How long does it take to earn the IMPALLA Master of Science Degree?
The IMPALLA MSc in Social Policy Analysis is a 1-year full time programme. The programme starts at the beginning of September and does not consider applications for starting during the second semester.
From what university do I receive my IMPALLA diploma?
The programme is an interuniversity cooperation between CEPS/INSTEAD (Luxembourg Social Science Research Centre), KU Leuven (Belgium), Universiteit van Tilburg (Netherlands), Université de Nancy 2 (France) and Université de Luxembourg (GD of Luxembourg). The diploma is issued by KU Leuven.
Can I combine IMPALLA with professional activities? Is distance learning possible?
The programme is an intensive programme and class attendance is mandatory. During the first terms (September through January) courses are taught in a (weekly) modular format during the day. This makes it neither possible for student to combine the programme with professional activities nor to enroll in the programme through distance learning.
However, since the implementation of the Decree on the Flexibility of Higher Education by the Flemish Government (April 20, 2004) students from countries belonging to the European Economic Region (EER) (i.e European Union Countries and Liechtenstein, Norway and Iceland) can request to spread their courses over a period of max. 4 years. In this scenario, participation in all courses and seminars is mandatory and the deliberation will take place after finishing the complete programme. Students coming from countries not belonging to the EER can only register for a full time diploma contract. They will not be granted a residential permit upon attempting to obtain any other type of registration (i.e. part time).
What does "providing certified copies" mean?
All diploma's and transcripts of academic records should be certified as true and original by either the educational institution that issued them (in a sealed institution envelope) or by the local Belgian diplomatic office. Photocopies and faxes are not accepted. If you are still preparing for an examination at the time of application, you are requested to send – as soon as the results are available – a certificate attesting to the results. Please add a document explaining the grading system of your country (i.e. comparing the grades to numeric score). KU Leuven student registration procedure requires that the original diplomas are presented before you can be enrolled as a KU Leuven student. Therefore, all students need to bring their original diplomas on the IMPALLA starting day.
What is a proof of solvency?
This is any document that gives evidence of your financial situation. It can be:
- a copy of a grant/scholarship certificate if you benefit from any,
- a letter of confirmation from the person providing your financial support
- a document/bank statement giving evidence that you are able to afford your personal living expenses in Luxembourg and Belgium during the time of the programme (accommodation, meals, etc …)
What is a proof of payment (bank transfer)?
Any transfer of money from your bank account to a beneficiary is registered. You can receive a proof of payment from the bank clerk or from the point-of-pay terminal or, when you pay through private banking, on your computer.
Should my referees be professors whom I have attended classes with?
It is important that the reference letters come from people who know you, who are aware of your skills and who would consider that the IMPALLA Programme would be a good orientation for your future career. The more they were satisfied with your performance, be it as a student or in a job, the better. Please make sure that at least one of the letters contains a judgement of your statistical skills.
How many students are admitted to the programme?
The programme admits no more than 20 students, being highly selective. On average the IMPALLA programme receives 80 applications while on average 17 applicants are admitted.
What would be the most appropriate previous degree to apply to the IMPALLA programme?
The most important is that you have successfully finalized 4 years of higher academic education. This could be: a 3-years BA combined with a 1-year or 2-year MA , a 4 year BA or, a 3 year BA with 2-year MA of which the first year is finalized. Ideal applicants preferably have a background in an empirical social science like Sociology, Political Sciences, Comparative International Relations, Public Policy, Planning and Development, Public Management, Economics, Applied Economics, Business, Social and Behavioral Sciences.
Do I need to take an English language test?
Only applicants that have successfully completed a previous degree taught fully in English can be exempted from taking an English language test. A certificate from a teacher saying that an applicant can speak English is not a sufficient proof of an adequate command of English. Excellent objective knowledge of English is a prerequisite to successfully complete the IMPALLA programme. As standards on what an adequate level of English is, vary from country to country, the IMPALLA programme requires the results of a standardized test in English (TOEFL or IELTS).
Do I have to take the self-test in statistics?
The self test in statistics is mandatory for all applicants. As the schedule during the academic year is very dense, it is very important for candidates to have an understanding of elementary principles of research methodology and basic statistics at the start of the programme, in order to have reasonable chances to meet the programme’s demands. The results of this Statistics and Methodology test are taken into account in the admission decision of each candidate. The IMPALLA programme expects applicants to take this test individually. If a candidate is accepted as a student and a too large discrepancy appears between a candidate’s result in this test and his/her result in the first statistics exam, the Examination Board may consider it as fraud.
I'm currently enrolled in my last of 4 years of university studies. Can I apply for IMPALLA?
Yes, you can apply on the condition that you provide your graduation confirmation (transcript or diploma) before the start of the programme. Should you graduate after the start of the programme, we cannot take your application into account and advise you to postpone your application to next year.
How does the admission process work?
Application packages are evaluated on a "first come, first served" basis. First, your academic profile is screened by the IMPALLA Academic Selection Committee. This committee consists of the IMPALLA programme director, the Vice Dean for education of the Faculty of Social Sciences, the IMPALLA programme manager and the IMPALLA International Officer. Then, your transcripts and diploma's are screened on fraud by the International Admissions and Mobility Unit.
How will I find out if I am admitted?
The IMPALLA secretariat will inform you by e-mail. If you are admitted to the programme, all necessary documents for formalities such as those for obtaining a visa will be sent to you by registered mail by the IMPALLA secretariat.
How long does the admission process take?
The selection committee of the IMPALLA programme meets on a regular basis. Normally, a meeting is scheduled every three weeks unless more meetings are needed due to the large number of applications. This means that the programme tries to come to a decision within 6 to 8 weeks after receiving the complete application package.
Can I apply for financial support from the programme?
Yes, a limited number of scholarships and merit grants are made available by the IMPALLA Programme. The request for financial support does not affect the admission decision. Admission procedure and financial aid procedure are 2 separate processes. The financial needs of the applicant based on proven financial resources and his/her merit based on the academic results are the main elements taken into account for the financial aid decision.