Radboud University Nijmegen

Radboud University (abbreviated as RU, Dutch: Radboud Universiteit, formerly Radboud Universiteit Nijmegen and before that Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen) is a public university with a strong focus on research located in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. It was established on 17 October 1923 and is situated in the oldest city of the Netherlands. The RU has seven faculties and enrolls over 22,000 students. The university features many student associations which encourage participation in extracurricular activities.

Radboud University
Radboud Universiteit
Latin: Universitas Radbodiana Noviomagensis
MottoIn Dei nomine feliciter (Latin)
Motto in English
Happily in God's name
Typeprivate (publicly funded)
Established17 October 1923
AffiliationRoman Catholic[1][2]
RectorHan van Krieken
Administrative staff
2,735 [3]
Students22,142 [4]
Location, ,
Colors     Carmine Red[5]
Guild of European Research-Intensive Universities

Radboud University Nijmegen has been placed in the top 150 universities in the world by four major ranking tables.


The first Nijmegen University was founded in 1655 and terminated around 1680. The Radboud University Nijmegen was established in 1923 as the Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen (Catholic University of Nijmegen) and started out with 27 professors and 189 students. It was founded because the Roman Catholic community wanted its own university. At the time, Roman Catholics in the Netherlands were disadvantaged and occupied almost no higher posts in government. After fierce competition with the cities of Den Bosch, Tilburg, The Hague, and Maastricht, Nijmegen was chosen to house the university. The subsequent Second World War hit the university hard. Many prominent members were lost, among them professors Robert Regout and Titus Brandsma. They were deported to Dachau concentration camp. In 1943, rector Hermesdorf refused to cooperate with the Germans. On 22 February 1944, the university lost many buildings in a bombardment. Classes resumed in March 1945. Since then, student numbers rose steadily from 3,000 in 1960 to 15,000 in 1980. As of October 2018, the university is host to 22,142 student, of which 10,7% are international students, exchange students excluded. [6]

In 2004, the university changed its name to Radboud University Nijmegen, after Saint Radboud of Utrecht, a bishop who lived around 900.[7]


Featured prominently on the west side of the university's Heyendaal campus is the Heyendaal castle. It borders the Radboud University Medical Center, a large teaching hospital located on the campus, which is linked to the university's medical department. Bordering the university hospital is the Huygens Building, which houses the Faculty of Natural Sciences. The Erasmus Tower, which contain the Faculty of Arts, are situated at the south end of the campus next to the Radboud Sports Centre (RSC). The Erasmus Tower and the RSC border the Elinor Ostrom building, which is home to the Faculty of Management Sciences, which also encompasses the political sciences and economics faculty staff. On the other side of the Erasmus Tower, a number of general lectures halls are located along with the campus pub and bookshop. Beyond this area, the Faculty of Social Sciences is currently being built. When completed, it will border the Law Faculty.

Radboud University is noted for its green campus, often listed among the most attractive in the Netherlands.[8][9]

The university is currently undertaking major efforts to renew and refresh its campus:

  • The new law faculty was completed in 2014.
  • A refurbishment of the Faculty of Dentistry building was completed in 2016.[10]
  • The nearby Jesuit Berchmanianum monastery was purchased by the university in 2013. In 2018, it was connected to the rest of the campus. It now houses the university's general services staff and will serve as its auditorium.[11]
  • The main Erasmus tower housing the Faculty of Arts and the university restaurant is currently being refurbished. That project is set for completion later in 2019.[12]
  • The High Field Magnet Laboratory (HFML) and Free Electron Lasers for Infrared eXperiments (FELIX) laboratory are set to be physically connected later in 2019.[13]
  • Finally, a new Social Sciences Faculty building, to be named after Maria Montessori, is expected to be finished in 2020 on the site of the Thomas van Aquinostraat. This street used to collectively house the Faculties of Management Sciences, Social Sciences, and Law.[14]

In 2017, a SPAR minimarket was opened in the Erasmus building which provides students with snacks and accessories.[15] The university campus borders the campus of the HAN vocational university, which in turn is located next to Heyendaal train station. Frequent shuttle buses connect the university to Nijmegen Central Station and the city centre.



Radboud University has seven faculties and enrols over 19.900 students in 112 study programs (37 bachelor's and 75 master's programs).[16]

As of September 2013, the university offers 36 international master's programs taught in English and several more taught in Dutch. There are nine bachelor's programs taught fully in English: American Studies, Artificial Intelligence, Biology, Chemistry, Computing Science, International Economics & Business, International Business Administration, English Language and Culture, and Molecular Life Sciences. International Business Communication, Psychology and Arts and Culture Studies offer English-language tracks. All other bachelors are in Dutch, although most of the required literature is in English. Some exams, papers and even classes may be in English as well, despite the programs being Dutch-taught. All master's programs have been internationally accredited by the Accreditation Organization of the Netherlands and Flanders (NVAO).

International Master's programs

All English-taught Master's programmes are research-based programmes. They are taught within the Faculties of Arts, Law, Social Sciences, Medical Sciences, Sciences and Philosophy, Theology and Religious Studies, besides the Interfaculty Research school and the Nijmegen School of Management.[17]


Radboud University is home to several research institutions, including the Business & Law Research Centre, Institute for Management Research, NanoLab Nijmegen, the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behaviour, the High Field Magnet Laboratory, and the FELIX laboratory. Faculty members Anne Cutler (1999), Henk Barendregt (2002), Peter Hagoort (2005), Theo Rasing (2008), Heino Falcke (2011), Mike Jetten (2012), Ieke Moerdijk (2012), Mikhail Katsnelson (2013), and Wilhelm Huck (2016) won the Spinoza Prize. Visiting professor Sir Andre Geim and former Ph.D. student Sir Konstantin Novoselov were awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize in Physics.

