Name in National Language
Thomas More Kempen
Thomas More Mechelen-Antwerpen
Name in English
Thomas More Kempen
Thomas More Mechelen-Antwerp
|ECHE-LP-2020 - Funding Certificate- 101012419||ECHE-LP-2020 - Funding Certificate-101012378|
Thomas More international relations 2021-2027
Thomas More is a comprehensive University of Applied Sciences in the province of Antwerp (Belgium). Internationalisation is in our mission and strategy! We want to be the benchmark as an international university of applied sciences in Flanders. We strive to offer our students and staff excellent learning opportunities abroad in collaboration with our international partners. Thomas More has developed a vast network of international partnerships/networks with EU and non-EU countries.
The International potential
With 42 professional bachelor programmes, 18 associate degree programmes and more than 20,000 students in Antwerp, Geel, Lier, Mechelen, Sint-Katelijne-Waver, Sint-Niklaas, Turnhout and Vorselaar, Thomas More University of Applied Sciences is the largest breeding ground for highly trained professional talent in the province of Antwerp (Belgium).
Our study programmes in Dutch all offer English-taught exchange programmes. We welcome exchange students from our partner universities around the globe to study or do an internship. Joining one of our programmes for a semester or longer will give their degree an international boost. Further, staff of our partner universities is very welcome. Each year in the month of March we organise the ‘International Days’. This is a Thomas More wide event for all faculties during which we try to bring together our partners. Guests are welcome to share expertise, give guest lectures, network and much more!
Next to study programmes in Dutch, Thomas More offers a range of inspiring English-taught international degree programmes giving (foreign) students with high ambitions access to our top-quality education; in addition to full (three-year) programmes, we organise abridged (one-year) courses to obtain a second degree.
The internationalisation objectives of Thomas More are in line with the objectives set by Europe and Flanders. In December 2020, Thomas More obtained the ECHE (European Charter for Higher Education) for the period 2021 to 2027 and therefore participates fully in the Erasmus+ programme.
In addition, Thomas More is a strategic partner for numerous large and small companies, institutions and organisations in the wider region and far beyond. Thomas More is part of the KU Leuven Association.
The international actors
The International Office is part of the Department of Education and consists of the head of the International Office and members of the International Office. The International Office acts as an advisory service to the International Coordinators in the different faculties or study programmes. The International Office advises study programmes, draws up the structures for the implementation of internationalisation and coordinates all activities concerning international relations. The International Coordinators of the study programmes are responsible for developing and realising the potential of internationalisation in their study programme.
In treasuring and building international relationships Thomas More values:
- The development of strong networks of partner institutions with an educational offering that complements and/or reinforces that of Thomas More;
- The alignment of the curriculum with international reference points;
- The integration of various forms of mobility in the curriculum: physical, blended and virtual mobility;
- The continuing attention for the development, through the curriculum, of intercultural and international competences of students and staff;
- Pursuing a clear policy for the development of integrated, transnational educational activities (joint modules/curricula, bi-diplomas and joint diplomas);
- The commitment to ‘quality service’ for students and society.
The majority of the international partnerships are within the framework of the Erasmus programme and are part of Erasmus+ or Erasmus Belgica. We apply the ECTS-principles and ECTS-procedures. Thomas More is expanding its agreements with higher education institutions in non-EU countries. These collaborations reinforce the universities international profile and have a clear added value to our education. More and more, these collaborations outside Europe fit into the Erasmus framework of the so-called 'International Credit Mobility'. In addition to partnerships with higher education institutions, Thomas More focuses on other strategic international partners such as companies, non-governmental organisations and regional authorities.
Internationalisation within the curriculum
For Thomas More the mobility of students and staff is a tool and not a goal in itself. The university continues to stimulate all forms of long and short term physical mobilities. In doing so, it pays explicit attention to diversity and inclusiveness. In addition, the university offers international development opportunities to students and staff @home. All can participate in international classrooms at home, take on the buddy-ship for international students, participate in service-learning courses or choose subjects with 'Collaborative Online International Learning' (C.O.I.L.) aspects. Service-learning courses facilitate encounters with people from different cultures and lifestyles, take students out of their comfort zone, increase their sense of citizenship and have similar learning effects as an exchange stay abroad. In C.O.I.L. courses, lecturers from different countries formulate learning objectives together and encourage students to cooperate internationally.
All our study programmes are encouraged to create opportunities within the curriculum for different types of international learning activities (virtual, blended and physical). New partnerships are evaluated with a view to the potential for cooperation in various ways that offer learning opportunities to all actors involved.
The increasing number of exchanges will strengthen the contacts between the university and its various partners and ensure that students and staff members have a permanent and broader international perspective.