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Overseas and Off-Campus Programs

France: Strasbourg

Semester: Fall, Spring, or Full Year
Date: Fall: early September to late December. Spring: Mid-January to early June.
Offered: Annually
Program Focus: Language Intensive


FREN 202 with a 3.0 GPA or better and 3.0 GPA in language                                    

Campus Contacts:

Isabelle DeMarte
Associate Professor of French
ext. 7426

Molly Robinson Kelly
Associate Professor of French

ext. 7422

Program Design:
The Strasbourg program focuses on the language, history and contemporary culture of France. Courses are taken with faculty in the IIEF (Institut International d’Études Françaises) at the Université de Strasbourg, and are also taught by other faculty from the Université de Strasbourg. An option for Political Science or International Affairs students is offered by faculty teaching at the IEP (Institut d’Études Politiques) of Strasbourg. In addition, it is possible for students with advanced French to enroll directly in courses at the Université de Strasbourg.  Independent studies, honors work and internship opportunities are also available. Students will reside with carefully chosen host families.  The program includes an orientation, local and regional excursions through Lewis & Clark College in France (LCCF), as well as a 5-day field trip to Paris, including museum excursions, a play, and other cultural activities.

Since its founding by the Roman Empire, Strasbourg has served as an international gateway and birthplace of great ideas in every era. Its rich history as the much-disputed prize of many nations has given the city a unique international flavor.

Strasbourg houses the Council of Europe and the European Parliament, as well as the European Court of Human Rights. In addition to its role as the political “Capital of Europe,” Strasbourg is an important economic center. Its historic role as the “crossroads of Europe” continues as the second largest port on the Rhine river and the midpoint between France, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, and Luxembourg.

The city owerflows with cultural activity from the homespun to the avant-garde. Cyber-cafés are tucked onto streets that look as they might have two hundred years ago. An ultra-modern tramway takes locals from Renaissance- and Medieval-period areas of town to metropolitan commercial districts.

Culturally, the city boasts a national opera with ballet, a national theater, museums, gardens, and one of the largest and most beautiful cathedrals of Europe. Strasbourg continues to have an active modern artistic community, keeping cultural growth in the city alive. More cultural experiences than anyone could possibly attend are available, all within a short walking distance.

For students, who want to travel, Strasbourg is ideally located. Constant train services keep London, Brussels, Zurich, and Paris all within a few hours’ distance. International students from all over Europe and the world come to study in Strasbourg, making study in Strasbourg an intercultural experience of the most flavorful variety.

Students can attend classes at any number of departments and institutes of the University of Strasbourg, depending upon their level of French skills. At Université Marc Bloch there are courses in the humanities, at Université Robert Schumann, courses in political and social sciences.

Most students will have at least some coursework at the Institut International d’Etudes Françaises (IIEF). An institute of the university, all classes are taught in French, with focus on French language and civilization. History, literature, politics, translation, and many other subjects are offered to foreigners from all over the globe.

Sports classes are also offered at the university, ranging from favorites such as volleyball and tennis to more exotic offerings, such as akido, paragliding, or tango. Active student clubs introduce students to French peers who share extra-curricular interests in theater, pottery, hiking, singing, and more.

Requirements Fulfilled:
Fulfills the overseas study requirement for the French Studies major and the overseas study requirement for the World Languages major with French as the first language. This program also fulfills the two-course international studies requirement.

Credit earned varies based on courses completed. Students may earn up to 19 credits. (Overloads are not permitted.) 

Students may earn credit in four ways:

  • LCCF courses: Each term LCCF hires French professors to teach a small number of courses that are available only to LCCF students. 
  • IIEF university courses: University courses open only to foreigners. These courses are taught in the IIEF: Institut International d’Etudes Françaises, a part of Marc Bloch University. Courses range in level from beginners to advanced, designed for mastering French language acquisition in the four areas of oral, written expression and comprehension.  Subject courses in French civilization, literature, politics, and  culture are taught at advanced levels.
  • University of Strasbourg faculté courses: University courses open to French and foreign students: LCCF students with sufficient language skills may take courses throughout the University of Strasbourg. The university is divided into three major parts: Robert Schumann University (includes the Institut d’Etudes Politiques), Marc Bloch University (humanities), and Louis Pasteur University (natural sciences). Each of these institutions, in turn, houses several facultés, comparable to a U.S. department.
  • Credited internships: A limited number of internships are available to students with sufficient language skills and motivation.

Course listings are subject to change each semester. For inquiries about a course needed, or further information, contact LCCF staff at: .

Students are given a French language placement examination to determine course curriculum options, which vary according to students’ language levels.  Curriculum options vary according to students’ proficiency levels. Curriculum options vary according to students’ proficiency levels. Curriculum offered by the IIEF may include: French Language BlockFrench Regional CultureFrench Writing Workshop & Village ProjectFrench Civilisation or French LiteratureArts & Ideas, or Press Review in France. Students may also choose from a wide variety of courses offered by any of the regular departments or Facultés of the University of Strasbourg.

