Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Checkout the Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France....

Standyou Team
Standyou Team

Feb 12, 2024 08:43:19

Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France for International Students

Educational Structure

In France, engineering education is traditionally offered at the "Grandes Écoles d'Ingénieurs" which usually award a "Diplôme d'Ingénieur" equivalent to a Master's degree after five years of study post-baccalaureate. However, there are Bachelor's programs available that serve as entry points into the engineering field or as preparatory years leading towards the Diplôme d'Ingénieur.

Admission Requirements

  1. Academic Qualifications: A high school diploma equivalent to the French baccalaureate, with strong grades in mathematics, physics, and possibly chemistry.

  2. Language Proficiency:

    • For French-taught programs, a B2 level in French is typically required, demonstrated through tests like TCF, DELF, or DALF.

    • For English-taught programs, proof of English proficiency through TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent tests may be required.

  3. Entrance Exams: Some schools may require specific entrance exams or evaluations.

  4. Application Materials: These usually include academic transcripts, letters of recommendation, a motivation letter, and sometimes a CV or personal statement.

Application Process

  • Direct Application to Schools: Some institutions allow direct applications from international students.

  • Campus France: For many international students, applying through Campus France is a streamlined way to manage applications to multiple institutions.

  • Parcoursup: This platform is mainly for students within the EU but check if your situation allows for application through Parcoursup.

Tuition Fees

  • Public Universities: For non-EU students, the annual tuition fees for Bachelor’s programs can be around €2,770. EU/EEA students pay significantly less.

  • Private Institutions: Fees can vary widely, from about €6,000 to €20,000 per year or more, depending on the school and program.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

  • French Government Scholarships: Such as the Eiffel Excellence Scholarship Program, primarily for Master’s level but check for Bachelor’s options.

  • Institutional Scholarships: Many schools offer their own scholarships based on merit or financial need.

  • External Scholarships: organizations and countries offer scholarships for students studying abroad in France.

Living in France

  • Cost of Living: Varies by location, with cities like Paris being more expensive. Students should budget between €600 and €1,200 per month for living expenses, including accommodation, food, transportation, and personal expenses.

  • Student Life: France offers a vibrant student life with numerous cultural, historical, and recreational opportunities to explore.

Career Opportunities

Graduates with a Bachelor in Civil Engineering from France can find opportunities in construction, urban planning, environmental engineering, and related fields. While some may choose to enter the workforce directly, many opt to pursue a Diplôme d'Ingénieur or a Master's degree to specialize further and enhance their career prospects.

Professional Recognition

For international students, it’s important to consider the professional recognition of the French engineering degree in your home country or wherever you plan to work. The "Diplôme d'Ingénieur" is well-regarded worldwide, but specific recognition for Bachelor’s degrees should be verified based on individual career goals.

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Universities Offering Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Universities and Grandes Écoles Offering Civil Engineering Programs

While direct Bachelor's programs in Civil Engineering are less common in the traditional French system, some institutions offer undergraduate programs in engineering that can serve as a pathway to specialized civil engineering studies at the Master's level or within an integrated program. Here are a few institutions where you might find relevant programs:

1. INSA Group (Institut National des Sciences Appliquées)

  • The INSA group comprises several engineering schools across France, known for their 5-year integrated programs leading to a "Diplôme d'Ingénieur." Some INSA schools offer preparatory cycles or initial years that are somewhat equivalent to Bachelor-level studies, focusing on fundamental sciences and engineering disciplines, including civil engineering.

2. Université de Technologie (UT Group)

  • The Université de Technologie group, including institutions like UT Compiegne, UT Troyes, and UT Belfort-Montbéliard (UTBM), offers integrated programs where the first two to three years provide a foundation in engineering, potentially aligning with Bachelor-level education in other systems.

3. École Polytechnique

  • Known as "l'X," École Polytechnique offers a highly selective integrated program leading to a "Diplôme d'Ingénieur." The first three years (Bachelor’s level) cover a broad range of fundamental sciences and engineering principles, after which students can specialize in areas such as civil engineering.

4. Ecole des Ponts ParisTech

  • Although traditionally focused on graduate-level education, Ecole des Ponts ParisTech is renowned for civil engineering and offers courses that might be accessible to students in integrated programs or through exchange opportunities at the Bachelor level.

