Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po) Paris, France

overhead view of the Louvre and surrounding square packed with tourists

The Institut d’Etudes Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po), founded in 1872, is an internationally recognized center of academic excellence and is a member of the Association of Professional Schools of International Affairs (APSIA). Sciences Po’s reputation as a leading institution in the field attracts elite students from all over the world; over 45% of the full-time student body are international students. With an urban campus composed of 17th and 18th century buildings in the heart of Paris, students are exposed to the cultural flavor of the Saint Germain district, and world-class historical and cultural attractions such as the Louvre and Notre Dame are all within walking distance. 

Academic Terms

Fall Semester
September - December
Spring Semester
January - May

Students may spend one semester at Sciences Po.


Students will enroll as full-time students alongside Sciences Po graduate students. Students can earn up to 9 credits toward their MA program at AU. Programs of study at Sciences Po include:

  • International Development
  • International Security
  • International Public Management
  • International Economic Policy
  • Environment, Sustainable Development and Risks
  • Human Rights and Humanitarian Action
  • European Affairs
  • Public Affairs
  • Communication
  • Economic Law
  • Finance and Strategy
  • Regional and Urban Strategies

Note: Students are required to choose one program of study at Sciences Po, a choice which will influence the courses that are available to them.

Language Requirement

AU students enrolled in the Program typically take the majority of their courses in French. However, it is also possible to take courses in English and certain programs of study at Sciences Po have all of their course offerings in English. 

Students who wish to take courses in French must demonstrate proficiency in French at a high intermediate level at the time of application and are encouraged to reach advanced proficiency before enrolling at Sciences Po. Students are required to submit their TOR language exam results as part of the application. Students who are admitted to the Program should also be prepared to complete a basic language assessment administered by Sciences Po.

Student who will not be taking any courses in French do not need to provide any proof of language proficiency and may write their statement of interest in English, which will be submitted with their application materials.

Regardless of whether students plan to take courses in French or in English, it is recommended that all students study the French language before going to France in order to gain communication skills for daily life in Paris.


Students are responsible for making their own housing arrangements and for all housing costs. Sciences Po’s Accommodation Office can provide students with some resources for locating housing. Similarly, the SIS Office of International Programs may be able to connect students with past program participants who are willing to provide information about housing in Paris. However, students should expect to work independently to find housing in Paris.

Visas and Immigration

Once admitted to the Program, students are issued a letter of acceptance by Sciences Po. Students use this document to apply for their student visa at the nearest French embassy or consulate. U.S. citizens must initiate the visa application process via an online procedure. Students are responsible for researching the most up-to-date immigration requirements and arranging all immigration documents. We recommend starting this process as soon as you are accepted to Sciences Po. The French student visa process may take several months to complete and, as of December 2018, requires the submission of biometrics at a local visa processing center. STUDENT


During the semester prior to the start of the Program, the SIS Office of International Programs conducts a mandatory pre-departure meeting. Topics covered include administrative, logistical, security, and cross-cultural issues. Sciences Po holds an optional one- to two-week Welcome Program for international students at the beginning of each semester. AU students are strongly encouraged to participate, as it is designed to facilitate adjustment to the Sciences Po academic methodology and life in Paris.

Application Deadlines

Spring: September 15
Fall: February 15

Applicants are required to submit a non-refundable $50 application fee.

You will be notified by email with a decision regarding your nomination for study abroad.

Please note: This program is competitive and submitting an application does not guarantee admission.

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Suggested Program Match

This program is generally compatible with all SIS degrees programs.

Students are required to choose one program of study, a choice which will influence the courses that are available to them.

Browse Program Options