The ARES’ Chambre of Hautes Ecoles and Higher Education of Social Promotion (Chambre des Hautes Ecoles et de l’Enseignement supérieur de promotion sociale) represents the French-speaking university colleges and universities of applied sciences of Belgium. The ARES is the umbrella organisation of all higher education institutions (universities, university colleges, higher arts schools) in French-speaking Belgium. The ARES incorporated the responsibilities in 2014 of, amongst others, the CGHE, Conseil Général des Hautes Ecoles, a long-time member of EURASHE.
The University Colleges and Universities of Applied Sciences offer higher education in one or two cycles for almost 75,000 students in eight fields of study: agronomy, applied arts, economics, paramedicine, teacher training, sociology, technology and translation-interpretation. The one-cycle courses (3 years) give students a vocational qualification that culminates with the award of a bachelor degree. They cover 180 ECTS and put a major focus on integrating students into working life. The two-cycle courses (5 years) have a university level. They offer advanced scientific and technological training. The first 180-ECTS cycle takes three years and leads to an „academic“ bachelor degree. The second 120-ECTS cycle leads to a master degree.