English-Taught Programs

Finding English-taught Bachelor’s programs in civil engineering in France can be challenging due to the emphasis on French as the medium of instruction, especially at the undergraduate level. However, there's a growing number of programs taught partially or entirely in English to attract international students. It's worth checking specific schools’ offerings for the most up-to-date information.

Application and Admission

International students typically apply through the "Studying in France" procedure managed by Campus France. This process is streamlined for non-European students and covers application to multiple institutions. For European students, including those from the EU/EEA and Switzerland, applications may sometimes go through the Parcoursup platform, which is the standard application portal for French students.


  • Language Requirements: Even for English-taught programs, some level of French proficiency is often recommended to help with daily life and integration into French culture. Many institutions offer French language courses for international students.

  • Pathways to Civil Engineering: Since direct Bachelor's programs in civil engineering are rare, students may need to consider integrated programs or look for universities that offer a broad engineering curriculum at the Bachelor level, with options to specialize later on.

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Eligibility Criteria for Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

1. Academic Qualifications

  • Secondary Education: Applicants must have completed secondary education that is equivalent to the French Baccalauréat. This typically means having a high school diploma with good grades, especially in mathematics, physics, and possibly chemistry, given the technical nature of civil engineering.

  • Transcripts: You'll need to provide transcripts from your high school, showing strong academic performance, particularly in subjects relevant to engineering.

2. Language Proficiency

  • French Programs: For programs taught in French, you will generally need to demonstrate French language proficiency at the B2 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR). Tests such as the TCF, DELF, or DALF are commonly accepted.

  • English-taught Programs: If the program is taught in English, you'll likely need to demonstrate English proficiency through tests like the TOEFL or IELTS, unless you are from an English-speaking country or have completed your studies in English.

3. Entrance Exams and Interviews

  • Some institutions may require you to take entrance exams or attend interviews as part of the admission process. These exams often test your knowledge in mathematics, physics, and your language proficiency.

4. Application Materials

  • Motivation Letter or Personal Statement: This should explain why you want to study civil engineering, why you're applying to the particular institution, and any relevant experiences or goals.

  • Letters of Recommendation: Usually one or two letters from teachers or professionals who can vouch for your academic abilities and character.

  • CV/Resume: Some programs may request a CV or resume that outlines your educational background, extracurricular activities, and any relevant experience.

  • Proof of Identity: A copy of your passport or national ID card.

5. Visa Requirements

  • If you're a non-EU/EEA student, you'll need to apply for a student visa. This process typically requires proof of acceptance into a French institution, proof of financial resources (about €615 per month), health insurance, and accommodation arrangements in France.

6. Financial Proof

  • Demonstrating financial capability to cover tuition (if applicable) and living expenses is a crucial part of the visa application process for international students.

Application Process

  • Direct Applications: Some schools accept direct applications from international students.

  • Campus France: Many students will apply through Campus France, particularly those from countries outside the EU/EEA. This platform streamlines the process for applying to French higher education institutions.

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Course Duration of Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Bachelor’s Programs in Engineering

  • Duration: Bachelor’s programs in France, including those in engineering fields, generally last three years. This aligns with the Bologna Process, which standardizes higher education degrees across Europe to ensure compatibility and quality.

  • Integrated Programs: Some Grandes Écoles and universities offer integrated programs where the first three years provide foundational engineering education, equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree, followed by two years of specialized study leading to the Diplôme d'Ingénieur.

Pre-Engineering Programs

  • Preparatory Classes: Known as "Classes Préparatoires aux Grandes Écoles" (CPGE), these two-year programs prepare students for competitive exams to enter Grandes Écoles. While not a direct part of Bachelor's or engineering studies, they are a common pathway for students aiming for top engineering schools in France, including those specializing in civil engineering.

Admission to Master’s Level

  • Direct Entry to Diplôme d'Ingénieur Programs: Students who complete a Bachelor’s degree (either in France or internationally) in a relevant field may apply for admission into the second phase (last two years) of the Diplôme d'Ingénieur program, focusing on civil engineering or their chosen specialization.

English-Taught Programs

  • Availability: While more rare, some English-taught Bachelor’s programs in engineering disciplines may be available in France. These programs also adhere to the three-year duration model.

