Sciences Po Lille (Institut d’Études Politiques, IEP) is a highly selective institution specializing in political science, humanities, and social sciences (such as sociology, history and economics). Sciences Po Lille has an enrollment of 1600 French students and over 250 international students from 45 countries on 5 continents, providing an true international feel. The small size of the student body provides a sense of community for students who are not only academically gifted, but also active in the numerous organizations affiliated with the school.
Lille, the capital of the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region of France, is a city of contrasts. It is home to a city center with buildings dating from the 17th century while outlying areas are built up around modern industrialization. In and around Lille there are hundreds of museums, historic sites and buildings, and parks and recreation areas. The Palais des Beaux Arts de Lille, a local art museum, houses a collection of paintings, sculptures, and ceramics dating from the 15th century. It is considered the second most important art collection in France, following the Louvre. The city has a vibrant nightlife and on weekends locals meander around Lille’s many markets. Lille is located in the heart of Europe, and is only an hour from Paris, a half hour from Brussels, an hour and a half from London, and two hours from Amsterdam by train.
Optional (but popular) cultural excursions to political points of interest in Lille and Paris are offered at the student's own expense.
A Note on Exchange Programs:
Exchange programs require a balance of sending and receiving students, therefore exchange programs may not consistently be available in the semester you are seeking to study abroad. Please inquire with the GEO Advisor for the most up-to-date information on your program choice, and have some alternative programs in mind should the exchange program not be available or be competitive.
Academic Year (early September – mid June)
Fall Semester (early September – mid December)
Spring Semester (early to mid January – mid June)
Academic Year: March 16
Fall Semester: March 16
Spring Semester: October 1
After nomination by the Global Education Office students must submit an online application November 15 (spring study abroad) and April 15 (fall study abroad)
There is no French language requirement since courses can be taken in English. However, some French language skills are helpful for navigating daily life in Lille, W&M students without a French language background interested in politics, humanities, and social science courses in English are welcome to apply.
Students may choose from the full university curriculum, which focuses primarily on the social sciences. Courses are taught in English, French, Spanish, and German, with semester-long and intensive seminars. 1st and 5th courses are not available to visiting exchange students. Courses are finalized in Lille during Welcome Week.
Students with advanced French can take integrated courses. Students without sufficient French proficiency take courses designed for international students.
Except for History, all courses must be pre- or post-approved. History courses will be automatically approved as HIST 299 once students submit a syllabus to the Global Education Office. Grades will not appear on transcripts or be included in GPA calculations.
The tuition exchange agreement between W&M and Sciences Po Lille allows W&M students to pay their regular tuition and fees to W&M while taking classes at Sciences Po Lille. Students will pay for housing, meals, and other fees on site in Lille. Compulsory health insurance, which provides access to the French health care system, is approximately 220 EUR and will be paid on-site.
Students are also billed a $375 study abroad fee. International medical/evacuation insurance is required for all students who study abroad and a fee of $170 is applied to the student's account prior to the start of the program. Students are responsible for airfare and visa costs.
Students participating in semester long study abroad programs must have a visa and/or required entry documents. Please familiarize yourself with the requirements prior to applying and begin the application process immediately after you are nominated for the program. As a reminder, your passport must be valid for at least 6 months after the end of the program.
Housing and Meals:
As Sciences Po Lille does not currently have university housing, students are responsible for finding their own accommodation and will pay their landlord directly. Sciences Po Lille has launched a new housing platform to help students find accommodation. Thousands of accommodations from private owners, halls of residence, real estate agencies or rooms in private homes are available. Prices vary depending on accommodation and may not include gas/electricity, Internet, or furniture. There are no meal plans; students will cook or provide their own meals.
W&M student in good standing; minimum 3.0 GPA
For more information on this program and the steps to apply, please review the Steps to Study Abroad on our website.
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Approximate Decision Date (Subject To Change)
NOTE: 1. Applications are first reviewed by the Reves Center, and students nominated for the exchange program are notified. Application materials are then sent to the school abroad (and the school abroad often requests additional materials at this time). When the school abroad completes their application review, students are then notified of the final acceptance decision. This timeline varies greatly from school to school. In rare cases a student nominated by the Reves Center will not be selected by the school abroad to attend their university; the Reves Center would then explore further options for the student. 2. Any start and end dates listed are to serve as a guide for general planning, but specific dates are subject to change and may not include mandatory orientation programs or exams. Contact your host university for the most accurate dates.