Study in Paris

University in Paris
Updated 2022-05-02 22:23

Studying in Paris means you get quality education coupled with an exquisite cultural experience altogether. If you dream of studying in Paris, learn about the French university system and some of the most prestigious Parisian institutions you can consider, as well as Parisian student life.

Public universities in France

France has a total of 83 public universities, all of which are subsidized by the French government. This means that students from all walks of life have access to a rigorously regulated, high quality education system. There are also courses in Paris taught exclusively in languages other than French - about 30 at the Bachelor's level and over 400 at the Master's level!

Private universities in France

Tuition fees at public universities are higher than at public universities, usually around 2,500 euros and can go up to 8,000 euros a year. Private schools and business universities are extremely prestigious and have excellent reputations, so it is best to research your institution thoroughly before applying. Also, keep in mind that French universities are based on a system of earned credits called the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS). In short, your studies in France and your French degree will be recognized by European universities.

The best universities in Paris

The Ecole Normale Supérieure de Paris (ENS)

The ENS de Paris has a Grande Ecole status (elite and selective institutions whose graduates reach the highest levels of the French public and private sectors) and also a university status. The ENS is part of the Paris Sciences et Lettres (PSL) research university, a nine-member university faculty formed in 2010. The ENS is an institution of excellence that offers an array of courses for internationally recognized degrees in fields such as biology, chemistry, computer science, geosciences, mathematics, physics, cognitive science, economics, geography, history, theoretical arts, languages, ancient sciences, diplomacy, and geopolitics, to name a few. The ENS prepares its students for privileged positions in public administration, while its research center is an internationally recognized institution with some 1,700 researchers working in collaboration with leading research organizations around the world.

The ENS allows international students to apply based on selective eligibility criteria. Once you meet these criteria, you will still have to pass the written and oral tests that determine whether or not you will be able to continue your studies at the ENS. Naturally, the university offers courses in English. However, for arts and social sciences courses, a reasonable level of French is highly recommended. In addition, the ENS provides a monthly stipend to international students and housing on one of its three campuses. Learn more about the ENS.

Paris-Sud University

Although courses in marketing, economics, human resources, and other subjects are available, the Université Paris-Sud nevertheless focuses on the scientific field. Chemistry, computer science, biology, pharmaceuticals, medicine, environment, energy, earth sciences, materials, electronics, and mechanics are the most popular fields of study, and Paris-Sud is primarily known for its research in mathematics and physics. In fact, its physics research has produced two Nobel Prize winners, Pierre-Gilles de Gennes in 1991 and Albert Fert in 2007.

The university accepts international students who wish to complete an exchange program but warns that, apart from its "international courses" for master's and doctoral students, the rest of the courses are only taught in French. It is therefore imperative to have a reasonable level of French, even if no language proficiency test is required. Find out more about the University of Paris-Sud here.

The University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne brings together nearly 40,000 students. Specializing in the humanities and social sciences (visual arts, cinema, law, economics, geography and development, management, history, art history, philosophy, political science and social science), it also offers a mathematics program and a Bachelor's degree program focused on business, environmental management, tourism, hospitality and catering. The university stands out in the field of archaeology where it is ranked 23rd in the world.

Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne attracts many international students. The university offers a list of courses taught entirely or partially in English, and while it does not award scholarships directly to international students, it does provide resources detailing possible organizations to which they can apply. Some of its campuses are located in Paris, others in the suburbs. Learn more about the University of Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne.

Ecole des Ponts - ParisTech

Previously known as the Ecole des Ponts et Chaussées, ParisTech is a very large engineering school. Among its alumni, we can proudly name Henri Becquerel, Nobel Prize winner in physics. Through its 12 research laboratories, École des Ponts is very involved in the challenges of the modern world and develops Master's and Doctoral programs adapted to subjects including environmental science, urban management, transportation and more. Various types of funding can be provided to international students, such as the merit scholarship offered by École des Ponts itself, a stipend of 850 euros per month, transportation costs funded by the European Community, and grants based on social criteria that apply to the standard of living in the home country. Please note that the Ecole des Ponts requires at least a B1 level diploma in French. If you do not meet this requirement, you must take French classes to improve your skills. École des Ponts is located in Champs sur Marne, and some of its branches are based in the suburbs of Paris. Here is more information about the École des Ponts.

The Sorbonne University

Formed in 2018 as a result of the merger between Paris-Sorbonne and Pierre and Marie Curie University, Paris Sorbonne has the largest number of humanities and arts faculties in France. There are more than 10,000 international students. Learn more about Paris-Sorbonne University..

