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Université Savoie Mont Blanc


Program Snapshot

Explore Chambéry, a gateway city to the French Alps, with its historical buildings, museums, pedestrian squares and streets with colorful café terraces, and world-famous opportunities for skiing and water sports.

The Université de Savoie offers a complete range of ISEP Exchange and Direct possibilities and provides a full and exciting program of complementary cultural excursions and activities. ISEP participants can choose from 3 options:

Option 1: ISEP Exchange Academic immersion. Take regular university courses taught in French alongside local students. Top fields include business, engineering, the humanities, tourism/hospitality, fundamental science, and environmental studies.

Option 2: ISEP Exchange Study in English and improve your French. Combine English-taught courses in Tourism and Hospitality management or Marketing and Business Management with French Language and Culture classes (offered spring semester only).

Option 3: ISEP Direct Language and culture program. Focus on French Language and Culture courses at all language levels from beginner to advanced.

Read a story by an ISEP student who studied abroad at Université de Savoie.

For more information regarding programs in France, please contact Lindsay Moats or check out her blog.

NEW: Students are now able to take the "Language & Culture Program" at Savoie on ISEP Exchange during the SPRING. Placement for this option is Extremely Limited. The Language & Culture Program is also available on ISEP Direct for Fall, Spring, and Full Year. Chance of placement on ISEP-Direct is Excellent.

The two Savoyard departments, gateways to the French Alps yet benefitting from the warmer climate of the plains and France's largest lakes, are bordered on the north by Switzerland and on the east by Italy. Savoie is about three hours from Paris and the Mediterranean coast. Tourists enjoy the area for its quality of life, magnificent natural surroundings, history and heritage, and breath-taking Alpine and cross-country skiing and water sports. Chambéry was the capital of the former Duchy of Savoie. Like Annecy 50 kilometers away, it combines the charm of an old city with the vibrancy of a modern economy. The Le Bourget campus is 10 kilometers from Chambéry.

ISEP Exchange: undergraduate and graduate programs available for an academic year or semester
ISEP Direct: undergraduate programs available for an academic year, semester or summer

ISEP-Exchange for US students.
ISEP-Direct site for students from all member institutions.
Summer program available.

Chance of Placement
ISEP Exchange chance of placement for US students is generally Excellent.
For the most current chances of placement, see the Sites Open for Applications for US Students

ISEP Direct programs chance of placement for US students is Excellent.
Chance of placement on ISEP Direct (summer program only) is Excellent.

Program Dates
Option 1: ISEP Exchange: Regular University Courses
Academic year: September to May
Semester 1: September to December or January
Semester 2: January to late May

Option 2: ISEP Exchange: Study in English and Improve Your French
Semester 2: January to late May

Option 3: ISEP Direct: French Language and Culture
Academic year: September to April
Semester 1: September to December
Semester 2: January to Late April

ISEP Direct French Language and Culture program available for semester of full-year.
See ISEP Direct Fees and Deadlines

The ISEP-Direct program fee includes the benefit package for: Tuition, Housing and Insurance

ISEP-Direct Program fees:
Summer 2016: $4,250
Full Year 16-17: $14,900
Semester 1 16-17: $8,400
Semester 2 16-17: $8,750

For priority consideration, applications for the following semester should be received before February 15 and September 1 unless otherwise noted. Rolling admissions are considered for ISEP-Direct before these final application deadlines:
SM1: May 1, 2016
SM2: October 1, 2016

Summer Program
The Université de Savoie offers a seven-week immersion experience in the town of Chambéry, located in the heart of the French Alps. Through a combination of classroom learning and cultural activities, students study French, gain firsthand cultural experiences, and explore the delights of the Savoie region.

See summer program information

Fast Facts
Chambery, France (pop. 100,000)
Student Enrollment: 12,000
Language of instruction: French
University Home Page
Joine the ISEP France Facebook Group
ISEFE (Language and Culture Program on ISEP Direct)


Option 1: ISEP Exchange: Regular University Courses

Chambéry campus - Social Sciences (geography, history, philosophy, sociology); Economics and Law (economic and social administration, public administration, law, economics and management, information and communication); Arts, letters, and languages (English, Spanish, Italian, German, French literature); Applied Management (international business, transport, tourism & leisure, hospitality)

Le Bourget campus - Applied and basic science, and technology, environmental, some engineering (biology, chemistry, construction & environmental engineering, civil engineering, geology, mathematics, materials science, physics).

Annecy campus - General Management studies and further engineering and technology departments (business, administration, electronic engineering & robotics, mechanical engineering).

Option 2: ISEP Exchange: Study in English and Improve Your French

This exciting new exchange opportunity is open to students who may not yet have the necessary language skills to enroll in regular university courses in French. Students are immersed in French culture and take classes in intensive French while earning academic credit in the discipline of tourism and hospitality management. This program is only available spring semester.

