APA Paris: Premier Academics, Culture, Community

Video and Photos

Explore Paris and create lifelong friendships at Academic Programs Abroad.
Explore Paris and create lifelong friendships at Academic Programs Abroad.
Art History students will visit museums as part of their studies.
Art History students will visit museums as part of their studies.
Academic Programs Abroad students visit French chateaus as part of the program.
Academic Programs Abroad students visit French chateaus as part of the program.

About

Become a true Parisian and take classes in French alongside your French peers with APA's Paris Program. Build your schedule by choosing courses, in any field of study, at our University of Paris and higher education partner institutions, in-house electives, or replace a class with an independent study/research. Receive weekly one-on-one language support with a French professor and teaching assistant. A wide range of academic support is available throughout your term in Paris.

Experience French culture with weekly events and tickets to the performing arts, exclusive day and weekend excursions. To facilitate a truly immersive experience, students live with carefully selected French hosts, in student residences, or independent apartment living. Many take advantage of community involvement opportunities like volunteering in an English class at a local elementary school or joining an intramural sports team. Two-month, full-time professional summer internships are available.

Highlights
  • Build your own schedule and direct-enroll into the Paris university system: take classes taught in French in the fields of your choice.
  • Choose an APA in-house course in art history and/or political science - an international study tour is included in each course!
  • Receive weekly one-on-one language support with a French professor and teaching assistant.
  • Take part in French culture with events, tickets to the performing arts, excursions, cooking workshop, and free entry into museums.
  • Extend your stay with a two-month, full-time summer internship.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

93%
based on 25 reviews
  • Academics 8.4
  • Support 9.7
  • Fun 9.1
  • Housing 8.9
  • Safety 9.3
Showing 16 - 25 of 25
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Kylie
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing way to explore French culture and improve language skills

Going abroad to Paris with APA was undoubtedly the best experience of my college career. I lived comfortably in the 17th with my host family in an apartment surrounded by bakeries, close to the lovely Parc Monceau, and a few minutes walk from an amazing open-air market.

After class, I spent time with friends on the Seine or exploring Paris's seemingly-infinite collection of museums. On weekends, I wandered different Parisian neighborhoods, sat in cafes with a book and an espresso, and bar hopped. On several occasions, I was lucky enough to go on weekend excursions with APA to beautiful Chateaus, vineyards, and gardens.

APA offered a great support network and made the transition from American academics to French university fairly painless. They also invested a lot of time to make sure that students' course credits would be recognized at their home universities. Although the informal language classes at their Alesia office were a pain, I can't really say I have any other complaints about the academics.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this program - you are able to take classes whose rigor matches those of American schools (if you so choose), get the support you need from a small program, and experience french culture without living in an American bubble (which often happens with many other abroad programs and universities, like Sciences Po).

What would you improve about this program?
I wish we had a little bit more free time on the weekend excursions and I think the oral expression class was completely unnecessary, especially for those living with host families.
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Adriana
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

A True Taste of Paris

APA really gives you all the support you need while being abroad in a new country. Claire, Sophie, and Blandine took so much time to explain to us everything we needed to know, from the French university system to navigating living with a host family whom they very carefully chose for us. My host mom was amazing and gave me an even deeper look into what normal Parisian life is like while helping me greatly improving my French. Taking classes in real life French universities with French teachers and students was an extraordinary experience. Being unfamiliar with the system, there were a fair amount of struggles in regards to handling the academic work but APA does the most it can for us to be challenged yet supported. I am very grateful for these three ladies, their knowledge and expertise helped create a wonderful experience for me in Paris. I would absolutely recommend this program to anyone who is truly looking to immerse themselves in the rich culture.

Default avatar
Amanda
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

APA Spring Semester 2011

My experience with Academic Programs Abroad made my study abroad in Paris incredible. Each of us received personalized, thoughtful treatment as an intimate group of students studying in the program. I thoroughly enjoyed the cultural programming that was offered almost twice a month, and the two weekend trips to Normandy and the Loire Valley were memorable and so well organized. I made lifelong friends in this program, which did so much to foster these friendships and to cultivate these connections. Furthermore, APA accurately paired me with a host family whom I adored, and with whom to this day I still keep in touch with. I appreciated their approach in not pairing me with a family right away, rather getting to know me for a few days before making a decision as to the right type of living scenario and family I would feel most comfortable with. I would recommend APA Paris to anyone looking to explore liberal arts studies in Paris and to make such amazing memories along the way!

Mary
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

APA Paris Fall 2012 and Spring 2013

When I was looking for a study abroad program, I knew I wanted to go to France, and I knew that I wanted to have an immersive experience that allowed me to improve my French skills and learn as much about French culture as possible. With APA, I got exactly what I was looking for--and way more.

Organization/management: I can't say enough good things about the women who run APA. They truly go above and beyond to ensure that each student has a good experience in France. They make themselves available at all hours of the day and are always willing to talk about classes, home stay issues, and even personal problems. They make Paris home away from home for the time you're they're--and they even organize an amazing Thanksgiving dinner.

Housing: I was fortunate enough to be able to stay for the whole year and with the same family; I still keep in touch with them and I've visited them in France and they've visited me in the US. I have really great memories thanks to them, from watching the election from afar with my host day in 2012 to spending time with them in the Loire Valley. That being said, living with a host family is a different experience for everyone. APA does a ton of research and interviews before placing students with families, so most of the time, things do work out. I think that the most important thing is to go in with an open mind, and with an understanding that you are living in someone else's home and that you need to respect their rules (if there are any). The people who struggled the most were those who couldn't get out of the "dorm mindset." For example, if your host mom decides that dinner is at a certain time, you need to show up or let her know in advance that you won't make it.