University Paris Diderot ' Paris 7

The campus of the University Paris Diderot is located in the 13th arrondissement of Paris. It is a multidisciplinary university that offers courses in health, languages, psychoanalysis, history of science, art, computer science, and more. It is highly ranked in mathematics and is very involved in research, particularly in the fields of neuroscience, oncology and hematology. Paris Diderot is one of the eight universities that make up the Paris Cité consortium, which grants (to a limited number of programs) scholarships to foreign Master's students. To learn more about the Paris Diderot University, click here.

Paris Dauphine University

Paris Dauphine University is an institution focused on organizational and decision sciences, with an emphasis on multidisciplinary education. It was the first French university to be identified as EQUIS, which means that it is recognized worldwide in the management of educational systems. It is not surprising that Paris Dauphine ranks so highly in the areas of statistics and operations research, as well as in the teaching of applied mathematics, law, economics, management, social sciences, computer technology organizations and journalism. Moreover, Paris Dauphine has partnered with many international universities, but it also accepts foreign students whose universities are not part of this agreement. Paris Dauphine has strengthened its range of courses taught in English, has developed more courses in French and also offers seminars in French for foreign students at the beginning of the semester. Find more information about Paris Dauphine University here.

Formalities to come and study in France

If you want to study in France, it is important to know the formalities to be able to enter the country properly.

First of all, regarding visas, nationals of the European Union, Switzerland, Monaco, Andorra and the European Economic Area can enroll in a French institution without having to apply for a visa. Nationals of other countries must apply for a student visa in their country of origin if the duration of their studies exceeds three months.

If you are a student and wish to enroll in a French higher education institution, you will need to have a foreign secondary school certificate or diploma in your possession.

Registration procedures and additional formalities vary depending on your country of origin. The Campus France website provides a very good overview of the different aspects of student life in France when you are a foreigner.

Student life and leisure activities in Paris

Student life is not only what happens on the campus. Indeed, it also concerns other aspects such as renting an apartment. This part is even more important because the Parisian rental market is one of the most difficult in France. Rentals are expensive, even those for students, and they go very quickly as soon as an ad is published. You will have to be very resourceful to find your student housing. To do this, take into account all the different types of rentals that can be found: studio or apartment rentals, shared apartments, rooms in private homes, student residences with the CROUS in Paris.

Students in Paris can take advantage of special offers and student discounts for everything related to culture. Indeed, Paris museums, cinemas, theaters and amusement parks such as Disneyland Paris or Parc Astérix allow all students to benefit from reduced rates. Access to certain sports facilities such as fitness centers or swimming pools also allows students to avoid paying the standard price. Finally, some restaurants, fast-food restaurants and bars also offer special rates. Parisian cuisine will no longer hold any secrets for you!

If you are studying in Paris, you will certainly need to get around the city, whether to get to your university or for any other necessity. Again, Parisian transportation services offer monthly and annual passes at a discounted price.

Leisure in Paris as a student

Want to take advantage of your studies in France to go out and have fun at night? Paris has no shortage of neighborhoods that are filled with Parisian students every night. One of the nightlife areas is certainly the popular and trendy Bastille, where you will find lively streets as soon as the sun goes down. Oberkampf is also one of the liveliest neighborhoods in the city of lights. It is even considered the Parisian HQ for all students who love nightlife. You can enjoy happy hours in the many bars of the street Jean-Pierre Timbaud, then continue in the many clubs present in the nearby streets. Finally, if you are looking for a cosmopolitan atmosphere, go to the Marais, Châtelet and Montorgueil. If you like Speakeasy, those hidden and unusual bars, you won't be disappointed because Paris is full of them!

Lovers of green spaces and outdoor walks will certainly appreciate the numerous parks and woods of Paris such as the Bois de Boulogne and the Bois de Vincennes, the Jardin des Plantes, the Parc des Buttes-Chaumont, the Luxembourg Gardens, the Parc Monceau, the Parc de Montsouris or the Champ de Mars.

As you can see, during your free time you will not lack activities during your studies in Paris and you will have the opportunity to have fun and enrich yourself culturally every day, in addition to being able to taste the delicious Parisian cuisine.

Useful links :

Campus France
Public Service - Student Visa
Ile de France Mobilités
RATP - Students
Live, Study
Loc Service
Roommate Map
Le Bon Coin

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