students should have a good command of English, both spoken and written. Applicants are required to demonstrate their proficiency in English, either by proving that some of their previous studies were successfully completed in English, or by submitting the results of a recognised language proficiency test such as IELTS (academic version, overall band score of at least 6.5) or TOEFL (minimum score of at least 580 (paper-based) or 237 (computer based) or 92 (internet based)).
          • Master of Medicine

          Tuition Fee

          • International Applies to you

            1750 EUR/year
            Tuition Fee
            Based on the original amount of 1750 EUR per year and a duration of 12 months.
          • EU/EEA Applies to you

            1750 EUR/year
            Tuition Fee
            Based on the original amount of 1750 EUR per year and a duration of 12 months.
          We've labeled the tuition fee that applies to you because we think you are from and prefer over other currencies.

          Living costs for Antwerpen

          800 - 1230 EUR/month
          Living Costs

          The living costs include the total expenses per month, covering accommodation, public transportation, utilities (electricity, internet), books and groceries.


          Check the programme website for information about funding options.

          StudyPortals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

          The Global Study Awards: get funded with up to £10,000 to study abroad

          Together with the ISIC Association and British Council IELTS, StudyPortals offers you the chance to receive up to £10000 to expand your horizon and study abroad. We want to ultimately encourage you to study abroad in order to experience and explore new countries, cultures and languages.