Our French Language Immersion & Area Studies Program has two important goals: to improve your written and verbal proficiency in French through language and area studies courses and to introduce you to contemporary France and its role in the European Union. A beautiful and bike-friendly city on the Loire River, Nantes offers wonderful food, outdoor spaces, and stunning modern and classic architecture. Nantes is also the ideal place to perfect your French—with few Anglophones and a focus on full immersion, you’ll have the opportunity to fully integrate into French society and function completely in French.

This program has a close relationship with the Université de Nantes, so you will have many opportunities to enroll in local university courses. IES Abroad courses are taught in French by native French faculty, many of whom are professors at the Université de Nantes. You also have access to the university libraries, computer labs, cafeterias, and sports facilities, and you are welcome to join student clubs and other social and sports organizations. You may also enroll in an art course at the Ecole Superieure des Beaux-Arts (ESBA), or study Business and Communications at the AASCB- and EQUIS-accredited Audencia Business School.

Nantes is your classroom. Visit La Beaujoire Stadium to watch soccer games or Ile de Versailles to people watch and explore. Tour the museum and home of Nantes’ own science fiction author, Jules Verne. Take a stroll around town or near the Erdre and Loire rivers and explore what makes Nantes a model “green” city in France. Practice your French while ordering crêpes in the region where they were first made. You can also enroll in a teaching internship, which includes time spent working at your placement in addition to an academic seminar that helps you contextualize what you’re learning.

During your time in Nantes, you stay with a local family who can help you practice your French-speaking skills and get to know what daily life in Nantes is truly like. Get around the city on foot, by public transportation, or by bike, as Nantes was named the “biking capital city” in 2015. We want you to feel at home in Nantes, so we do everything we can to help you integrate into life in the city. From housing to cultural events, our job is to make sure you have the most authentic study abroad experience possible.

Quick Facts

  • Center: IES Abroad Nantes
  • City: Nantes
  • Country: France
  • Program Credits: 15-19 per semester (5-6 courses)
  • Language of Instruction: French
  • Language Prerequisites: 4 or more semesters of college-level French

Program Dates

After you are admitted, refer to the Travel Dates section of the Predeparture Information in your MyIESabroad account before booking travel.

Fall 2018

August 29 - December 15

Spring 2019

Early January - Late April/Early May

Upcoming Application Deadlines:

Spring 2019 - October 15, 2018


Our mission is simple: to provide you with the best study abroad program possible—which includes the highest quality academic and cultural experiences.

We offer unique courses that explore French language, history, and culture, as well as other topics, through an in-depth and hands-on approach. Our world-class professors and course options at prestigious local institutions enhance your academic experience and provide you with new perspectives each day in class.

While in Nantes, you take 15–19 credits per semester, and all courses are worth 3 credits unless otherwise specified. All courses are taught in French.

Create your own academic experience by selecting from the following required and optional components:

  • IES Abroad French language course (required, 3-4 credits)
  • French-taught area studies courses (required, 3 credits each)
  • French-taught courses at a local university (optional, 3 credits each)
  • Teaching Internship and seminar (optional, 3 credits)


This is a full list of courses offered in Nantes. After you are accepted, you will see a list of final course offerings for your term in your MyIESabroad account. The final course list for each term will depend on faculty availability, students interested in each course, and discipline diversity.

Art History

  • AH 313 - French Classicism: Art And Architecture (Fall)
  • AH 314 - French 19th and 20th Century Art (Spring)

Cultural Studies

  • CU 356 - French Cooking and Gastronomy: Food, Wine and Etiquette (Fall, Spring)
  • SO/PO/CU 352 - French Overseas Territories: A Model of Diversity Management (Spring)


  • EC 380 - International Trade And Globalization (Fall)
  • PO/EC 382 - The European Union and France (Spring)

French Language

  • FR 303 - French Language in Context: Emerging Independent Abroad (Fall, Spring)
  • FR 353 - French Language in Context: Independent Abroad (Fall, Spring)
  • FR 377 - Phonetics and Conversation (Fall, Spring)
  • FR 401 - French Language in Context: Emerging Competent Abroad (Fall, Spring)
  • FR 451 - French Language in Context: Competent Abroad (Fall, Spring)

