Charm offensive to international students means more university courses in English
Universities in France are planning to offer more courses in English as part of a drive to double the number of international students coming to the country over the next 10 years. Prime Minister Edouard Philippe has also announced plans to simplify visa procedures and reform tuition fees in a bid to compete with institutions in Germany, Russia, Canada and China. France is already the world’s top non-englishspeaking student destination, but the number of foreign students at French universities fell by 8.5% between 2011 and 2016.
“In this field just as in other economic ones, the world’s balance of power is shifting,” said Mr Philippe announcing his Welcome to France plan. “That’s why we need to welcome more foreign students.”
Tuition fees will rise for students outside the European Economic Area but will still be lower than in Britain and neighbouring countries. Student visa regulations will be simplified, international students will be offered more French classes and the number of courses taught in English, which has already increased fivefold since 2004, will be boosted further.
The charm offensive is designed to attract more students from Asia and the Gulf states. But the increase in English-taught degree courses is also likely to make it easier for British expats and their offspring to study at French universities.
The Sorbonne in Paris