Université de Paris Sud - Science Only

Enjoy the benefits of being close to Parisian life while living in the pleasant town of Orsay. 30 minutes by train from the heart of Paris, Université de Paris Sud (Part of Université Paris-Saclay) is located in the Southwest of the French capital nearby Orly airport to easily visit other regions in France and Europe.

The university is ranked as the #2 university in France, and #42 worldwide (ARWU 2018). Paris Sud is considered one of the top universities in the world for Math, Physics, Astronomy, and Chemistry according to the Shanghai Academic Ranking of World Universities 2017. It is currently ranked as one of the top 7 universities in France by the 2019 QS Rankings, and is known for its beautiful, pastoral campus with substantial woodland and a botanical garden. 

Key information


Orsay, France




Fall, Winter, Academic year

Program type


Application information

Application status



20/21 deadline

First come, first considered for remaining spaces until full or:

Mar. 15 (Fall, full year)

Oct. 15 (Winter)

University-specific additional requirements

One academic reference required - see the Eligibility section below.

21/22 applications

Open Nov. 1, 2020

Program details

Areas of Study: PhysicsComputer ScienceMathematics and Chemistry. "License" refers to Bachelor-level courses. Most license programs in France are 3-year degree programs. Masters-level courses may be open to 4th year students, on a case-by-case basis.  

Course requirements:
In Europe, full-time course load is typically 30 ECTS (European credits), and exchange students at Paris Sud are typically expected to take 30 credits per semester. 6 ECTS = 3 UCalgary units (1 half-course). 
The amount of credits each course is worth corresponds to the workload/contact hours, and can vary from 1-30 ECTS per course, so please be mindful of this in your selection.

Please discuss the courses you need with your academic advisor.

The exchange agreement with Paris Sud falls under TASSEP. TASSEP is the Trans-Atlantic Science Student Exchange Program, a consortium designed specifically with the curricular needs of science students in mind. Canadian science students have access to a variety of European Partners in the consortium.

The academic year is divided into two semesters, Fall and Spring. The Fall semester starts early September and ends in December, Exams take place in January. The Spring semester starts mid-January and finishes at the end of June.

Please Note: French visa applications for Canadians may require travel to the Vancouver consulate to submit the documentation and take biometrics as needed within 3 months before departure to France, so students may not have access to their passports during that time. 

  1. Costs

    Exchange students pay their tuition and academic fees to the University of Calgary. Other expenses are paid directly to the service provider. 

    The cost of living in the Paris area is around €1,000 per month. See more info on cost of living here

    For study beyond exchange (e.g. through a Masters program), international students may be eligible to apply for several scholarship programs (Paris-Saclay, CRIF, Eiffel and Paris-Sud) to cover living costs. For more information on financial assistance visit the university website.

    Paris cost comparison vs. Calgary: Click Here 

    Also, don't forget to include things like visas, insurance, vaccinations etc in your budget planning. All students on exchange in France will have to pay roughly €215 for French social security on arrival, which covers some costs of medical care, but comprehensive travel medical coverage will still be required.

    Please Note: French visa applications may require travel to the Vancouver consulate to finalize your student visa and take biometrics as needed - please speak with the exchange advisor as soon as possible about whether this will be required for you.

    Students considering significant rail travel in France may want to purchase a Carte Jeune via French National Rail (SNCF), which allows for reduced travel for every journey over a year. 

  2. Funding

    Did you know that you can take your UCalgary funding with you on exchange?   
    Since you remain a degree seeking student at UCalgary while on exchange you remain eligible for any 
    awards and scholarships you are eligible to receive from the university as well as student loans.

    Our office administers the International Study Travel Grant for students travelling on approved UCalgary study programs that are credit bearing. The amount changes year to year as the money is split evenly between qualified applicants. Students may only receive the study travel grant once. Please see the exchange funding page for more information.

    France - Housing Aid
    All students in France who rent housing with a contract, regardless of national origin, are eligible for a National Housing Aid from the ‘CAF’, Caisse d’Allocations Familiales. For the subsidy application, please make sure to bring a copy of your birth certificate.