Film Studies

FS 320 - History of French Cinema (Fall)


  • HS 358 - France And The Atlantic World (Fall)
  • PO/HS/IR 335 - The Palestinian Question from 1945 to Today (Fall)
  • RL/HS 342 - Religion, Society and the State in Modern France (Spring)
  • RL/HS 362 - Nantes Between Revolution and Counter-Revolution. Political and Religious Controversies of the French Revolution: the Example of Nantes (1780-1832) (Fall)

International Business

IB 350 - International Marketing (Spring)

Internship Seminar

IN 395 - Teaching Internship Seminar (Fall, Spring)

International Relations

PO/HS/IR 335 - The Palestinian Question from 1945 to Today (Fall)


  • LT 345 - Panorama of French Theater (Spring)
  • LT 347 - French Writers and Foreign Nations: Encounters with the "Other" in 19th and 20th Century Literature (Fall)
  • LT 348 - French Romanticism (Spring)
  • LT 349 - French Poetry At The Turn Of The Century (Fall)

Political Science

  • PO 371 - Construction Of A European Union From 1945 To The Present (Fall)
  • PO 372 - Government and Politics in France since 1958 (Spring)
  • PO/EC 382 - The European Union and France (Spring)
  • PO/HS/IR 335 - The Palestinian Question from 1945 to Today (Fall)
  • SO/PO/CU 352 - French Overseas Territories: A Model of Diversity Management (Spring)

Religious Studies

  • RL/HS 342 - Religion, Society and the State in Modern France (Spring)
  • RL/HS 362 - Nantes Between Revolution and Counter-Revolution. Political and Religious Controversies of the French Revolution: the Example of Nantes (1780-1832) (Fall)


  • SO 360 - Contemporary French Society: French Identity In The European Union (Fall)
  • SO/PO/CU 352 - French Overseas Territories: A Model of Diversity Management (Spring)

Theatre Arts

TH 343 - Theater Production (Fall, Spring)

Partner Institution(s)

The amount of credit awarded by partner institutions varies and depends on the number of contact hours for the course. Course offerings vary from semester to semester, and course listings and syllabi are not available until shortly before the beginning of the academic year.

Université de Nantes

IES Abroad students have been enrolling in courses at the Université since the IES Abroad Nantes Program opened in 1965. All students will be automatically registered at the Université de Nantes and are encouraged to enroll in at least one university course provided you have the appropriate prerequisites. You may choose to enroll in just one course or you can take the majority of your courses at the Université in addition to your IES Abroad French language class.


Most university courses are assigned 3 credits for a semester. At the Université de Nantes, most courses consist of a cours magistral (lecture course) and a travaux dirigés (discussion sessions). The lecture course is taught by a professor or a maître de conférences, and the travaux dirigés are generally taught by an associate professor.

You may select French-taught courses in:

  • Art History
  • Business and Economics
  • Education
  • Geography
  • History
  • Humanities
  • Languages and Literature
  • Political Science
  • Psychology, Sociology, Philosophy
  • Sciences: Biochemistry, Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Mathematics, Physics

Audencia Business School

Consistently ranked as one of the world’s top 100 institutions for Business & Management, the Audencia Business School is one of France’s elite Grande Ecole institutions, ranked sixth in the nation. Audencia has AACSB and EQUIS accreditation and offers French-taught courses. The Audencia Business School is ranked 6th in all of France and is highly international, with a third of the student body made up of international students.

IES Abroad students have access to French-taught courses within three parts of the institution:

  • Audencia Business School
  • SciencesCom (communications & media)
  • Ecole Atlantique de Commerce (business)

Ecole Supérieure des Beaux Arts (ESBA)

Fall and Academic Year IES Abroad students (with priority given to students with experience) may enroll in one course at this fine arts school. As registration takes place in September only, spring students may enroll only if a spot becomes vacant.


