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Education Abroad Office

Institute for American Universities (IAU)

Area: Global Direct
Location: Aix-en-Provence
Country: France
Term: Fall, Spring, Academic Year, Summer
Website: IAU Direct Program

IAU offers semester and summer-term study abroad programs in the historic Provençal city of Aix-en-Provence, France. Located along the Mediterranean Sea, IAU allows students to experience the culture of the south of France. The mild climate, famed cuisine and the arts give the Mediterranean region a distinct feel, unique from anywhere else in the world. While the city of Aix offers access to traditional French culture in an intimate setting, it still maintains the charm and elegance of a large metropolis. The quaint town is known for its beloved painter, Paul Cézanne, who painted the surrounding rolling landscape. Local excursions during both semester and summer programs provide students with an enhanced awareness of Provençal culture while giving them a unique and unparalleled French experience.

IAU's campus in Aix is centrally located just a few doors down from local French universities, shops, cafes and more in the historic part of town. The facilities have been completely renovated with modern amenities to suit the needs of the 21st century college student. IAU Aix employs a full-time student affairs and academic affairs staff to advise, place, house, and otherwise support incoming students for full semester, year-long, and summer programs.

Cost: IAU tuition rates + in-country costs

Requirements: minimum 3.0 GPA

Students will pay IAU directly for the program fee. Extra fees may be associated with certain courses that have additional requirements. This program fee will include tuition, housing, daily breakfast/dinner (homestays only), activity fee, textbook rental, orientation, health, liability and repatriation insurance, excursions, and scheduled cultural activities. Additional student costs include round-trip airfare, lunches, and personal expenses. There are many IAU scholarships that you can apply for to help offset these costs.

USC students will receive the following automatic discounts for IAU programs:

  • SEMESTER PROGRAMS: 22% off tuition (except IAU's Florence, Italy program: 28% off tuition)
  • SUMMER PROGRAMS: 15% off tuition
  • VIRTUAL EXPERIENCES/INTERNSHIPS: 20% off tuition (semester, summer) 

USC students who receive Federal Pell Grants will receive the following automatic discounts:

  • Pell Grant Plus Program – In an effort to encourage socioeconomic diversity in study abroad and expose more undergraduate students to international academic experiences, IAU will award a $3,000 grant to Federal Pell Grant recipients to be used for any of its on-site semester programs and a $650 grant to Federal Pell Grant recipients to be used for any of its on-site short-term programs (summer and January term).
  • Please submit the following form to the Office of Admissions in order to confirm your eligibility in the Pell Grant Plus Program. Students must have full-time student status at IAU, partake in demi-pension housing, and be currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program to be eligible. Kindly note that students would not be eligible for other IAU scholarships or grants by receiving the Pell Grant Plus.

Students attending IAU, Aix-en-Provence have the opportunity to take a wide variety of courses from IAU's program selection. Programs include: School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Marchutz School of Fine Arts, French Honors Program, and School of Business and International Relations.

To see courses USC students have taken at this university, please reference the Registrar's Course Equivalency Table

IAU offers its students in Aix-en-Provence, France, dozens of opportunities to explore and maximize their time abroad. From cultural and linguistic immersion opportunities to athletic sports, lecture series to soirées with students from the local French universities, IAU has something to meet the needs and interests of its diverse student body.

Per university policy, all USC students will be charged for  emergency medical, evacuation and repatriation insurance of  for their time abroad. Students will be enrolled in this insurance by the education abroad office prior to their departure. Contact the Education Abroad Office for more details.

Students in Aix can choose to live in a French homestay or in an apartment near campus. Students who live in a homestay must learn to adapt to the family's personal and cultural lifestyles, which are naturally quite different from student's own habits however this experience can provide students a very enriching opportunity to connect with local French culture. Students in homestays will have daily breakfast and 6 dinners/week included; students in residence halls must provide their own meals, using the shared kitchen inside of their residence hall. 

IAU's semester dates line up closely with USC's academic calendar with the Fall term running from late August to mid December, and the Spring semester running from mid January to early May. There are three different summer sessions students can choose from.

Orientation takes place shortly after incoming students arrive and is designed to help them become familiar with their new environment. Students are introduced to one another, to IAU and to Aix-en-Provence. They meet with the Housing and Academic Directors and with the staff. During this period, the academic policies of IAU are explained and information is given about housing, cross-cultural adaptation, safety and security, and banking options. New students are briefed on social and recreational activities such as sports, ski trips, local gyms, and excursions. French "partenaires linguistiques" show students around the city, answer questions about life in France, and introduce their new American friends to "les jeunes Aixois."

Students who attend IAU for a semester or Academic Year are required to apply for a French visa. IAU will provide its students with guidance to help aquire their visa. More information on the visa application process can be found HERE.


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