• Application Deadline
  • 12 months
The space sector plays a role in economic, social, technological and scientific developments. Its manifold applications require highly skilled experts with a broad interdisciplinary perspective. The development of innovative space technologies is fostered by an intense symbiosis between the technological sectors and the challenges set by fundamental research in exact and biomedical sciences.


The Master of Space Studies programme is designed to prepare scientists to respond to a myriad of challenges and opportunities within the space sector. The large scale of space projects imposes important constraints on management and requires a truly international response with accompanying  European and international legal and political measures.

You will learn, through interaction with industry, the skills necessary to compete for employment and research opportunities from among the broad applications of the space industry, including security and defence. In addition to coursework in space sciences, the curriculum is enriched by a master's thesis and a series of guest lecturers from international, national and regional institutions.

Programme outline

The interdisciplinary nature of the programme is expressed by the common core of 25 ECTS in introductory coursework. These courses are mandatory for every student. They’ll acquaint you with the different aspects that form the foundation of space-related activities.

Domain-specific optional courses, for a total of 20 ECTS, covering the domains of (A) Space Law, Policy, Business and Management, (B) Space Sciences and (C) Space Technology and Applications, are available to broaden your knowledge with the possibility of combining the latter two. 

The master’s thesis (15 ECTS), you’ll be embedded in a research team of one of the organising universities, or in an external institute, organisation or industrial company. The master’s thesis is the final section of the interdisciplinary programme, in which the acquired knowledge and abilities are applied to a complex and concrete project.


The mission of the Department of Physics and Astronomy is exploring, understanding and modelling physical realities using mathematical, computational, experimental and observational techniques.

  • Fifteen teams perform research at an international level, publishing their findings in leading journals and attracting top-level scientists.
  • Developing new physics and the application of innovation in the development of new techniques is an important aspect of our mission.
  • Interaction with industry and society is greatly encouraged and furthermore, the department is responsible for teaching basic physics courses in several other study programmes.

Career perspectives

Graduates will be in a position to develop a career in the space sector or in space research; taking up roles in

  • the space industry (engineers, product developers and technical-commercial functions);
  • research institutions with activities in space (researchers and project developers);
  • (inter)governmental bodies with responsibilities in research and development programmes related to space (project managers and directors);
  • policymakers on the national, European and international levels;
  • and in a broad range of companies and organisations which use or are facilitated by space missions.

Questions about student life in Belgium, life at KU Leuven or more information about a specific course? Chat with our students: www.kuleuven/be/chatwithourstudents.

Programme Structure

Introductory Courses
  • Introduction to Law, Policy, Business and Management
  • Introduction to Exact Sciences and Technology

Truncus Communis

  • Space Law, Policy, Business and Management
  • Fundamental Science from Space 
  • Engineering Design of Space Missions and Spacecraft Components 
  • Earth Observation 
  • Questions in Space Studies 


  • Space Law, Policy, Business and Management 
  • Space Sciences
  • Space Technology and Applications
Master's Thesis

Detailed Programme Facts

English Language Requirements

  • 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.

    Schedule IELTS
  • Minimum required score:


    The TOEFL iBT ® measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The test has four sections (reading, listening, speaking, and writing), each with a score range of 0-30, for a total score range of 0-120. Read more about TOEFL iBT ®.

    Schedule TOEFL®

General Requirements

Criteria for admission

  • a Master's degree for which he/she can motivate the relevance for space studies
  • a 2-page essay with a consistent view of the importance of the programme for his/her professional expectations, in view of the candidate's previous education programmes
  • an intake interview

Students with an initial Master's that does not have a direct apparent connection with space studies can still apply, and may be accepted depending on the power of conviction of their background and argumentation.

All international students must meet the language requirements.

For more information on the admission requirements, please visit the homepage of the programme

Tuition Fee

  • International

    6000 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 6000 EUR per year and a duration of 12 months.
  • EU/EEA

    6000 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 6000 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 Leuven

  • 810 - 1280 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.

Space Studies
Visit programme website

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.


Did you know you can compare your wishlisted programmes with our new Comparison tool?