University ranking

University rankings
ARWU World[18] 101-150 (2019)
Leiden World[19] 125 (2019)
THE World[20] 128 (2020)
USNWR World[21] 104 (2020)
QS World[22] 217 (2020)

Radboud University has been named best broad university in the Netherlands for the past seven consecutive years.[23] The physics department is considered top tier. A recent accomplishment is its contribution to the first picture of a black hole.[24] The Faculty of Law is nationally unrivaled in its research in business and law,[25] and retains strong international ties with other prominent research institutions, such as Bologna, Nice and Oxford. The Faculty of Law's European Law School and Notarial Law departments are considered best in class in the Netherlands,[26] [27] just as Political Sciences, Sociology and Theology programmes in their respective fields.[23]

The QS World University Rankings ranked the university 177th in the world in 2015.[28] The university scored 45th in a 2012 ranking of European research universities.[nb 1]

In 2019, the Times Higher Education World University Rankings put the university in 123th place worldwide.[30]

Radboud Excellence Initiative

The Radboud Excellence Initiative was created with the dual purposes of attracting talents from every academic field to Radboud University while strengthening international bonds between universities worldwide. The initiative is a joint enterprise of both Radboud University and Radboud University Nijmegen Medical Center. It provides two routes by which a researcher may come to Radboud University. Promising researchers who have completed their doctorate between two and eight years earlier at the time of nomination may be nominated for a fellowship whereas those researchers who are more established in their discipline may be nominated for a professorship.[31]

Once selected, fellows may come to Radboud University to undertake research for a maximum of two years. Professors may come to Radboud University for a maximum period of six months.[31]

Coat of arms

The coat of arms was designed at the time of the founding of the university by the goldsmith workshop of the Brom family in Utrecht. The lower part is the coat of arms of the Catholic Church in the Netherlands. The dove is the symbol of the Holy Spirit. The shield is surmounted by the crown of Charlemagne. Underneath is the motto "In Dei Nomine Feliciter."[32]

Notable alumni

Notable faculty

See also


  1. RU is cited as Stichting Katholieke Universiteit, the name of the not-for-profit management board for Radboud University and the University Medical Center (UMC) St. Radboud.[29]


  1. "Een bijzondere universiteit". Archived from the original on 22 February 2013.
  2. "Other networks - International Office English". ru.nl. Archived from the original on 10 September 2012.
  3. http://www.topuniversities.com/university/453/radboud-university-nijmegen. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. "Facts & figures".
  5. "Colour". ru.nl.
  6. "RU Facts and Figures".
  7. "History of the Radboud University".
  8. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Green campus". Department of Property Management.
  9. "Facilities on the campus - Working at Radboud University". Ru.nl. Archived from the original on 10 September 2012. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  10. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Renovatie Tandheelkunde". Universitair Vastgoed Bedrijf.
  11. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Berchmanianum". Department of Property Management.
  12. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Erasmusgebouw and square". Department of Property Management.
  13. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Connection between HFML and FELIX". Department of Property Management.
  14. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "New building Faculty of Social Science". New building FSW.
  15. "SPAR | SPAR University RU Nijmegen". www.spar.nl. Retrieved 15 March 2018.
  16. articles with dead external links%5d%5d%5b%5bCategory:Articles with dead external links from December 2017%5d%5d%5b%5bCategory:Articles with permanently dead external links%5d%5d "Internal Server Error" Check |url= value (help).
  17. "Overview of Master's programmes and specialisations". Archived from the original on 24 June 2013.
  18. "Academic Ranking of World Universities 2019". ShanghaiRanking. Retrieved 17 August 2019.
  19. "CWTS Leiden Ranking 2019". Retrieved 5 October 2019.
  20. "World University Rankings 2020 - Radboud University Nijmegen". Times Higher Education (THE). 18 September 2019.
  21. "U.S. News Education: Best Global Universities 2020".
  22. "QS World University Rankings 2020". Top Universities. 15 July 2019.
  23. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Keuzegids 2019: Radboud opnieuw beste brede, klassieke universiteit". Radboud Universiteit.
  24. "Dit is de allereerste foto van (de schaduw van) een zwart gat". NRC.
  25. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Onderzoeksmaster Onderneming & Recht en master Nederlands recht nummer 1 in Keuzegids". Faculteit der Rechtsgeleerdheid.
  26. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Bachelor Notarieel Recht". Radboud Universiteit.
  27. ingevoerd, Geen OWMS velden. "Bachelor European Law School". Radboud Universiteit.
  28. "QS World University Rankings® 2015/16". Top Universities. 11 September 2015.
  29. "European Research Ranking 2012". researchranking.org.
  30. "World University Rankings 2019". The Times Higher Education. 26 September 2018. Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  31. "What is the Radboud Excellence Initiative?". Radboud University Nijmegen. Retrieved 2 June 2018.
  32. Judith van Beukering (red.) 80 jaar KU Nijmegen - 80 objecten. Tachtig jaar Katholieke Universiteit Nijmegen in voorwerpen van wetenschap, geschiedenis en kunst (Nijmegen 2003) 15.

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