ApplicationHow to Apply to Study at a University in France

How to Apply to Study at a University in France

When deciding to apply for a college in France you of course must fill out the application in its entirety. The faster you do so, you speed up the process of the admissions committee evaluating you and deciding if you’re a good fit for the school.

As an international student, the application process may differ depending on your nationality.

Here’s a short guide on how you can apply for college in France.

For European Students

To apply for admission in a French university as an international student from another EU country, you will usually need:

  1. Completed university application
  2. ID photo or driver’s license
  3. High school transcripts (or relevant equivalent)
  4. Essay (if asked)
  5. English proficiency results (TOEFL, IELTS, Duolingo etc.)
  6. Apply for financial aid program (if the University provides one)
  7. Application fee (if asked)
  8. Any other required document depending on the University

For Non-European Students

If you are not from an EU country, when applying for college in France, you need:

  1. Completed university application
  2. High school and college transcripts (If you didn’t attend a college then just the high school ones will do)
  3. Copy of passport
  4. A passport sized photo
  5. Essay (if asked)
  6. English proficiency results (TOEFL, IELTS, Duolingo etc.)
  7. Copy of birth certificate
  8. Certified translation of the birthplace of your parents
  9. Proof that you can support yourself financially
  10. Any other required document depending on the University
  11. After admission: A French Student Visa

Entry requirements for French Universities

Once you have chosen a program in a University in France you want to apply to, you can begin the application process. We should note that for each University it is different, some Universities for example may ask of you GRE, GMAT or LSAT aor admission – these are internationally used tests which ensure that applicants are prepared for the challenges of advanced study. Here are some general entry requirements that you might definitely face when applying to a French University.

General Entry Requirements

Most French universities will ask for the following documents for admission:

  • A Campus France authorization
  • A passport copy
  • A passport sized photo of yourself
  • Copies of transcripts and graduation diplomas
  • A copy of your European health card (for EU students)
  • Application fee (if required)
  • A civil liability certificate
  • A cover letter
  • French and/or English proof of language proficiency
  • Proof that you have the financial resources to fund your stay in France

MA Entry Information

If you want to apply for an MA program in a French university, keep the following in mind:

  1. Masters in France is usually 2 years in duration
  2. French Masters degrees are organized into “teaching units” (TU) to focus on different topics within a wilder subject area (practical workshops, theoretical discussion, and independent project-work)
  3. Dissertation (or a similar extended research project)
  4. There are two types of Masters: Specialized Masters and MBA programmes
  5. Specialized Masters – is sometimes used to refer to advanced programmes awarded by Grandes Écoles.
    a) Four semesters long
                        b) Competitive applications
                        c) Highly intensive
  6. MBA programmes – originally developed in America but France was the first country to offer these in Europe. French business schools tend to be one of the most competitive to get into.

PhD Programs

The majority of PhDs in France are conducted as a part of a programme within doctoral schools, there are 266 in total. They collaborate with research laboratories and centres to provide the doctoral training for PhD candidates. A ‘doctorate’ in duration is six semesters for a standard 3-year PhD, resulting in two teaching (or research) semesters per year.

What you need to enroll for a doctorate:

  1. Find a thesis topic and thesis supervisor
  2. You should look for a Doctorate during the second year of your Master’s
  3. Check with your doctoral school for information if you need funding or not

Tuition fees for French Universities

The entry requirements as well as tuition fees differ depending on the University. For example some Universities might not ask for a high fee or SAT results but some might. On average, here’s how much you might have to pay for tuition in a French University based on your degree.

  • Bachelor’s degree: 2,770 euros per year.
  • Master’s degree: 3,770 euros per year.
  • PhD’s degree: 2,770 380 per year.

For more information on tuition cost in French Universities and how you can get funding, see French Tuition Costs[3] .

Do I Need a Student Visa?

If you’re not a European student, here’s what you’ll need to obtain a student visa:

  • An acceptance letter from an accredited institution in France. This should be on official headed paper, with details of your program of study and the start and end dates of study.
  • Proof that you’re able to fund yourself while staying in France. The current amount required is €615 per month, which can be shown with a bank statement, a guarantor’s letter or a notice of funding from a loan, scholarship or grant.
  • Proof of return ticket home. Often this is in the form of the actual ticket or reservation showing the date of departure, but can be a handwritten statement of intent, including intended departure dates.
  • Proof of medical insurance (minimum cover €30,000)
  • Proof of accommodation. Can be shown in the form of student housing confirmation or a certificate of board and lodging or ‘attestation d’accueil’ (if you’re living with friends or relatives).
  • Proof of proficiency in French, if you are studying a French-language course.

Can I Study in English in France?

Studying in English in France, although not the most common thing you hear, is possible.

Public Universities in France are some of the most affordable institutions in Europe. Some of them have English-taught programmes where you can get a full French English. Most of them will also include teaching you French while you study in English but some like “Sciences Po” have English-only programmes. Read our article about how to find English-taught programmes in France and which are the best ones.

Popular courses to pick in France

  • Art

Art is something that the French know plenty about. Some of the world’s best artists come from the country. An Arts degree can open an exciting world of possibilities and potential while helping you to take on a greater appreciation of the fine arts of the country. If you are creative and want to extend your source of inspiration, choosing this degree could be the best option for you.

  • Business

International Business is another popular course taught in France in which you can earn your degree. While studying and getting new skills you will also have multiple opportunities to pick a career. With a business degree, the areas in which you can work in are not limited. Many people make their way to the universities in France when they seek an International Business degree.

  • Law

Another degree in France that attracts international students from all over the world. French Universities are appealing to law students because of the high level of academics. Those who can speak French well enough to attend school can get an affordable education from some of the top schools and educators in the world of international education. Click here to read our article if you want to find out more about different courses in France and why students pick them

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