Thursday, July 18

Study in France: A Guide For International Students

Are you considering your next European study destination? If so, studying abroad in France should be at the top of your list! The advantages of studying abroad are numerous, and enrolling in a Graduate program in France provides a distinctive academic environment for students looking for sophistication and dynamism.

Known as the French Republic or République française, France is a country located in Western Europe, with its influence extending to overseas regions such as South America (French Guiana) and various islands in the Pacific, Indian, and Atlantic oceans. It shares borders with Belgium, Luxembourg, Germany, Switzerland, Monaco, Italy, Andorra, Spain, and the Netherlands. Interestingly, France holds the record for the most time zones (twelve in total) due to its diverse territories around the world.

So why is studying abroad in France the ideal choice for your academic and cultural growth? Picture yourself residing in a country adorned with picturesque landscapes, ranging from the majestic capital, Paris, to the charming villages of the French South, the sprawling vineyards of Bordeaux, the enchanting city of Strasbourg, or the snow-covered peaks of the French Alps.

Opting to study abroad in France will significantly enhance your resume. France has long been regarded as a European and global hub for philosophy, arts, culture, and science, and it currently stands as a prominent center for business, technology, and tourism. With over 85 million tourists visiting each year, France ranks among the top tourism destinations globally. Moreover, it boasts the fifth-highest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and holds the position of the world’s seventh-largest economy.

Why France is a great study abroad destination

Furthermore, France plays an active role on the global stage, being a prominent member of various international organizations. As a leading member of the European Union and Eurozone, France also holds positions in significant bodies such as the United Nations Security Council, the Group of Seven (G7), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and the World Trade Organization (WTO).

France attracts over 250,000 international students annually, making it a highly sought-after study abroad destination. It’s no surprise, as France ranks 8th globally and 5th in Europe among the top study destinations. Renowned for its rich cultural heritage, cuisine, sightseeing opportunities, and internationally acclaimed universities, France also ranks 3rd among student preferences for experiencing a new culture or lifestyle.

France – Quick facts & figures

  • Capital: Paris
  • Official Language: French
  • Population: 67 million
  • Total Area: 640,679 km²
  • International Students: 358,000
  • Academic Year: September – June
  • Currency: Euro (€)
  • Calling Code: +33
  • Time Zone: CET (UTC+1)

More about studying abroad in France

France is renowned internationally for its rich contributions to arts, philosophy, and culture, boasting some of history’s greatest thinkers like Descartes, Foucault, Voltaire, Jean-Paul Sartre, and Simone de Beauvoir. The French education system comprises three stages: primary, secondary, and higher education, all overseen by the French Ministry of Education.

Higher education in France encompasses public universities like the renowned Sorbonne University, specialized schools, and prestigious Grandes écoles such as Sciences Po Paris for political studies, HEC Paris for economics, Polytechnique, and the École des hautes études en sciences sociales for social studies, among others.

Public universities provide academic, technical, and professional degrees to high school graduates who have obtained their baccalauréat, with degrees awarded at three levels of achievement known as cycles. High schools prepare students for admission into universities, Grandes écoles, or specialized schools. Popular fields of study in France include economics and business, fashion, hospitality, technology, and tourism.

Grandes écoles, both public and private, offer intensive and specialized three-year studies in disciplines such as business, public administration, or engineering. Admission to Grandes écoles is highly competitive, often based on exam scores. Prospective students typically complete a two-year preparatory course called cours préparatoires or prépas after receiving their baccalauréat. Graduates of Grandes écoles earn a Master’s degree.

Additionally, specialized schools in France, whether public or private, train students for professional careers in various fields such as art, architecture, social work, or tourism, offering Master’s degrees as well.