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Study in France

WHY STUDY IN FRANCE

With its intriguing history, architecture, culture, food, tradition, music, and most important, its top-notch quality of higher education, France, certainly has reasons that make it perch on so high a pedestal for the best study abroad destination.

French institutions rank notably high, and with its long-standing policy of equal treatment to domestic and international students, France makes itself the fourth most popular destination for studying abroad.

Further, let us tell you the top reasons which make France shine out as a most desirable destination for International students:

• The cost of studying in France is comparatively more pocket-friendly to the students in comparison with the US and the UK. The universities and colleges offer pleasingly low tuition fees and the Public Universities offer a number of attractive scholarships. Most scholarships and grants are awarded on the basis of the financial needs of the students. The amount varies between 1,606 to 4,600 EUR per year, while those eligible for a merit-based grant, and receive an amount ranging from 1,800 to 6,102 EUR.
• With the Government investing heavily in higher education, France has gained an exceptional academic reputation by offering quality education at an affordable rate. As a result, France is a home to top business and engineering and arts colleges and universities in the world.
• With the qualitative education, comes the benefit of easier access to jobs/employment opportunities. Students with French degrees have an upper edge in getting jobs with handsome pay packages.

With just the right mix of everything, we bet, France offers an unmatched joie de vivre for any student in the world.

EDUCATION SYSTEM

Owning a degree in France is a matter of an immense pride. France is known to give equal weight to both domestic and international students, making it a top reason to study there.

The higher education in France is divided into three levels namely, the License Professionnelle, known as the Bachelor’s degree and the other two degrees are the Master’s and Doctorate. The bachelor’s degree is a 3-year course into any chosen field, divided into 6 semesters, the Master’s is a 2-year course the Doctorate is a 3-year course. The degrees are awarded in European credits known as ECTS. Accordingly, a bachelor’s degree is awarded on obtaining 180 ECTS, while the Master’s is obtained on gaining additional 120 credits.

Now there are broadly two types of higher educational institutes in France, the public universities and the grandes écoles (the elite higher-education institutes in France). Students are supposed to be graduates of Baccalauréat. As for international students, they are required to complete their secondary education. There are about 88 public universities spread across the country. As for the grandes écoles, there are over 300 of them covering different subject areas. Admission to grandes écoles is academically tough and more expensive in comparison to education in public universities of France.

For the admission to the prestigious grandes écoles, a student has to enroll himself/herself for preparatory training classes (known as CPGEs). Based on the course one wishes to pursue, whether business, scientific or into humanities, one is accordingly needed to enroll into the particular CPGE. Passing in that training exam is of immense importance for it is the only road to make it to a chosen grand école. There are no such competitive exams required for admissions to public universities. However, international students are required to pass proficiency tests like IELTS, TOEFL, LSAT, GRE, GMAT, varying depending on the college/ university one opts for.

COST OF STUDY AND SCHOLARSHIPS

The cost of higher education in France is primarily dependent on the course and the university one enrolls in. As mentioned before, the admission to public universities is relatively cheaper than in grand Ecoles.

Tuition Fees

Following are the average tuition fees for different courses:

• Bachelor’s program: around 190 EUR per year.
• Engineering degree: around 620 EUR per year.
• Medicine: around 450 EUR per year.
• Master’s program: around 260 EUR per year
• Ph.D. program: around 396 EUR per year.
• Grandes écoles: Since they are premier educational institutes, they charge a very high fee which may range from 500-600 EUR per year to even 10,000 EUR per year depending upon the course selection.
• Business schools: around 5000-7000 EUR per year.
• Private Universities: starting from 1,500 to 20,000 EUR per year.

The living cost can go up to 10,000 EUR per year. For those who have a tight financial budget, can rely on getting scholarships. For the need-based, the scholarship amount granted ranges 1,606 EUR to 4,600 EUR per year. The merit-based grant ranges from 1,800 EUR to 6,102 EUR per year.

