Live and study for a semester in Montpellier, one of France’s fastest growing cities and an emerging cultural and educational center. Within easy reach of both mountains and the Mediterranean, and home to 100,000 university students, it is a young, vibrant city with a centuries-old history of intellectual advances and social tolerance. Montpellier is the ideal place to experience French culture as a study abroad student. There is no minimum level of French required for this program. 

Designed in collaboration with the College of Education at the University of Montpellier and the University of Minnesota's College of Education and Human Development, this program meets the degree requirements of students majoring in elementary education foundations, early childhood education, and special education.

You will leave this program with first-hand experience in teaching in a second-language context. By design, you will practice cross-cultural skills, develop empathy for being immersed in a new, challenging language and culture, and get a head start on classroom management skills and interpersonal interactions with students.

Two or three day-long excursions are planned each semester to introduce you to the unique character of southern France.  These day excursions are included in your program fees. In addition, the program’s social assistants organize activities in Montpellier to help you get to know the city and to provide you with opportunities to meet French students. Optional longer excursions are also organized by the Program Center staff during the semester and are offered at an extra cost if there is sufficient interest.


Students may choose between four different housing options in Montpellier. The cost of the homestay includes 16 meals per week, while the other housing options do not include the cost of meals. Additional information about each housing option and tips about budgeting for meals can be found in the Housing & Meals Guide

Course Description

This cohort-based model combines theoretical learning and practical teaching experience in a supportive and balanced learning environment. All courses are taught at the University of Minnesota Program Center and are taught in English, with the exception of the French language course. 

The program consists of three required core courses, plus electives in English. Most students enroll in a total of five courses for the semester (30 ECTS/15-17 U.S. credits)

Required Courses: 

Introduction to Elementary Teaching (3 U.S. credits)

This course focuses on the principles and pedagogical considerations for effective classroom teaching. French Education students may join this class.


Teaching Practicum (3 U.S. credits)

Students spend time each week assisting in the English language classroom in a local school setting under the supervision of the French classroom teacher and the course faculty member. Students are placed in classrooms corresponding to student interest and academic program needs.


French Language Course (3 or 5 U.S. credits)

Beginning-level students enroll in a 5-credit French language class that is divided into sections based on level. 

A1 Level - Syllabus for MONT 1001 (5 credits)

A1+ Level - Syllabus for MONT 1002 (5 credits)

A2 Level - Syllabus for MONT 1003 (5 credits)

A2+ Level - Syllabus for MONT 1004 (5 credits)

Intermediate and Advanced levels of French language (B1 and above) are offered in a special language program for international students and is included in the program fee. 

B1 Level - Syllabus for Advanced French 1, 3000-level (3 credits)

B2 Level - Syllabus for Advanced French 2 3000-level (3 credits)

Elective Courses

Electives in English are offered in the areas of youth development and psychology and French literature and cinema.

Electives - Course descriptions and syllabi 

At the Advanced level (B1 and above) students may also enroll in Program Center-based literature and culture courses taught in French. Interested students should contact their ISEP Student Services Officer to discuss current offerings. 

ISEP STUDENT SERVICES OFFICER Gretchen McCarthy 703-504-9980 | Thanks for your interest in ISEP Study Abroad! I’m your Student Services Officer and main point of contact here at ISEP. As you search for programs, I'll be available to answer any questions you might have. Feel free to contact me at any point in your search process for help, tips or advice.


(in English)

*This program is OK for Sophomores

Fields of Study

  • Area Studies

    French Studies

  • Education: Recommended!

    Curriculum and Instruction Early Childhood Education Elementary Education Special Education

  • Foreign Languages and Literatures

    French Language and Literature

  • Psychology

    Developmental and Child Psychology

  • Visual and Performing Arts

    Film Studies

Academic Requirements

  • U.S. GPA: 2.5 or higher
    *accepts lower GPA with explanation

Special Application Instructions

Students applying to this program must submit the following additional application materials by uploading them to the "additional documents" section of the ISEP application. 

1) Academic Reference 

2) Personal Essay

Please answer the following questions (max 500 words):

1) Why did you select this particular program and how does it suit your academic, career, and personal goals?

2) What do you think you might find challenging about studying abroad and how do you think you will meet those challenges?

Special Needs Support

  • Mental Health
  • Mobility
  • Hearing
  • Visual
  • Speech
  • Learning

Other Academic Conditions

While this program has no language prerequisite, students who have taken any French in the past should complete an ISEP language evaluation. Additional information can be found in the French Language Evaluation Guide

All grades and credits for these programs are issued in U.S. equivalencies on a University of Minnesota transcript. 

PASSPORT: All students must have a valid passport to participate in this program. If you do not have a valid passport, we suggest you start the application process as soon as possible. 

VISA/RESIDENCE PERMIT: Most students attending this program will be required to obtain a visa/residence permit. For more information on the process and estimated cost, please review the ISEP Country Handbook here.

Semester & Prices (based on your filters)

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