Pre-College Programme Electives

  • Pre-College Programme students in class (Photo: Manuel Braun)Pre-College Programme students in class (Photo: Manuel Braun)

In addition to their core courses in the social sciences, Pre-College Programme students will participate in one elective class of their choice (about 18 contact hours). Students will be able to choose one elective course among different options: either a French language course or an introductory workshop to one of Sciences Po’s key disciplines, such as political science, international relations, law or sociology.

Admitted students will list their options among available elective courses in order of preference. The Summer School will make every effort to accommodate students' preferences, but cannot guarantee that students will get their first choices.

Option 1: Elective French Language course

French as a foreign language classes are available at the beginner and intermediate levels. Following a holistic approach to language mastery, French language classes will introduce students to French culture, literature and methodology while improving their knowledge of the French language.

  • At the intermediate levels, students will improve their oral and written expression, and develop both their linguistic knowledge and literary background. They will learn to express their own opinions through various exercises: oral presentations, debates, academic writing, interviews, creative workshops, readings of texts and articles. Different aspects of French culture and society will be explored, from politics and social issues to media, cinema, music and literature. Download the course overview for French as a foreign language - Intermediate levels (PDF, 265 KB)

Please note that admitted students who chose French language as a first choice for their elective course will need to provide proof of their current level of French as part of their registration - except students who are at a complete beginner level. More information on Language Requirements.

In the event of insufficient student enrollment in one of the French language classes, admitted students will be given the option to join a social sciences workshop instead (see below).

Option 2: Elective Workshop

Workshops introduce students to one of Sciences Po’s key disciplines through the lens of a specific topic. Taught entirely in English and in small groups, these courses allow students to exercise their critical thinking, express their opinions and debate.

The following workshops will be available in 2019:

Discrimination Worldwide: a sociological perspective

  • Professor: Lisa Buchter
  • Overview: This course offers a sociological perspective on discrimination across the world. Each session introduces a new topic: race, gender, educational inequalities, homophobia, market discrimination, urban inequalities, and the institutional creation of inequalities in many different national contexts, such as France, the USA, Mexico, Vietnam or Namibia.
  • More information: View the course overview for "Discrimination Worldwide"

Get a Deal: international negotiations in practice

  • Professor: Barthélémy Michalon
  • Overview: In this workshop, students are exposed to a wide variety of scenarios and challenges, especially in an international context, and they need to resort to negotiation to overcome them. Students are faced with various role-playing situations, such as trade or diplomatic negotiations. This way, theoretical explanations provided in each class are immediately put into practice through interactive exercises and negotiation models.
  • More information: View the course overview for "Get a Deal"

Gender in the Making: social relations through a critical lens

  • Professor: Prunelle Aymé
  • Overview: Through a variety of themes, students will analyse gender as a social fact intertwined with other economic, ethnic, religious, sexual and political relations. Students will aim understand gender as being in the making, and will explore the concept of gender identities as plural, constantly evolving, constructed and reconstructed through time. 
  • More information: View the course overview for "Gender in the Making"

Introduction to Humanities: politics, violence, and resistance

  • Professor: Vincent Millou
  • Overview: From Arendt, Kant and Thoreau, to Nietzsche and Baldwin, students will be introduced to some of the most elegant and sophisticated texts ever written on the topic of violence and resistance. Throughout the course, students will learn key methodological skills such as how to structure an argument, how to avoid or spot fallacies, and how to revise written texts.
  • More information: View the course overview for "Introduction to Humanities"

La Démocratie en Europe

  • Professor: Mathieu Fulla
  • Overview (in French): Ce cours entend discuter l’idée selon laquelle l’histoire de l’Europe au XXe siècle serait celle de l’avènement irrésistible de la démocratie libérale et de l’économie de marché, la chute du Mur de Berlin scellant la « fin de l’histoire », pour reprendre la célèbre formule de Francis Fukuyama. Il interrogera enfin les causes du rejet de plus en plus massif par les Européens des structures traditionnelles de la démocratie libérale.
  • More information: View the course overview for "La Démocratie en Europe"

Migration Issues in Comparative Perspective

  • Professor: Ariane Chebel d'Appollonia
  • Overview: This course offers a comparative analysis of Europe's and America's distinct responses to the recent challenges posed by international migration flows. The fundamental goal is for students to understand how the immigration-terrorism nexus plays out over time in Western democracies.
  • More information: View the course overview for "Migration Issues in Comparative Perspective"
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