Considerations for International Students

  • Recognition: International students should consider how a French Bachelor’s degree in engineering is recognized in their home country or globally, especially if they plan to work outside of France.

  • Language Skills: For programs taught in French, proficiency in the language is crucial not only for academic success but also for integrating into French society and potentially working in France post-graduation. Some institutions offer language support for international students.

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Online Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Options for Prospective Students:

1. Blended Learning Programs: Some institutions may offer programs that combine online coursework with periodic in-person sessions or labs. These hybrid models provide a balance between the flexibility of online learning and the benefits of hands-on experience.

2. MOOCs and Online Courses: While a full Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering may not be available online from French institutions, numerous Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) and specialized online courses are offered by reputable institutions worldwide, including some based in France. These can be excellent resources for learning specific skills or concepts within civil engineering.

3. International Online Programs: Students might consider online Bachelor’s programs in civil engineering offered by institutions outside France. Some universities around the world offer fully accredited online degrees in this field.

4. French Language and Accreditation: For those looking specifically for French educational offerings, it's important to consider the language of instruction and the accreditation of any online programs. Accreditation is crucial for ensuring that the degree will be recognized by employers and professional bodies.

5. Future Developments: Keep an eye on announcements from French universities and engineering schools. The increasing interest in online education may lead to new programs being developed, including possibly more offerings in English to attract international students.

Advantages of Traditional Study Modes in France:

  • Networking: Studying on-campus or through blended programs in France offers networking opportunities with peers, faculty, and industry professionals, which can be invaluable for career development.

  • Internships: Many engineering programs in France have strong links with industry and include internships as part of the curriculum, providing practical experience and potential job opportunities upon graduation.

  • Cultural Experience: Living and studying in France offers a rich cultural experience, improving language skills and understanding of French society and the European context, which is beneficial for students aiming to work in France or with European companies.

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Intakes & Application Deadlines for Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

General Academic Calendar

  • Primary Intake: The main intake for Bachelor’s programs in France, including those in Civil Engineering, is in the Fall (September). This aligns with the start of the academic year in France.

  • Secondary Intake: Some institutions may offer a secondary intake in Spring (January or February), but this is less common for engineering programs.

Application Deadlines

For EU/EEA Students

  • Parcoursup: For students applying through Parcoursup (the French platform for undergraduate admissions), the application period typically starts in January, with deadlines in March for the same year's September intake. The exact dates change yearly, so it's essential to check the current calendar.

For Non-EU/EEA Students

  • Campus France: International students from countries outside the EU/EEA often need to go through the Campus France procedure. The "Etudes en France" process usually opens in November, with deadlines that can be as early as February for the September intake. These deadlines are crucial for students requiring a visa to study in France.

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Tuition Fees for Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Public Universities

  • EU/EEA Students: For students from the EU/EEA and Switzerland, tuition fees at public universities are relatively low due to government subsidies. You can expect to pay around €170 to €600 per year for an undergraduate program.

  • Non-EU/EEA Students: As of the last update, non-EU/EEA students face higher tuition rates at public universities, which were introduced a few years ago. These students can expect to pay approximately €2,770 per year for Bachelor’s programs. However, some institutions and specific regions in France may offer exemptions or reductions, allowing international students to pay the same rate as EU/EEA students.

Private Institutions and Grandes Écoles

  • General Range: Tuition fees at private institutions and some Grandes Écoles can be significantly higher than at public universities. The fees can range widely from around €6,000 to over €20,000 per year, depending on the prestige of the school, the facilities offered, and the specific program.

  • Specific Programs: Some specialized programs, particularly those with strong industry connections or advanced technological resources, may charge higher fees.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

  • French Government Scholarships: Various scholarships are available for international students to study in France, including the Eiffel Excellence Scholarship, which is highly competitive and covers tuition fees, a monthly allowance, and other expenses.

  • Institutional Scholarships: Many universities and Grandes Écoles offer their own scholarships based on merit or financial need. These can significantly reduce the cost of tuition and, in some cases, cover additional expenses like housing.

  • External Scholarships: Other organizations, both within and outside of France, offer scholarships that can be applied to studies in France. These may be based on nationality, field of study, or other criteria.

