French Field Studies

  • Scene of Paris from above

About This Program

  • Location: Paris, France — Sciences Po
  • Term: Full Year
  • Language of instruction: French
  • Eligibility: Open to NU students from all majors
  • Program type: Exchange Program and Internship
  • Program Credits: Minimum Credit Requirement

Full Year 2015

  • Application deadline: January 15

For the fall portion at IFE: students pay tuition for IFE’s Paris Field Studies & Internship Program.

For the spring semester portion on the Sciences Po exchange program, students pay Northwestern tuition equivalent to one semester (1.5 quarters). View all estimated costs for Sciences Po. Students will be charged the Study Abroad Administrative Fee (SAAF) for the fall IFE portion of this program, but will not be charged the SAAF for the winter/spring Sciences Po exchange portion.

Students applying to this program are eligible for IPD Study Abroad Fellowships and may be eligible for external funding opportunities. Students participating in this program are subject to Withdrawal and Refund Policies for Northwestern-Sponsored Programs.


The French Field Study Program is a full-year program consisting of:

Fall Semester at IFE (Internships in Francophone Europe)

During the Fall, students participate in IFE's Paris Field Studies & Internship program. This program prepares students to succeed at Sciences Po by helping them acquire confidence in French and familiarity with France and allowing them to develop knowledge about a particular subject of interest. IFE offers an intensive internship/academic experience for a small group of study abroad students, with individualized placement for work and research in a variety of fields including economics, political science, development studies, international relations, education, social policy, visual arts, theatre, and more. Students receive a thorough grounding in French political, social, and cultural issues prior to the internship, in the form of two lecture-and-workshop courses: French Society: Issues and International Context and The Political Life of France Yesterday and Today. During the internship portion of the program (12 weeks), students complete a seminar course entitled Towards a European Society, and report to a research advisor. The semester culminates in a long research paper written in French, based on the internship.

Linking the Two Semesters

Late in the fall term, IFE works closely with students and the Sciences Po to ensure proper enrollment in courses needed to continue the themes (and major field) undertaken by students during the fall semester. 

Spring Semester at Sciences Po

During the spring, students take courses at Sciences Po. Sciences Po is an elite, world-renowned institution that specializes in political science and also excels in history, economics, and international relations.


Sciences Po offers a broad offering of classes in the social sciences, emphasizing comparative studies in an international context.  Areas of focus include, contemporary history, economics and business, international relations, law, European studies, political science and sociology.

Students will receive a transcript issued by Sciences Po, and course credit will be eligible for transfer back to Northwestern as long as students earn course grades of C or better. Refer to the Credit Transfer page for information on the “C” grade equivalent and minimum credit requirement for this exchange program.