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How much does the programme cost?

The total cost is approximately equivalent to one year of higher education at home.

You will spend more on medical preparation and travel costs, but you will save on accommodation and living expenses during your stay in the South.

The route counsellors can give you a more detailed description of the costs per country.

The registration fee for the Banaba is equal to the registration fee for all other bachelors, namely € 906. There are of course no costs associated with volunteering in the projects. 

Other costs are for your plane ticket, vaccinations and possibly a visa (depending on the country). You also pay a monthly rent for your room with a host family. You pay this rent directly to the host families or to the projects, not to the UCLL. We estimate the total cost (all included) at €4000 - €5500 for the entire academic year.

Are you going alone or in a group to the South?

In order to be able to integrate as good as possible in your internship environment, it is best that you do not always find yourself together with another student in exactly the same network or at the same project location.

However, we always try to send you to a certain region as a group, because we think it is important for our students to have the possibility to rely on each other if necessary.

There are two options:

  1. You will stay in the same village or in the same city as one or more other students. This allows you to find each other according to your own needs. For example: staying with different internship partners, with the same partner but each with a different project of this partner, in each other's neighbourhood or in the same house.
  2. You stay at 1 or 2 hours drive from other students and therefore have the opportunity to visit each other during the weekend.

From the intake we will prepare you for a departure as a group. For the programme it is important that you are able to deal with each other in a professional and respectful manner during your stay in the South. Dealing with each other is also part of the evaluation criteria of the course unit 'Internship abroad'.

The proximity of other students depends on the project and the region you choose. We will discuss this in detail during the intake procedure, taking your wishes into account as much as possible.

How do you live there, do you have to arrange this yourself?

The programme facilitates the search for a housing formula as much as possible. 

There are various housing formulas:

  •  host family
  • student room (e.g. on a university campus)
  • room on the project
  • living together with other young people in an apartment

A combination is also possible, e.g. a first period in a host family and then the choice of other options.

Each of these residential formulas has its own characteristics. We prefer residential formulas in which you live under one roof with locals. In many of the countries in which we operate, we work with host families.

Nevertheless, in some regions, this form of coexistence does not exist very much or is less appropriate to the context. The formula in which a student is housed in the South ultimately depends on the possibilities within a particular country, region or project. 

During the second meeting (orientation meeting with the person in charge of the country), you will receive more specific information about the possibilities with regard to housing.

When do the courses start?

The course starts half September 2021. It's the start of the preparation process of 9 weeks.

How many hours a week are there classes?

From September until the end of November classes will be scheduled on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. On Thursdays and Fridays there are no classes. The lessons take place at the campus Social School (SSH, Groeneweg 151 in Heverlee) between 8:30 and 17:30. Some of the classes can take place online.

Exceptionally, following activities are planned outside the general schedule:

  • in September: 3 days with 2 nights together with the students from all the other countries
  • guest speaker about your country e.g. one evening
  • 1 cultural activity with your country group e.g. in the weekend

After returning from the South you will still take part in the return two days at the end of June, but there are no more lessons. All you have to do is come to the campus for the evaluation interview, the exams and the defence of your Bachelor's thesis.

what exactly does the bap/research project in the south involve?

The Bachelor's thesis is a scientifically sound research project in which you, as a student, demonstrate that you have acquired all of the educational competencies.

Method: Participatory Action Research

Within the Banaba International North-South Cooperation, we explicitly opt for a participatory action research approach (PAR).

PAR is a scientifically recognised research tradition that is very much in line with our vision on international cooperation.

PAR is explicitly based on locally defined priorities and 'real life problems' and investigates these together with the local organisation or community.

Together with these stakeholders, a process of critical reflection and dialogue is started on the problem definition in order to arrive at insight and change.

PAR's success is measured:

  • not only by the quality of the information obtained;
  • but also by the way in which the organisation or community was actively involved in the research
  • and the extent to which their knowledge, skills and capacities were improved.

Bachelor's thesis: rather practical or knowledge-oriented

Depending on your background and the nature of the research, a Bachelor's thesis can be practice-oriented or knowledge-oriented.

As a student, you demonstrate that you can formulate and elaborate a problem definition and a research question in a methodically responsible manner, taking the North-South International Cooperation approach as a starting point.

It reflects:

  • your reasoning skills; 
  • ability to process information; 
  • your critical reflection;
  • the competence to apply solution strategies in problem situations in practice.

In addition to using a coherent foundation from the scientific literature, you collect primary research material and a personal and critical contribution is expected.