High School Abroad in France
Our program provides students with 150 language contact hours in just a few weeks.
After immersing yourself in unfamiliar practices and customs, you’ll become better equipped to interact with people from other cultures — in school, on the job, or in your personal life.
Studying abroad gives you the kinds of life skills that can’t be learned in a classroom — and shows college admissions reps that you’re already one step ahead in terms of initiative, maturity, and independence.
said their experience made them more aware of global issues.
said their experience with CIEE helped shape their college applications.
said they regularly use the knowledge and skills they acquired while abroad with CIEE.
Beaches, skiing, world-class museums — there’s something for everyone in Europe’s largest and most diverse country.
With CIEE High School Abroad in France, you’ll experience what daily life is really like for your peers in the largest — and most diverse — country in Europe.
All our homestays are located in the greater Midi-Pyrenees region, famous for its amazing food, fair climate, and cultural scene. Get ready to settle in towns like Villefranche-de-Lauragais, Montech, and Gourdan-Polignan. Conveniently located within a couple of hours drive of the Atlantic ocean, the Pyrenees mountains, and the Mediterranean coast, you'll have the opportunity to appreciate many of France's amazing natural landscapes and cultural destinations.
Discover the country’s rich culture and history, both in class and through your own personal explorations. You’ll advance your French language skills through intensive study and casual conversation, and build practical, real-world skills that will serve you in college and beyond.
Lose your voice cheering for the local rugby team during a close match. Try eating escargot at dinner out with your homestay (and surprise yourself to find it’s not as strange as you had imagined). Get a feel for regional slang, and build your vocabulary by chatting with local shop owners, neighbors, and friends of your homestay.
CIEE wants all our students to feel welcomed, supported, and empowered to succeed while studying abroad. Local CIEE staff have provided details about conditions and cultural attitudes that students with specific identities might encounter in France.
Upon arriving in France with your fellow participants, you will be met by CIEE staff in Toulouse for a multi-day orientation. During orientation, you will participate in a series of workshops focusing on a variety of themes — culture, language, academics, social norms, and current events — all designed to best prepare you for your experience in France. You will also take three hours of language classes to help prepare you for your language immersion experience. In addition, you’ll see some of the best that Toulouse has to offer!
Participate in an exciting scavenger hunt, where you’ll explore the city and put your French into practice. Visit some of Toulouse’s most impressive structures: the Basilica of Saint-Sernin, the Capitole de Toulouse, and the Pont Neuf.
France is well-known for its rich history, as well as world-famous art, architecture, food, and culture. With cosmopolitan cities, alpine ski villages, quiet countryside, and a bustling coastline, France has something for everyone. From the Eiffel Tower to the beaches of Nice, there’s no shortage of top attractions to explore. Wherever you’re placed to live and study, you are only a train ride away from a range of amazing destinations. You’ll have plenty of time to discover the country—on your own, with new CIEE friends, and with your homestay.
Tuition for this program includes the cost of one day trip and one overnight trip per semester. Trips will take place earlier in the semester to allow trimester students the opportunity to participate. These trips vary every semester, but some examples of past excursions include:
Albi (Day Trip)
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Albi is located just one hour from Toulouse. Join your CIEE cohort in a day of exploration and good food! Spend time meandering through the city, visiting some of the top sights.
Tarn-et-Garonne (Overnight Trip)
In the nearby département of Tarn-et-Garonne, discover the best of southwestern cuisine in a cooking workshop where you’ll chop, peel, and mix in a professional kitchen before savoring the three-course meal you’ll have helped prepare. Then, stroll around the city of Montauban, the capital of the Tarn-et-Garonne. A protestant city in a Catholic kingdom, Montauban has been labeled a city of art and history since 2015. You’ll be mesmerized by the paintings and sculptures at the Ingres Bourdelle Museum or the arcades at the Place nationale. You’ll also be enchanted in the medieval village of Saint-Antonin-Noble-Val and discover local specialties at its extensive Sunday market. Besides museums, city streets, and cuisine, the Tarn-et-Garonne also holds breathtaking rivers, mountains, and canyons for hiking, and canoeing!
Carcassonne (Day Trip)
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Carcassonne is listed by CNN Travel as being the second-best walled city in the world. Spend a Saturday with CIEE staff and your fellow participants exploring this incredible destination.
Tarn (Overnight Trip)
You'll discover Tarn department, one of the largest in Occitanie. Learn about the pastel plant whose blue pigment made the southwest of France a wealthy place in the Renaissance. Get your hands “dirty” by dying t-shirts with the pastel pigment! Continue to the small city of Castres, home of Jean Jaurès, the famous pacifist assassinated for his stance against World War I. With a local guide, explore this provincial city with its colorful homes on the Agout River, reminding you of Venice. Visit a small, pedagogical farm and learn the ins and outs of running a small-scale farm that puts the environment and the animals’ well-being above all. Lastly, hike in the Sidobre, famous for its natural granite formations!
What People Are Saying
"Over the last weekend in January, I went to a park called Les Trois Forêts with my host mom, my host brother, and my host mom’s sister and her two little girls, and it was the best experience I had. Not because of what we did (indoor swimming in a huge area, playing board games like a family, etc.), but because this was when I decided that I loved everything about this year, even the hard and the bad parts, and that I wanted to spend my life traveling and having moments like this one."
Madelyn F., CIEE High School Abroad Alumna
"I learned things that aren’t taught in schools: what is really important to me, what I want out of life, and how to be more open-minded and confident."
Sophie R., CIEE High School Abroad Alumna
"Everyone is shocked to hear that I studied abroad when I was 15 years old. I’m shocked myself — yet, quite frankly, I’m shocked that it isn’t more common to study abroad in high school. CIEE gave me an opportunity that most people have never heard of. The program transformed me into the person I am today, with impeccable people skills and the ability to adapt to any environment. I owe a huge thanks to the CIEE program. I am proud to be a CIEE alumnus!"
Alex A., CIEE High School Abroad Alumnus
Dates & Fees
- Be between the ages of 15 and 17 when the program starts and cannot turn 18 while on program.
- Be in the 9th, 10th, 11th, or 12th year of schooling.
- Have a minimum GPA of 2.5.
- Demonstrate, through the application process, their flexibility, maturity, adaptability, and readiness to face the challenges of living in a new culture.
- Have 2 years of French or equivalent.
High school abroad participants are NOT authorized to volunteer, take jobs, or seek employment during their stay.
For more information, refer to the detailed Program Essential Eligibility Criteria.
Priority deadline discount: Apply to a fall semester or academic year by February 15 and get a $400 discount. Apply to a spring semester by July 15 and get a $400 discount. Discounts are deducted from final balance.
Program fee includes iNext travel insurance. Full inclusions are found online.
|Program Academic Year 2024 38 weeks
|Start Date *
|End Date *
|Program Fall 2024 17 weeks
|Program Fall Trimester 2024 13 weeks
|Program Spring 2024 18 weeks
|Application Due Deadline Passed
|Program Spring Trimester 2024 11 weeks
|Application Due Deadline Passed
|Program Spring 2025 18 weeks
|Program Spring Trimester 2025 11 weeks
*Dates for this program are provided as tentative dates. Please consult with your study abroad advisor to confirm dates before purchasing your flights.
A resident of Toulouse with American and French citizenship, Isabelle received her Licence (BA) in English and philosophy and her master's degree in literature from the University of Paris–La Sorbonne...