Additional Costs

Besides tuition fees, students should also budget for living expenses, which can vary greatly depending on the city. Paris, for example, is significantly more expensive than smaller cities or towns across France. Living expenses, including accommodation, food, transportation, and personal expenses, can range from €600 to €1,200 per month.

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Cost of doing Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Tuition Fees

  • Public Universities: For EU/EEA students, the annual tuition is relatively low, around €170 to €600. For non-EU/EEA students, the cost is higher, approximately €2,770 per year, as of the last update.

  • Private Institutions and Grandes Écoles: Tuition can vary significantly, ranging from about €6,000 to over €20,000 per year, depending on the institution's prestige and the program's resources.

Living Expenses

Living costs in France can vary widely depending on the city, with Paris being notably more expensive than smaller towns or cities. On average, students can expect the following monthly expenses:

  • Accommodation: €300 to €800, with student residences usually at the lower end and private rentals in larger cities at the higher end.

  • Food: €200 to €300, depending on whether you cook at home or eat out frequently.

  • Transport: €20 to €70, with larger cities like Paris at the higher end due to metro and bus passes.

  • Health Insurance: About €40 per month for students under 28, as they can join the French student social security system. Students over 28 or those from outside the EU may need private health insurance.

  • Miscellaneous Expenses: Including books, supplies, personal expenses, and leisure activities, can range from €100 to €300 per month.

Additional Costs

  • CVEC Contribution: All students must pay the Contribution Vie Étudiante et de Campus (CVEC), approximately €95 per year, which funds student services.

  • Visa and Related Fees: Non-EU/EEA students need to account for visa application fees (about €99) and potential travel costs to a French consulate or embassy.

  • Language Courses: If you need or want to improve your French, language courses may add to your expenses. Costs vary widely depending on the type of course and institution.

Budgeting Tips

1. Student Discounts: Take advantage of student discounts for transportation, museums, and cultural events.

2. Shared Housing: Consider flat-sharing to reduce accommodation costs.

3. Student Restaurants: Utilize CROUS university restaurants for affordable meals.

4. Part-time Work: International students are allowed to work part-time up to 964 hours per year, which can help offset living expenses.

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Admission Process for Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

1. Research and Selection of Programs

  • Identify Institutions: Start by researching institutions that offer Bachelor programs in Civil Engineering or related fields. Consider factors such as program curriculum, language of instruction, location, tuition fees, and available scholarships.

  • Check Accreditation: Ensure the program and institution are accredited by relevant French and international bodies, ensuring your degree will be recognized globally.

2. Understand the Application Requirements

  • Academic Records: You will need your high school diploma and transcripts. Some programs may require specific grades, especially in mathematics and science subjects.

  • Language Proficiency:

    • For French-taught programs, a B2 level in the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) is typically required, demonstrated by exams like the TCF, DELF, or DALF.

    • For English-taught programs, you may need to provide TOEFL or IELTS scores.

  • Entrance Exams: Some schools may require you to take specific entrance exams or tests.

3. Application Process

  • EU/EEA Students: May apply through Parcoursup, the French platform for first-year undergraduate applications.

  • Non-EU/EEA Students: Often need to go through the "Studying in France" procedure managed by Campus France. This process is streamlined for students from countries without a French embassy procedure.

  • Direct Application: Some institutions allow or require direct applications, particularly for international programs or students from countries not covered by the Campus France procedure.

4. Prepare Your Application

  • Gather Documentation: Prepare your academic transcripts, proof of language proficiency, letters of recommendation, motivation letter or personal statement, and any other required documents.

  • Write a Strong Motivation Letter: This should explain why you want to study civil engineering, why at that specific institution, and highlight any relevant experiences or projects.

5. Submit Your Application

  • Follow the specific submission guidelines for each program. Ensure you meet all deadlines, which can vary significantly between institutions and application platforms.

6. Interviews and Additional Assessments

  • Some programs may require an interview or additional assessments as part of the admission process. Be prepared to discuss your interest in civil engineering, your educational background, and your future career goals.

7. Acceptance and Enrollment

  • If accepted, you will receive an offer letter. You may need to formally accept the offer and pay a deposit or the first installment of tuition fees.

  • Complete any remaining administrative steps, such as enrolling in courses, applying for housing, and registering for orientation sessions.

