The Institute for American Universities (IAU) is located in Aix-en-Provence (pop. Approx. 143,000) situated on the Mediterranean coast. The program offers courses in French language and a variety of other liberal arts and social sciences courses, making it an ideal study abroad location for any major. Homestays and a strong program of cultural activities complement the academic program to ensure students have a complete immersion into French culture.
Aix is a very beautiful old town, rich in history and local tradition. Overlooked by hills and Mont Sainte Victoire, Aix lies in a natural basin and is famous for its fountains, winding streets and sunny squares, monuments and churches, universities and thermal waters. The many concerts, the summer Festival d'Art Lyrique, libraries, museums, churches, bookstores, markets, and cafés have earned Aix its reputation as one of France's most engaging cities. A wealth of cinemas, restaurants, night clubs, and sports facilities welcomes Aix's students.
In Aix-en-Provence, you can find one of the finest examples of the famed Provencal style of architecture, and a walk through the streets is a lesson in artistic control, in form, composition, rhythm, and beauty. Within a few miles of the center of Aix, original motifs of many great artists remain intact. Aix-en-Provence allows easy access to Paris, Geneva, London and other major European cities. With Italy and Spain only hours away by train, Aix-en-Provence is ideally located for students planning to travel on the weekends.
College of Staten Island, CUNY
Senior Study Abroad Advisor
Questions? Contact me
This program is sponsored and administered by the College of Staten Island CUNY.
See here the Summer 2022 Course Schedule. Course descriptions and syllabi are available on IAU's website.
The Institute for American Universities (IAU) in Aix-en-Provence, France is chartered by the Board of Regents of The State University of New York and was founded in 1957 under the auspices of the Universitè d'Aix-Marseille. It is one of the oldest and largest education abroad programs of its type in Europe.
IAU offers four programs of study in Aix-en-Provence: The School of Humanities and Social Sciences, The School of Business and International Relations, The French Honors Program, and The Marchutz School of Fine Arts
Aix-en-Provence is a major cultural center, hosting a summer International Music Festival featuring jazz, pop, classical, and opera. Cinemas, museums, parks, restaurants, cafes, and night clubs, as well as a variety of sporting events, are available to students. The region is known for its sunny, temperate and generally dry climate, so sunshine and outdoor activities abound.
Aix’s location provides numerous travel opportunities for students. Field study trips are embedded into many courses; several others are organized by IAU staff. Additionally, students are also encouraged to strike out on their own and explore their new surroundings. Marseilles, the Mediterranean and the Maritime Alps are only an hour away, and Nice, Monte Carlo, Barcelona, Saint Tropez, Paris, Milan, Rome and Geneva are all within one day of travel, perfect for a weekend trip.
IAU prioritizes homestay placements for students due to the cultural and language advantages they offer; however, given the changes in availability and willingness in host families, it is important that students maintain flexibility and an open mind when it comes to housing placements. Moreover, as a result of the reduced number of families available to host students at this time, it will be necessary to place some students in student residence apartments. Students should be prepared that they may not receive their first preference for housing. Note that the costs of all meals, laundry, and cleaning supplies for the student residence apartment are the responsibility of the student.
Students are housed in the homes of French host families when possible. Living in a French home is ideal as it provides an immediate introduction to life in Southern France. Host families come from a cross-section of society; they belong to no particular professional or social milieu, but all are carefully chosen, and many have hosted American students for several years.
The homestay option offers students room and half board. Daily continental breakfasts and six dinners a week are provided by the host family. Students are responsible for lunches.
Bed, linen, pillow and blankets, are provided, and the room is cleaned weekly. Students must bring their own towels, and they are provided with one machine load of wash each week. You can request to be placed with another IAU roommate in the host family setting.
There is a multitude of affordable cafés, brasseries, small sandwich and grocery shops from which to choose. Many other food markets are available around town during the week.
- Prior French language is not required, except for internship.
- Minimum class standing - students must have completed at least one semester (minimum 12 semester credit hours) of college-level coursework at the time of application.
- 2.5 GPA or higher
- Students must be at least 18 years of age
Applications to Include
- Official transcripts
- One letter of recommendation from a teacher who knows the applicant from a classroom setting
- Statement of purpose
Internship - February 1
Regular Sessions - February 15
A valid passport is required. U.S. citizens do not require a visa for the summer program. Students with other nationalities may be required to apply for a visa. If this is your situation, please allow ample time (6-8 weeks) to apply for your visa starting with the Campus France visa application. Upon acceptance to the study abroad program, you will be provided with detailed instructions on the visa application process, if necessary. Additional information is available on the IAU Passports & Visa page.
Have you talked with your study abroad advisor about your home institution's application process? Your institution's deadline might be earlier than the CCIS program application deadline. Check now to make sure all of your material is submitted on time!
"I came to Aix. I spoke French. My ideas became realities and experience became my teacher. I am ready to never stop traveling!"
"Last year I studied in a program in a French university. In Aix, there is a difference in organization, courses and activities. At the CCIS program at IAU, I feel very secure in knowing that if I ever have a problem, there will be several people willing and able to help. I feel that the courses themselves are challenging. Overall, a wonderful experience in a wonderful place. IAU staff are very helpful and patient. "
The Europe and the Islamic World Seminar is designed for students interested in an academic and cultural experience in France and Spain.
Choose from three summer sessions to explore your creative talents while you also explore the French countryside and seek inspiration from the landscapes and old towns that have inspired some of the greatest artistic talents.
IFALPES, the Institut Français des Alpes specializes in the teaching of French language courses. Known as the "Venice of the Alps" with canals, Old Town, lake, skiing, castles, restaurants, Annecy is a bustling city all year.