ESBA courses are practical workshops - you work alone with advising from the class instructor. Your evaluation and grade is based on your work and progress in class. ESBA offers you opportunities in:

  • Drawing (i.e. pencil, pastel, ink, etc)
  • Life Drawing
  • Painting

Courses typically earn 2 credits.


IES Abroad offers students the opportunity to intern as an English teacher while in Nantes. Interning as a teacher while you study in Nantes gives you a rewarding job experience with a wealth of long-lasting career benefits. You will:

  • Gain a better understanding of the real-life, everyday culture of your host country
  • Add global work experience and skills to your résumé or your application for graduate school
  • Improve your confidence

All of our teaching internships are supervised and earn IES Abroad credit. You participate in a 3-credit seminar to complement the practical experience you gain during the internship.

Teaching Placements

Participating in a teaching internship in Nantes as part of your study abroad experience gives you the opportunity to learn about the French education system and teach English to French students. No prior teaching experience is required. A teaching internship abroad will help distinguish your application for graduate school or a job opportunity. It’s an exhilarating challenge, and we’re here to help guide you in securing your placement and succeeding in your internship.

You complete at least four hours of supervised teaching each week, and participate in a seminar to complement the practical experience you gain during the internship.

Placements are available in écoles primaires (elementary schools), collèges ( junior high schools), and lycées (high schools).


We want to make sure that your greatest challenge is deciding which landmarks to see first or discovering the best café—not finding a place to live where you feel comfortable. We do our best to locate housing that is reflective of how the local students are living. Our goal is that when you leave Nantes, it will feel like home.


Live in a private room with a local family in a homestay. Many host families have been welcoming IES Abroad students into their homes for years. Only one student is housed with each family. You receive breakfast daily and five evening meals per week.

Student Life


The program begins with a 10-day orientation and language-intensive session that introduces you to the IES Abroad staff, your fellow students, and the city of Nantes, and prepares you for full French immersion.

A portion of your orientation takes place off-site in coastal resort towns, such as Caen, Quimper, or Vannes in the fall; and the city of Tours in the Loire Valley in the spring.

Additionally, CORE™, IES Abroad’s Comprehensive Orientation & Re-entry Experience, begins during orientation and continues throughout the semester with activities focusing on cultural adjustment, goal achievement, and preparing for the return home.

Extracurricular Activities & Cultural Events

Redefine the way you live and learn in Nantes through our cultural events, such as:

  • French table lunches with Center staff and professors
  • Trips to local opera and theater productions
  • Visits to museums, local industries, and exhibitions
  • Student theater performances
  • A weekly conversation club for French and IES Abroad students

University Clubs & Events

Upon enrolling in the IES Abroad Nantes Program, you are automatically registered at the Université de Nantes and have access to join student clubs and other social and sports organizations.

Eligibility Requirements

  • 18 years of age
  • In good standing at your home school
  • 2.75 GPA or better on a 4.0 scale (GPAs under 2.75 will be considered on a case-by-case basis)
  • 4 or more semesters of college-level French or the equivalent
  • Enrolled in a French course within the year prior to the program start date
  • Sophomore, junior, or senior standing when program begins
  • For local university courses - 3.0 GPA or better on a 4.0 scale (no exceptions)

Passport & Visa Requirements

A passport that is valid for at least six months beyond the end date of the program, with at least two blank pages is required.

A student visa is required to enter France. Upon admission, you will receive more information about the application process and any related fees. The visa application process for non-U.S. citizens can be extremely lengthy.


Fall 2018

  • Tuition: $14,075
  • Housing: $4,045
  • Insurance: $230
  • Total: $18,350

Academic Year

  • Tuition: $25,320
  • Housing: $8,090
  • Insurance: $455
  • Total: $33,865

Consider these prices as a starting point. We encourage you to contact your study abroad office to determine the actual cost to you when factoring in financial aid, scholarships, your home school policies, and other factors.

Program taught in:
  • French
IES Abroad

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Last updated October 8, 2019
This course is Campus based
Start Date
1 - 2 semesters
18,350 USD
Program cost Fall 2018
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