Before arrival at École des Ponts ParisTech

French as a Foreign Language (FLE) courses are intended exclusively for École des Ponts ParisTech students.

French as a Foreign Language courses are essential for three main reasons:

1. to facilitate the academic and social integration of allophone student-engineers;

2. to develop intercultural and teamwork skills;

3. to prepare students for internships (short/long), end-of-studies projects and employability.

Therefore, the École des Ponts ParisTech requires that double-diploma (EFD) and trainee students have a minimum level of A2 (according to the CEFR) in French upon their arrival at the school.

UPON arrival at École des Ponts ParisTech

Exceptionally, at the beginning of the 2020-2021 school year, students' FLE level will be evaluated online. The placement test covers five language activities (oral and written comprehension, oral expression and interaction and written expression). Students can consult the evaluation grids upon request.

To assess your own FLE level, click here

According to the results, students will be guided towards the department orientation weeks or the French engineering studies preparation seminar (SPEIF).

The FLE section of the Language and Culture Department offers these students:

  • a French engineering studies preparation seminar (two weeks in September and one week in November);
  • first and second semester courses (around 30 per year)
  • personalized monitoring to help them improve their FLE skills.

Our students

The FLE section gives priority to international engineering students who are required to take FLE courses at École des Ponts ParisTech (double-diploma students, parallel admission international students and trainees).

Other Master's program students, doctoral students, researchers, etc., are accepted into FLE courses if there are any places remaining.


The School requires students with a level under B1 on the FLE placement test to follow the French engineering studies preparation seminar (SPEIF).

International engineering students are also required to take an average of two FLE courses per semester.  Students with a level higher than C1 in FLE are exempted from this requirement.


Each language course is credited with 1.5 ECTS (for 13 x 1.5 hours per semester).Rules for French courses

Rules for French classes

  • Attendance is mandatory with 1 absence allowed per course per semester.
  • Absences due to department trips/visits are not counted.
  • A second absence requires the student to do additional homework.
  • In any case, absent students must keep informed of what has been done during the class, obtain the documents distributed and do the work required for the next class.
  • Punctuality, active class participation, preparation for work requested by the teacher and meeting deadline requirements are all taken into account in the final grade (the validation procedures are listed in each course description).
  •  A suggestion box is available in B226 for student comments and suggestion

French engineering studies Preparatory seminar (SPEIF)

General objective

To facilitate the academic and social integration of international engineering students at the École des Ponts ParisTech.

Operational objectives

  • To become familiar with one’s new study context
  • To become more efficient in the methodologies essential to international student-engineers: summaries, presentations, note-taking, grading methods for scientific modules...
  •  To develop group and individual learning strategies (specific lexicon, quick handout reading, personalized reference tools...)
  • To develop general knowledge of one’s environment (historical, geographical, political, legal and economic, engineering and professional).

Students concerned  

After taking the placement test at the beginning of the school year, students with a level higher than B1.1 follow the orientation weeks in their scientific department. Those with a level below B1.1 follow the SPEIF in September (two weeks and one week in their scientific department). The 3rd week of SPEIF takes place in November.


Students must take two French courses per semester. The number of students in each course is small (around a dozen) to encourage exchange and progress. Each course (1.5h x 13 sessions) is credited with 1.5 ECTS.

Students with a C1 level (according to the CEFR) in FLE on the school placement test are exempt from FLE courses.

The French section offers approximately 30 courses per year, given in priority for international students in engineering studies. Other non-French speaking students of the ENPC (doctoral students, researchers, masters students...) can enroll if there are any available places.

Course offering

FLE courses are defined to meet the specific needs of engineering students (academic and professional writing and speaking, intercultural skills...), but also their interests (general and scientific culture, art and literature, current events...).

There are three course types that allow students to acquire:

  • know-how and skills for academic and professional life (Improving Academic Writing, Improving Academic and Professional Writing, Oral Communication, Speaking...);
  • intercultural skills (Francophonies, Multicultural Exchanges, Humor, Theatre and Society...) and
  • general culture and scientific culture (Scientific Enigmas and Paradoxes, Science and Ethics, Let's Talk About Art, Sharing French Cultures...)

N.B.: Students choose two courses according to their level and interests. However, they must enroll in at least one written expression course in the 2nd year (first and/or second semester).

 To consult the course offerings for second semester, click here.

Personalized monitoring

Personalized monitoring is also offered to students who request it and/or those whom teachers feel have specific difficulties. It is organized individually or in small groups.

It meets different student needs:

  • Phonetic and pronunciation training (by native speaker groups);
  • Job application preparation (internships): CV, cover letters, mock interviews;
  • Departmental work proofreading (reports, projects, syntheses...) and presentation training;
  • Or other specific needs (oral comprehension, methodological advice, etc.).

Contact one of the permanent teachers:



Jennifer LESSERTISSEUR (B326):

Amokrane KADDOUR (B226):


Since 2018, the CTI (Commission des titres d'ingénieurs) has required engineering students to obtain a minimum B2 level in FLE (Download the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) as part of your engineering training in France. This level must be certified on an external exam, taken at the end of your engineering studies in France (third year, before leaving for the Final Project).

Learn more about the TCF (Test de connaissance du français).