Finance your studies / Scholarships

How to finance a study project in France

Scholarships offered by the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs

Scholarships available at French embassies abroad

French government scholarships are allocated by the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs for studies, training courses and language courses in France. The majority of scholarships are awarded by the Cooperation and Cultural Action Departments (SCACs) in French embassies and consulates general abroad. Whatever their country of residence, applicants should therefore directly contact the SCAC in their country of origin, before their departure and sufficiently in advance, to obtain comprehensive scholarship information regarding eligibility criteria, the selection timetable and the required application materials.

For further information, contact the SCAC of the French Embassy or Consulate in your country of residence.

There are several categories of scholarships: study scholarships, training grants and high-level science scholarships.

Specific programmes

The French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs also awards scholarships under specific programmes directly operated by its services in Paris (Directorate-General of Globalization, Education and International Development, Sub-Directorate for Higher Education and Research).

Eiffel Excellence Scholarships

The Master component of the Eiffel Excellence Scholarship programme was launched by the French Ministry in January 1999. It is intended to support international student recruitment by French higher education institutions amid growing competition among developed countries to attract the academic elite from around the world.

This scheme was supplemented in 2005 with the Doctorate component for high-level doctoral students.

With a view to enhanced clarity, the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs has decided to merge the Programme’s two components under a single call for proposals. There is, however, a separate application form for both components.

The Eiffel scholarship programme provides funding for:

  • Master level courses,
  • a ten-month mobility programme under dual enrolment or joint thesis supervision (preferably in the second or third doctoral year).

The objectives of the French Ministry’s Eiffel Excellence Programme are as follows:

  • to train in French higher education institutions aspiring foreign policy-makers of the private and public sectors in three priority study areas: science, economics and management, and law and political science;
  • to encourage applications by students from emerging countries, especially from Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and the new EU Member States and, at doctoral level, from industrialized countries.

The Eiffel Programme is a tool open to French higher education institutions in their search for the best foreign students. Applications are submitted solely by French institutions.

The French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs has entrusted the management of the Eiffel Programme to:

Campus France
28 rue de la Grange-aux-Belles
75010 Paris

For more information, visit the website of Campus France

"Make Our Planet Great Again" Scholarships

Many people applied to the Make Our Planet Great Again Program launched on 8 June 2017 by the President of the French Republic to attract researchers, teachers, students, entrepreneurs and NGOs who would like to develop projects to tackle climate change.

A total of 154 applicants were selected and are now attending master, doctorate or post-doctorate programs or are working in French laboratories for a short period in 2018-2019. Students and researchers will join the French MOPGA community, which now includes 32 scholarship holders, managed by the French National Research Agency (ANR).

Excellence-Major Scholarships

Established in 1992, the Excellence-Major Scholarship Program, established jointly by the Ministry and the Agency for French Education Abroad (AEFE), is part of the policy for promoting French higher education. at French educational institutions abroad (the list was set by the Order of 4 June 2010) to pursue university studies during five years in France. Each year, up to 200 new fellows are selected for this prestigious program on the basis of excellence.

The Excellence-Major fellowships are an instrument for promoting French higher education as part of French cultural and cooperation policy abroad.

They are designed to encourage student mobility and are a vector for cultural diversity that the Ministry and AEFE support through the network of French educational institutions abroad.

For more information, visit the website of the Agency for French Education Abroad (AEFE) [in French only]

Scholarships in Theology (call for applications 2018)

The Theology Scholarship Programme is intended for students wanting to study theology at French higher education institutions. The Programme offers scholarships to French-speaking students, first and foremost to members of religious orders and the clergy, at the Master and Doctorate levels (possibly at Bachelor level by special dispensation when the applicant comes from a country lacking the necessary local infrastructure).

The 2018 Scholarship Program for Religious Sciences is open to future religious officials who at some point may perform duties in a religious institution and to students who would like to study human sciences related to religious sciences.

Applications from students studying abroad have priority over those from students already living in France.

Nationals of the European Union and North America are not eligible for this Program.

Lastly it is important to note that in 2018 two types of scholarships exist: long-term scholarships (18 to 36 months) and short-term scholarships (up to 18 months).
The deadline for applications to be received at the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs is:

  • 27 April 2018 (changed to 18 May 2018) for long-term scholarship applications and short-term scholarship applications for Bachelor and Master 2 degrees.
  • 30 June 2018 for short-term scholarship applications for other degrees.

Candidates therefore should send their applications to the Cooperation and Cultural Action Service of the French Embassy in their country of residence, as soon as possible and before the dates indicated above. Applications that are sent directly to the Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs by a student or a school are not eligible.

For more information, please consult the following documents (in French).

"Quai d’Orsay/Entreprises": co-financed scholarship programmes

As part of its policy of attractiveness and of promoting French higher education, the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, through the "Quai d’Orsay/Entreprises" programme, has signed public-private partnership agreements with large French companies, designed to encourage and develop the reception of foreign students in France from the best institutions in their countries of origin.

Scholarships offered by the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation

Depending on their nationality or status, certain foreign students can also request assistance from the French Ministry of Higher Education, in the form of travel grants, means-tested scholarships and financial assistance for doctoral studies.

For further information, visit the website of the Ministry of Higher Education, Research and Innovation (in French)

Scholarships available under European programmes

The ERASMUS+ program for higher education contributes to the creation of a European higher education area by encouraging mobility in Europe and internationally for students (study or training period).

The program offers financial assistance which partly covers travel and subsistence expenses. This aid may vary depending on the host country chosen.

For more information, contact your academic institution to find out how to participate in an exchange.

Scholarships offered by the University Agency for Francophonie (AUF)

The University Agency for Francophonie (AUF) offers programmes of action for students, teaching staff and researchers.

For more information, visit the website of AUF (in French)

Scholarships offered by international institutions, non-governmental organizations and foundations

Scholarships offered by French local government

Regional Councils and other local government authorities offer mobility scholarships to foreign students. For further information, please directly contact the General Council or Regional Council of the region where you want to pursue your studies.

Scholarships offered by foreign governments

Certain countries grant scholarships for studying abroad. Students can get information from the Ministry of Higher Education in their countries of origin or from the scholarship authority.

Scholarships proposed by various organisations

This section is updated by the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs when informed by other bodies.

Updated: November 2018