    E. Catherine Barclay Scholarship
    The E. Catherine Barclay Scholarship is a generous award of $7500 granted to one outstanding full-time student, registered in any faculty at UCalgary, who has been accepted by us to study for a full academic year (French-taught courses only) on one of our official exchange programs.

The International Relations Office of Université Paris-Sud can reserve a room in a CROUS-student hall for exchange students (fill in the online form available here). Costs range from a very affordable €155-470 euros per month, and full-year students may apply for additional housing reimbursement through C.A.F (see cost section above)

5 Student Halls are available around the Faculty of Science campus in Orsay:
-There are 2 student halls with private rooms (shared bathrooms & kitchens)

  • Le Bosquet (Les Ulis): approx monthly cost €165 (farthest from campus, 25 min by bike)
  • La Pacaterie (Orsay): approx monthly cost €155 (5 min to campus by bike)

-There are 3 student halls with furnished studios (ensuite kitchenette, private bathroom) 

For more information visit the university website

This exchange is open to regular, full-time students in the Faculty of Science, who have completed at least 1 full year (10 courses) at the post-secondary level, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.7 (B-). 

Courses at Paris Sud are taught in French. As such, applicants must have a command of French at the B2 level according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Language (CEFR) at a minimum, or have completed at least two 300-level or above courses in French. Certification of language proficiency may be required.

An academic reference is required for a complete application.

Are there options to learn French while at Paris Sud?

Yes. Paris Sud offers courses in French as a Foreign Language (FLE) for incoming international students throughout the year. These classes are offered at beginner, intermediate, and advanced levels. 

What supports or services are available at Paris Sud? 

Paris Sud offers supports for a variety of accessibility needs, including those who need technical or learning assistance, have permanent or temporary needs, need more time with exams, transportation, translation of documents into Braille, and more. For information on accessibility of campuses across Europe, ESN has created "MappEd!" which allows you to check the accessibility of universities and cities across Europe. For city-specific services and places in Europe, the Jaccede interactive platform (website and/or smartphone app - both Android and iOS) also provides a searchable user-built database to identify important accessibility information of public places and locations.

Have questions?

Study Abroad 101

Please watch this YouTube playlist before reaching out or booking an appointment.

Watch Study Abroad 101

Academic Advising

Before applying to study abroad, you should ask your academic advisor how an exchange might align with your degree (e.g. best time to go, what courses you need).

After you are accepted, you should ask your academic advisor more specific questions about courses/transfer credits. It’s also recommended to follow up with your advisor again once you return to Calgary.

Find your academic advisor

Study Abroad Advising

If you have questions about this exchange program, you can meet with the specific advisor for this program by booking an appointment through the link below. Appointments are currently on zoom.

1. Select “Book an Appointment”
2. Select “Study Abroad Appointments”
3. Select “Book by Appointment Type”
4. Read through the list of appointment types to select the most appropriate type and view available times.

Book an appointment

The exchange advisor for this program is: Saskia Schaelicke

How to Apply

Download the application guide

This PDF contains information on how to complete your application and what to do after you have applied.

Application guide

Identify three programs of interest

We recommend applying for your top three programs for the priority application deadline, as placement may be competitive. We will assess your applications in ranked order.

Check requirements and deadlines

These may vary by program, so check the individual program pages and make sure that you are aware of any different application deadlines or eligibility requirements.

Start your application

Once you have gathered everything you need, you can begin your application!

Please note: Applications will not be considered complete until all required documents are submitted in full.


International travel presents challenges that may not be found when attending classes on campus. There may be a lack of resources, emergency services, hospitals, accessibility issues and/or demands on the physical and the mental self, all of which can challenge individuals when away from their usual support systems and structures. Adequate preparation is essential.

For this reason, it is imperative that you evaluate all aspects of your own physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual condition against the rigors of the particular study abroad program you are selecting. If you are unsure of whether or not this program is a good fit for you and/or if you have any circumstances that could impede your enjoyment of the program, please contact us. Our Study Abroad Team will be happy to assist in finding the best options for you and arrange any supports or accommodations necessary to ensure your success.

Please note if you have or are seeking a certificate from Student Accessibility Services, you should provide this early to your Study Abroad Advisor to ensure that the option that you are seeking can support your needs.