Following are some scholarships in France for International students:

• Eiffel Excellence Scholarships: Eligible for Masters and Ph.D. Degree holders. Eiffel scholarship-holders on Master’s courses receives an allowance of €1,181 and scholarship-holders on Ph.D. courses receive an allowance of €1,400.
• École Normale Supérieure International Selection: About 30 exceptionally talented international students are awarded a monthly stipend of approximately 1,000 Euros for 2-3 years.
• Ampere Scholarships of Excellence at ENS de Lyon: The ENS de Lyon with its allies offer scholarships grants to exceptionally bright international students, enrolling in their Master’s program, worth 1000 EUR per month for duration of a year.
• Emily Boutmy Scholarships at Sciences Po University: The scholarships have different forms ranging from €5,000 to €10,000 for 2 years of postgraduate study or 3,000 EUR to 12,300 EUR for 3 years of undergraduate study.
• Université Paris-Saclay International Master’s Scholarships: The University grants a scholarship of 10,000 EUR per year and a maximum of 1,000 EUR for travel and visa expenses.

ELIGIBILITY REQUISITES

France, with its most exceptional and efficient educational system, is one of the top reason for bringing thousands of students to the country. The admission process and eligibility criteria for French Universities are quite different from those in other countries. It follows a very systematic and rigorous approach to admission.

Eligibility Criteria for International students for securing admissions in French Universities (Private and Public)

• International students are required to show their English proficiency through international tests like TOEFL or IELTS. They are required to send their IELTS/TOEFL score to the university they intend to study and certain universities require undertaking the of standardized admission tests like GRE GMAT, LSAT. Depending upon the selected university, a student has to undertake the require exam/s, and furnish them with the scores.
• Students pursuing an undergraduate degree are required to complete their secondary education. If the university has any specific entrance test, the student is required to pass one.
• Students pursuing Master’s degree should have an equivalent bachelor’s or diploma degree.
• Students pursuing PhD needs to have an equivalent masters or diploma degree.
• The Non-European Union/International students are required to pass the compulsory Preliminary Admission test (“demand d’admission préalable” – DAP). The application for the test can be done at Culture and Cooperation Service of the French embassy in your home country.

Eligibility Criteria for International securing admissions in Grandes écoles:

International students are required to apply through an online system for a preliminary admission at Admission Post Bac. For securing admissions to Grandes Ecoles, one has to enroll for preparatory training exam called CPGE, based on its score; one is allowed the admission to their chosen Grandes Ecole institute.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

The application procedure to study in France is more or similar with those of other countries.

Prospective students should select universities they are intending to study in and should have finished taking IELTS/TOEFL and other required standardized exams. They should fill in the online application form of the desired university and submit all the needed documents.

Following are the documents required for the application procedure:

• Prior admission or pre-registration certificate provided by the university;
• Campus France authorization;
• Passport or ID card (valid for the duration of your stay);
• ID/passport type photos;
• Copies of graduation diplomas and their French translation;
• Registration fee (185 EUR/year for a Bachelor’s degree, 260 EUR for a Master’s and 390 EUR for a Ph.D.);
• Social security fees (around 200 EUR);
• A civil liability certificate;
• Resume (only in some cases, and only for postgraduate degrees);
• Cover letter;
• French and/or English Language certificate (depending on tuition language of chosen degree);
• Transcript of records (a minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA or equivalent);
• Copies of diplomas (if not available, a certificate stating that you graduated);
• Proof that you can fund your stay in France (with a minimum of 800 euros per month).

Once all the documents have been provided, if the college/university is satisfied with the documents, the applicant will receive a confirmation offer letter. Post this, the applicant needs to complete the Registration and pay college/university fees. The applicant then needs to book an appointment with the French embassy for the visa interview. After completing the entire application procedure, the French embassy will consider the same within 48 hours, if approved, the applicant should book their tickets. The admission intake in France is during September and February.

Following is the list of the final documents needed for making entry to France, post successful application:

• Confirmed admission letter from French University/school
• Final admission letter – unconditional
• Proof of Accommodation in France
• Proof of Financial Resources
• Overseas Medical Insurance
• Flight tickets
• Academic Degree Certificate
• Resume
• Valid Passport

Most Popular Universities in France for Indian Students:

Ecole Normale Supérieure

Ecole Polytechnique

Université Pierre et Marie Curie (UPMC)

École Normale Supérieure de Lyon

Other Resources:

Visa Processing Time

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