Option 3: ISEP Direct: Semester or Full-Year French Language and Culture Program

Students wishing to take full-time French language and culture courses must participate in ISEP-Direct. Institut Savoisien d'Études Françaises (ISEFE) at the Université de Savoie ISEFE is a university institute specializes in teaching French as a foreign language to students from non-Francophone countries. French language and culture courses are provided for beginner, intermediate, and advanced students. Courses aim to expand students'& knowledge of French culture while honing their reading, speaking, and listening skills. Students are placed in appropriate language levels according to a placement exam taken before arrival. Students can also enroll in up to two additional courses per week organized by the International Relations Office that are specifically designed for international students. In addition to these courses, one or two special seminars on aspects of French culture will be offered and three or four excursions and activities relating to aspects of French culture and contemporary life will be included in the program fee each semester.

Typical program includes (15 hours/week for 12 weeks, roughly equivalent to 12 US credits; credits dependent upon home university's calculation).

Academic Notes

Suitable fields are French literature, linguistics and psycholinguistics, applied foreign languages, hotel management, international trade, tourism, social psychology, sociology, modern history and history of Savoie, Alpine geography and stratigraphy, regional and human geography, materials physics, molecular spectroscopy and analytical chemistry, ecology, civil and architectural engineering, applied information science, artificial intelligence, optics, industrial microcomputers, photo-chemistry, and business technology (at Annecy campus).

The diploma programs in clinical psycho-sociology and advanced psychopathology are closed to ISEP. Some fields, including stratigraphy and industrial microcomputers, can take only a small number of ISEP participants.

ISEP Exchange
Students typically enroll in 6-8 classes per term which averages to 12-16 hours in class per week. A term runs for 12-14 weeks.

ISEP Direct
Students will enroll in classes according to their langauge level and will have a total of 180 contact hours which averages to 16-20 of class per week. A term runs for 12-14 weeks.


Transcripts are sent to ISEP and then immediately released to the student's home institution if there are no outstanding financial obligations. For ISEP Exchange students, transcripts will be available in March and July. For ISEP Direct students, transcripts will be available in January and May.

Language Notes

Option 1: ISEP Exchange: Enrollment in Regular University Courses

Language Recommendation: Level B1/B2: Typically 4-5 semesters of university level French OR 3+ consecutive years of French language study.
Language Notes: French language and civilization courses are offered in addition to regular university classes during each semester. Contact hours per week: 4-6 hours.
Pre-session: A two-week pre-session, intensive French language course is offered before semester 1 free of charge to ISEP students.

Option 2: ISEP Exchange: Study in English and Improve Your French

Langauge Requirements: 2 university level French courses or the equivalent is recommended in order to navigate daily life in France.
Language Notes: French language and civilization courses are offered in addition to regular university classes during the semester.

Option 3: ISEP Direct: Semester or Full-Year French Language and Culture Program

Langauge Requirements: No prior knowledge of French is required. Courses are offered at the beginning, intermediate, or advanced levels.

Special ISEP Application Instructions

All students studying in France must purchase French health insurance (la Sécu) upon arrival for approximately 215 euros in addition to purchasing ISEP Health Insurance prior to departure.

Hints for Researching Courses

A popular field of study on ISEP Exchange at the university is Modern Letters. Students can take French literature and grammar courses in this department. Click here for course offerings.

To find additional course descriptions, please follow the instructions by clicking the link "course information" above.

Housing and Meals
ISEP Exchange
Students are housed either shared apartments (private bedroom), or individual study bedroom with en-suite facilities. A meal plan at the restaurant-universitaire, supplemented by a stipend, is provided. No married student housing can be arranged unless both husband and wife are ISEP students.

ISEP Direct
Students are housed either shared apartments (private bedroom), or individual study bedroom with en-suite facilities. Meals are not included.


You are responsible for all of your personal expenses including: optional fees (e.g. computer, language, science lab fees), books, local transportation, entertainment, etc. The amount below is provided as a guide; the actual amount needed will vary depending on courses and personal habits. Your personal expenses per month, including books, are estimated at 200 euros. ISEP Direct students should budget between 250 and 300 euros/month for meals.

ISEP students receive a special orientation upon arrival that includes academic and administrative information and details about the various excursions and activities that take place during the semester. The International Office provides assistance and guidance regarding registration, academic affairs, organization of classes, exams and grading systems, and all administrative procedures. The "Student Welcoming Committee" assigns a local student as a contact person, responsible for providing a campus tour, an introduction to sports and other activities on campus, integration with the cultural and social activities in the city, and contacts with the local student body.


Host will provide arrival directions with acceptance packet

Community Engagement (Internships, Service-Learning, Volunteering, etc.)
No internships are available at this time.

Université de Savoie is a medium-sized university (12,000 students) with three campuses. Good facilities are offered (library, computing, sports, accommodation) along with special attention paid to assistance for induction, French language, "brush-up" sessions, help with administrative procedures, and organized visits of the region.

What Past Students have to Say
"If you are looking for a quaint, quiet, totally French town, then Chambery is your place. If you enjoy skiing or snowboarding, you'll be happy to know that there are tons of organizations you can sign up with to go to various ski resorts for the weekend with provided transportation." - ISEP student from Virginia Tech