This program is offered through a consortium called CIC SPA consisting of Big Ten Universities plus the University of Chicago. The Montpellier program is administered by the University of Minnesota, but is open to all undergraduate students from CIC SPA institutions, including Penn State students.
The Language and Culture program in Montpellier offers courses in French language and culture for students with beginning to intermediate-level language skills. Classes in the Language & Culture Track are offered through the "Institute for Foreign Students" at Paul-Valéry Université and are designed for non-native speakers of French. Students may also register for an online, one-credit course, Global Identity, which is designed to help students reflect on their study abroad experience while overseas and to encourage them to deepen their cross-cultural sensitivity. Fall semester and academic year students are encouraged to brush up on their French skills by enrolling in the Intensive French Summer Program at the Institute for Foreign Students at Paul Valéry University, for an additional fee.
You will receive credit for all academic courses taken at this institution, and all of your grades from abroad will count toward your Penn State cumulative GPA. You may not take any courses overseas on a Pass/Fail basis. Students may not take sport activity courses (e.g. sailing, bowling, golf, etc.) abroad. These courses will not be credited at Penn State.
During the semester, students will enroll in a minimum of 15 - 16 credits, depending on French ability. Students can enroll for a maximum of 17 credits of regular courses during the semester. There is an optional 1 credit Global Identity course offered through the University of Minnesota for an additional fee, bringing the maximum credit enrollment to 18 credits.
Be sure to meet with your French Department adviser and complete a"pre-departure agreement" before going overseas. This will help you receive credits for courses you plan on taking while abroad. Any questions about this process should be addressed to the French Department. For more information about this program and about the range of courses offered on this program, please visit the University of Minnesota Montpellier, Language and Culture web page.
To see what kind of credit students in past semesters have received for courses taken on this program, visit theCIC SPA Montpellier Course Equivalency List. Keep in mind you will need to complete the course equivalency process once you have been accepted to your program and after you have completed your registration abroad. To obtain specific instructions on this process visit our Course Equivalencies page. To learn how the courses on this program can work into your individual degree audit, meet with your academic adviser.
Successful applicants will satisfy the pre-requisites established by the program:
Minimum 2.5 cumulative GPA
Second Semester Sophomore class standing or higher at time of study
Completion of at least 2 college-level French courses
Participants must have had French courses within 1 semester of participation in this program, or must be able to demonstrate required language skills.
Housing and Meals
You will live either in a homestay, where some meals may be provided, or in a dormitory (note that space is limited), where you will be responsible for providing your own meals.
For more information on program costs, please be sure to review the Fall Budget Sheet orSpring Budget Sheet. These budget sheets include information on costs that are billable to the bursar bill, as well as estimated additional costs. Costs vary by program, so it is important to review this information carefully.
Please note that tuition rates may vary depending on major and class standing.
Financial Aid & Scholarships
Penn State students studying through Education Abroad can use most components of their existing financial aid packages toward the cost of study abroad. This may include federal and state grants, VA educational benefits, federal student loans, and University scholarships and grants. Notable exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships.
The University Office of Global Programs also administers a number of grants and scholarships. Eligibility is based on academic excellence and/or financial need. There is also funding available for study abroad programs in diverse locations and for students from diverse backgrounds. In most cases, applicants should have a current year FAFSA on file with the Office of Student Aid. Funding opportunities may also be available through Penn State academic departments. For detailed information on financial aid and scholarship opportunities and application procedures, please visit theFunding Study Abroadsection of the Global Penn State website.
For More Information
For more information about programs and education abroad at Penn State, we encourage you to meet with or contact our Peer Advisers. These study abroad returnees can explain program options, give an overview of the education abroad process, as well as provide information about his/her program. If you are not at University Park, contact your Campus Global Representative.
To learn more about the specifics of each program, schedule an appointment with the education abroad adviser for this program.
For the inside scoop on life in a foreign country, be sure to check out the GeoBlogs of Penn State students currently studying abroad.
How to Apply
If you would like to participate on this study abroad program, you will need to apply to Penn State Education Abroad by clicking the "Apply Now" button on this page.
You must complete the following materials in your application:
Education Abroad Questionnaire
One academic recommendation
Visit the How to Apply section of our website for more information.
Please note that you will also be instructed to complete an application with the host provider as a part of your Penn State application either at time of application or upon acceptance.