MSc in Biology: Ecology and Biodiversity

General information

The graduation option Ecology and Biodiversity allows students to gain experience in the research methods used to study the ecology and evolution of organisms found in terrestrial, freshwater and coastal ecosystems.

A staff of experts teaches up-to-date knowledge on individual organisms, populations, species communities and ecosystems, backed up by their active research experience in taxonomy and phylogeny, vertebrate and invertebrate ecology, evolutionary ecology, biogeography, plant ecology, plant-animal interactions, and nature management. In addition, students are introduced into ecological research by means of practical field training and excursions in Belgium and abroad

Programme structure:

Compulsory: 42 ECTS

Electives: 48 ECTS
Can be chosen from 3 groups

  • Conceptual Courses
  • Applied Courses
  • Practical & Technical skills

Master's Thesis: 30 ECTS

For an overview of all Master courses, click here.

Contact Person: Secretariat of the Biology Programme (


The highlighted icons, represent the fields of education (in compliance with ISCED Classification) engaged during this course/programme.

0511 - Biology", "0521 - Ecology", "0522 - Conservation and environmental management", "0532 - Marine Geology


Venue: Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Brussels, Belgium

Faculty of Science and Bio-engineering Sciences
Campus Etterbeek
Building Y - GalerY'
Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussel


Open from 15 Nov 2018


The tuition fee consists of a fixed amount and a variable amount:

  • the fixed amount is a fixed cost which is paid once per academic year
  • the variable amount is a specific amount per ECTS credit in your year programme.

The tuition fee = the fixed amount + (the variable amount x the number of registered ECTS credits).

The amount that you will pay for the fixed and the variable amount depends, among other things, on:

  • the programme you enrol in;
  • your nationality (EEA or non-EEA);
  • the number of ECTS credits that you register for;
  • whether or not you are a scholarship student;
  • the type of contract you have: a credit, exam or diploma contract

General overview of tuition fees 2018-2019


Degree Requirements 
The Master of Science in Biology is open to holders of a Bachelor degree in Biology. For other academic bachelors in science, applied science and life sciences, equivalency will be evaluated based on scientific competences and skills of the students by the Master of Biology Steering Committee. Such as academic Bachelor degrees with a minor in Biology (e.g. BSc in Environmental Sciences, BSc in Biotechnology...).

Language Requirements 
In order to be admitted, you need to provide a proof of sufficient knowledge of English by meeting one of the following criteria: 

  • a diploma of primary, secondary or higher education where English was the language of instruction
  • having successfully completed at least one school year of secondary education where English was the language of instruction
  • having successfully completed course units in higher education with a minimum total of 15 study credits where English was the language of instruction 
  • having successfully completed ASO secondary education in Belgium
  • having successfully completed one of the following language tests
    • TOEFL: minimum level 550 paper-based, 213 computer-based, 80 internet-based
    • IELTS: minimum level academic module 6,5
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE), grade B
    • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE), grade C

Extra info for Belgian degrees. Students who have earned the corresponding Bachelor degree from an accredited higher education institution from the French Community of Belgium, automatically fulfill the admission requirements, as do students with a Flemish Bachelor degree. Students who have successfully completed Flemish or French secondary education in Belgium also automatically meet the English language requirements.

Application Procedure:

Applying for the academic year 2019-2020 possible as of the 15th of November.

We advise you to apply as soon as possible. Applications are processed in the order they are submitted.

Admission is based upon acceptance of the application (proof of meeting the academic and language requirements, satisfactory background,...). All necessary information regarding the admission requirements, deadlines and application forms can be found on the application page

All students who have not obtained a Flemish degree will need to pay an application fee of 50€. Enrolled students will pay the tuition fee minus the application fee of the programme.

Application Deadlines

  • Non-EEA citizens: before the 1st of April.
  • EEA-citizens: before the 1st of September


Academic level: Master

Qualification: Master of Science

Occupations (not validated):
Spotted a mistake in this page? Click here to request a change.