I. LCCF Courses at Strasbourg

LCCF Honors Tutorial
Students with superior French Language skills undertake this course under the direction of a French university faculty member.  A project of depth  involving research and ideally contact with French nationals, will culminate in a final analytical term paper and presentation.

LCCF Tutorial (offered Spring Semester)
French Writing Workshop and Village Field Project.  This seminar course focuses on honing French writing skills while organizing and undertaking a Village Field Project in the Alsatian region, which is rich in history, art, and nature.  Keeping in mind the local cultural specificity, students choose a village for a visit, interviews and interaction.

Arts & Ideas: Exploring the Performing Arts (offering contingent upon requisite enrollment)
This course initiates students to the performing arts, studying the genre of orchestral music, dance, opera, and theater.  Each genre is then linked to a specific work for which students prepare before attending performances in the host city.  Students will also make presentations and write several papers in order to progress in their written and oral French skills.

The European Union (offered during the Fall Semester)
This course primarily examines the development of the European Union and its institutions from its inception in 1950 to its present form.  In addition, a number of international organizations located in Strasbourg will be studied.  Three field trips are included to the EU Parliament, the Council of Europe, and the European Court of Human Rights.

II. University Courses for Foreign Students at the IIEF

Most courses at the IIEF are for one credit unless otherwise noted.

Stage de Septembre
This four credit course is offered during the month of September to foreign students arriving in France before the start of the university semester in October. It has two parts: an intensive language session each morning and an elective in the afternoon. Electives for the September 2003 session were: French history, French literature, French Media, and European Institutions.

Civilisation française
The political and economic evolution of France since 1900. Analysis of demographics, women, immigration, the press, education, religion, and economy.
Bibliography: Rémond, Réné: Notre siècle 1918-1988; Duby, G. et Mandrou, R.: Histoire de la civilisation française; Burguière, A. et Revel, J.: Histoire de France (volume 4 Les formes de culture)

Institutions Politiques
Study of the major developments in the French political landscape since the Revolution. Second semester deals exclusively with the Fifth Republic.

Histoire de l’Art
Fall semester: Néo-classicisme et romantisme. Studies of the works of David, Gericault, Gros, Ferie, Ingres, and Delacroix. Spring semester: Réalisme et impressionnisme. Studies of the works of Corot, Courbet, Manet, Degas, Monet, Renoir, Sisley, Morisot, Cassatt, Pissarro, and Cezanne.

Phonétique et pratique du français oral
Theoretic approach to French phonetics. Study of relationship between written and spoken French. Bibliography: Carton, F.: Introduction à la phonétique du français.; Malmberg, B.: La Phonétique.; Martinet A. Eléments de linguistique générale.; Wioland, F.: Prononcer les mots du français. Des sons et des rythmes.

Institutions Européennes
Survey of the major European institutions with particular emphasis on those headquartered at Strasbourg—the Council of Europe and the Parliament of the European Union.

Littérature: “Initiation à la Littérature Française”
General history of French literature with analysis of extracts from major works.
Bibliography: Ronsard, poésies; Racine, Andromaque; Voltaire, Le dictionnaire philosophique; Flaubert, Un coeur simple

Grammar Block (up to 6 sem. hrs)
A wide range of courses designed specifically to improve students’ grasp of French are offered at the IIEF. Subjects range from written and oral expression and comprehension to translation and writing styles.

Other Courses commonly available at the IIEF:

  • Civilisation Française
  • Histoire du monde contemporain
  • Littérature du XXème et techniques d’Ècriture Littérature thématique
  • Ecriture créative
  • Société internationale de 1945 à nos jours
  • Traduction Anglais-Français
  • Diversité linguistique et culturelle

III. University Courses

The University of Strasbourg consists of three major parts:

  • The Université Louis Pasteur (U.L.P. or Strasbourg I), science and medical school, is known for its advanced level of comprehensive research (a Nobel prize and 9 members of the Academy of Science).
  • The Université Marc Bloch (U.M.B. or Strasbourg II), Arts and Sciences
  • The Université Robert SchumanN (U.R.S. or Strasbourg III), predominantly law-oriented, specializes in International and European Law.

Each of these institutions, in turn, houses several facultés, comparable to a U.S. “department.” Course descriptions are often not published for university courses. The following descriptions are of the most frequently offered courses.

The Institut d’Etudes Politiques (IEP) is at l’Université Robert Schumann.  Most IEP courses are 2 or 4 credits per semester. The IEP has its own highly competitive admissions process.  After initial recommendation for admission by the LCCF direct, candidates must  be interviewed at the IEP after arrival.

Program Design


France, Strasbourg

48.579069; 7.766455