Classes: For the most part, students take classes at local universities with APA. Honestly, the academics aren't on par with public/private universities in the US, but that's out of the control of the program. I really enjoyed some of the classes I took, others were not so great. APA bolsters French universities by offering their own classes, a shopping period, and private tutors. I felt as if I did so much learning outside of the classroom with APA, in terms of my French and knowledge of French culture and learning how to live in a different country--so it was a worthwhile trade-off.

Cultural program: This is one of the most unique aspects of the program, and it really allows you to get to know France. I loved the weekend trips we want on to different parts of the country--the sites were spectacular and there was never a shortage of food/wine!

If this sounds appealing to you, APA might be a perfect fit. I am so, so glad that I decided to spend a year with them. Not to get too cliche, BUT it truly can change your life.

Default avatar
Breana
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

One of the best decisions I've ever made.

As someone who is truly passionate about French language and culture, I can honestly say that studying with APA was one of the best choices I have made, not only in my academic career, but on a more personal level as well. I had grown restless studying French in school, feeling that I had peaked in my abilities and wanting to take my French to the next level. That's why I chose APA — I wanted to immerse myself in the language, take all of my classes in French, and live with a host family. So I did! And I took every advantage of the opportunities APA offered me, from the weekend excursions (my favorite part of the whole program) to the weekly shows and events, I did it all and loved every second of it. By the end of the year, I really felt like Paris, and the APA office in particular, were home to me.

If I could do it all over again, I would choose APA in a heartbeat. My advice for anyone considering the program: your metrocard is your ticket into the most interesting parts of the city. Use it as much as you can. Take the APA Art History class — it's challenging, but you'll learn a lot! Take advantage of all of the trips and shows APA offers. They're a great way to connect with other people in the program, while also getting to see some incredible performances. Don't be afraid to ask questions, especially to former APA students — we're here to help!

And, most importantly, keep an open mind. The more you use the resources available to you, the more you'll get out of them!

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Eleanor
6/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Offers great language skill improvement

APA offers great opportunities to perfect your French and chances to travel with the group and experience aspects of French culture you can only learn from locals. The host family experience was a highlight, and APA does expend an immense amount of effort in finding good families who fit individual students. The support they offer is extraordinary, from finding tutors to advice about doctors. The French university system is an adjustment, however, and beyond the language barrier classes are not the most challenging. APA gives you the chance to really live in Paris.

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Noah
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

APA Paris Spring 2016

APA was a fantastic study abroad experience. The program was well organized and the directors provided great support in all aspects of our experience. The two weekend trips to Normandy and the Loire valley were fantastic as well. It was difficult at times to adjust to the French system but the program helped us with the adjustment process with lots of cultural preparation and a great host family system. I would make sure that you have a strong level of French before coming, since almost 100% of the programming is in French, which can be quite mentally taxing at times. However it is definitely worth it, as my French greatly improved.

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Alyssa
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

The Opportunity of a Year Abroad

If you are looking for an experience that will change your outlook on life, choose this program. This is the absolute best program for people looking to throw themselves into the French way of living. By living with French families and being directly enrolled in the French universities, you have the opportunity to develop your ability to speak French, to develop relationships, and to develop the knowledge of the French social system and culture. I truly cannot have seen myself in any other program that supported me as much. The support from the directors of this program allowed me to spread my wings and try new things in a new country. I have formed lasting relationships and have a new found confidence in my ability to speak French. Logistically, the program is very organized though some problems that come up are caused by the cultural differences between the French and American school system. Overall, I would recommend this to anyone and everyone who is passionate about French and French culture.

Steven
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Consider APA!

My semester abroad was truly one of the highlights (if not the highlight) of my college experience, and I'm so glad to have spent it with APA.
APA's support system is amazing; the three women who run the Paris office go above and beyond to make sure that you are happy, are integrated, and are doing well academically. When I started struggling a bit in my classes, they, without hesitation, set me up with a couple of tutoring sessions to ensure that I could succeed in the class. They truly care about each student.
Another highlight was the homestay. APA does a fantastic job of matching families with students. I loved my host family and was able to fully integrate into their way of life. My family was enthusiastic and helped me with my French, and my French dramatically improved as a result.
If you're looking for a full, immersive experience in Paris, consider APA!

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Emily
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Discover Paris with APA!

APA Paris is an incredible study abroad option. During my semester abroad with APA, I formed close relationships with my peers and the warm, caring APA staff as I explored Europe for the first time. Before leaving home in January, I was nervous about living life independently in a new city. Luckily for me, APA made it as stress-free as possible. Upon arrival in Paris, APA set out to teach us everything there was to know about the city -- from guided tours through different neighborhoods in the city like the Marais and Montmartre to metro riding lessons, the transition to life in Paris was so much easier than I expected. The women who run the program are some of the kindest and most supportive people I've met!
Aside from having a flexible academic program and a rich, unique cultural program, one of my favorite aspects of APA were the group excursions. Piling into a big coach bus with all of my friends and road tripping to Normandy, Monet's gardens and the Loire Valley were some of the highlights of my experience. At a little farm-to-table restaurant in the Loire Valley, I had the best meal of my entire life! Fresh goat cheese tarts, garlicy potatoes and apple tarts galore!
To anyone looking to discover the historical and cultural hot spots of Paris while challenging themselves academically, I would definitely recommend APA!