Licentiate degrees vary widely in their meaning, and in a few countries are doctoral level qualifications. Sweden awards the licentiate degree as a two-year qualification at doctoral level and the doctoral degree (PhD) as a four-year qualification.  Sweden originally abolished the Licentiate in 1969 but reintroduced it in response to demands from business.  Finland also has a two-year doctoral level licentiate degree, similar to Sweden's.  Outside of Scandinavia, the licentiate is normally a lower level qualification. In Belgium, the licentiate was the basic university degree prior to the Bologna Process and was approximately equivalent to a bachelor's degree,   while in France and other countries it is the bachelor's-level qualification in the Bologna process.  In the Pontifical system, the Licentiate in Sacred Theology (STL) is equivalent to an advanced master's degree, or the post-master's coursework required in preparation for a doctorate (. similar in level to the Swedish/Finnish licentiate degree), while other licences (such as the Licence in Canon Law) are at the level of master's degrees. 
The VUB offers a flexible Doctoral Training Programme. The emphasis lies on an individual programme. Although the programme is in principle not compulsory, you are highly encouraged to participate because the large number of seminars and workshops on offer enables you to develop a wider range of skills. The Doctoral Training Programme presents PhD students with a structural framework for acquiring and developing skills which will support their research as well as their teaching abilities, but which will also prove valuable outside their discipline and the academic environment. The programme offers the opportunity to take part, free of charge, in numerous masterclasses, symposiums and expert seminars, as well as many workshops such as presentation skills, project management, academic English or career coaching.