French Language

Welcoming beginner, intermediate, and advanced students of French

The information on this page pertains to the Summer School's University Programme.  Find more information on the Pre-College Programme here.

“In my university, we focus more on literature, so the Summer School was an occasion to learn more about political and sociological issues in France and the European Union while studying French.”  - Yingtong, China 

Sign up for the Summer School newsletter to receive more information about the 2017 French language track as soon as it becomes available. 

French Language Track Overview

Students who choose to study the French language at the Summer School have the unique advantage of learning at one of France’s most prestigious universities while being immersed in the daily routines of life in Paris.

Students of the French language track take classes at one of six levels adapted to their knowledge of the French language. In assessing a student’s level, Sciences Po uses the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), which places full beginners at level A1 and advanced students at level C2. Download an explanation of the CEFR levels (in English and French, PDF, 140Ko).

The coursework offered in the French language track is determined by a student's language level:

  • In 2016, French language courses account for the majority of class time (at least 48 contact hours) at every level, allowing students to make maximum progress during their time at the Summer School. 
  • At the beginner levels, language learning was reinforced both through small-group tutorials and “real-life” activities such as Outdoor French classes that took language learning outside of the classroom and into the city. 
  • At the more advanced levels, students took a variety of classes designed to prepare them for study within the French education system, from methodology workshops to small thematic classes on topics related to the social sciences or the humanities. 
  • In addition, students at every level had access to Sciences Po lecture classes on topics in social sciences and the humanities taught in both English and French. Past lecture subjects have included French history, French politics, art history, and international relations. 

In partnership with the Alliance Française Paris Ile-de-France, Sciences Po offered 2016 Summer School students the option to take the tests for the French Ministry of Education’s official Diplôme d'études en langue française (DELF – levels up to B2) or Diplôme approfondi de langue française (DALF – levels C1 and C2). Please note that in 2016, these exams only took place during the July session.