8. Visa Application

  • Non-EU/EEA students will need to apply for a student visa. This process involves proving you have sufficient funds to support yourself, health insurance, and an acceptance letter from the institution.

9. Preparation for Arrival

  • Arrange accommodation, consider opening a French bank account, and familiarize yourself with the healthcare system. Also, look into options for learning or improving your French if necessary.


  • Start the process at least a year in advance of the intended start date to ensure you meet all deadlines and have time to prepare for your move to France.

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Scholarships for doing Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

French Government Scholarships

1. Eiffel Excellence Scholarship Program: Targeted primarily at Master’s level students, but engineering students enrolled in a dual degree program that includes a Bachelor’s phase might also be eligible. It covers a monthly allowance, health insurance, and cultural activities but does not cover tuition fees.

2. Campus France Scholarships: Campus France offers a comprehensive search tool for various scholarships offered by the French government, French higher education institutions, and other organizations for international students.

Institutional Scholarships

Many French universities and Grandes Écoles offer their own scholarships based on merit, financial need, or specific criteria such as country of origin, academic excellence, or field of study. Examples include:

1. Excellence Scholarships: Offered by individual institutions to attract talented international students.

2. International Programs Scholarships: Some programs specifically designed for international students may have associated scholarships to support tuition and living expenses.

Regional Scholarships

Some regional councils in France offer scholarships to international students studying in their region. These scholarships may be aimed at promoting cultural and academic exchange and can vary widely in terms of eligibility and benefits.

External Scholarships

  • Erasmus+: While primarily known for exchange programs, Erasmus+ also offers scholarships for full degree studies, including Bachelor’s degrees, for students within and outside the European Union.

  • Corporate and Foundation Scholarships: Companies and foundations sometimes sponsor scholarships for students in specific fields, including engineering. These can be based on merit or research interests aligned with the organization’s goals.

Career after Bachelor in Civil Engineering in France

Career Paths in Civil Engineering

1. Construction and Project Management: Overseeing construction projects from conception through completion, ensuring they are completed on time, within budget, and according to specifications.

2. Structural Engineering: Designing and analyzing structures such as buildings, bridges, and tunnels to ensure they are safe, sustainable, and efficient.

3. Environmental Engineering: Working on projects that improve environmental protection, including water and waste management systems, pollution control, and sustainable design.

4. Geotechnical Engineering: Focusing on the engineering behavior of earth materials, geotechnical engineers design foundations, retaining walls, and other structures in or on the ground.

5. Transportation Engineering: Planning, designing, and operating transportation systems, including roads, airports, railroads, and ports, to ensure safe and efficient movement of people and goods.

6. Water Resources Engineering: Developing systems to manage water resources, such as dams, levees, and water treatment plants, for urban, agricultural, and environmental uses.

7. Urban and Regional Planning: Working with municipalities and developers to plan and design the development of land and infrastructure projects within communities.

Working in France

  • Language Proficiency: For international students wishing to work in France after graduation, proficiency in French is often essential, particularly for roles in public sector organizations or local companies.

  • Professional Recognition: Graduates may need to meet additional requirements for professional recognition in France or the EU, especially for roles that require certification or licensure.

International Opportunities

  • Global Employability: A degree from a French institution is well-regarded internationally, facilitating opportunities to work abroad, especially in countries with strong ties to France or within French-speaking communities.

  • Engineering Consultancies: Many global engineering consultancies operate in multiple countries and seek graduates with international qualifications and the ability to work across different cultures and regulatory environments.

Further Education

  • Specialization: Pursuing a Master’s degree or additional certifications can enhance career prospects, allowing for specialization in areas like sustainable design, project management, or specific engineering technologies.

  • Research and Academia: A Bachelor’s degree can be a stepping stone to a career in research or academia, particularly for those interested in innovative engineering solutions or teaching.

Professional Development

  • Networking: Joining professional organizations, attending industry conferences, and maintaining connections with alumni can provide valuable networking opportunities.

  • Continuing Education: The field of civil engineering is constantly evolving, so ongoing education and skills development are crucial for career advancement.

Starting Your Career

  • Internships and Work Experience: Gaining practical experience through internships or work placements during or after your studies is highly beneficial and often essential for securing employment.

  • Job Search: Utilize university career services, professional networks, and online job portals that specialize in engineering and construction sectors.

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